Friday, December 02, 2016

Random Acts of Shifeness: Grandpa's Coming to Town

  • My dad is coming to town. He recently retired and is ready to enjoy not working. It will be nice to see him. I'm sure he's wishing his oldest son would have chosen to live in a more tropical locale as Boise in December isn't tank top weather. 
  • The tree is up. We might have to hang it from the ceiling so it makes it to Christmas. As you can imagine, Ms. Frizzle thinks it's a giant chew toy. And I'm glad to announce that Ms. Frizzle has added Christmas ornaments to her diet. She might change her mind about her dietary choices after one of the ornaments make it through her system. 
  • I got a really good deal on a bag of clementines. Some days you really have to count your blessings. Thank you, Fred Meyer for the incredible savings. Some days you also hope that they will invent sarcastic font to remove all doubt that I was being facetious. 
  • Quote of the week: If plan A doesn't work, the alphabet has 25 more letters - 204 if you're in Japan. - Claire Cook
  • Joke of the week: It’s the World Cup Final, and a man makes his way to his seat right next to the pitch. He sits down, noticing that the seat next to him is empty. He leans over and asks his neighbor if someone will be sitting there. ‘No,’ says the neighbor. ‘The seat is empty.’ ‘This is incredible,’ said the man. ‘Who in their right mind would have a seat like this for the Final and not use it?’ The neighbor says, ‘Well actually the seat belongs to me. I was supposed to come with my wife, but she passed away. This is the first World Cup Final we haven’t been to together since we got married.’ ‘Oh, I’m so sorry to hear that. That’s terrible….But couldn’t you find someone else, a friend, relative or even a neighbor to take her seat?’ The man shakes his head. ‘No,’ he says. ‘They’re all at the funeral.’

  • Recommendation of the week: Towel shopping at Bed, Bath, and Beyond. So, so much fun. Did I mention that someone needs to invent a sarcastic font? It's really going to be fun when Mrs. Shife tells me she doesn't like them and I get to take them back. I am a man with only a few admirable qualities and towel shopping is definitely not one of them. 

Thanks for stopping by. Talk to you soon.

I will persevere. I will keep moving forward. I will be the stream. 

Friday, November 25, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving 2016

Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.
Most of the visitors to the Casa de Shifley 2016 turkey day extravaganza were really thankful for modern medicine.
Mrs. Shife had an allergic reaction to something that led to an "awesome" rash all over her body.
I decided to add a sinus infection to my to-do list this week.
And my sister-in-law either has strep throat, the flu or is going through heroin detox. We are pretty sure it's strep but you never know about her. After all, she is the one who saw me in my thong underwear.
So what's new with me?
Well, my wonderful Aunt Kathy mentioned that the Seattle Times was looking for holiday cooking horror stories and I should submit a Thanksgiving story that happened at her house a few years ago.
I did and they published it.
Here's the link or you can just read it below.

Twas the night before Black Friday, when all the through the abode
The labs were stirring, even the one from a different zip code.
The vomit was projected by the back door with unrestrained care
In the hopes that someone would arrive soon to help their despair.
The adults and children were all startled out of their beds
As visions of WTF danced in their heads.
And as we released the dogs to finish their puke attack
We soon discovered they had more to do than just yak.
When out on the lawn the labs began to seek sweet relief
Everyone watched with curiosity that soon turned to disbelief.
Like a flash, it came out of their rears
A black toxic sludge that had them in tears.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave a luster to these horrible objects below.
When what to our wondering eyes did appear
A trail of oil from the turkey fryer used downstairs by the family’s engineer.
We now knew why the labs were to the door so lively and quick
They had in a moment been led astray by the temptations of a turkey oil slick.
This Thanksgiving was one for the ages,
Now it was time to find the carpet cleaner in the yellow pages.

There were a couple of close calls but, fortunately, no incidents with the newest lab in the family. 
Ms. Frizzle just had a few pieces of turkey and called it a good night on her first Thanksgiving. 

I will persevere. I will keep moving forward. I will be the stream. 

Friday, November 18, 2016

Happy Birthday Hayden - 2016

Hello Hayden. 
It is that time of year again when I scratch my head and wonder like all parents:
“Where did the time go?”
I really can’t believe you are going to be 5.
How is this possible?
I still remember like yesterday the moment you were born and how I knew my life would never be the same.
You have grown from a dependent little infant to an ‘I do it’ toddler to my fiercely independent soon-to-be 5-year-old darling daughter.
It’s hard letting you go off on your own sometimes, but you are growing up and this is how life works. I will still reach down to hold your hand every chance I get, but I know those opportunities are decreasing as you continue to spread your wings.
Charming and bubbly.
Beautiful and lovely.
Innocent and friendly.
Dearest Hayden, you are all of the above and more.
You are an amazing little girl and I hope you enjoy your special day.
Happy Birthday Hayden Belle.


Friday, November 11, 2016

Dog Days of November

  • Some dog updates for those of you keeping score at home. I talked to the people that took Tank and he's doing well. I really want to go visit him, but I have read that you should give the dog 16 weeks to give him time to adjust to his new surroundings. It's only been 2 weeks. I like Ms. Frizzle a lot, but I miss my basset. 
  • Speaking of Ms. Frizzle, she's doing well too. We are just having a hard time figuring out what she really likes to eat as she seems to change her mind all the time. Some times she's really into stuffed animals, socks, and shoes. Then there are times when she only wants crayons, paper, and wood. Occasionally she will throw in some coins, batteries, and household plants to make her diet super interesting. 
  • She eats everything. 
  • We had had to baby proof our house before but this will be the first time I have had to lab proof a house. 
  • A few of my most recent Google searches: "When will my labrador stop chewing everything," "Best chew toys for labs," "Drink recommendations to celebrate puppy achievements like her eating 2 remote controls," and "Am I certifiably insane?"
  • I ran across this expression about labs that gave me no hope at all: "Chew till they're 2. Shed until they're dead." Awesome.
  • Oh and she still occasionally shoots Yoo-Hoo in the house, and by Yoo-Hoo I mean poop, and by poop I mean some foul-smelling, liquid monstrosity that varies in color, viscosity, shape and odor because it depends on if Ms. Frizzle ate 14 crayons or took down Mrs. Shife's indoor ficus tree or if she devoured Hayden's Barbie because it seemed like a good snack until dinner time. 
  • Anybody dealing with post-election stress disorder? I'm being open minded and giving him the benefit of the doubt. If I think about it too much I will end up like Ms. Frizzle and dealing with a bad case of poop smoothies. 
  • That's all for today, folks. Enjoy your weekend. Thanks for stopping by.

Frizzle taking a break before she tries to eat the other slippers. 

I'm having a hard time figuring out if Hayden likes Frizzle or not.

Ms. Frizzle staying still for a moment before she tries eat the sandals behind her.

I will persevere. I will keep moving forward. I will be the stream. 

Friday, November 04, 2016

Crestfallen Once Again

More than 6 years ago, the Shifleys participated in Operation Dwarfshank Redemption, which was my clever (or not-so-clever depending on your caffeine/alcohol/pharmaceutical intake for the day) way of saying we were going to adopt another basset hound.
We did and I believe most of you have heard about or have seen our husky hound, Tank.
Unfortunately, we had to find him a new home last weekend.
I don’t want to go into too many details because it’s still pretty tough not having him around, but he attacked Ms. Frizzle and Hayden. These are not isolated incidents and we have worked with trainers over the past few years to try to make our house his forever home.
It just wasn’t meant to be.
He’s now in a home that has an older basset hound and two grown children and they fell in love with him right away.
Initial reports are that he’s doing great and I’m happy to hear that.
It was the right thing to do, but doing the right thing sure does suck.
He will always be one of my favorite dogs.
But right now my heart hurts when I think about him.
Especially knowing that he’s no longer my dog.
But as much as it hurts, I wouldn’t trade the pain for all the laughs, cuddles, walks, belly rubs, shakes, scratches, howls, and bassetness that he gave me, Mrs. Shife and the kiddos.
We had some good times with him, and time will ease our pain but it doesn't feel like it right now.
Thanks for the memories, Tanklin.

I will persevere. I will keep moving forward. I will be the stream.

Friday, October 28, 2016

The Name Game

Since we named our newest family member Ms. Frizzle, it got me thinking about unusual names which ultimately led me down the path of really bad names like the ones below.
Which one do you find the most disturbing? 

Thanks, but no thanks. I prefer my jam to taste like Uncle Steve. 

You need to be a big dude with Sackrider as your last name. 

Have you met his brother, Phil? 

I think Chris P. Nutts was the director. 

I can think of some other fun things that I would rather do.

He looks more like a Dick to me.

I think I'm going to give Uber a try. 

Major Dick Holder is in charge of the 4th Battalion. 

I guess with a name like Wang Liqin, you are really going to be focused on the ball.  

I do believe "Mike" might be having fun with the news reporter about his name. 
I guess Mike Hunt was unavailable for the interview. 

I agree. These are bad website names.
I would definitely not renew "SpeedoFart" when GoDaddy came calling. 

He has to be really good at his job with a name like that, right? 

Because Uranus was just too popular that year for boy names. And you want your child to hate you.

Thanks for stopping by. Talk to you soon. 

I will persevere. I will keep moving forward. I will be the stream. 

Friday, October 21, 2016

Two Years Later

This time two years ago I was getting ready for my book signing party.
Hard to believe it has been almost 730 days.
I'll give you a second to do the math.
Ready? OK.
I'm glad I did it as it turned out to be one of the coolest things I have done with this life of mine.
I still think it's awesome that I can type my name on the Amazon site and my book appears.
And I'm still getting royalty checks.
I earned enough this month to pay for 1 gallon of gas.
I will not be retiring any time soon thanks to my book, but I certainly didn't do it for the money.
I did it for the groupies.
Nope that's not true either.
It was a dream of mine and something I very proud that I did.
However, there are a few people who disagree completely with that statement and they were more than happy to tell me about it with an Amazon review.
Here's my favorite review from an unsatisfied customer:

I disgusted Stan.
But Stan kind of disgusted me because he doesn't know how to spell reading.
I guess we're even.
Dealing with criticism from complete strangers was by far the hardest part of writing my book.
You can't please so you might as well please yourself, right?
Well that's all for today.
Thanks again for stopping by and I will talk to you soon.

I will persevere. I will keep moving forward. I will be the stream.