The way to love someone
is to lightly run your finger over that person's soul
until you find a crack,
and then gently pour your love into that crack.
~Keith Miller

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tonight was the last class session that I will teach this semester. Stage three exam then the final for them. Paperwork for me! They have been planning a crosscountry with their teammates for part of the last couple of classes. I've taught a bit on human factors ... and aeromedical factors, then let them get with their team and practice their new skills planning a trip. Some of them totally get the performance stuff ... some rock that little E6B ... we're got some pilots emerging. I like it.
Their planning looked ... like beginners ... which they are. I brought in a clean sectional and drew a crisp line with a pencil like they insisted on doing. I kept on enlarging it on the overhead... everyone was having a good time, but no one could see the line. I sat on the stool and got them to thinking about how that would feel in the airplane ... I highlighted the line. I promised them that it wasn't just girly. I showed them how Nav one info is written on my log with a purple pen ... everything N1 is purple including the radial at the checkpoints. Green is for N2. Heading changes, planned altitude changes , communication barriers ... all pilot inputs are highlighted or flagged some way. I showed them how I would fold the chart and the Nav log. How I would clip it together. I told them that this is how I would do it, but the most important thing that I want them to take away is to figure out what works for them. I told them the important part as they begin learning is to make a commitment to themselves to maximize the experience ... to enjoy flying the airplane towards specific targets ... work on time and speed ... take the winds aloft in to consideration, but realize that they post only twice a day ... I'm rambling. I told them to realize that each xcty plan should provide them with many opportunities to learn and to please not hop in the plane and punch up GPS direct and then chat all the way back and forth ... to please not cheat themselves out of the sheer pleasure that a well executed excellent plan will give them They'll learn more by putting more into it. I'm gonna miss them.

I did take the excellent advice of someone who has flown a very successful career without losing his swagger. He said don't piss the bosses off. Unfortunately, I had already done that ... several times. I couldn't bring myself to be disingenuous, but I did want to do the mop up on aisle nine. I thought about where he must have been coming from ... he's a savvy guy - the boss. It was easy for me to fashion a conciliatory statement that was genuine. I was glad I spent the time on trying to put things right ... righter ... without revisiting areas where we won't see eye to eye. He very graciously said he realizes that he doesn't have a way with words and apologized for a couple of specific things that he would have liked to have phrased better. He didn't have to do that. So - that was a great learning experience for me. Maybe next time I can avoid damage control all together by not indulging my ... myself.
So - good day.
I think I'm in a bit of a spiritual time out ... because I'm doing that thing where I want to pull God's hand along the way I want to go ... or maybe even "yank" my hand out of his and run ahead ... or maybe I should say headlong.

In my life I have learned how to be patience with other's. The few people that I do give any of my time to, I tend to be pretty decent with them ... patient ... pretty nonjudgemental. I seem to compartmentalize my own activities though ... I get pretty aggravated with myself when the ball isn't moving forward ... preferably at high velocity. Looks like I have some thinking to do here.

Monday, November 29, 2010

FI's best counsel is don't even think about it ... . He said, "I know you think you're a lot tougher then you think I think you are ... but I'll give you three weeks worth of instructing brand new foreign students before you're regretting the decision ... plan on keeping a pillow in the car ...". Then he went on to reminding me how difficult it would be for my family. He said if I feel like a 25 year old, more power to me but... . Then he told me to call a guy who has recently been there. So ... not very favorable! He did have some good insights.

I talked to some of the guys. They all think I should set my sights elsewhere. Two of the guys have experience there ... they said spins happen often because the student doesn't understand the difference between left rudder and right rudder ... they get uncoordinated then just kick it on over ... one guy said he had a near "event" because when he was saying full power full power, the student thought to pull power pull power. Everyone said get everything in writing because the "deal" tends to mutate. They think I need to push back to get what I want. Maybe.

Oh - new pretty green plastic came today - two new certificates, I wanted my numbers to all match and not be my social. The Wright Brothers have never looked so good! ... Well they probably have looked better, but you know what I mean.
This morning my husband asked me "What is the thirtieth anniversary?" It took me a minute to realize that he was talking about the traditional gift for the 30 anniversary. "I don't know", I said, "I'm not even sure of how to phrase the search." I thought I sounded unenthusiastic and so I said, "I think it's water ... like a trip to the Bahamas or something." He laughed - nicely. A minute later I said, "You know, asking me stuff like this just makes it worse when you show up with nothing." He said he is evolving. Maybe I am too. I'm not going to look it up.

Now, the house is quiet ... everyone is out chasing their day. I am going to put on some loud music and work in my house until the exterminator arrives ... our sons play ball together ... he has been the assistant coach for a few of the all star teams. He's a little younger than me ... spraying peoples homes and driving a school bus. Geez. We spend our lives doing all sorts of different things don't we. Choices that we don't even realize we're making.

I seem to be a little less sun-shiney then I usually am. My husband commented on that this morning saying my happy mood gets everyone off to a good day ... "I'm getting pretty tired of pulling that wagon" was my soft reply. The truth is, I don't know what is wrong with me. I know I'm going to find a job, and I know I like having some time to tend to some neglected items in my house ... and except for last year, I really enjoy Christmas. Everything seems to be "all good to go". I guess we all have those times when things seem out of sorts but we don't know what or why ... or how to fix it.

A new aquaintence from WAI texted me for some help on teaching XCTY planning - she is doing her Helicopter CFI checkride this week. After the exterminator guy I'm going to go spend a little time showing her how I teach it. This is the last week of my semester ... finals ... then Christmas break.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

I think it's surprising that I say "I really wish ... ". Or " ... Just because I wish ... ". Where did that come from? Do I do that a lot? I specifically remember being a kid who didn't believe wishes. I'm smiling at myself as I reflect on this because it just seems sort of, I don't know, maybe sorta sweet. Sorta silly and unguarded ... This week I'm going to pay attention to that word. Do people really even use that word?

A wish is a ------- your heart makes

... An incomplete memory. Jiminy Cricket? Gotta google that. Wishing star? No that's Winnie the Pooh.

I think I am very pragmatic about things ... then I reread a couple of my meanderings and see that I wish. If I could close my eyes and make a wish that I was sure would be granted, what would I wish for?

This week I'll be listening.

Here it is ... from Cinderella.

A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you're fast asleep
In dreams you lose your heartaches
Whatever you wish for, you keep
Have faith in your dreams and someday
Your rainbow will come smiling thru
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you keep on believing
the dream that you wish will come true
Sunday evening ... It's already dark out. Because of the trees, I guess, it gets so dark here. The house that I hope to build at the beach should have a window to capture the airport beacon which is NNW of the higher ground that my husband has been tracking. There is an unrestricted view of the beacon from almost everywhere on the island. For some reason I like that.
All the paint that I purchased last week for the kitchen has been applied. This afternoon I put up a full wall of chalkboard paint. Everyone really likes it. I am looking forward to seeing how it works out ... for me ... it may feel like another place for clutter to collect. The old cabinets are original to this house. I like them. They are sturdy, made of real real wood ... If you look very closely you can find imperfections that clearly indicate the hand of the man who built them. I like to think of him standing back admiring his work the year I was born. I've sanded, stripped, refurbished hardware, eventually replacing all the hardware and wood puttying the scars ... I always paint them high gloss white. They are telling me it's time to do that again. Tucked inside one of the cabinets I have carefully taped pictures of first the children (some all grow up) and now grandchildren of friends ... . Wonder who has spent the most time on those cabinets ... Me or the guy with the hand planer? The kitchen has never looked better, but I'm wondering how I'm going to get the remaining traces of black paint off of my cuticles!

So, those two Roman shades led to this update ... Naturally that extended in to the breakfast room ... Already freshly repainted 'cept for the woodwork ... and with just enough fabric for two panels to install across the top of those windows. What's the old saying ... If I close my eyes I can almost hear Momma say, "Idle hands do mischief make ... ". Did she make that up? This sort of mindless business is the perfect environment for me to start thinking down the wrong track! Hey, you gotta think it up first! Speaking of which, my little 6'6" brother called to chittychat ... he always has a joke for me that makes me laugh out loud ... Unfortunately, they are seldom repeatable. Not vulgar, just not polite. He is currently researching herbal remedies for memory loss for our mother. A month ago his blood pressure was through the roof ... exasperated because she refuses to call for her biopsy results ... Now he is convinced that she just can't remember to do so. (Yes, I did tell him what you said about no news from the Dr. is good news ... He needed to hear that!).

Tonight we might have been returning from Port A ... Maybe that's why I'm a little wistful tonight.

So, tomorrow ... A call to make ... That will most likely lead to another trip over there. I've calculated that it would take $500.00 bucks a month to commute for that job ... Which might have yanked the chain that turned on the light to the epiphany about the perspective that the DFE holds. (I had hoped that I was too old to learn things the hard way ... I remember writing something that I'll have to reread about "I doubt it!" ... may haftah do a little rethink ... ). Today I texted back and forth with a recently departed buddy. After he got finished bitching about his layover in Toronto (seriously - told him to shut up and go for a walk, or out to eat because I think Toronto is beautiful and remember all kinds of wonderful restaurants there ... silly boy!) we started discussing the options I am circling around. He thinks I might as well sell my soul to the devil as make a deal with one of the operations I'm looking at. He is a smart kid ... a smartass kid, but a smart kid as well. I told him that the King Air time is very seductive ... as is the MEI ... it'd make opportunities for me that I may regret not having if I take a pass. He told me to talk to FI about it first. Now I am remembering what he didn't say ... FI keeps up with a guy who plugged in there while on furlough. OK. Well ... I am looking forward to seeing what the week holds. I am thankful for the smile that looking forward affords. I really wish I could visit with favorite CFI on this stuff ... he'd have an interesting perspective to offer ... I think he has significant King Air time. Oh well ... I'll get it figured out. I read here in my ramblings that I hoped to wake up on Christmas morning with the certif done ... I'm ahead of schedule on that and I really think I may have a job to start the new year with.

Saturday, November 27, 2010


When I was in the midst of all the little and big fires going on at the flight school I trained at, I would wake up several times during the night trying to figure out how I was going to make it work. At some point, at least if it's your own money, you reach a tipping point ... where maybe you want to quit before you reach your goal (for a bazillion little reasons as unique to the pilot as their fingerprint) ... the guys call that a place where you are pot committed.

"Being pot committed simply means that you have so many chips already invested in the hand relative to your remaining chips, and the odds, that you have to call. Folding would be a mathematical mistake. Being pot committed happens much more in tournaments than in ring games. The reason for this is usually because as the blinds keep increasing in a tournament, the play is forced and there is more clashing with weaker hands. In a ring game there is as much time as you need, so players are all-in less. Also, the goals in the ring game are different than in a tourney. In a tourney you can play more recklessly, trying to move up the ranks. If you lose your stack you aren't nearly as concerned as if it were real money.

The typical scenarios of when you might be pot committed are as follows. Number one, if you don't have many chips left and you already invested some in a hand -- say being in the big blind when it was large or raising some only to be reraised. You know you don't have the best hand, but because you don't have many chips left and the fact that the pot is so large, you have to call. The next case of being committed is when you raise enough preflop to put more than half your chips in the pot. Sure you can still fold if someone reraised you, but since you have so many chips in the pot, it wouldn't be correct. See, say you have 100 chips and raised 50, only to be reraised to 100. The pot is now at least 150 chips, and you only have to put in 50 more to play. At that point it is correct by the math to call because you are getting 3:1 on your money and most hands in holdem aren't that bad
. " http://www.learn-texas-holdem.com/



What I liked, well, one of the important things I liked, about those particular training experiences was that the stakes were high for me ... as a person. My flight instructor said he'd never seen anyone who wanted to excel at this as much as I did. As I recall, he said that right after I realized exactly how not funny pot committed really is ... . Some time before that he had shared, in his round about way, about a person he loved (Hell no, he didn't say that) who went down on a routine training flight. I think, although he never said this, I think he thought I should be very happy (hear safe)maybe painting pictures of airplanes, or maybe cloud shapes. He doesn't know that I paint. What he does know ... what he learned about me ... is I really love to fly well ... but more then that, I see the airplane as a vehicle that takes the pilot towards who they eventually become ... better versions of themselves. There's some sort of inexplicable buzz that rising to the challenge downloads right in to your laugh out loud place. There is joy there. It took awhile to bring him around to the facts ... One, that I would earn a CFI certificate, and two, that he was gonna help me do that. At least, I really hoped so ... because he was the person I really wanted to work with on this very important (to me) project. I thought I was safe to trust him ... he seemed like a person who could make a commitment and not let me down along the way. I also felt that he would be able to provide objectivity along the way ... his experience level as a pilot and as a person, made him the ideal instructor for me to work with ... I respect him. I remember him nodding when I said something about this: "Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them." ~ Thoreau
I told him that I know something about death myself ... and worse yet, is the life unlived ... which I have also witnessed. I promised him I would be very careful with my earthsuit. He laughed when I jokingly told him that this (pointing up) was the only place where my children can't find me.

Later, with the temporary certificate in hand we debriefed the ride. It was a non event actually ... the time learning what the Inspector had to offer was the most significant part of the ride. The FI asked me, again in his round about way, what it was that working specifically with him contributed. I told him I would have to think specifically about that.

Part of it is this: "Friends... they cherish one another's hopes. They are kind to one another's dreams." ~ Thoreau

Another part of it is this ... many of the CFIs I've trained with over the years are really just guys who need to build time towards their hopes and dreams. That's okay. I get it. It's the way this industry works. On another hand, I have benefited tremendously from flying with guys who have a ton of experience, but no hopes and dreams ... not exactly burnt out, but more like killing time while they figure out who they are gonna be next. Those experiences were a little bit better then okay. Experience is like a patina ... there's a little something extra that just might rub off on the student. Then there's this ... this guy. I think he's teaching just because he wants to ... he says he wants to grow tomatoes too. [I told him some tomato buckets would receive plenty of light right over there near the fence out on the field. He said there is a dear problem with that. (His sweetheart is retiring pretty soon.) The guy is seriously witty.] I am still learning stuff from this guy. But most of what he taught me wasn't about flying the airplane. Part of what he provided was a place for me to learn about myself ... and he didn't mind elbowing me towards better outcomes. I think he is at a time in his life where he can tend to the hopes and dreams of his students. It seems to me that, ideally, that is who a Flight Instructor is.

At some point in this process I told some of the guys ... "If you're in this long enough you finally get it ... Aviation is like, Welcome to the tribe, oh, and by the way, we're cannibals." Yeah, they know I wasn't really kidding ... and yeah, we all laughed. A bit cynical ... booted.

Some of what I learned from sitting beside this guy was: Be aware, ... there are various size pieces of flying metal up here (those may be the least of your worries). There is shrapnel flying in the bravo sierra level too (Everybody does their time there as well ... expect it ... it's part of it.) Just because I wish the whole airspace was painted various shades of sun/moon washed blue doesn't mean it can be.

Maybe it can be summarized like this: Wear your boots, you know you're most comfortable in them, but don't let your boots wear you ... enjoy ...

... don't piss in the wading pool ... it ruins it for everyone.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Mirrors and twinkling little stars

I kept on waking up last night ... not in an unpleasant way ... just my usual pattern. The thing I really like about that is it gives me a very quiet, comfy, place to think about stuff. Last night in the cool dark of my bedroom that string of lights in the corner of my psyche illuminated something that I seem to have been stepping around.




This morning as I got ready for the day I recognized something that this blog helps me see about myself ... I am a tad spoiled. That comes a a surprise to me, because I had a different idea of what spoiled looks like ... I thought it must come with a purse pup.

This string of light pictured above ... little stars with suction cups, they can be easily "hung" anywhere a little glow is needed. I bought the mirror stars on the same day (at IKEA on a little walk around right after the CFI ride). Seems like when I come back by to read what I note here, I get to see a more objective look at myself. This is what I'm talking about specifically this morning: I said I don't want to work for someone I don't respect. Hah! Guess what? ... nobody does! I've been thinking about that leadership stuff, and also just the dynamics, or politics, or whatever you want to call them, that are part of every interpersonal environment. I say I don't want to play. Wahhhh! I do want to play ... I just want to make the rules! I want to play my version of fair ... my version of nice ... my version.

Wouldn't it be just peachy if we could all order up the ideal work environment. I'll take the new airplane with the awesome avionics and a side of what might be cooler to fly ... throw in a student, 'cause it'll be fun to watch their lights come on ...but hold the asshole who is trying to make the financial side of the field sustainable. I don't want to put on the allegorical boots and wade through the muck ... at least not every day, some days I like those cute high heel sandals. Boots will keep my ankles safe ... safer from the nasty little bites. I need to boot up.

And it is just possible that I owe someone an apology. I don't like thinking about that. I know I was right, but can see that he might have been a little bit right too ... and I might have been a little bit wrong not to see that earlier.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

It's hard to believe that it is already Thanksgiving again. I put the turkey in early this morning and boy did it smell delicious ... this year every thing seemed to go like clockwork. All five of our children were here and ... I wondered how many more holiday meals would be sorta like this one. It seems like things are changing with the kids growing up. My husband observed that we have spent almost 18 years in this house ... incredible. Five created the pecan pie this year ... best one ever! L, S, and I went for a long walk after lunch. I saw several different contrails crisscrossing the sky. People working another holiday, away from their loved ones ... reminding me of our troops who sacrifice so much so that we have the luxury of peaceful days like today ... taking long lovely bird chirping squirrel scurrying walks.



Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Joss Stone & James Brown Men's World

New to me - Joss Stone. "Killing time." "Incredible." "Natural Woman with Aretha." Worth a look. My favorite "Don't Know How".

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Today I might have been a bit of a bitch without even trying.
The guy who hired me to ground instruct has become a friend over the years. I know this is going to sound horrible, and it kinda is, but I do not like to make friends. I tell myself that is because I am too busy just managing my own life and my family. I tell myself I really don't have time for more relationships ... and the truth is, while that is part of the truth, another part of the truth is I don't like to expose myself to the disappointments that relationships frequently seem to bring. Friends borrow your stuff and forget to return it ... friends get a tiny little piece of your heart and they just don't seem to know what you've given them. I don't mean that in a big dramatic way ... this is what I am talking about: My friend ... the guy who hired me ... I can not remember how many times I've had his back, both at the office and in his real life ... I have gone way out of my way to do whatever I could for him and his family. He has never asked me for help that I didn't figure out how to say "you betcha" to it. I genuinely like him. Today, for the first time, we had a real conversation about my last several weeks at the airport ... since the DFE showed up and reneged on what I made my decisions based on. (Yeah, stuff changes and I am really not whining about that. I am very grateful for how things have gone for me. Working out the different route built me. I think things will work out well here in the next few months. I am fortunate that everything is on track for me.) What I said to my friend today was this ... when he asked ... I think he and the other supervisor could have, should have spoken up for me when the DFE was bullying me. I said, "When the shit started flying around me you guys stepped away ... on to other things ... more important things." I've seen it before. When the military guy was in the process of being screwed ... the guys didn't show up for him. They should have. That's what I think. On the other hand, I have the luxury of speaking up because I don't have to worry about health insurance or house payments or all the security that a stable income provides. I don't discount the differences of that experience. And ... I am willing to admit that sometimes I really should keep my mouth shut. Sometimes my boots wear me ... but I am mindful of that, and reallyreallyreally working on it. See, the deal is this ... when you don't think of someone as friend or yourself as their friend, your expectations are different. I think that has been one of the real growth areas here for me. From now on the guys I work with are just work buddies ... not friends. That's that boundary stuff that I've been needing to think about. Keep it professional, not personal.

Monday, November 22, 2010

I am reading about the life of Lincoln. His life was one set back after another. He is considered one of our most successful presidents. A truly amazing life story.
It went well - seriously tidy maintenance hanger. I'm like totally impressed with an operation that maintains well! I observed to the interviewer, "Wow, your fleet is extremely well maintained ... down to the correct looking air pressure in the tires." Not a small thing. Then he toured me through their maintenance hangar. The floors looked like Mommas ... I have never been anywhere else (including the NAS/Pensacola that was so orderly and dust free. He told me the head mechanic was retired Navy, formerly Blue Angel mechanic. I felt as though I could walk straight to any item that was requested ... the organization was epic. There was a red Harley tucked in one of the corners ... it didn't look out of place. I know ... I wasn't there to look at the maintenance hanger!
I liked their program. It's a little different ... they want a student to work with the same instructor all the way through their commercial multi (and they spend ten hours in a King Air and 20 hours in a King air full motion sim) I am not a multi instructor - he said you can be. I said I am in the business of getting my training money back in my bank ... he laughed. If I hire on they will provide the upgrade ... probably not as simple as signing over my first born ... we'll see. I liked a lot of how they do what they do. Still leery of the composite aircraft, but willing to investigate for myself and form an opinion. I sat in their twin Diamond Star ... and their Bonanza ... bumbuddybumbuddy bum bum. Pretty seductive.
I said, "How's that same instructor all the way through working out ... and why is that preferable?" He said the cultural differences and the language issues just make it more time consuming for the student to get used to the instructor and visa-versa. Hmmm. Maybe that makes sense. A lot of the interview, if you'd call it that, went really well. I think I could be happy there and contribute. He asked me to call the owner for an appt. on the 29th. I will. The important thing to me is to find my best case scenario and stick with them for at least a year or two.
Grit= firmness of mind or spirit ... unyielding courage in the face of hardship or danger. I met several of their students. I liked them quite a bit. They are here as the next generation of professional aviator at the discretion of the Chinese government. If they fail to complete their task with in the allotted time, their peasant farmer parents will have to repay their tuition and living expenses. I could see the grit in their velvety black eyes. I admire the courage that propels a poor kid half way around the globe for a seat at the poker table. That, the King Air, and the maintenance hanger.
Alright, I called them ... I have a meeting scheduled for 1:00 today. He said they have a new batch of students coming in. Maybe it will be a good fit.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Tomorrow morning I am going to call those guys who have a flight school about an hours drive away. I kinda hate to do that for a couple of reasons, but the main reason is I am afraid. What if they aren't hiring ( like I heard they are ). What if they are hiring ... I've heard their foreign students in the air ... They are never where they say they are ... I mean, I get the whole metric system conversion conundrum, but isn't NE pretty much NE everywhere? I've heard other pilots ask " diamond 123cf say altitude" or other little "where are you really?" type questions intended only to facilitate orderly traffic flow in this busy little uncontrolled space. I have never heard one of those guys respond. They'll call left base for 36 and you'll finally spot them right downwind ... They'll land taxi back and roll right out in front of the guy on final without ever making another call. They say words that lull you into thinking ... This guy knows what he's doing. I do the same thing with my Spanish. I'll think I said my cousin blahblahblah and then find out I really said my asshole blahblahblah ... It makes for a much more interesting story, but in the airplane, interesting is almost never the trajectory one wants to stay on. So, all that to say: if they aren't hiring I may be in for a disappointment, if they are hiring, I may be in for a disappointment. Tonight I thought of all the times my big brother " dared" me to do something ... Usually something that could potentially land one of us at the Drs office getting stitches, or in big trouble with our Momma, or both. I never see that abbreviation "lmao" without thinking of him. I have a tiny scar on my right thumb ... I took his pocketknife and peeled a layer of skin off when I was probably five or maybe six years old. We had seen some nonsense about blood brothers on one if those black and white cowboy shows. He cut his little finger. I remember saying, "You're already my brother" and him "I know, but that's just 'cause we have the same Momma and Daddy ... This is 'cause we mean it ... Come on I dare you." That's the first dare I remember ... The dare that made him my blood brother. We were big on daring each other. Sometimes I really wish I could call him up and hear him goad me on "Come on sissy pants ( we were real trash talkers ) ... What are you chicken?! And the hook was set with, " I dare you." Our deal was if you took the dare the other "darer" had to do whatever it was too. Thank God no one ever got really hurt. He did knock a piece of a permanent tooth
out once ... and had the cap over it as a reminder. Well, every scar on my skinny little sun browned legs was from zooming my bike over some craziness we'd devised ... or testing a parachute ... or whatever ill conceived notion was hatched in our mischeivious imaginations... . My ground school kids were trying to get me to say I'd jump out of an airplane the other day, and I thought sure I would given a proper challenge. I told them "no way, I wouldn't risk a broken leg for a thrill jump ... . I'm thinking about this tonight because I am feeling kinda chicken. A blood brother can sense that kind of weakness ... He'd dare me to if it took that. I'll go take a look at that program ... Obviously. It's been on my mind. If I have to, I'll dare myself.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The sheet rock work is genius. I know that sounds just a bit like bragging ... seriously I do great sheet rock ... drywall diva. I just get it. The joints on the molding ... let's just say beggars can't be choosers on that ... the new window treatments will draw the eye away from my amateurish corners, and I will sculpt a big smile into those tiny gaps. Everyone seems to like the change of paint. I'll probably be able to finish this project early on Monday morning and post a photo at that time.

Today I had an excellent idea for a Christmas ornament mobile ... can't really believe I haven't thought of that before. Five will love creating one.

This morning, bright and early, my husband told me he thought I should look for a CFI job at a place I know is hiring, but 73 miles from here ... yeah, one way. One hour one way was nothing when we lived in the metroplex ... but here it seems pretty far. I could easily do it for a year. It's going to take me a year to repay the cost of my flight lessons. A year of instructing full time will take me to a better place aviation wise. His office is about a mile from our home, so I'm sure he'll be available to pitch in when the need arises. All freeway with the music cranked up as loud as I might want for a couple of hours a day is doable. I'll look in to it.

Friday, November 19, 2010



Today I have been painting my kitchen and cutting cove molding to finish trimming out the new window over the sink. The window has been in place for about five years now ... I have been looking the other way on the molding. I am a huge fan of finishing what you start, but I remember when I stopped trying to make those mitered trim pieces fit j u s t r i g h t. Today the miter box was quite cooperative. AND(and this is a big and) I am aware of a product called paintable wood putty ... genius ... ! I seem to be a different person then I was back then, because I actually considered attaching the molding with hot glue. That would have eventually come back to haunt me no doubt. I did make one huge mistake ... and I don't know how to fix it. I accidentally bought and applied high gloss oil based paint to the new trim pieces ... and because it looked so fresh, to the rest of the window frame. Yeah ... a bit of a mess. I sanded oil based paint off of all the wood work in our house when we first bought it ... oil based high gloss white yellows. I think I have created a sanding job for myself ... sanding woodwork competes with sheet rock work for the position at the bottom of my "only if I have to list".
That fabric I bought yesterday got this whole thing started ... . The kitchen windows have been without window treatments. That fabric was specifically procured to remedy that. Roman shades ... quick and easy. A one morning project at most. Then, I remembered that mustard yellow door in the pictures from the beautiful Southern Living Dream Home ... beyond that door is a bathroom with a dark grey wall behind a gorgeous white porcelain bath tub. I like that contrast. Those exact colors are in the fabric I chose, so I thought, why not? Let me just say, I like the yellow ... some of it is up and it is very cheery. The dark grey I have planned for the ... above the cabinets (I can't spell that word). The yellow is only on the back splash and around the door that leads to the garage. This is a big change from the previous very restrained shades of vanilla ... soothing vanilla ... like sand at the coast. I couldn't help noticing, on the drive home from the paint store, that the yellow and dark grey are very much like taxiway and street colors ... we'll see. Now, I am noticing that the kicthen floor would love an upgrade ... uh oh!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

I don't know what the next few years will look like, but it seems like change for the better is in the air. I used to be well informed, hah, as well informed as I could be, about politics and National issues. I always vote, but I just don't spend the energy reading about and forming opinions on issues anymore. Leadership, for whatever reasons, seems to be in short supply in all levels of our culture.
How do you like these quotes?

I don't believe in team motivation. I believe in getting a team prepared so it knows it will have the necessary confidence when it steps on a field and be prepared to play a good game.
Tom Landry

A winner never stops trying.
Tom Landry

Football is an incredible game. Sometimes it's so incredible, it's unbelievable.
Tom Landry

I've learned that something constructive comes from every defeat.
Tom Landry

If you are prepared, you will be confident, and will do the job.
Tom Landry

Leadership is a matter of having people look at you and gain confidence, seeing how you react. If you're in control, they're in control.
Tom Landry

Leadership is getting someone to do what they don't want to do, to achieve what they want to achieve.
Tom Landry

Right after the game, say as little as possible.
Tom Landry

Setting a goal is not the main thing. It is deciding how you will go about achieving it and staying with that plan.
Tom Landry

The secret to winning is constant, consistent management.
Tom Landry

Today, you have 100% of your life left.
Tom Landry

When you want to win a game, you have to teach. When you lose a game, you have to learn.
Tom Landry

I grew up watching the Cowboys play ... make that win. Many of the young women I hung out with in college aspired to be Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders ... and of course the young men aspired to date them (the cheerleaders, ). Mr Landry became an icon for hard work, steely strap of your boots determination, focused dedication to one's objectives.
I've been interested in quotes for forever. Quotes are like snapshots ... they distill an idea. Why was I surprised when I happened on these quotes? Tom Landry seemed so silent pacing the sidelines with his fedora set just so and his arms frequently crossed over his chest and then suddenly flying up in to a signal.

I am happy to find these quotes just now. I have been focusing my surplus energy on aviation related endeavors. I don't sit well. I guess I was seeing this break wrong. I spoke with my very first flight instructor on the drive back home after the CFI check ride. He said my timing on this couldn't be better ... business for CFIs will be skyrocketing again before long. I've heard versions of that from several credible sources ... and I am embarrassed to admit, that as I sit here ... sat here, because I'm thinking about it differently today ... it seemed like the season was over and I wasn't going to be able to find a place to play (at this very serious stuff). I am very used to waking up, getting my people bundled and off, and then hitting this goal.

Goal complete, now what? I thought I knew.
Now nothing is what was echoing back. I don't want to kick clods around the airport.

I forgot about the off season ... after the Superbowl. I've been looking around my house for things to do ... and there are a few things to do. I will like painting the kitchen ... there is a spot of sheet rock that was removed to install a new appliance that I will have to repair first (I have a visceral reaction to the thought of sheet rock work, my skin and sinuses start feeling parched, but I can push through that ... it's just a tiny job, and it comes before the new paint color I want), and while I have my hands in wall mud, I might as well change the fixture over the kitchen sink. It's a square flush fixture now, but a pendant light would be an attractive update. I saw some amazing home fabrics yesterday ... and I know what to do with them, and I have some time for that if I use it wisely. The off season doesn't last forever.

Maybe the country has been in the off season as well.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

That student came in and did pretty well on his test. He was waiting on the front steps when I drove up and I wouldn't have recognized him in his ROTC uniform had he not mentioned that he'd be coming straight from whatever it is those guys do. I asked him why ROTC and he said he likes things that make sense. ( Don't we all?) He said he's aiming for a helicopter slot and I realized as I listened to him talk that he reminded me a lot of the only helicopter guy I've been around a little. I told him I used to know a man who said flying helicopters was better than anything. I'm glad I went to just a little extra effort to round this kid up. I smiled to see the light in his eyes as he talked about helicopters. I hope it works out well for him ... I hope he loves flying them as much as the guy he reminds me of.

I think you are born, and get to live life as a preparation for, and a way to choose, how what comes next - some people call it eternity - starts out looking like. I think of God as the Creator ... I believe the In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth ....
I do not feel a need to define for anyone else exactly where that in the beginning began, or even the how things were created. I am willing to start here ... where I have some ideas about how or what my experience is and leave everyone elses experience to them. In my faith we say, "a soul has a personal experience with God". I believe that is true. Usually, what is unsaid right after that is "and we will tell you what that should look like". That is the part that bothers me. I think I will eventually have a face to face with the Creator ... I think God gets me. I think I am a child of God. I think God created me for that reason, and then let me chose to be His child. I think I could have chosen otherwise. I think when the choice is presented, a choice is made.
Several years ago I bought a block of clay and began creating a face ... kinda like a mask. I just wanted to see if I could create a reasonable three dimensional representation of a human face ... just for fun. It was a lot of fun. My thumbs were just the right size to work the clay in to eye sockets and my little finger worked out just right for the nostrils. As I spent time on this little project, I made choices about the cheekbones, the jawline, the lips. I thought about the wonder ... really the majesty ... of being able to create a place that is amazingly self supporting ... that supports all the life ... that supports our lives ... that eventually led to my little life sitting on the front porch steps with a block of clay in my hands, awe in my soul, and a tear streaming down my cheek. I felt a tiny bit of tenderness for this little chunk of clay that was starting to look a bit like me. I remembered (Genesis 1:27) So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him, male and female he created them. Pretty sweet.
I look around and see his thumbprint and his little finger pretty much everywhere. I bet he had a lot of fun working out the details and I bet it was amazing before it started getting messed up. There's still an astonishing amount of beauty about.
I experience God as Creator ... an artist/inventor. I think our ability to make choices allows us to collaborate with the Creator on what is being created. We are not born finished products ... our choices take us to who we become.



I sat there on the front porch steps with the clay drying on my hands and wondered at the Creator able to breathe life into his creations and willing to let them choose what their experience with him would look like ... and eventually help to determine what they themselves would develop in to. I sat the mask aside ... under the boxwood beside the brick path that leads up to our front door. That was over ten years ago, and I haven't thought of it many times since, until today. The nose has weathered off, as did the lips, and there's a small chunk fractured off from the cheek. After I dug around and found it a few minutes ago, I put a leaf back over that one eye ... what remains of that little project looks pretty rough ... neglected ... left to the elements.
I guess what I came in to write about today is this: I sometimes forget that I am not a finished product ... I am still in the Creator's hands. Definitely where I want to be.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tonight's big topic is Aeromedical Factors. PHAK.
Basically, hypoxia,hyperventilation,middle ear/sinus/dental problems, spatial disorientation, motion sickness, carbon monoxide poisoning, stress and fatigue aka girlfriend problems, dehydration ,alcohol,drugs,OTC meds,scuba concerns ... what else? I usually talk just a bit about pregnant pilots (just in case), excess caffeine ... maybe I should have made arrangements to show them a photo I've seen of a disgusting looking barely opened crew meal. I'll show them the you tube video on hypoxia that they always like.
I spoke with one of my students who took an incomplete this summer because of a conflict with another University event ... I don't always go in after them if they can't keep up with their own stuff, maybe they need some time to mature in to someone who can become a professional pilot ... but this kid I particularly remembered as a good, hardworking student. I called him and left a message ... he returned the call before I had set the phone down. Turns out, he has been back and forth to home in a different state because his Dad (career AF fighter pilot) has had some cardio events caused by blood clots that have something to do with not wearing his compression suit and not taking his cumiden ... legit? I don't know. I typically give full leeway to credible whoopers. I did remember the military connection and I have heard of a blood thinner called cumiden (even if I don't have a clue how to spell it). Yes Mam this and that all the way to scheduling his make up final ... 32%of the total grade for a three credit hour class. Because of ROTC committments he is available only on Saturday (Oh, no way I say) or Wednesday night. I was really hoping to schedule him in to an empty seat in the back of the room while I teach ground ... . So Wednesday evening it is ... another night out of mi casa ... four in a row this week ... four in a row last week ... I think not teaching ground school next semester will be fine with my family.
I did visit with the FI this morning. We talked a little about my instructing prospects. He thinks they'll be needing CFIs by nlt January 2011. He thinks I should have kept my spot warm with the ground instructor gig. I told him that I have really really really enjoyed teaching this class, but I just can't balance the cost of all the bs with the few glimmers of joy ... last night I saw one of my favorites getting weather for a night flight ... I remember when he first came in, sitting on the front row, too intimidated to make eye contact. I will miss seeing them through the process, but there is a lot of stuff that I won't miss. I am certain that I can fill that void with family dinners.

It's sprinkling ... ahem ... drizzling here this morning. Last night, right in the middle of the monthly, has recently become weekly, instructor's meeting, I received a text: Flying the Mooney on Wednesday ...if you wanna let me know. Yeah. I wanna. I sent a note back ... uhhuh (Southern for "I would love to")...time? My buddy doesn't know what time. He has to arrange to pick it up in a different town, I believe it was getting an avionics checkup or some such. He has a corporate pilot plus type job ... meaning he is a salaried pilot who is on the hook for other to be determined tasks. I think his title is PilotBitch ... and I hope he has a lot of better friends (Hey, buddy). This morning I mentioned that I might fly on Wednesday to my husband. He didn't say so, but I was easily able to see that he thought I might be through with all that for at least a while ... maybe 'til January. My husband doesn't fly. He doesn't especially like to fly even with me! "Have you checked the weather?" he asked. Five piped in, "90% chance of rain". He was surprised that she keeps up with that sort of thing ... "For tomorrow I mean" was his reply. I was mildly surprised that he found the possibility of a flight objectionable. "What if it's raining after school." She would be delighted to walk home in the rain with that umbrella she keeps in her backpack I thought, but didn't say ... this isn't about that ... I don't know what this is about, but it's not about that. I don't fly very light aircraft with storms in the vicinity ... .

Sunday, November 14, 2010



This image really resonates for me.

I am a huge fan of quilts. I like the idea of taking scraps ... the useable scraps of something ... and creating a new beautiful something out of it. I don't think of it as recycling, but that is exactly what recycling should be. I guess I have a collection of old quilts.

Quilts. We didn't use quilts when I was growing up. Quilts were probably seen as too old fashioned ... post WWII the economy was booming ... people were able to buy new stuff and a lot of the old art forms became dormant. The quilts I have came out of someone's closet ... they are relatively unused. I repair them with scraps from the fabric of my family's lives. My children use them ... carefully because they know that I treasure them. I love seeing my fully grown children snuggled under those old remnants ... time has softenned the sturdy cloth ... you can still feel the love that went in to making them. When you are under the weather, a really good quilt helps you get better quicker then anything else! It's the love stiched in! I am beginning to imagine some of them folded at the end of a little bunk beds waiting for visits from grandchildren. I wash them in that wonderfully scented laundry detergent now, but later they'll just smell like the beach ... .

This quilt was one of many draped over airplanes in a maintenance hanger that I visited this week ... there were several sick airplanes under blankies in there. I didn't meet the mechanic, but I will. I'm curious about what kind of person uses old quilts over the airplanes in his care. This quilt (in the photo) is very special ... it is appliqued ... a very time consuming thoughtful process of decorating the coverlet. High quality workmanship. The hanger itself was very tidy. I liked being there. I like a stranger who wraps his airplanes in quilts.

Friday, November 12, 2010

After each certificate/rating milestone I create a commemorative piece. This is for the initial CFI. Still drying ... still needing a dab of touch up ... but I like it.





"Yes I am a dreamer. 
For a dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight,
 and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world."
 ~ Oscar Wilde



It's been an awesome morning ... two more possibilities came in for flight instructing. After doing some housework I went back to painting. It's been so long since I painted with acrylics ... well, I don't remember when. I am happy with the painting. My daughter who is back at home while her knee mends came in and said, "I really enjoyed hearing you singing this morning." I didn't know I was singing. This afternoon I am going to prepare Papas con Huevos for Four's Spanish class ... that is actually the kind of thing that I don't like to do. I like to do things for my children, but this is pretty involved with drop off at the High School and socializing with the other parents ... I am a bit of a grouch ... I'll like it when I'm actually doing it, but I don't look forward to it. Silly me.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

I've been wanting an airport light glass - I don't want to call it a globe or a shade, but don't know the proper name ... in any case, where I was had recently refurbished and the manager gave me this one. I've been waiting with the electrical components, aka the base, for awhile. I have worked up the basic talk on the aircrafts electrical system with a simple lamp as the prop ... whaaalaa ... now I have the lamp I wanted to use for this completed.
That was the nice surprise for the day ... I'll take it.


Looking forward to looking at an employment opportunity today. Part of going back to work at least part time was about helping me see how it really is out there ... I guess it's a good thing to have your eyes open. Almost every week I hear of a woman like me whose life partner has departed ... sometimes to that final destination, or the greener pasture along the way ... . I've be sheltered by my husband from many of the harsh realities ... he would like to make my transition towards what ever the future holds, less of a shock for me ... as my children grow up, I am working my way out of what my life work has been.
In life it seems like I've walked around with the expectation that people in general will treat each other ... well, as they would wish to be treated themselves. And that if that is not true in all cases, because it is just not realistic, that they will adapt to treating those people who are good players/team members as they would wish to be treated within the context of a team. That's just not how it is though, is it? One of the main reasons that I would never consider homeschooling my children is because we wanted them to see how it is while they still had the protection/support of family in which to process the insanity that abounds out there. It's funny, I've been kinda homeschooled myself!
While I was over in ATL I visited with a guy who is what I'll call a professional hero. He said this blog stuff is just an open door to any kind of craziness. I told him that I see it as a place to see what I say to myself ... to see what the day leaves with me, and what I do with it ... and then later as the page hits increased from just my own and my two specifically invited buddygirls, I saw it as an electronic front porch where neighbors with similiar interests might drop in. There are some pretty interesting blogs out there ... this doesn't seem to me to qualify as one of them!
Well, once again, I find myself with about thirty minutes worth of wet hair and somewhere else to be. I really hope today has a pleasant surprise in it.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tonight I have a small group coming in to retake their the Stage two exam. Another evening out for not a really good reason. When I gave them my availability, I didn't imagine they would schedule me for an evening! My bad. We have a birthday party slated for tonight ... in my dining room. The birthday boy has been apprised. I am also scheduled on Monday night. Last night I told these kids, "Absolutely no grades below 80 on this next stage check" ... every one of them is capable of better work!
Today I have been warming up to the idea that I won't be teaching ground school next semester. I'll get to see all of my son's baseball games ... I won't have to miss anybody's anything. I am surprisingly okay with it. Several times today I have thought, "I hope they get someone really good" ... IhopeIhope this and that. Then I remind myself that it is not my problem.
Tomorrow I have a look see set up at a different flight school. If it's not a good fit, I can look at another couple of ideas. Before we started our family I worked for the major commercial furniture dealer in DFW. I was one of their top account executives ... that's how I got that memorable bizjet ride up to Grand Rapids (yeah, obviously the highlight of the trip). In other words, I like and am good at sales. I know people who would like flight instruction. I'm starting to think working with adults outside the university setting will be ideal for me. That, and I have time to paint, and that painting I'm working on rocks.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Today I told the d of FE that I would not be teaching ground for them next semester. It's something that I really love to teach, but I think the way I feel about how things have gone here just make it not right for me to commit to another sememster of teaching. There are misunderstandings or disagreements or betrayals ... there are things ...that are worth working at to make rightthisdoesn'tappear to be one of them. I have learned that it takes more then one person to straighten up this kind of mess. And while I am in this mess, I didn't make it ... or even participate in making it. I haven't worked outside my home in so long that I'm just not that savvy to the ways of the market place. The FI told me not to let this ground job go ... saying it would make me very viable for the next CFI spot that comes available. What he doesn't know is that I don't want to work for a person who I don't respect and my ability to respect this guy is pretty much beyond repair. That would seem to be a basic requirement in the work place. The guys constantly complain about him ... as an adult I would like to be able to support him, but I can't ... it's better for me to not participate. It kinda takes the fun out of teaching these last few nights.

I did enjoy my painting today ... it's drying before the next layer goes on. It looks like a mess nowbut it's going to look really good. I can see it coming along.

9 November2010

Trying to learn how to set up a little sidebar onthis blog to shelve some of the contentthat I had removed (and backed up)but which I would still like to look at from time to time. Id like to have two differentsub categories ... one home for the quotes I like, and twoasort of personal prompt for lessons learned (or at least glimmered). So, this morning I added several posts from 2009 with the intent to figure this gadget thing out. But not right now. Right now Iamtorn between painting and prepping for ground school tonight. Painting is gonna win.
Friday, November 6, 2009
Quotes

"Avoid having your ego so close to your position that when your position falls, your ego goes with it" - Colin Powell

"The freedom to pursue an aesthetic quality in life is an added dimension, like being able to fly where others walk." -Truman Capote

"Do you have the patience to wait till your mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving till the right action arises by itself? - Lao Tzu

"If you are to be, you must begin by assuming responsibility. You alone are responsible for every moment of your life, for every one of your acts." - Antoine de Saint-Exupery

"Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm." - Sir Winston Churchill

"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, then to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat." -Theodore Roosevelt

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." Anias Nin

"When you're angry or frustrated what comes out? Whatever it is it's a good indication of what you're made of." H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

"Whatever you can do or dream you can, DO IT. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. - Wolfgang von Goethe

It's about love. It's about compassion. It's about kindness and faith. It has nothing to do about luck. You get what you give so give good." - unknown

"I sometimes wonder if fear isn't just God's way of saying, "Pay attention, this could be fun." " - Craig Ferguson, American on Purpose

"When one door of happiness closes another opens: but often we spend so much time looking at the closed door that we do not see the one that has opened for us." - Helen Keller

"Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action." -Benjamin Disraeli

"Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing you will be successful." - Albert Schweitzer

"There is only love, everything else is our resistance to it." - Terces Engelhart

"The quality of our lives is the quality of our thoughts." - Edward Ezekiel Isouve

"Every life is, ultimately, a story with a message." - Toni Raiten -D'Antonio

"We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think.Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far." Swami Vivekananda

"Pain is temporary, pride is forever." Marine Corps

"Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, an hour, a day, a year but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit however it will last forever." - Lance Armstrong

"Work is love exhibited." - seen on the bulletin board of a social worker working with food stamp applicants

"Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails." Proverbs 19:21
Friday, November 13, 2009
Thinking about Psalms 46:10

Philip Yancey - "PRAYER Does it Make Any Difference?" notes:'Be still and know that I am God" The Latin imperative for "be still" is vacate As Simon Tugwell explains, "God invites us to take a holiday [vacation], to stop being God for a while, and let him be God."... the first step to prayer is to acknowledge or "remember" God -- to restore the truth of the universe. "That man may know he dwells not on his own," said Milton. (pages 26 and 27)


Notes found on line at website noted below :
First, the injunction to "Be still" must be understood in the milieu it was uttered. The Psalmist addressed a cosmos in crisis. The crisis imperiled the creation (vv. 1-3); threatened the city (vv. 4-7); and besieged the country (vv. 8-11). In the crisis with their world falling apart, the people were afraid (v. 2).

Second, the verb "Be still" (Hebrew, rapah) is used 46 times in the Old Testament with meanings everywhere from describing laziness to ordering relaxation. Though the majority of versions translate the injunction "Be still", other meanings are "Cease striving " (NASB), "Be quiet" (NCV), "Desist" (Young's), or "Calm down" (CEV). In no biblical usage or context does the Hebrew verb enjoin God's people to meditate or contemplate. Rather, believers are to rest and trust in God.

Third, verse 10 contains two co-ordinate imperatives, with the emphasis being on the second command, to "know that I am God", not the first, to "Be still". With the first imperative functioning as an adverb, the verse might read, "Calmly (or quietly) know that I am God . . ." [2] Thus by their focusing upon the initial command, to "Be still," comtemplative spiritualists ignore the greater command, and that is, to "know that I am God."

The command "know," primarliy means, "to know by observing and reflecting (thinking) . . ."[3] As such, believers are encouraged to find comfort of soul by reflecting upon the saving works that God has both performed and promised. The meditation the psalm envisions is therefore objective, not subjective. "Be still" does not call persons to induce within their consciousness a wordless void or incubator in which state a mystical experience or word can be hatched. The cognitive command to "know" cancels that notion. In the light of God's mighty works and providence, the psalm exhorts believers to reverence Him. As the prophet Habakkuk wrote, " . . . the Lord is in His holy temple. Let all the earth be silent before Him" (2:20).
www.frbaptist.org/bin/view/Ptp/PtpTopic20060404145458


Ps 46:10
Be still, and know that I am God...
vacu- +
(Latin: from vacare, "to empty")

November 2009 - to remember also

I am taking a break. It has been my plan, for a long time, to earn the certificates and experience to be able to fly for income. I have turned out to be a person who doesn't want/need a lot of stuff. I like the stuff I have to be really nice - but if it's not that's not as important to me as it seems to be to a lot of people...it's not how I keep score...it's not how I assign value or self esteem. Working at things that I find interesting and challenging are what I like to do. Being decent towards other people and respectful towards them and towards myself is important to me. I am not going to be the best at every aspect of what I choose to do. That doesn't bother me. I am thankful that I have the luxury to make choices. Well, I guess we all make choices - what I am trying to say is this: Several years ago I asked some women from a different culture about one of their religious/social customs. From my frame of reference the answer to the question should have been common knowledge to the women - comparable to someone handing me a globe/map and asking me to point out Texas - something any school child should be able to do! The women looked at each other - no one knew the answer - they weren't embarrassed by their ignorance of their culture (The question was something like, "What does this festival that y'all are preparing to celebrate commemorate"? It'd be like asking a Christian - why do so many of the churches of your faith have a cross hanging somewhere in the building....) . The women were annoyed at me for asking them the question. I'm not judging them - I am observing a cultural difference. The women of that culture are not encouraged to think about stuff like that - that is the point I am meandering to. I am grateful for the opportunity to be allowed to follow my curiosity about things. I am grateful that I live in a time and place where I can exercise that freedom. I am so thankful for the people who have engineered and defended those freedoms. I feel an obligation to them to not squander those liberties.

I did spend several years finding my way to me. I sometimes question whether or not I am making appropriate choices about how I spend my time now. Should I still be keeping busy as PTA President and Garden Club - League of Women Voters - Literacy Council - Jr.League has started up in town - should I be doing that kind of thing? I cook well - am I messing up by not spending time planning wonderful meals and keeping all the grout in my home pristine? We have a "sock basket" - over the years I have become not the sock girl. 2x7x7=98 socks per week to chase ... they seemed to be less important than something else - so I went looking for it.

I would not have dreamed it would be flying airplanes. I do like flying quite a bit. I like that each of the tiny components of the activity can be done well - I like that there are little things and that it is a big thing. I like that I can learn about it by doing it and also by reading about it and thinking about it. I like that I can learn about it from/with other people. I like flying with people. I like that you have to discipline yourself towards it. I like that the discipline is somewhat transferable to other areas of my life. I like the layers of it. I like very much the possibility of helping someone else on their journey. It'll be different than mine - and I wouldn't participate in much of it with them - and that's good. I think when you come up to something that requires hard choices - something you can stretch towards - I think it's a luxury to have the opportunity to do that. The flying - and the stretching.

These last few months I have learned a lot about hope, trust,perseverance,humility,compassion, generosity and arrogance - I've spent some time thinking, some time laughing, sometime crying, some time seeking forgiveness, some time forgiving ... I'm learning how to love I guess. It's easier to love my people - the people I've chosen/promised to love. It's harder to figure out how to be trusting and loving in the larger context. It's hard to make one's self vulnerable. It's hard and easy at the same time. It is letting go of self...and control.... The stakes change - from what you're trying to get or protect to what you're willing to let go of. It is a sort of a realization that we are really all sojourning (broken/wounded) souls. It's hard to stay there.
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Milton

"Happy, but for so happy ill secured."
I like Milton. This quote - though out of context - is what I'm talking about with flying. I feel a lot of happy when flying. I talk about flight discipline - which is super important. I have flown with people who have the happy disciplined out of themselves though. Seems like it's pretty hard to stay with the joy - in the moment - and still bring that high level of competence aboard. That's the joy really - being pretty darned good at something that is so much like fun. When I first started flying I was just happy to fly - now I am also well secured.

Note added on 9 November 2010: This is the quote that goes with that big picture I am painting. It's gonna be good!
"We're never so vulnerable than when we trust someone - but paradoxically,if we cannot trust, neither can we find love or joy"~unknown


"To be trusted is a greater compliment than being loved."


"The two pillars of 'political correctness' are:
a) willful ignorance
b) a steadfast refusal to face the truth”
~George MacDonald


The key is to get to know people and trust them to be who they are. Instead, we trust people to be who we want them to be- and when they're not, we cry.” ~idk

“Love comes when manipulation stops; when you think more about the other person than about his or her reactions to you. When you dare to reveal yourself fully. When you dare to be vulnerable.”~Dr.Joyce Brothers

"Love means exposing yourself to the pain of being hurt, deeply hurt by someone you trust."~idk

"Faith is not belief without proof, but trust without reservation"~idk

"Someone who trusts can never be betrayed, only mistaken"~idk

T S Eliot
"No soul is desolate as long as there is a human being for whom it can feel trust and reverence. "Those who trust us educate us."

"You must live in the present,launch yourself on every wave,find your eternity in each moment."
"To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts, nor even to found a school, but to so love wisdom as to live according to its dictates a life of simplicity, independence, magnanimity and trust.”
~Henry David Thoreau - you gotta adore Thoreau
Posted by DeAnn at 7:03 PM 2 comments
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
400OVC then later 600OVC
What a great day to be a runner! Up first thing warming up on a couple of easy miles around the neighborhood before the real run begins...beautiful cool, moist, but not too wet, air. Perfect - really. I loved it when I was 16. I didn't even have to train - at 5'10/120#s in my running shoes (we called them tennies back in the day) - I was born to run. Back when I was a kid we all ran...we didn't have a lot to do I guess - but we had places to be. Seriously, I just ran...and jumped. I did jump for the track team during high school...ran to unwind in college. I didn't have a car til my senior year - I was on my bike a lot. This weather that we had today would have been perfect for biking.

Not so great for pilots.

I am not a runner now - I am not even a biker. I am thinking about picking that running stuff back up! I could be running on days like this instead of fretting about perfect weather! One of my college friends has spent the last 3 years working with a trainer - he looks like he has been doing a little somethingsomething. I've been training...I look like I have been thinking about pressure altitude and controllable pitch props. No one I hang out with wants to talk about props!
Posted by DeAnn at 7:23pm
Thursday, October 8, 2009


"When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You just know that your name is safe in their mouth." Billy - age 4
"Happiness project" - #6 - and last question

What am I doing to live life with passion, health and energy - this is the last question from the happiness project lady.

I floss my teeth every day. I love V-8 juice. I eat an apple (Fuji - my favorite) and grapes (dark seedless and frozen with walnuts) and flax and fiber in my coffee - everyday. I have had polyps removed twice now and am due in for another "excavation" (I have been putting this off). I am mindful that life is a gift. I am trying to accept that it is maybe good to "feel" things. I am trying to accomplish things that are hard and learn about things that are interesting - challenging. I am trying to learn how to hear God. I am trying. I wake up choosing happy and stretch before I take my dog out for a walk. I am trying to be thoughtful...decent...accountable. Not too sure about passionate - think that might be broken. I'll be looking to see where that is expressed in my personality.

I have really enjoyed this blog because it helps me to pause and think about some of my issues - who knew?

That's about it.
Basic Airwork - hot coffee and stability

I woke up during the night thinking about "basic air work". Essentially it is this - handling the airplane well...consciously practicing handling the plane well. In my log book there is a space where the CFI "signs" dual lesson and makes notes about what the lesson was about (commercial maneuvers, controlled field, emergency procedures etc.) - sometimes I make a note there (CJ go 'round 18 for collision avoidance, safety pilot w/, or unusual items of interest to me). Out of all those lines in my logbook - out of all of those places where someone may have written - basic air work - it is written only once. I wrote it. What I saw and realized I saw was basic air work is "basic". But we don't do much of that - we "go" out and practice lazy eights or steep spiraling descent. We practice the maneuvers that are in place as a vehicle to demonstrate our proficiency at handling the plane well in various flight regimes. What I've noticed (duh) is that when you handle the plane well - you fly the maneuvers pretty well. I really concentrate on basic air work now...I am always thinking about what could be adjusted what tiny little correction might be made ... I like the small stuff. What I want to do is remember that when it is my turn to instruct a student. We get so goal oriented in life that we neglect the basics - the foundational acts that make the "stuff" work well. I wonder what the basics are in my life. I think they may be different from one life to another...at least slightly different. I am going to try to list some but even as I think about this I realize that they are probably those "fruits of the spirit" mentioned in several different places in the Bible. Tiny tiny tiny on the inside of my wrist under the bracelet that is usually there I have frequently written (in pen)protects,trusts,hopes,perseveres. I think love may be - no it is - it must be "basic life work". I have been discovering that it is not always very easy to love. 1cor13
Now it is that time of day when I help my kids roll out. I sorta dread the commotion bc the girls have been on a fussfest of late.

Later - another note on this. I really wish I had taken notes on some of the exercises my best CFI presented as training experiences. I just wish I could remember exactly how he taught me what he taught me. I will probably remember as time goes on and I get to start teaching. I can see myself getting better and better at teaching them in the class room and that makes me feel good.
I like working with the beginning students quite a bit. It is really great to see different ways of working with different people paying off for them.
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Desiderata --notes for me for later

Desiderata written by Max Ehrmann in 1927
1. Go placidly amid the noise and haste and remember what peace there may be in silence.
2. As far as possible without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.
3. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.
4. Avoid loud and aggressive persons; for they are vexations to the spirit.
5. If you compare yourself with others you may become bitter or vain, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
6. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
7. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
8. Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery; but let this not blind you to what virtue there is.
9. Be yourself.
10. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love, for in the face of aridity and disenchantment, it is as perennial as the grass.
11. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
12. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune, but do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
13. Beyond a wholesome discipline be gentle with yourself.
14. You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here, and whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
15. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be.
16. And whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, be at peace with your soul. With all its shame, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.
17. Be cheerful.
18. Strive to be happy.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Just so I remember ...
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Caring

Lately - just lately - I have been thinking about the act of caring - as in caring about. It's easy to "not care about that", it's easier to let those things slide away (to the place where ice cream tries to make it better). That has not been working for me though - lol. I said, in conversation yesterday, that you have to not care "toomuch". You have to care in a detached way, I said.

What?!?! How does that work? I believe caring is pretty much a hands on activity. I don't know why I said those care "carefully" things. The friend I was talking with said "Whoa, that sounds like a I cared about someone and they hurt my feelings so now I'm going to care less...kind of thing". Which, in fact is exactly what it was and he knows it.

Someone else at work expressed his take on caring - If your last name is not his last name how much energy can he really be expected to expend on caring about you...something like that. Sounds a little cavalier...sounds like a good plan for keeping yourself detached.

My husband is reading a book that caused him to share this idea with me: Ones gifts (what they are naturally good at - their talents) are their "ammo", their passion is their target, circumstances bring those two things together.

I care. I care too much. That is one of the things I am really good at.

I am passionate about very little.

I think I can afford to care well for those things I am passionate about. I think I may even have a little bit of room to be passionate about more things.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Recent Cryptoquote:
Do you know what my favorite part of the game is? The opportunity to play. - Mike Singletary

Somedays are more noteworthy than others.
In addition to routine Saturday doings I learned something cool yesterday. I have a couple of different types of images I like to look at ... specifically, things I might see at the beach, and things I see because of an airplane.

I loved the time spent in the Keys because those two things totally come together there. But ... the Keys are a bit too touristy. And have nothing to do with what I was thinking about.

Yesterday I learned how to put the pictures I want into a file on my desktop and on my thumb drive. Yes, I know, welcome to 2003 ... next thing you know I'll be building my own PowerPoint's.

I have six large frames hanging in the den with photos that I took aviation related. I have some shots from the Naval Air Station which might replace a few of those. I also have a few (several) photos aviation related which were shared ... those I'm printing to share with students. I also realized that a slide show running while they do group activities may be a very nice bonus. I use you-tube videos to illustrate things from time to time. They really like that ... and the new FAA Cd's ... some of them rock. I think they rock ... some of these students don't have a clue who Harrison Ford is. Hans Solo was their Dad's guy.

Then there are those ten frames waiting for the beach photos. That's what I'm looking forward to this week ... and some weeding. I do my best thinking while I'm weeding flower beds.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

I went ahead and "stored" the last couple of days worth of reflecting/fussing. The bottom line for me is I want to work and I would like very much to repay the family coffers by working but I don't have to work. That is one of the things that the young CFIs enjoy messing with me about ... and while it is true that I'm not trying to make rent there are many valid resons why people work. Someone is saying I should write the letter outlining my grievances because the big boss has asked for it. If he really wants it, he'll ask for it again. I can do without the drama, and I don't need to cause potential heartache for someone who is trying to support a family. The other part of this is how it makes me feel to have someone wrongly imply inappropriate behavior on my part. It makes me furious. But then I quickly realize that anyone who knows me and sees how I do my life would know how ludicrous that innuendo is. Some one is saying stand up for yourself and I am saying it's just too silly to mess with.

The winds of change and circumstance blow in and all around us and so we find a foothold that's familiar ... and bless the moments that we feel you nearer. ~N.Nordemon

One of my favorite quotes.

This morning, for just a minute, I was reading about how someone used the wind ... not a tailwind ... it seemed like a weaker band or gradient ... not at a different altitude, just slightly away from the most direct course. I sat there looking at the cyclonic swirl tightening towards the L ... duh ... and then a little light started to twinkle.

One of the things that flying has seared into my psyche ... be thinking of plan B ... be looking for pieces of plan C ... . In the CFI training I was pretty thrilled with the quality of instruction I was receiving. Plus the FI was smart enough to set up scenarios that I just might not see coming. (Once I became accustomed to his ways I could sense something was going on, but not always what. ) Some of the extemporaneous take away underscored this idea that the straightest line to where you think you want to go, just quite frankly may not be the most promising or rewarding course.
I'm expressing a couple of different, related, ideas. I would have chosen to stay here to complete my training. I wanted my endorsements to be from someone who had worked along side. That's how I am. Going elsewhere was really good for me. I'm sure there's still stuff I could learn working with this instructor, but I was really ready to move forward. I'm still learning some cool stuff from previous instructors ... sometimes the light flickers on later.
Also, having an opportunity to see that I can't see the big picture sometimes is pretty cool. I have laughed at myself. He says when the student is doing all the work and the instructor is just sitting there it's pretty easy to see what could happen and subtly steer the experience towards that learning place. I hope that true. So ... there's a big picture in life too. I thought I would finish here and then just start instructing here. Wrong on finish here worked out so much better then I would ever have dreamed. Wrong about instructing here may be way cool too.

Plan A isn't looking as wonderful as it did 2 months ago. I've set up a meeting to explore plan B. I can see some of the pieces to a plan C. I like it. I want to get "to teach". There are ways to do that other then just barrel through with plan A ... is that the expression? I may not have to plan to refuel en route ... I may be able to reach that destination with an elegant solution rather then what might be comparable to brute force (and depleted resources). There are constraints that I have chosen to work within, but the winds of change and circumstance maybe just a bit more favorable just slightly off what I thought was the course.

On a different topic - those breaks on landing at PDK. The brake disc had "coned". The mechanic here and I were talking about some of the possibilities and he offered that as one. We changed the brake pads on one of our vehicles today and I had an opportunity to look at it and put my hands on it and I'm pretty sure that was part of the problem. Maybe the distorted disc nicked the hydraulic line ... I don't know. I think I'll call the mechanic over there and see what he says.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Two things: One, my friend who knows me well called yesterday and said it seems like I have veered a little off track and I said yeah - that stuff I was doing is done and I'm just waiting to see what comes next. She was like uhhuh.
Me, sitting around, looking at the queso dip that mysteriously appeared on my new lamp shade, is not a very good version of me. I like the me that is accomplishing. We all know that house work is unrelenting ... it's just a fact that the trash can't carry itself out. H also called yesterday. She wondered how one gets that icky film out of the washing machine ... these are the daily concerns that we ladies who lunch deal with. Yes. I knew exactly what she was talking about and was able to offer a couple of tested remedies. Isn't it ironic that a washing machine will not keep itself clean? Remember the Beaver's mom? June Cleaver, right? Her house was impeccably tidy ... those black and white homemakers (including crusty uncle Charlie and the urbane Mr.French) set the standard that women from my vintage strive to attain. I wondered why June always wore her pearls and heels ... I realize now that she did so because she never left the house and she wanted to feel fabulous somewhere ... .
So,my buddygirl's uhhuh was more then an acknowledgement that I have completed an objective ... she thinks I may need to take a look at myself rather then that Queso. I have thought to get in the car and drive to the coast, but it's not the time for that.

Two, from thinking and re-reading that ground school post, I see something that I do know how to work on. I need to help my students see themselves in the airplane from the beginning. They show up in the class because they think they want to fly ... but they don't see themselves as pilots yet. My students are largely visually motivated ... the guys who tend to fall behind are the guys who are not flying concurrent with ground school. Sitting in the airplane makes the knowledge portion doable ... . I know that motivates them. I need to think of some ways to enliven ground school. The beginning material that is presented as a lecture ... those early bites need some seasoning. Seeing what pilots see will help with that. We see some really cool stuff.

I want some flight students. I'm missing the airplane. I'm missing what I see from there. The bug poop on the leading edges doesn't bother me like the spider webs on my front porch do! But today, I am going to bring my better self to the task of house wifery ... ha, I like it ... I am going to go find some snazzy shoes and a necklace and I am going to get that glob of queso gone. I might even hum along with some Glen Miller.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Tonight's ground school lesson is where I really wish the whole thing could begin.

Unfortunately, they do not fall in love with aerodynamics. They are not ready to understand what makes it fly ... they want to skip ahead thinking the subtleties are unimportant, or more likely that they will learn about them along the way ... when it matters. Systems ... a little more interesting, but still somewhat irrelevant ... aren't all our airplanes in top notch shape? What could go wrong? Whatever it is won't happen to them ... most of them think the CFI is there to handle that, whatever that is. No one has soloed when we cover those foundationa lectures. Later ... the weather theory lectures and weather products ... they learn to read the METARS ... experience comes with experiencing. They haven't experienced much yet. They haven't felt the wonder and raw beauty of it yet. I am getting some amazing pictures ready for them to look at to help capture their imaginations. The regs ... delivered as a lecture ... I am continuously working on weaving the regs in as appropriate ... spoon fed doesn't go down well. I love the lectures on performance and weights/balances. I was away for the performance part, the W/B lectures were lively and well received. Tonight we began talking about planning cross countries. They are beginning to see where all their work this semester comes together. They are just beginning to see themselves ... alone ... navigating. They don't naturally take to the notion of pilotage and dead reckonning ... they are all about the GPS. These guys, like my own children, were still sitting in booster chairs when they started button pushing their first game boy. I love to fly little two hour rectangular flights challenging myself to be over each of the points when I projected I would be. Nerdy, I know. I told them there is a time for following the pink line ... setting the auto pilot ... sure. I encouraged them not to cheat themselves out of the joy of planning and executing a flight well.