A Present of Perspective.

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Nestled in a comfy spot on the couch with my iPad, I was about to click on Pinterest and look for tree ideas for a Farm House Christmas when my husband comes into the living room with an announcement.  He suddenly has a great idea about the master bath downstairs and suggests we move our bedroom to the first floor.  He gave me a whole plan of what we could do. 

What? I just wanted to figure out where to put a Christmas tree.

Within minutes my thoughts went from a Christmas tree to a bathroom makeover.  Do you want to know what my first concern was when he landed the idea into my lap?

The downstairs bathroom only has one sink! How am I going to go to his and her sink and abundant counter space to one sink?  Not only that, if we move our master bedroom downstairs, it means I have to move my office upstairs. What will happen to my sanctuary?

Here I was merely thinking about where to put the Christmas tree.  Maybe I should just put the tree in the bathroom and call it done. (hahaha)

So for the last few days, I have been thinking about a bathroom remodel and where to put the tree. Both of them require rearranging things.  I tend to rearrange things in my home as therapy.  Though, right now, I see a different kind of treatment may be with wine.

The view I wish to have

I once read If you want a different perspective change your view.  Let’s face it a new bathroom and rearranging the furniture for the Christmas tree will definitely change my view.

But I’m also praying for a new perspective on some big decisions and new paths that God has me on. All of which overwhelm me. Honestly, I could use a new perspective in quite a few areas this time of year:

1.Holiday expectations. I have hopes of how our home will look to who will be here.  How much are we going to spend on our kids and family? Since Jeff’s schedule changes from year to year, will we do family dinner or breakfast this time of year? My expectations might need a new view this holiday season.

2. A new remodel.  Not only for the bathroom but for me as well. It will mean new surroundings, a different view than what I have now. If you know me, I’m not good with change. How am I going to adjust to having a less counter space to share? It’s called flexibility. 

3.A change of plans. What does God have for me right now in this season of my life? I’ve been thinking more and more about writing a memoir and the commitment that it would take.  Not only that, there are changes I want to make in my ministry to my PW tribe.

As I walk through these changes, it’s a good reminder that the best growth comes from rearranging and looking at things from a different view than before.  When we see the finished product, we find a surprising joy that we didn’t expect.

The outcome will be beautiful 

When I shared this story with a close friend of mine, she reminded me that finding that perfect place for the tree to remodeling a room in my home can be chaotic.

She also encouraged me to be open to a new outlook of what God has planned.  Cause life is a story. You have a start, a little conflict, and obstacles to overcome all of which lead to a beautiful ending that you didn’t expect.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29;11

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29;11Text placeholder

 

God gives me hope to what is to come.  A beautiful arrangement of his forever love and blessing. Although I’m fretting about these things, I’m grateful God has a plan, His perspective on how things will be.

Just like when my husband comes to me and says that we should toy with the idea of redoing the bathroom and moving our bedroom downstairs, there is a plan in the making.   But all I can see is chaos and construction.

 

Isn’t in those times we should open our minds and hearts to welcome those changes?

My PW, are you looking for a new perspective on something?  If so, let me assure you’re not alone!

This holiday season I pray you find a new way of looking at things, be open to change, and expect the unexpected. Maybe some of them will come with a big red bow around them.

If you have any rearranging to do or remodeling projects on the horizon, leave me a comment below. That way we can commiserate together!

Love for you to fly on over to my facebook page.  

 

IMG_3765 Take-off and Landings Always, Tiffany

Daughters of a Pilot…

IMG_6289Raising kids and having my husband travel comes with its challenges. There have been times that I’ve questioned my mothering skills and have become so frustrated that I would cry if his trips were one day too many.

A couple of weeks ago I asked my adult daughters how they felt about their dad traveling. More importantly, I was curious how they saw me as I was carrying that extra parenting bag on my own.

Paige, my oldest daughter, was little more descriptive in her answers. I guess you could say the firstborn view came out in her. Paige was born into the military life with Jeff who was gone for 6 months at a time and was surrounded by other kids who had their dad gone for long periods as well. Paige was a strong-willed child and still is. She would let you know if she was unhappy and she was definitely not afraid to speak her mind.  Now that she in her early twenties she has become an amazing young woman. She is independent and strong, like her mother. She works full-time for a start-up company in Austin.  Surprisingly, she and her sister, Jillian, live together!

My youngest daughter, Jillian, has always been the wise, old soul kind of girl. She often tells me to settle down, or says, “Mom, you gotta pick your battles with Tobin or Adin.”  Jillian helped me a great deal when I was dealing with health issues, and she immediately stepped up and helped out with family responsibilities that I couldn’t handle at that time. I will always be grateful and blessed for her help and attitude. She is in her early twenties now and works at a Flour Mill. In addition to her job, she is a part-time student at a Junior College in Austin studying  Organic Farming.

Here are the five thought-provoking questions I had asked my girls….

  1. What’s it like having a dad who travels all the time?

Jillian: I’ve never thought it was that weird because that’s how it’s always been! It’s cool that any city I go to he has recommendations. The opportunities to travel both as a kid with the family and now as an adult is amazing and all the trips we’ve been able to take because of his job is incredible… not something to take for granted!

Paige: Kind of annoying. But it just becomes life. At some point, I realized how weird it would be if dad was home all the time and how annoying that would be. 

As a little girl, teenager and now in my early twenties?

  • Because everything was about ‘me’ when I was little, it felt like a personal thing. Like “oh dad doesn’t care if he misses my birthday.” – not true 
  • As a teenager, I started adopting my own independence. I didn’t take it as personally. It was just the way our house worked. I got to have his car when he was home. 
  • Now, I’m an adult. It doesn’t bother me. I learned to crave the space from growing up the way I did, watching mom and dad orbit around each other to an extent. Occasionally, I’ll call dad and the call with go straight to voicemail and I know he’s flying; I just know to call him in an hour or two and fix problems myself. 

2. Did you learn to play-off on Dad and I when he was on a trip? How was I when dad was gone?

Jillian: Mom is the person to ask about most things but for the “big” decisions you talk it through with mom and get the final vote of approval from dad. Dad’s harder to talk to sometimes and sometimes more strict… but I think that’s based off military experience, not pilot life. Mom was always firm on “I’m the same person no matter if dads here or not” so not much of difference.

Paige: Not consciously? Mom, obviously, took the brunt of the parenting just because of proximity. 

  • Was I scared of Dad for a long time? Yeah. He was the hammer. He would get home and whatever trouble I got in 3 days ago was suddenly remembered. It was like “ah I love my dad but he’s scary.” He’s really tall and his voice is really deep, it as a lot for me sometimes.  
  • Mom was a little more stressed out with dad gone. She had 2 kids to take to school, a dinner to cook alone. Then, we decided to add another lil baby in the mix. At a few points, mom had a job so she was doing all that plus working with dad being gone. She constantly had to tell her friends “oh Jeff is flying, he can’t be here.” In a world where a women’s place is based on her husband’s success (and arguably, availability) I think that was hard. Some of mom’s friends just didn’t get it I think. 

 

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3. Did you enjoy your dad being gone? Cause I recall a few times you girls asked when he was leaving.

Jillian: Sometimes! Because he gets antsy when he’s home too long! But also sometimes I’d think “hmm when is dad gonna be home for longer than a day or two?” when we were working on a project or he got called in semi-unexpectedly.

Paige: Yes, sometimes. We were a house full of girls. He was (and is) this giant man who booms around the house. I’m making him sound like a giant, but he’s not. He just takes up space. Like any human does. 

  • Me and dad butted heads a lot as I got older. When I was mad at him, it was great having him gone. I didn’t have to deal with tip-toeing around him trying to be nice when I was fuming. 

4. Were you ever worried about Dad flying? If so, Why?

Jillian: No. I think flying with him in smaller planes 1-on-1 and seeing his knowledge really solidified how much knowledge he has about flying/air safety that I can’t even grasp.  He’s also an observant guy who always talks about issues in the news/scary stories openly and I’ve never doubted he can think smart and quick to manage any situation.

Paige:  During 9/11 yes. I remember that day. 

  • When your dad is a pilot, there’s just always a certain amount of fear associated with the profession. Being 30,000 Ft. in the air in a metal tube isn’t a natural place for humans to be. So, of course, it’s a little scary. You have to become comfortable with accepting the fact something bad might happen. You have to trust that things will turn out. 
  • When dad started flying with a gun and going to the shooting range, that’s when the danger of what he did set in a little bit. 
  • When I was little I remember sobbing when he left. I thought he was never going to come back. I totally just neglected the fact that he already flew airplanes every day. 
  • There was a night in college when I woke up from a dream and dad had died in a flying accident. It was 5am and I called mom and dad. It’s a scary dream, my worst nightmare, but it’s just a fear. 

5. What have you learned by having a dad who’s a pilot?

Jillian:  Airports aren’t scary or stressful unless you make them that way. Time management is the key to life.

Paige: Traveling is fun. 

  • Traveling is stressful. 
  • Traveling is taxing, emotionally and physically. 
  • Traveling is worth it. 
  • I will forever have a love for aviation. If I get to retire early, or ever get to have time in my 30s, I would like to learn how to fly. Just for fun. 
  • The space mom and dad had in their relationship is rare, and they made space work for them. They had to establish a lot of trust. As an adult, I’ve realized I couldn’t live with someone who comes home and lives in my world every day. Having a dad that traveled and a mom that stayed at home made me live with 2 very independent parents. They trusted each other and were really a team in both providing for the family and raising us. For the most part, they made it look easy, even though I know it wasn’t. 

Just for fun, I asked the girls what they told friends if they asked what their dad’s job was…

Jillian: My dad flies airplanes and its cool. My friends thought the same thing. Plain and simple.

Paige: What he did for work and what he did in child rearing are 2 different things, but related. 

  • When I say my dad is a pilot, people think it’s cool. It allowed him to do adopt a pilot with my 5th-grade class. Now when I say my dad is a pilot, it’s usually followed up with explaining how much training he had to do to get there — I have a lot of friends who are scared to fly. I’m like “get over it, my dad is a pilot. He literally has to go through so much training.”
  • But, raising us, he made me f*** work for s***. Sorry for the profanity but it’s true! 
  • When I left for college and didn’t have a car, was living with 14 other college students in a house, and had little money my friends were like “Wait, what? Won’t your dad help you with school? Why do you have to have a job? So mean.”
  • Now I describe him as an airline pilot, highly intelligent, if not conservative-leaning, hard-working dad who worked really hard so we could live comfortably growing up. He loves me, he loves our family, but he’ll also give me advice + compliments sometimes at weird times. Imagine being home although Christmas and having your dad say “Have your own finances together before you get married, you should buy your own house.” Or running a half marathon and at mile 8 having him say “Just so you know, I really like who you are as an adult.” Dad is a low-key feminist, but he wouldn’t say that. But he is. He has always prompted us to provide for ourselves, be able to be independent, to not need to depend on anyone else. 
  • When I tell my friends those stories, they laugh. You never really know what dad is going to say or do next. He might rent a plane and fly to Tampa, he might buy a tiny boat, he might have to have an emergency landing on a trip. His life is more exciting than he thinks it is. 

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WOW! After reading their honest answers, I cried. But a proud cry.  As a mom, I felt like I wasn’t there for them as I wanted to be. I was surviving from sun-up to sundown. I yelled, slammed doors from time to time, and I’d cry in my closet or behind a locked door.locked.  I tried hard not to reveal the ugly side of me, but more often than not, I did just that.

Lest you think I forgot about my son for this interview, I promise I didn’t! I was going to ask Tobin these questions as well, being a teenager I knew his answers would only be one-word sentences. So I’ll wait a few more years to ask.

If you’re a young mom, a mom in the teenage season or have adult children just remember that you’re doing a great job. Your kids see that.  I had a friend tell me, “The seasons you are in with motherhood become different only cause you get different.”

I couldn’t agree more. 

photography of aircraft wing

Take-off and Landings, Always Tiff

Where is my Cookie?

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A few years ago Jeff called me after he was flying the friendly skies and had nestled in his hotel room for the night. I asked him how he was and he said that he was waiting for a new coffee pot to be delivered. It was seven o’clock in the evening, so I was puzzled as to why he wanted coffee!

Apparently, the coffee pot in his room was not percolating as it should be.  He was craving a warm cup of decaf coffee to eat with his delicious, mouthwatering cookie (I could literally taste the cookie and smell the coffee as he was explaining it to me).

As we were talking, or should I say, he was giving me a detailed write up on his gooey, melt in your mouth treat, there was a knock at his door. His new coffee maker was delivered on a silver platter as requested. Okay, maybe not a silver platter…but this whole thing was becoming quite the event.

While waiting for his coffee to brew, Jeff was a smart husband and changed the flight plan to ask how my day was, if the kids were behaving, and reminding me that he loved me.  However, as we were sharing our day, all I could think about was the darn cookie!  Our phone conversation didn’t last very long cause I had to get off this whole cookie- coffee trip!

Where can you find such a cookie? This source of this delightful dessert is none other than DoubleTree hotel. Have you ever stayed at a DoubleTree Hotel? ( link)

DoubleTree’s motto is …”Every stay starts with a warm cookie welcome, no matter where you are in the world. The cookie is only the beginning. It represents the constant dedication to our guest and thoughtful touches that ensure you feel special and cared for throughout your stay.”

  Their chocolaty cookie is all about a  sweet treat. Their cookie is to die for!  You can read about the history here.

Cookie Envy

After our phone conservation, I sat down at the kitchen table and looked out the window. I was worn out and ready to call it an evening. Escaping to my room for a long, warm bath- and a cookie!- Sounded like bliss.

If anybody needed a cookie, it was me!  It was in that moment that I found myself wishing I could call up room service and have a special sweet treat and my drink of choice delivered on a silver platter.

girl cookie

I hate to admit, but I do pack the jealousy bag from time to time.  I dream of nights in a spa hotel with soft, luscious sheets and pillows, freshly folded towels in the bathroom and all the sweet and heavenly smell of the lotions and creams. And the heavenly aroma of a freshly baked treat that will melt in my mouth waiting for my arrival.

Then my dream comes to a screeching halt, and I remember that my husband makes sacrifices every time he is flying. He sleeps in a hotel several nights at a time.  He misses out on a lot of family time. Honestly, I really shouldn’t have cookie envy.

But  I do.

Yet when I come to the end of my day, and I’m relaxing in my living room chair or my bed, I’ll tell you, I wouldn’t trade it for the world! Cause I know God is watching out for me. He gives me the strength to handle each day as it comes. It takes a unique woman to be a Pilot’s Wife, and God knows that. 

I may not get that warm cookie or decaf coffee delivered to me, and that’s okay.  I know that my dessert may come in other forms such as a kiss goodnight from my teenager, a little boy laying his head on my lap, or a call from an old friend. Or maybe, just maybe, God will bless me with his spiritual, warm treat and coffee and remind me as a wife and mom that I’m doing a pretty good job at this so-called Pilot’s Wife thing.

That’s all the dessert I need.

I came up with my DoubleTree motto:

“Every day starts with a warm cup of love. I will always have that feeling no matter where I’m in the world of a mom, wife, daughter,  or friend. The cookie (experience) of a warm heart is only the beginning to melt away the stresses of the day. It represents a constant dedication to our family and thoughtful touches from our loved ones that ensure us that we’ve felt special and cared for throughout our day”.

Here is the link to Doubletree Cookies recipe for the world-famous DoubleTree cookies. Ask your family to make them for you for you (wink, wink) while you lounge in your favorite chair.

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A Pilot Wife’s Mother’s Day…

pilot's wife mother's day

“I have always told my husband that however Mother’s Day “went down” would be a direct indicator of what Father’s Day would look like. We do have that advantage with Mother’s Day being first.” – Wife of a Pilot

Several weeks ago I asked a group of pilot wives what they wanted for Mother’s Day. After reading their answers, there was one common bond between all of us: appreciation, love and the chance to relax.

Here are the Top 5 ideal gifts that PW’s dream of —

1.  A day off to enjoy going to a  spa

A day to relax, me, myself, and I.  This was a first class dream for the majority of wives.

Is it too much to ask that we want “me” time to relish in quiet and finish a thought? Or have a massage with scented oils that relive some of the stressful knots in our shoulders or arms from picking up toys and little people?

Right now, I dream of a spa day! I have an aching knot that is throbbing intensely from the stress of a teenager, from sitting at the computer, and from selling our house in Florida. Need I go on?

2.  A chance to work in the yard and putter around

Being able to plant and play in the garden was another popular request several wives posted.  “Oh, the eternal hope and promise of a seed,” one wife noted. As  I become older and witness my children maturing into adulthood, there is something about the promise of a seed (child) and watching it grow.

For me, I would love for the stupid squirrels to stop eating my precious flowers. Thanks to these invaders, the flowers I planted a few months ago are half chewed on or dug up from the squirrels thinking there are nuts are in the soil.

3. Vacation by myself

Vacation all by myself? Is that possible?

One PW stated that she was going camping with her son.  We all chimed in that she would receive the Mother’s Day reward! It’s a semi-vacation by yourself.  Another wife commented, “Well, maybe with an air mattress, a down comforter and a bottle of Veuve Cliquot.”

I loved this idea from a girlfriend, “Every Mother’s Day I only want a night away with my other mommy friends at a hotel – a full 24 hours off! It’s the best, and I look forward to it every year!!” Now that’s a gift!

Just last week for our anniversary, my husband and I took a weekend trip to the hill country and stayed at a B&B. I almost told him to leave me here after our time together so I could write and enjoy the birds chirping and the sights and colors of the wildflowers. Of course not having a teenager argue with me about taking out the trash, or having the dog following me to go out to use the restroom, would also be a vacation benefit.  Side note: I do have a great teenager, he’s just a teenager.

4. House cleaned and organized

If you’re like me, I love a clean and organized house. When I had little ones running around the house, the most important Mother’s Day gift for me was to have a neat and tidy home.

Clearly, I’m not the only one. One overworked and weary wife flew in with, “I want my house to stay spotlessly clean (without me doing it) for an entire week!”  Another one cried, “I just want the lines in our carpet to resemble I vacuumed. Is that asking too much?” There was one wife who pushed the called button and said she would love to have her husband send a cleaning lady and a professional cook for the days when he’s away.

Personally, I would just like my teenager to stop wiping his hands on the railing as he goes up the stairs to his room. Or have a meeting of the minds with the dust bunnies to stop leaving their mark on my floor. I also have issues with an unorganized closet, drawers, and kitchen pantry. I have a friend that is an organizer by trade, and she recommended that I go online to napo.net to get some awesome advice and ideas.  I’ll do that after my massage.

5. Spend the day with my family

While it’s not always a popular choice for moms, it can have its own reward.

A PW friend shared with me a heartwarming Mother’s day moment with her family, “One financially lean year when my husband was gone, I gave each child 3 dollars and drove to the dollar store. I waited in the car. They came out so proud!!!!! They each picked out some trinkets, and the cashier lady even threw in a balloon. It was probably the most precious Mother’s Day. Brings a tear to my eye today. They were five and nine years old.” I don’t know about you but receiving a handmade or thoughtful gift from your kids is priceless.

I have been a mother of 3 incredible kids and one special little boy that came into our lives for a just a few years.  As I think about Mother’s day I just have to remind myself that I’m a good mom. I’m not a great mom. I make mistakes. Who doesn’t? But when I see my children smile, bring me a homemade card or gift or just want to sit in my lap, I can’t help but feel that is the best gift of all. IMG_0697

My friends, may you have a beautiful Mothers Day.  I hope you get your house cleaned and organized (even it’s just for a day or two), the chance to putter around or plan a trip just for you, and above all, to spend time with those you love and who allow you to wear the title, Mom.

Take off and Landings Always,Tiffany

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A Pilot’s Wife Vows

Pilot's wife Vows

I, ____________________, take you, _______________, to be my lawfully wedded pilot, to have and hold, from this day forward, in turbulence and delays, for richer and for first-year pay, in sickness when you are gone or home, and in health until either you or I take off to the pearly gates.

I also do solemnly swear to be your one and only pilot wife.

I promise to remember:

To take your uniforms to be pressed or to wash and iron when ready for departure.

How to get around in a new city and remember to always to have my passport updated as well as our kids.

The names of the airport abbreviations as well as military time.

That the only constant thing in our life is flexibility on both our parts.

That it’s me that sets the mood for your arrival and departure.

I promise to follow:

You in an airport terminal cause you know where to go.

You to the tropical islands when you say let’s go.

You if or when you choose to live close to the airport to reduce commuting.

Your lead when there is a sudden change in reroutes or flight plans that will affect our family.

I promise to remind you:

Of important dates when I would like you to be home for.

 Not to forget your work badge/headphones/ and jacket if needed.

About birthdays, anniversaries, or other special memories that are coming up.

I’m not here to pack our unpack your bag. (unless asked)

I love you regardless that you put your towel on the floor, leave your suitcase in an area where I trip on it, or you forget food on the counter cause you are in a hurry to get to work.

That sometimes life is not a check-list.

I promise to try to:

Make friends for me and find couples that we can go out with.

Be more patient when appliances break when you’re gone or I have to go to the emergency room by myself for a child’s sprained or broken ligament.

Be flexible when you call to say you have been delayed or detoured or got called out unexpectedly.

Keep focused on the positive instead of the negative.

Be understanding and not get over excited if something happened at work. I need to listen when you need to talk. And let you work through the situation. wedding-wedding-ring-53585

I promise to wait:

For you to come home later than expected.

For your schedule to come out, so I know when you will be gone, but also know that it might change.

 To talk to you about important things that need your attention until you have arrived home and had a chance to reconnect.

To hear from you’ after you’ve landed the plane and arrived safely at your hotel.

 For that kiss with potential(4-second kiss) all over again.

I promise to live:

Within our means your first year with the airlines.

With your suitcase always out and your travel bag of personal items on the bathroom counter.

With a piece of furniture that you like and that makes you feel at home.

With you wanting to come home and wipe the kitchen counter or just piddling to reconnect with the family.

With the understanding that as a pilot you are a man of routine and like to have to control (over some things) but that’s what makes you a good pilot.

*A life of my own; to find a passion that will give me a feeling of independence and confidence.

I promise to be there:

For when you need to talk about your frustrating day or you encounter an unexpected delay while at work.

For the kids when you are gone.

To leave something to eat for you on those late arrivals coming home.

For those times that you need me home at a certain time for a delivery or appointment that you arranged, but are unable to make because of work.

I promise to love:

For the life, we created together, not the life we think it should be or left behind.

For your integrity and strength and passion for life, not your uniform.

For who you are today, not who I want you to be.

Take off and Landings Always,Tiffany

What would you add to a Pilot’s Wife vow?  Leave a comment below.

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My Traveling Shoes

traveling shoeLife is not a journey you want to make on autopilot.

A few Sundays ago Jeff and I were flying out of Pensacola, Florida. However, we forgot that it was the end of  Spring Break vacation for most people. There was only one flight to Houston that we wanted to be on.  Just two seats, but the only seat left was the jump seat (a place that only a pilot can sit in) which meant I would have to find another flight.   As Jeff walked down to the jetway, a look of sadness covered my face because I was left behind.

Left alone at the airport waiting for another flight, I had to find something to occupy my long wait time.( 7 hours to be exact) Being the observer I am, I found myself people watching.

I wondered, where all these people were going? Were they going home, traveling to work, or going on vacation? I wanted to know!  I observed their constant activity; I couldn’t help looking at their shoes.

Shoes can reveal a lot about a person. I saw women wearing cute heels.  Or people wearing boots, tennis shoes, or loafers. At the same time, I wondered what do my shoes (identity) reveal about me?

The Terminals I’ve walked down

In walking the different terminals (seasons) of life, I have worn an assortment of interesting shoes.

1.When my girls were in school, I decided to go back to college and pursue a degree in Hospitality management. I had a dream of owning and operating a B&B, and I worked hard at making it happen.  We took off looking for B&B in an area of where Jeff would be close to work. We landed in the small town of New Smyrna Beach, Florida where we found the perfect B&B.  We met with the sellers prior to our move and at that time felt that there was a connection between all of us.  However, in negotiations with the owners, there were signs that this wasn’t going to happen. Durning our talks I spent a week with the innkeeper and walked behind her as she showed me the day-to-day operations.  After that week, as I walked out the door, I knew in my heart God had shut that door and had me pack away my shoes (dream) for the time being.

2. A few years later, the church we attended didn’t have a women’s ministry. After talking with my pastor’s wife, she encouraged me and offered support and prayer in allowing me to share with the women at our church a vision to introduce a women’s ministry. However, over the next year and a half in developing women’s events and retreats, there was an unexpected turn of events. In that time I felt that this door was being shut as well. I needed to walk away. I did so with a shoe of grace and sadness. (To this day, I still get teary-eyed about the loss.)

3.  During that season of serving as a women’s ministry leader, Jeff and I were asked to fly into the area of raising a little boy that needed a sense of security and love (go here to read more). At the same time, I also had unexpected health issues that required many doctors visits and some time in the hospital. ( In time I will share with you my story of healing.)

In all honesty, I found myself crying out loud and yelling to God as to why he was taking all this away from me. I had worked so hard, I moved and uprooted my entire life, even leaving friends and family, to follow a dream and share a vision to start a ministry.  Now it was gone!

Wearing the shoes of hospitality, serving, being a mom to a little boy, and dealing with health issues,  I learned that I was only to wear those shoes temporarily.  God revealed many things to me, and in retrospect, he showed the closed doors were for my good.

God had me in an area where I was vulnerable, and I needed him to carry me to find my true destination.

As I struggled to find something to call my own, I discovered a few things about myself.

1.I don’t need to compare myself to others who look as if they had the perfect outfit (life).

2. As I traveled and searched for that one thing to fulfill me, I needed to be willing to venture out into other areas where God was taking me. If I needed to walk away, I learned to do so with grace and hope.

3.If there were something that I wanted to pursue that would allow me to use my gifts and talents, I needed to have the courage to share that with the people that I loved.

While I felt that each of these shoes ( passions and calling) were intended just for me, I also believed that they gave me purpose and magic. For a time, I guess they did.

Now I see that God had me try them on so that I could eventually walk in the shoe that I was intended to wear.  I also know that He let them stay in my bag so that I could share with others what I have learned.

Your plane is here

Believe in your heart that you’re meant to have a life full of passion, purpose, and magic and miracles.” ( Roy Bennett)

I have always had a passion for writing. It gives me confidence that I have never felt before. Over the past ten years, I have written devotions to offer hope and love to other women ( go here to read those).  It was during these times of sharing that I felt alive and full of purpose. My family saw that in me as well.

In my struggles and searching, there were times where I  found myself feeling tired of carrying around the weight of feeling lost in what it was I was ultimately designed to wear. I wanted to unpack those desires that I had and use them to bless others.

Recently I discovered four questions that I had written several years back when I was part of the women’s ministry.  Maybe these questions can help you find your purpose and calling the exact shoe you were destined to wear.

4 questions

Those are tough questions, and I had to prayerfully think about them myself. Perhaps some time alone with these questions can help you find the answers you’ve been searching for.

When I started this series “The Shoes a Pilot’s Wife Might Wear,” I came up with this acronym that I think combines my love of shoes with my calling and purpose:

She

Helps

Others

Evolve

She helps others evolve…..into the woman that God has intended her to be. 

Each of us has been designed to help others evolve into something magical and purposeful.    Something that fulfills.  He has equipped us with our calling.

I have been uniquely designed for a purpose” (Psalm 139:14-15  NIV)“I have been uniquely designed for a purpose” (Psalm 139_14-15 NIV)

 

Girlfriend, I pray that whatever shoe God has for you for your unique purpose that you wear it with confidence, strength, and passion. And above all else, wear it well.

 

 

Prayer for today: Father, you know my heart.  You know what I am passionate about and what breaks my heart. I ask you to reveal that me in a way that only I can see what it is that I’m to wear.  That desire in my heart that I have show me how to take those steps to do what it is that you have equipped me to do.  “God doesn’t call the equipped,  he  has equipped the called!” I ask all this in your precious name. AMEN

Take off and Landings Always,Tiffany

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Rain Boots by the Door at all Times

Rain boots requiredHave you ever had a water explosion you couldn’t identify? Or you wake up at 0 dark early to the sounds of your dog yelping in pain outside?

These are the storms of my life, and both of them required me to wear my rain boots.

There is a saying amongst Pw’s: If something is going to happen that includes waters, it does so when our husbands are away.   In my case, every water rescue occurred that way.  I want to share two of them with you as I’m sure you can relate. I have had a few waters rescues in my 25 years of marriage.

Water Emergency #1  

I heard a loud knock at my front door at 5 am one morning. With Jeff out of town, I created in my mind a madman or ghost coming into my house.  I didn’t want to answer the door, so I hid under the covers hoping whoever it was would go away.   

A few hours later my neighbors called to tell me that water was spouting out at the corner of the house.   It had made a loud noise that startled them out of bed.  Apparently, one of our sprinkler heads popped off, hit the roof, and all that water was making its way into our garage ceiling.   To make matters worse, I didn’t notice the intensity of the water damage until two days later when Jeff came back home.

Water Emergency #2

Another morning, my boys let our dog out in the backyard.  Within minutes of letting her out, I heard loud yelping. Running outside in my pajamas, I saw that a raccoon had attacked my dog and was dragging her out to the water near our boat lift (I later learned that when a raccoon attacks it will take their fight to the water in order to drown its victim). 

 

Image

This is Lucy and. The calm of the water aftermath.

 

Honestly, I had no clue what to do. 

My boys, however, thought that shooting the raccoon with a bb gun was the solution.  Certain I would shoot my dog rather than her attacker, I suggested to my boys to throw rocks while I grabbed the water hose and aimed it straight at the evil animal. Within 5 minutes, which seemed like an eternity, we managed to scare the raccoon away and free our dog from its snare.

Upon closer inspection, we say that there was minimal damage to Lucy. She was out of breath, had some blood on her paws from the oyster shells in the water, and suffered cuts on her neck from the raccoon’s teeth. In the end, she only needed a few rabies shots and some recovery time to overcome the trauma.

Each of these water emergencies required me to don my rain boots. I gladly put them on as they provided stability and protection in the midst of a crisis.

Sully’s rules for emergencies

A few years ago I read the book Highest Duty, by Capt. Chesley “ Sully” Sullenberger. I’m sure you recall the unforgettable landing he and his FO made on the Hudson River.

In the book, he said there are general rules about any aircraft emergency. 

1. Maintain aircraft control.

2. Analyze the situation and take proper action

3. Land as soon as conditions permit.

Some pilots have found an easy way to remember these basic rules: Activate, navigate and communicate.

Being married to a man who lives and flies by these rules, has caused me to adopt the same mindset when faced with water emergencies.  I will confess there are times where I first panic, scream and maybe cry, but within minutes I have switched gears to:

1.Activate my surroundings and establish what is going on.  I have to simultaneously gain control of the situation while at the same time remain level-headed with my emotions and the emotions of those around me.

2. Navigate where it is I need to land as soon as possible. Gather information as to how to find a solution to the problem.

3. Communicate with those around me. Once I’ve assessed the situation and navigated my way to safety, then I need to calmly communicate with others what it is I need help with.

My water challenge rules 

Once I’ve followed those rules and have put on my own personal flotation device, then I call my husband without freaking out and explain to him what just happened.  Let’s face it our husbands are flying a heavy-duty machine in the sky which requires their full attention.   Calling or texting him while he’s flying and yelling, “Mayday! Mayday! “ would only make matters worse.

I will spill out some water guilt, I have called him freaking out about a crisis or emergency, it didn’t make anything better.  In fact, it only made me feel like I was drowning all the more.  How could I expect him to solve my problem when he was miles away?

Now, when I’m alone and facing a difficult situation, I need to rely on the One who not only walks on water, but can cause it, and my troubled heart, to be still. In water emergencies and more, I find comfort in Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengths me.”

“I can do all things through Christ who strengths me.”Philippians 4_13I have to remind myself that I’m not Superwoman. When I face troubles, pressure, and trials,  I should take a moment to pause and ask God to give me strength when it feels like the waters will overtake me. I’m grateful to know He won’t let me drown.

I’m sure we can all share our water stories and how often we find ourselves wearing rain boots.   The storms of our lives definitely offer challenges.  Though, I would have to say that in those water challenges we find the strength we didn’t know was there.  Because of that strength, the next time we step into our rain boots, we can walk with confidence and the right tools.

Our prayer: Dear Father, when stressful times arrive, and I find myself worried and anxious, please give me the peace of mind and calm my troubled heart.  I feel as if I’m in a turbulent sea and unable to find my balance, so I worry. Help me to find clarity of mind and answers that I need for Your protection.  For You are my life vest and I know that you will guide me as I walk through the stormy waters of life.

In Your name, I pray, Amen.

Take off and Landings Always,Tiffany

Leave a comment and share your rain boot stories. I’m sure we could get a good laugh and relate from own water emergencies.

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