Archive for June, 2010

As my intrepid leader prepares for her big jump this weekend, it occurs to me that a supportive employee would do her best to help her boss better prepare for the big jump she’s fretting about. So I’ve poked around a bit online to find some helpful tips for Amy’s big jump.

1. Scout the area of the jump. For Amy, that means finding a dark corner where she can weep and pray before the plane takes off.

2. Don’t wear loose clothing or shoes. That means for at least this one Saturday, she’ll have to hang up that mumu she stole from Mrs. Roper. And if her shoes are nice in tight, they’ll be harder for her to rip off her feet and use as a defensive weapon if she feels cornered.

3. Meet your instructor and learn about his/her history and expertise. Amy is lucky; she’ll be taking the plunge with the pros at Skydive City and surrounded by off-duty service members. You know, the ones who really like it when you hug them with the iron grip of a frightened gibbon as you cry so hard you leave a mucous trail that would impress a gargantuan horde of mutant slugs. Best-selling author and Homefront Online contributor Ellie Kay has a good story about her first skydiving instructor that she posted on the wall of our Facebook page. Maybe Amy will be so lucky.

4. Learn about the banana pose. Seriously — this a real tip. I have nothing to add; this is a stand-alone. (Insert joke here.)

You’ve still got till this Saturday, June 26 to add to the pot to help push Amy out of the plane. Click here to donate, and please add Jump, Amy! Jump! to the comments section of the form.

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Here's Amy fearfully cradling her head in her hands on a roller coaster surrounded by teenage girls having a great time.

What would you pay to get your boss to jump out of an airplane?

$5? $50? $500? Would you give her a good push her for free? Have you already done it and hope you don’t get caught?

If you haven’t and you want to, try to contain your jealousy. I was very excited to learn that my boss, Amy Palmer, COO and co-founder of Operation Homefront, will be jumping out of an airplane June 26. I was somewhat less excited to learn she will be wearing a parachute. But then I got excited again when she agreed to let us do a fund drive to raise money for military families in need, and that she’s taking a flip cam to record her fears and probable pants-wetting for posterity and our YouTube peanut gallery.

Amy has promised that if she chickens out, she’ll personally match money pledged in our Jump, Amy, Jump! “fun raiser.” She freely admits she is utterly terrified. Parachuting is on her bucket list, but she once became so petrified on a Ferris wheel that she burst into tears, grounded all three teenagers who had trapped her on it and took away their cars to boot.

Only one was actually her child.

Gotta say, I admire the woman for facing her fears. It would take eight figures, Rohypnol and a Timothy Olyphant/Tom Welling tandem sandwich to get me out that door.

So I hope you’ll join in the fun of getting Amy out of the plane and safely back to solid ground. Every dollar we raise will help push her out; I’m putting up $100 to feed the kitty.

As we say so often throughout this organization: Every penny counts. Click here to make a difference. Click here to share words of encouragement or mockery for Amy on our Facebook page.

This is gonna be fun.

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I can’t imagine the pain and stress of a service member’s funeral. The hurt, confusion and anger of losing a loved one on top of dealing with paper work and red tape would drive anyone to emotional extremes.

And it does. Fights between family members over how and where service members should be laid to rest have prompted lawmakers to start crafting legislation to quell the feuds.

Turns out state law — not DoD paperwork — is the determining factor in who claims the body. In one case, that meant an absent father got preference over the single mother who raised a fallen soldier, even though the soldier had designated his mother as his emergency contact. The father decided to bury the son in a state he’d never even been to. The mother was understandably devastated.

In Georgia, the new law requires the state to be true to the service member selected on DoD forms. Several other states are following.

We can’t legislate civility among fractious families. But if new laws can guarantee a service member’s final wishes are respected, surely that can be of some comfort to grieving families.

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I love the Pioneer Woman website. I often go there in search of yummy food, and I am never disappointed. (Love her Cauliflower Soup and Oven-Roasted Asparagus; 12 pounds to go till I can try her Best Chocolate Sheetcake. Ever.)

But today I was pleasantly surprised to learn Ree Drummond (PW) is also doing what she can to help military families. Check out her Photography page. She assigned her Flickr followers a homecoming photo theme, and the pics are real tearjerkers. What’s more, she’s donating a dollar to Operation Homefront for every comment left on the series of posts.

Thanks so much to everyone who took part in the assignment, and thanks so much to Ree for her generosity and patriotism.

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