Tag Archives: photography

Extra! Extra! I Survived Hot Air Ballooning!

Oh, yes, I DID survive. And dare I say? Thrived.

Hot air ballooning was so much more than I could have ever hoped for.

And not just because of the balloon. Or the hot air.

But because it involved so, so many guilty pleasures. I hope you’re ready for an eareyeful.

It started around 6pm on Sunday, when Peppermeister, the man trying to kill me via his 30th birthday “present”, herded me into the car. I knew what was up. Luckily, I’d already prepared my last will and testament.

We headed to a main road not too far from our house; this was the only sign of what was to come:

A long driveway led to an open field, where two other couples were milling about. Peppermeister is ruthless, I thought. With all this extra weight, we would plummet to the ground with even more force than I had originally feared.

He reminded me not to socialize because “people like us too much.” It was a cover-up, because he didn’t want me to get close to anyone when we were all about to die. Except he was right. People totally like us too much when we talk. In fact, we try not to be ourselves in public at all. So here we are at a picnic table by ourselves. Being [secretly] awesome.

An old-school bus with a trailer pulled up, hauling a giant basket. A slew of folks immediately began assembling our death trap.

Babs, a.k.a. Mommarazzi, was, of course, on hand to capture everything:

I was glad it was a rainbow. Hot air balloons are supposed to be rainbows. And rainbows are good luck. …Right?

I put on a brave face.

And that’s when I saw it. The greatest handlebar mustache of all time. You can even see it from the back (far right). The perfect distraction from imminent death.

Our basket had 5 compartments, and each person had to climb in and out while the basket was on its side. I made it, and started worrying I would drop Annie Leibovitz (my iPhone), causing someone else’s death.

I glanced upward nervously; I prefer to be on fire only metaphorically speaking.

The force of the now-inflated balloon pulled our jam-packed basket upright. Oh holy chipmunks. We have lift off.

Goodbye, Babs! Remember what I said about selling Peppermeister’s instruments! …I love you. Psst. Handlebar Mustache is RIGHT. THERE.

OMG. Let’s zoom in:

Tragically, the winds blew us northwest, away from The Mustache Miracle and right over my place of employment. I’d post pictures, but I feel like they might shoot me (how many times can I cheat death in one week?).

Here, look at these instead:

Ah. You never knew Jersey was this beautiful, right? Yes. Quiet, serene, relaxing… oh, wait. Did I mention we were with two couples from Brooklyn (one young, one middle-aged)? Here’s an 8-second reenactment of our first few moments in the air:

I had to admit, it was relaxing, despite their piercing chatter. I was lost pondering gravity potential Glee covers when we started running into trees. We got closer and closer to the ground, and made a bumpy ‘touch down’ in a corn field. The driver fire cord-puller guy claimed it was “to slow us down.” Personally, I think he was just trying to shut Fran Drescher up.

The van that brought the hot air balloon followed us the whole time, because, in case I failed to mention it earlier - they have no control over where the balloon will go.

I was a little worried about crashing into power lines, or this highway. (Or that drivers viewing our balloon-y majesty would cause a pile-up on said highway.)

I probably shouldn’t have looked down at the inside of the basket, either.

It reads: “We’re totally not responsible if we turn you into vampire meat.”

Yeah, I really shouldn’t have read that…

Why are we going so low again? Why? Oh no.

Luckily, we had enough juice to get our basket out of harm’s way, and got to watch as families came out of their houses, dogs barked, and little kids begged us to land in their yard (who doesn’t love watching a hot air balloon? It’s like music. Or eating asparagus and then peeing). Note that even so close to The End, I had only one thing on my mind: Snacks.

About 40 minutes later, they decided there wouldn’t be a better opportunity to land but in this backyard. I braced myself, and…

…We made it. (Crawling Falling out of the basket was even more hilarious than climbing in. My shoe fell off in the process, and Handlebar Mustache complimented my toenail polish [which totally matches my GoGuiltyPleasures slap bracelet, natch]. I may have to consider a Third Husband.)

A copy-cat balloon landed right after us. They didn’t get the memo about the rainbow pattern requirement. I’m surprised they survived.

Loading the basket back on the trailer was fun for everyone who wasn’t loading the basket back on the trailer. …That redhead was cute from the front, too.

And that’s when we found out what had happened. Somehow, I completely missed it. Young Mr. Brooklyn [Gypsy?] had gotten down on one knee -in the basket- to propose to his infant girlfriend. There’s no way the basket should have stayed afloat with the weight of that rock in it.

And P.S. – she’s sixteen.

Here I am attempting to point at the ring during the ride in the van back to our cars (where are Misty’s ninja photo skills when I need them?):

Once we made it back to home base, we were treated to champagne, beer, cheese and crackers. Apparently, hot air ballooning began in France, and when ballooners would land in someone’s yard, the homeowners would freak out. ‘Cause, you know, it was clearly a spaceship. To ease the tension, the ballooner would offer a bottle of champagne to the traumatized family.

Now. Why couldn’t Peppermeister have told me that from the start*?

*He claims he totally did**.

**I never listen to him. Ever. It’s probably why he wants to kill me.

So, what did you think of that mustache/engagement?

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Deep Thoughts With GoJulesGo

Sometimes...it depends on what the meaning of 'is' is.

I’ve been moved, Chipmunks. Moved to go where this blog has never gone before.

Into the depths of my big, beautiful brain.

Who have we to thank? Well, we could call her Siri, but I prefer Annie Leibovitz, because my new phone takes such beautiful pictures. That, ultimately, is why I got her.

Meet A-Leib.

Come, let us look at all of the profound musings A-Leib has inspired since coming into my life last Friday…

If cars ran on hay, and horses ran on gas, I’d be okay with us running out of gas.

Is there anything hot glue, a ball of twine, and an intense desire to mask inner turmoil with superficial beauty can’t do?

Sometimes, as the sun goes down, I wonder why all them “Twilight” haters hate. The protagonist is the epitome of quiet, selfless inner strength. She’s also a pretty good cook.

Man’s best friend can help us cherish simplicity: fresh air, open fields and sunny skies. And all the deer poop you can eat.

When one looks for signs to lead them down the right path, one often finds pebbles in one’s shoe.

I believe inner peace can be found in the most unexpected places. Like someone else’s backyard. …Or jail.

Happy Thursday! What’s been on your dead sexy mind lately?

P.S. – In case you were wondering, they’ve put in new trailheads on our street, and the trails lead to some pretty spectacular views. Yeah, man! This is Jersey!

Slap Bracelets Comeback – Part 3!

Yo yo yo flying squirrels chipmunks! I have an exceptional bundle of GoGuiltyPleasures slap bracelet pics for you today! You are VERY welcome.

If you missed the first and second installments, they too are worth your time, in my completely conceited and biased opinion. Renée from Lessons from Teachers and Twits also just incorporated her slap bracelets into this dazzling post.

Continuing on in the order in which these pictures were received, here we go!!!

#1 -Katy from k8edid

It would really, REALLY help you to know something before I post Katy’s pictures, and I’m soooo tempted to keep it to myself.

Hmmm.

Okay. I give.

Katy teaches at a nursing college, and should earn many high-falutin’ credentials after her name just for her creativity in the following pictures. Oh, and, if you don’t already know: her blog is delightful, with smatterings of (humorous) poetry and recipes! What more could a guilty pleasure blogger ask for?

I put the slap bracelet to use on my drinking utensils…

…on a mannequin…

He's no dummy; he's got the hottest accessory!

…on a poster for the nursing students (about ID bracelets)…

…on an IV…

Give the patient 1 liter of guilty pleasure IV - STAT!

… Then I took it home where Shelby modeled it (reluctantly) on her ankle and on her tail, and drooled when I put it around her favorite guilty pleasure – Milkbones…

…Finally, I slipped it on my husband’s (Sweet Cheeks) skinny little ankle and snapped a picture before he could figure out what was going on…

#2 – Deb from The Monster in Your Closet

Deb is a very special person, choosing to focus on positivity and gratitude even in the darkest moments. She manages to make everyone feel divine with each heart-warming comment and every beautifully moving post. She is an accomplished writer (check out “The Monster’s Daughter“!) and a Buffy fan. What more do you need to know?

Oh, speaking of Buffy, she totally kicked chipmunk tail in my first video blogging contest with a hilarious video about Buffy, earning this super-duper homemade prize. (I have to mention that post every chance I get because I love it, and Deb, so much.)

Deb’s been keeping me up-to-date on all of the slap bracelet goings-on in her home, which center around her adorable toddler, Li’l D. Just look:

Guilty Pleasure Power - ACTIVATE!!!

While Li’l D was flexing his muscles, someone else was snuggling his My Little Pony…

Sometimes...there are no words.

#3 – Sandy from Sandy the Social Butterfly

I heard from Sandy for the first time about a month ago, requesting a slap bracelet. She said she’d stumbled across my blog, and I like to think it was via one of the following search engine terms (yes, these are real search terms that led people to my blog):

  • chipmunk sexy humor
  • farting for pleasure
  • diet with pop tarts
  • strippers covered in ketchup
  • how do i shape my eye brows like ryan philippe

I’ve been having lots of fun reading Sandy’s blog, because she shares personal anecdotes that are as endearing as they are amusing. She is also the first person I know who actually does those INSANITY and P90X work-out videos. So be nice to her;  she may be made entirely of muscle and the forgotten dreams of [P90X's] Tony Horton, who clearly was never held as a child.

My, the pink against pristine white really raises the bar, Winston.

Just when I thought it couldn't get more stunning than Winston!

#4 – Cappy from Writer’s Block

I found Cappy a while back through one of my favorite bloggers, Girl on the Contrary. There’s definitely a common theme between these two gorgeous gals, and that theme is hilarity. She’s the perfect blend of silly and sarcastic. Every post of Cappy’s makes me burst out laughing, and I’m SO excited that she’s come over to the dark light side.

It's Kung Fu Pooh and Drunken Piglet! ...That sounds like a Chinese food dish I kind of want to try.

Thank you Katy, Deb, Sandy and Cappy! Consider yourselves cordially invited to the Chipmunk Ball. 

You STILL don’t have a slap bracelet to call your own? Stop your tears -and mine- by emailing me at JKSchnedeker@yahoo.com!

GOGP’s Sexiest Dog of the Year!

Okay. Maybe not sexiest. Unless you’re into that kind of thing. (I’m a guilty pleasure blogger. I don’t judge.)

As you might recall, Uncle Jesse, our [not quite] 2-year-old Australian Labradoodle, had his first photo shoot last month, and the 130+ pictures arrived on Christmas Eve! Thanks, Jenn and Joseph Frazz Photography!

Are you ready for this, celebratory chipmunks?! These were taken in our yard, and yes, we have a giant flag painted on a board on the back fence, courtesy of the original homeowners. (We’re thinking of adding flags from around the world, whaddya think?)

Prepare yourselves for hunk-itude:

UncleJesse_Joseph-Frazz-labradoodle

UncleJesse3_Joseph-Frazz-labradoodle

UncleJesse4_Joseph-Frazz-labradoodle

UncleJesse5_Joseph-Frazz-labradoodle

And my personal favorite:

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

How are you celebrating (besides putting your supermodel dog in a gold bow tie? Oh wait, is that just me?)? Any resolutions?

The Postest with the Mostest – #100!!!

Hunky Chipmunks, this post is epic. It’s…

My 100th Post!!!

Can I get a what-what? I knew this one had to be special, and as usual, the guilty pleasure gods were on my side.

My most chipmunkalicious friend, Jenn (ya’ll probably remember her from this special post or our guest interview on JM Randolph’s blog), discovered a pet photographer through her volunteer work at the animal shelter, 11th Hour Rescue.

Meet Joseph Frazz.

Photo credit: reviewobserver.net.

Joe is awesome for a lot of reasons, like the fact that he volunteers his time to visit shelters and take amazing pictures of cats and dogs. Because what better way to help them get adopted than by showing them in their best light?

Jenn hired Joe to take pictures of her dog, Shunderson, last weekend.

Joseph Frazz Photograpy

She showed me some of the pics and I lost my shiz.

Joseph Frazz Photography

I told her I would have to hire Joe, too. She replied, “Well…I kind of already did as your Christmas present.” Cue tear-fest.

Joe came over yesterday and conducted Uncle Jesse’s first photo shoot. Naturally, Uncle Jesse felt it was long overdue. Much like his mother, he’s a supermodel at heart. He kept his demands low, and only required filtered water and hand-rolled cigarettes, a new squeaky toy and a bag of organic chicken-flaxseed treats.

Technically, he's Australian.

(Don’t worry, as soon as I get the rest of the pics, you’ll be the first to know.)

Make sure to check out more of Joe’s phenomenal photography on his Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Joseph-Frazz-Photography/114981261894705

I’ve Been Waiting For You to Ask Me, But I Can’t Wait Forever

You guys are so cool. I love everything about you. Especially the way you furrow your eyebrows and tilt your head when you read my blog. It’s so cute. What I’m trying to say is… I want this to work out. I really do. But I don’t know how much longer I can wait.

Why aren’t we talking about my blog banner photo?!

Venice Beach, circa 2004

I really hope seeing it didn’t make you think I was more sensitive or introspective or beautiful than I really am. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I am all of those things, but that wasn’t the point.

It’s the epitome of guilty pleasure, in all its glorious, self-serving cheesiness! 

#1 Sunset.

#2 Beach.

#3 Over the shoulder.

What are some of your favorite guilty pleasure pics?? Any from your own blog? (Remember the chipmunk eating Dunkaroos? Or the animals dressed as other animals?) Yes, 7-year-old MySpace headshots TOTALLY count!

Here are some recent favs, for your viewing pleasure:

Photo credit: strangenature.com

Photo credit: strangenature.com

Photo credit: humor-in-photos-and-pictures.blogspot.com

Photo credit: designyourway.net

Things That Confuse Me When I Walk My Dog: A Photo Tour

My husband and I try to take our dog for a walk every day, which usually amounts to 3 times a week. The only option by our house is to do a full 2-mile loop, and some most times E.L. Fudge cookies in front of the T.V. wins.

Perhaps the real reason I am hesitant to embark on this exhausting trek is because so many things baffle me along the way. (Click on any of the pictures to enlarge.)

MILE 0.15: Here is where my dog decides to relieve himself. Every time. As if he KNOWS it’s just far enough away from the house to require me to carry his feces for the remaining 1.85 miles.

MILE 0.41: I cannot for the life of me fathom why climbing this hill mountain never gets easier. No matter how many vodka shots I turn down the night before.

MILE 1.05: I don’t have a picture of Mile 1.05, because Mile 1.05 scares me, and I’m fairly certain that if I showed you why, you wouldn’t be able to sleep at night, and then I’d feel really bad (but would mostly worry that you’d stop reading my blog). Suffice it to say, the house at Mile 1.05 has a rusted sign on the gate, leading up to a dome-shaped apartment/garage, and it reads: HONK BEFORE YOU ENTER.

MILE 1.11: And if you’re not already freaked out, look what I recently discovered behind this seemingly-innocent house: a legitimate cemetary! They did a very good job disguising it; it took me almost 8 months to notice. But this worries me even more. I have so many questions, the first being, as I’m sure you’d imagine, are those people or pets? …And this is why I need to stop asking questions.

MILE 1.18: Luckily, it’s not long before we land in Pleasantville, but this too perplexes me. Are forsythia bushes supposed to look like that, and have the rest of us been offending Mother Nature unwittingly? And, P.S., what kind of birds are landing at this residence? I didn’t think turkeys could fly that high.

MILE 1.30: Now not only am I in Pleasantville, but it is 1952 and the neighborhood kids have gone for a dip in the watering hole.

MILE 1.52: I have not yet figured out why these people have a miniature pony, nor why I feel so disappointed when it chooses to hide in its shack (in case you don’t already know, I could do without horses).

MILE 1.60: There were 3 sheep here before winter. It’s spring now. Where are they? Oh, god, don’t tell me they’re behind the house at Mile 1.11.

MILE 1.71: Every time I pass one of the three (yes, three) Christmas tree farms in our neighborhood, I wonder how anyone could ever think New Jersey is anything less than a magical, pine-scented armpit, where everyone says, “How YOU doin’, amongst this fine bucolic splendor?”

MILE 1.79: You might not be able to tell from this photo, but this mailbox’s general girth puzzles me. Just look at the massive posts holding it up. Do they often get large packages containing the parts needed to assemble Dolly Parton’s bra, or a shopping mall? Or do they have a very small-but-unhygenic houseguest who comes to visit frequently enough that it requires drastic sleeping arrangements?

MILE 1.90: Daffodils. They’re everywhere! Why?

MILE 1.91: I will never, EVER understand why this house always has a ladder resting against it. Not always in the same place, but always there. If someone is trying to sneak out (or in), they’re not being very sneaky, or consistent. And if repairs are underway, why am I not seeing any progress? That ladder HAS to be messing with their Feng Shui.

These are all things I don’t understand. What I do understand is that if <insert deity here> wanted me to walk 2 miles every day, he wouldn’t have made Fudge Stripes taste so good.

THE END.

Wait, wait, P.S. – a little shout-out to someone else who’s confused: click here.