A Dream Job On Hold

Hello there beautiful people!

I’d like to preface this post by saying I know that pretty much everyone is getting their ass handed to them in one way or another lately so believe me when I say I know everyone is having a hard time and I in no way want this to seem like an oh poor me post because it isn’t but it is something on my mind and a big piece of my life currently that I feel like sharing.

In the very beginning of COVID-19 hitting the states and before the government money was given to airlines my employer offered what we call a special leave of 1, 3 or 6 months to try to reduce the work force but allowed people to keep health and flight benefits but have a return to work date.  It was a hard decision because at that time there wasn’t even talks of full blown shut downs it was so early in the pandemic. I chose the 6 month option and very thankfully qualified for unemployment.

Then the government stepped in and gave money but required no employees be laid off/furloughed til October 1st. Obviously travel has not returned to anywhere near where it would be for the airlines to return to a “normal” need for the same number of  employees as we had pre-pandemic so come October big cuts will happen.

When my company announced how many furloughs they expect to hand out to flight attendants last week it was a big number- a really big number. Even if that number is the worst case scenario and changes by a few thousand it’s still a big number. While nothing is official yet and won’t be for probably another month or so I’m in the last 3,000 flight attendants hired so if they furlough 15,000 or even 10,000 it will more than likely take years for my seniority to be recalled. Thankfully I work for a union which means that I have to be recalled back to work within 6 years. Even weirder than waiting I could be called back to any base not just where I was based when I got furloughed in the first place so that’ll be an interesting hurdle to get over.

It’s a lot for me to take in. How the airlines work is already weird as hell to talk about but trying to read through our 300+ page contract to try and figure out what happens when one gets furloughed/when do the benefits stop etc. how does it work when I do get recalled is a total mind F#$k.

I knew it was going to happen but hearing it out loud is still a punch to the gut.

I think the hardest part is that this is my dream job.

I absolutely love being a flight attendant.

I call it my fake job because even though I sacrificed a lot to get it, trained hard to graduate, moved 3,000 miles away to live in a bunk bed with an insane number of humans, and answered the phone no matter what time it was to go anywhere in the world at a moment’s notice, it rarely felt like “work.”

I got to adventure for a living.

Every senior person I talk to always says the same thing, you will go back because there is no better lifestyle than being a flight attendant. You may have ups and downs with it, take time away and come back but once flying gets into your blood, it just doesn’t leave.

It’s still my dream job, it’ll be my dream job the moment they invite me to come back even if that takes a few years to get to. I know that and I can look forward to this little break in life to accomplish other goals of mine but man, the moment that phone rings I will happily throw the pantyhose back on, rush to the airport, hop on that jump seat and spill my soul to the first crew I meet in true flight attendant fashion.

I’ll even be nice to the passengers 😉

In the meantime I’ll be working on my resume, sweating over cover letters and dreaming of the day I get to return to my life in the sky.

And now I’ll spam you with pictures from some of my favorite layovers…

Anytime I got to go to a baseball stadium,

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That one time Alex and I flew to Eugene, Oregon for lunch and then I picked up a trip for a long Vegas layover that night so we had to rush back to San Francisco,

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Anytime crew scheduling gave me a resort layover (this happened very rarely for me)

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That one time I got sent to South Korea in the dead of winter and had not packed appropriately (because I didn’t know I was going) so I wore every single layer I had on top of each other,

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That time I met a T-Rex in Kansas City,

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Any new state I got to cross off like Montana below and all of the layovers (not pictured because it’s not their blog 😉 ) that I got to see family and friends. Between Boston, Burlington, Orlando, Nashville, Newark, New Orleans, Baltimore, San Diego, Austin, Eugene and so many more those layovers are always so special to me.

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Cheers & All my love,

Kari

Friday Favorites (3): Amazon Finds

Hey party people! How are ya?

I can’t believe it’s 4th of July weekend, that just doesn’t even seem possible. Growing up in a small town in Vermont meant that everyone went to watch the 4th of July parade and you knew everyone who was walking in it. Our town’s fireworks were held that night and it was an important rite of passage to be able to watch them with your friends as a teenager. Speaking of watching fireworks with friends, I hope my best friend Meredith (aka my only blog reader) knows how much I miss her and despite my utter hatred for fireworks wish we could be in the “Lew Spot” watching them this year! Per usual I would only be coming for the company and the Ben & Jerry’s cart though 😉

My family was fortunate enough to have a pool in our backyard… yes in Vermont and yes we actually had warm enough summers to actually swim in it! Part of having a pool meant for my family anyway hosting the annual 4th of July party! In true Irish Catholic tradition my dad is one of 13 kids so anytime family gatherings happened it meant hundreds of humans! I remember vividly watching my mom make lists of people to invite, who was bringing what, what Costco runs we still had to do which is probably where I got my love of list making. Every year my dad would throw on a Hawaiian shirt and start the grill, our front yard would be covered in cars, the pool filled with kids and the kitchen overflowing with delicious food. Cousin Jane if you are reading this send me some taco salad!

While my 4th of July plans look quite different this year I am always happy when I get to think back on all of those fun memories of the holiday.

I suppose I should get to the purpose for today’s post which is linking up some of my favorite Amazon finds from this past few months… I’d say these are more summer/travel items but it’s also kind of a hodgepodge of items. Everything on this list is under $25!

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This Foldable Fedora makes for the perfect summer sun protection. This may be my favorite thing I’ve ordered in a long time! I think I first saw it on Lauren from Lauren McBride Blog and I’m so happy it caught my eye. This hat is incredibly packable! I’ve traveled with it a few times now rolling it into the corner of my suitcase and every time I pull it out it snaps back into shape perfectly! I love how many different color options they have, I personally have the Khaki color. $22.99

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This Silicon Make up Brush Cleaning Mat that does wonders for quickly and easily getting all of that bacteria off of my makeup brushes. I HATE cleaning my makeup brushes so anything that makes it easier for me is a big win in my book. This is a smaller mat which I actually prefer because that means it doesn’t take up much space which in my life on the road is a necessity. I’ve actually liked it so much that I bought a second one for my paint brushes. $5.99

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These PEDS Cotton Unseen Liner Socks that ACTUALLY don’t show. These socks are a game changer! I am not a big fan of no-show socks, they never seem to actually be low enough or very comfortable but let me tell you, I love these things! They have a little gel piece at the heel and over the toes and are low enough for even a brand like Ked’s or slides like Vans.  They come in a pack of 6 for $12.97.

I had been looking for a cute Boho Lumbar Pillow to go with an accent chair I bought (and built myself insert arm flex emoji here) so I ordered this one and absolutely love it! I love the color and the texture of it, plus the tassels at the sides are such an adorable addition. My style is very Boho/Mid-Century Modern and lots of natural colors so I know this will work even beyond using it on this chair. It is $14.99 but I do want to note that this is just the cover, you will need to purchase the pillow insert separately. I bought this pillow insert also on Prime for $9.99.

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If there is one thing flight attendants are proud of it’s their nails. If you ever see a flight attendant with a band-aid on their finger its because one of their nails broke and they haven’t been able to get to a salon to fix it yet. This is a fact! I’m virtually the 1% who does their own nails thus more likely to chip and look shitty pretty quickly. I’m not exactly going to carry around a bottle of acetone in my bag so I rely on these individual nail polish remover pads. I keep them in my bags so that even if I remember on my way to the airport that I never took my nail polish off I can do it quickly in the employee lot. They come in a pack of 50 for $12.95.

If there is one thing you buy off of this list (besides the fedora that should already be in your cart) let it be this glorious Scalp Massager! Men, women, children, pets, everyone loves this thing and for good reason. I use it when I’m washing my hair which not only feels great while applying my shampoo it also makes my scalp feel like I actually cleaned it. I’ve also used it on dry hair just to give myself a head massage or get rid of a headache and it makes me so happy. Seriously, if you need a little treat for yourself get this! Get it for your mom, your dad, your fella- it’s that good! It’s like a little salon in a $6.99 package.

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Who doesn’t love a good bathing suit cover up? This adorable Pom Pom Kaftan is the perfect piece for summer. I loved the embroidery down the front in addition to the pom-pom details. It covers well but doesn’t look boxy or shapeless like some can. I bought it for a Puerto Rico trip that didn’t happen (wear a mask people) so I’ve only worn it once and can’t speak to the quality over a long period of time but I will say the reviews make it seem like it holds up! I hand washed it/hung it up to dry. I bought a medium and I think it fits TTS plus the length in the front and back is good which is what I always look for in a cover up. I love how many colors there are to choose from and it’s only $20.99.

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I love this little Pill Box for storing my vitamins while I travel. I’m certainly not going to carry around 4 different bottles of vitamins every where I go so for awhile I was just dumping a bunch into a plastic bag which looked… suspect at best haha. This little guy is a fun solution to that problem plus it’s an obnoxious blue so I can’t forget to take them when I open my makeup bag every morning. It’s on the small side which is fine because it still fits about 2 weeks of daily vitamins in each slot and I’m not usually gone longer than that. It’s $5.99.

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Speaking of travel items this mini Jewelry Box is one of my favorite purchases of the last few months. I love how dainty it is but it still fits a bunch of my earrings, necklaces etc without them getting tangled up with each other. If you travel with a lot of jewelry this will not work for you! It is definitely small but it works for what I usually travel with. I do wish it came in other colors as it is just this pink but for the price/quality I’m happy with it. It’s $11.99.

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I’m finishing up this list with one of my favorite quarantine purchases, these Oalka Yoga Capri Pants. These are AMAZING! Where do I even start? I love high rise pants because anything that tucks the tummy in is a win for me. The material isn’t too thick that it feels so tight you can’t breathe (you know the type) but it’s still squat proof! I love the length of the capri, it fits in the perfect spot. I’ve run in them, done a HIIT class, hiked and yoga and they’ve held up every time with little movement. I’m not saying I’ve never had to yank them up mid-workout but not much which is A+ in workout pants.  They have a little pocket on the waist for your phone, a key, etc. I bought the long version as well which I also love, they hit the same spot on my waist but I do have to roll them at the ankle which is pretty normal for me and would be great for people with longer legs! I’ve washed them with no issues and they don’t expand as the day goes on. These are great people, you should buy them! The Capris & the Pants are both $19.99 and they come in a ton of patterns/colors. I’m on the larger side of a medium in pants but I usually get Medium for workout pants and they are perfect so I’d say TTS.

Okay I’ve babbled enough for one post, I hope wherever you are you have a safe, happy and healthy long weekend!

Is anyone going anywhere?

What are some of your favorite Amazon finds?

Love, Kari

My Favorite Hikes in Idaho

Heyyyyyy youuuuu guyyyyyssssss (said like Sloth from the Goonies obviously).

Ah what a great movie, it’s actually my favorite of all time fun fact. If you haven’t seen it you must stop what you are doing and go watch it because honestly we can’t even be friends if you haven’t.

Okay today’s post is another Idaho adventure planning one for you guys because well it’s my blog and I’ll post whatever I want to… and because it’s basically the only place I’ve been outside of my bedroom since March.

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I’m one of those people who both loves and loathes hiking. I like the idea of it, I like when I’m done and can say woah I did that but the whole middle of actually doing it is quite hard for me. I love using AllTrails because I can get a better idea of all the levels of hikers using the different trails I research. Plus it’s great that nearly every time the map takes you right to the trail heads. I actually may like researching hikes on AllTrails more than I like the hiking… kidding, but not really.  I promise my reviews are always brutally honest so without further ado let me present some of my favorite hikes in the Boise/McCall area…

Cervidae Peak: Boise, Idaho

4.5 Miles Out/Back

“Alex asked “have you come up with your AllTrails review yet?

And I said “Yes, they say there are rattlesnakes on the trial. At first you’re scared but eventually you start hoping one comes along and puts you out of your misery.”

Just kidding. Kind of.”

Woof. This b#$%@. This is the hardest hike I’ve done in Boise and maybe one of the toughest I’ve done ever. You gain a little less than 2,000 feet of elevation and follow a ridge up and down a pretty narrow path overlooking Lucky Peak Reservoir and multiple other mountains in the distance. Every single step is more gorgeous than the last and no matter what direction you look there is a beautiful view that makes it hard to believe the trail head is less than 20 miles from downtown Boise. It is incredibly steep and much of it is loose gravel which makes for a tough hike up but what makes it truly one of the hardest I’ve done is going back down. I highly recommend trekking poles for balance and to maintain footing. There is literally NO shade so if you’re going in the summer go early and bring lots of water! I wouldn’t do this hike if it was more than 80 degrees out because you truly are exposed. It does get windy up there though so bring an extra layer! We did it on a week day so I don’t know how busy it gets on the weekends but the parking lot is not very big so keep that in mind.

It was the first hike in a long time where I finished it and literally couldn’t believe I got to the top, it was incredibly rewarding! I would highly recommend but I would probably go on a few hikes before you do this one to prepare haha

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Adelmann Mine Trail: Boise, Idaho

4.7 Miles Out/Back

“It was 90 degrees and everyone else was boating but we don’t have a boat so we had to go hiking (not my logic).

The crickets and beetles were bigger than my hands which swelled up so bad I couldn’t get my rings off for hours. 

Absolutely no shade so if fine Irish skin is involved, beware! 

Would only recommend if you are promised ice cream after.”

I started with the hard but now we move onto a more moderate option for hiking in the Boise area. This hike is in the same Lucky Peak Reservoir area about 20 miles from downtown but it’s trail head is very deceiving. It looks like a private driveway with a big gate and everything but that’s the parking lot. Maybe only 5 spaces so not many people on the trail at any given time which is nice. There isn’t much shade so I wouldn’t go on a 90 degree day like we did nor would I go past 10/11 am on a summer day but we are dumb. The first mile isn’t too steep but it definitely starts getting steep after that. This hike has 1,4000 feet of elevation gain so I’d put it on the harder side of moderate. I will admit I didn’t make it all the way to the mine because I was overheating but it did look really cool over that way and starts to be more of a tree-lined forest the closer you get. The views are pretty spectacular but not nearly as beautiful as Cervidae Peak if I’m being honest.

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Table Rock Trail: Boise, Idaho

3.7 Miles Out/Back

“I don’t really like this one.” 

Table Rock Trail is okay. I’m keeping it on the list because it’s the only one that’s truly not far from downtown Boise and I think it’s the most accessible for different levels of hikers that could be visiting. The reason I don’t love it is I think it’s super crowded, no shade but also not enough views to feel worth it. It takes a little over an hour to get to the top and is still a moderately steep trail but it isn’t terribly hard with less than 1,000 feet of elevation gain. If you want to hike in Boise to say you did, do this one. If you’ve got a car and time- do one of the first two I mentioned.

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Box Lake Trail: McCall, Idaho

7.1 Miles Out/Back

“At one point I thought I was having a heart attack and then I found out I had only hiked a single mile.”

Once again starting with the hardest one I’ve done in the McCall area of Idaho but man was Box Lake beautiful. At 2,247 feet of elevation gain this beast is not an easy hike by any means. It’s actually listed as “hard” on AllTrails which you know means they aren’t lying. I swear some people are out here reviewing hikes like “17 miles, 90 degrees of steepness and no shade- easy 20 minute hike that I do every morning while carrying my 3 children and cooking a lasagna.” But I digress…

Box Lake is a tough first couple of miles of steep and then it flattens out a bit into this gorgeous meadow that makes you want to Julie Andrews on through it. Tons of wild flowers and beautiful mountain peaks to view along the way but once you see Box Lake itself the whole hike is worth it. We went last July and there wasn’t any snow but I do know they got a shit ton of snow this season so I’ve read the meadow is a big snowfield currently. Bring lots of water and a few snacks, we wish we would have brought a picnic lunch to have at the top so next time that’s definitely our plan. Trekking poles wouldn’t hurt but I didn’t personally use them so I don’t think you’d need them. The road up to the trail head is quite bendy and filled with pot holes, my little Civic would have been murdered so just keep that in mind when you go. I absolutely recommend this hike, it’s hard but it is beyond worth it when you get to the top.

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Louie Lake Trail: McCall, Idaho

2.6 Miles Out/Back

“Louie, Louie, oh no, you take me where you gotta go, yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah, baby”

Ah Louie Lake, such a fun little hike. This one is definitely used for lots of different activities like fishing and camping because you can drive up part of it to cut some of the hike off of if you’re carrying a bunch of stuff but we started at the first trail head each time we’ve done it. It’s not a very difficult hike at 813 feet of elevation gain though there are some parts more steep than others. It’s a wide trail in most places so it’s good for a larger group with mixed levels of ability. Once you get up to the lake it’s the most gorgeous clear blue water you’ve ever seen. We’ve done the hike in the dead of summer and in October when the snow started to fall and both were absolutely beautiful. If you want to do a shorter hike and are visiting the McCall area I would give this a 10/10 every single time. It’s one of my favorites of anywhere I’ve been!

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I plan on updating this post as I complete more hikes in Idaho but I truly hope you add a few of these should your travels take you to the Boise/McCall area.

Hiking has been such a difficult, rewarding, and most importantly fun hobby for me to get into over the last few years. Especially now when we all could use a little getting out of the house safely it’s been amazing for me to be able to hop on the trails and forget about how hard these last few months have been.

I’m also in the market for new hiking boots because I don’t love mine, not enough ankle support for these gams of mine so if you have any suggestions let me know in the comments!

Happy Trails, Friends!

Love, Kari