The flight of the children; Five pieces of advice on flying with those toddling maniacs

Oh there are certain rhythms inside a child that keeps them singing and cooing at all waking moments.  It allows them to explore and question non stop.  It is an internal condition that makes a squirmy body normal and restless legs not so much an ailment but an asset.  All of these glories of childhood, while very conducive to learning and growing are exactly the instincts and tendencies that make flying complicated.

On my mission north I attacked as a solo one.  My preparations and supplies were vast but compact.  Provisions were plentiful and within reach at all times thanks our new holders (the lap top lunch box… never thought I would spend so much time researching lunch boxes… this one is bpa free, made in USA, and so very useful).  The trip was not altogether bad.  I loaded the Ipod with books on CD and stories and favorite songs, all compiled on a playlist entitled “road trip”.  I brought along Miles weaving.  I feared no stares when nursing my not so tiny one year old in public.  I sang kids songs unabashedly.  I accepted help graciously.

Oh, but the way home.  Glorious.  To have help!  My dear, sweet man was able to accompany us on the return trip.  Despite angry stares and hostile remarks from a seat mate (who claimed she had children even though she huffed and puffed and all but blew my house down upon finding out it was us who would reside next to her for all of an hour-long flight) we felt utter success as we stepped off each flight with no true enemies and little crumbs left behind.

While I often don’t feel I am in a place for advice giving, I feel I have got this one down.  

So here is my two cents:

5. No matter the decibel your child’s voice reaches, keep a smile on your face.  A smile does wonders.

4.  Get assistance if you need to take a bus, trolley, wagon ride, whatever in between flights.

3.  Make eye contact and smile at flight attendants.  You might need them.

2.  Bring an extra shirt for yourself and something to freshen up with, be it deodorant or perfume or baking soda I dont care, I promise it will make you feel like a new woman after your days work and before greeting your loved ones.

1.  Do not order a cocktail.  If both your children fall asleep order a cocktail.

That is all.  You know the rest.  Good luck.

#28 (mostly) white sandwich bread

It’s a cool 89 around these parts today and a nice breeze can be felt upon stepping outside.  In my mind this is the best I am going to get for bread baking these days.  Turning the oven on is somewhat torture when you are too cheap to turn your air conditioning past 84.  But, I don’t let that stop me.  I have a new years resolution to keep up with!

After a gorgeous walk at the wildlife refuge again, I decided to go with the old faithful.  White bread.  But first, I have to include some sad news.  Today on our walk, not one, not two, but three large gators swam right up to us while were looking out at all there is to see.  And when I say large I mean in excess of eight feet.  This was of course intimidating, exciting, and all together breath-taking.  But, the truth is in my seven months since living here, with an average of 2 visits per week, this has NEVER happened to us.  Which of course led me to believe some fool has been feeding them.  There are signs.  It is quite obvious.  If I had cuaght them in action this is what I would have said,

“Do not, under any circumstance feed the ginormous dinosaur like beasts at the wildlife refuge (or anywhere!).  It is beyond dangerous for you and everyone else who visits the park now.  You are essentially sacrificing that alligator for its destiny is now surely to be destroyed.”

I did the right thing, and I informed the people at the visitors center of my suspicions (which they confirmed sounded accurate).  They were equally disappointed.  It was a sad occasion.

Who are you that is this ignorant and selfish?

So thats that.

Onto the bread.

almost white bread (by, ME! yeah!)

Dissolve 1 tbs. yeast, I tbs. organic sugar, and about a half cup of warm water in a large bowl.  Once its all frothy mix in 2 cups of brown rice flour.  Mix and mix. And mix some more.  Then add in about 4 cups of all-purpose unbleached white flour and a tablespoon of sea salt.  Start kneading.  You will surely earn yourself a slice or two because you should knead it for at least 10 minutes.  You will be sweating.  I like to give Miles a little chunk to keep himself occupied during this time.  I also set the timer otherwise what I think is ten minutes is usually more like two.  Turn into a buttered or oiled bowl and cover with oiled plastic (I have been using a piggly wiggly bag!) for two hours or until doubled in size.

Cut in half.

Roll each chunk out into a rectangle.

Fold into thirds and seal it up.

Place each one into a greased bread pan and let them rise until about two inches above the edge of the pan. Then bake at 375 for 40 minutes.  For the last few you can take them out of the pan to crisp up the edges.  Take them out and cover them with a plastic bag and a towel so that the crust is not quite so hard.  Slice it up and lather with some butter!  We actually made some today to use up a little heavy cream I had leftover.  I falsely thought Miles and Rowan would love to shake the jar.  I envisioned them dancing around having a good old time in great anticipation for the completed product.  But alas, it lasted a mere 4.5 shakes.  Approximately.  Either way, it tasted wonderful.  I won’t bother you with the instructions, there are about a million on the web already.  But try it.  It’s fun and tastes awesome.  It is creamy and salty and perfect on this good for toasting bread.

And for your weekend enjoyment… our headphones came in the mail for long flight up north yesterday.  

This is a look of pure disbelief. 

Have a great weekend!  Be joyful!