Saturday, October 31, 2009


Merry Halloween to all the queens (you know who you are). A title befit for our daughter in the picture you see before your primitive earth-man eyes might be Lady "Shazaaaaam" Stardust Superfly Isobel. She has more sass than a peeved Simon Cowell. So THERE!

A pensive Isobel brandishes a stick with which to "learn all them po white trash, like that Emmie Slattery, an' hit that Rhett so hard, he gonna think that Ashley done wholloped him wif a ho'shoe!"

click on this picture to see a bigger version if you want to check out Isobel's TWILIGHT EYES!!!!!!

Lady #1 "Ugh, who is that awful man with Isobel?"
Lady #2 "Isn't that Pierce Brosnan's son, Froken?"
Lady #1 "No, Froken has better abs"

We're off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of....OMG IT'S STEPHANIE FROM LAZY TOWN!!1!11!1!!

And I think that lion just turned into sweet, sweet version of GRENDEL.

Isobel is very proud of her teeth (that she will have all of on her seventh birthday, we hope). We trick or treated on this All Hallows' Eve and then celebrated by lighting a bonfire and casting the bones of slaughtered livestock into the fire. It's all great fun!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Baby Melchior is on his way!

Hello loyal subjects and serfs. Due to the recent downturn in the economy, we have decided to have another baby to prove that we are tougher than everyone said we were. So there. Oh and it's a boy, thank you very much, because daddy made it so. Here is little Melchior snuggling up to the placenta (as we are all oft wont to do now and again). He looks JUST like Isobel! ... and just like every other baby in a 3-d ultrasound photo.

Regard, the royal foot and leg:

Melchior, or just 'Chior as I like to call him, is due February 28th. Quoth he: "I can't wait to meet all y'all and try on all of the very manly outfits you bought me at Janie and Jack and Gap Kids.
And to Isobel, you best watch out girl, 'cause Melchy's 'bout to take your place as MACITSFIMHOLOL (Most Adorable Child in the Shiffler Family in my Humble Opinion. LOL.). Peace."

Monday, October 12, 2009

Isobel is two years old.

Christina and Isobel frequent the park across the verge as they will take any opportunity they can to get away from me. Here is Isobel at the baseball diamond wondering if mommy's hand signals are indicating for her to steal home or charge the mound.

The North Carolina zoo is chock-full of animals of all sizes and means. Here are some animals who, lured by the offers of Mr. Dark to live out their secret fantasies, have become bound in service to the carnival (or zoo in this case) as beasts of burden. Christina suggested riding the carousel backwards, but I know (as do many of you) what would happen if they were to do that. Shucks, y'all! Next picture!

Bruce and Judy came to visit because they heard Glen Beck was in town passing out autographed hate mail for the small price of everlasting and unwavering allegiance to him. It was great. Anyway, this is in Old Salem where people churned butter and stuff. Overall though, it was a pretty fun place.

A farmer offered us a hay ride and we took it. Isobel enjoyed the ducks by the eerie green bog.

On her second birthday Isobel was buried in gifts of all makes and models. She liked all of them except one. None of you shall ever know which one that is. Cute!

Chocolate monster likes her desserts rich and her toys unbreakable.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Musings on Mommy-dom

So, about 4 months ago, Miss Isabell tagged me with this, and I'm just now getting 'round to doing it:
Instructions:"Just write a post of your own 5 things that you love about being a mom and find someone to link to and tag - someone from your own country, if you like, but definitely someone from another country."

So here we go! Five things I love about being a mom. This list could probably alternately be titled "Five Things I Love About Isobel," since my experience of being a mom is tied up so closely with her and who she is.

1. Getting to share with Isobel things that I loved as a kid, and seeing her reaction to those things. She makes old things new again. A recent example:

The first time through, she wasn't too thrilled about Dumbo, but now she loves him and we talk about him a lot. This is the conversation we have at least once a day:
I: Dumbo! Everybody tease Dumbo.
C: Oh, yeah, everybody teased Dumbo.
I: Ears!
C: Yep, they teased him about his ears. Poor Dumbo.
I: Big Ears!

2. Deciphering Isobelspeak. Here are some of my favorites:
"Teeters" (Her name for Harris Teeter, the grocery store we've been going to.)
"Monkey George" (Curious George)
"Moonie" (Movie)
I know it's wrong in the teaching-the-kid-to-speak-properly sense, but I just can't resist using these words and phrases that she comes up with.

3. The sound of Isobel's voice, whether singing, laughing, or talking. I should really get a video of Brooke making her laugh, but in the meantime here's one that includes some singing:

(In case you can't tell, she's reenacting the trailer for Where the Wild Things Are.)

4. The attention she gets from strangers. I know this is shallow, but I've always LOVED hearing how cute Isobel is from random people we meet. It helps that I know she loves the attention. It just makes me feel so good to know that people who have no reason to say it make a point of complimenting her (and, vicariously, me).

5. Valuing my own life more than ever. I can't imagine not being with Isobel, and the idea of her growing up without ME as her mom is heartbreaking. So I have more reason to live, and live a good life, than I did before she was born.

So! I hereby tag: Tracy as my out-of-country pick, and also Krista and Nicole.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Greensboro Apartment Tour

Greetings, one and all. Witness our apartment in HD (horrendous defiance) and tell all your friends so that THE WHOLD FRIGGIN' WORLD CAN SEE WHERE WE LIVE.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


While in the Salt Lake City Isobel screamed "Gimme a photo shoot pronto or I will make this trip a living hell!" every 35 seconds until we capitulated. She describes this piece as "my pensive look that Barack Obama has when he's trying to look into the future."

Photo by Little Dream Photography

Despite leaving Colorado with naught but bitter resentment and sworn revenge in our hearts we managed to fit in this family photo between fits of choking on our own rage.

My new home for classes for the next long while.

Greetings from the site of a terrible terrible Twas between the good guys (Union) and bad guys (Confederate slave-loving jerks). The good guys won, btw. This is a tower from which the Union troops bungee-jumped in celebration immediately following their victory.

Where there is a need: Target provides. This pool may be filled with water, but Isobel's heart is filled with the spirit of good cheer and sorority with her fellow water creatures. Any change donated to "Little Isobel Einstein's Wiggly Curious George Pool Fund" will be promptly thrown to bottom with the exclamation: "Nummy!" (that's Isobelspeak for "money!")

I picked that shirt out, ladies. I still got it.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Jumpin' Jehosaphat!

The MEiBos family reunion was held in Joseph, UT. It is the only town in America where everything is still in black and white.

An abandoned miner's hovel yielded this treasure of fine design and asbestos.

Isobel used very old, very dark magic to make this building collapse (the spell included words like 'Baby Einstein', 'park' and 'shimmering scales of the Dire Naga'. Don't mess, y'all. Christina says "Git the HECK off my land!"

A pensive Isobel stares at the 'big people' with wonder at Cove Fort.

A few Shifflers and a few more Van Wagenens, lookin' sooooo good.

This face is "the look" of the season. Patent Pending.

We tried to sail to Freedom, but alas! At the end of our journey we were still in Utah.

Choot Chooooooot!

Friday, May 29, 2009

More pictures of Isobel at the zoo.

Trips to the zoo and various local parks are pretty much the only exciting thing we do these days. Luckily, Isobel is just a BABY and so these places continue to thrill her. This most recent time at the zoo, she discovered her power animal. Behold:

Honestly, though, she was entranced, and followed every peacock we saw. She also does a pretty good (loud) imitation of one, and has continued to burst out in peacock song whenever the mood strikes her. Here she is pretending to be a baby peacock in an egg:

Trains do NOT fit the peacock theme. They also happen to be TERRIFYING.

Here we are at a park in Manitou Springs, which is Colorado Springs' hippie nemesis city.

And this is at our local park:

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Howdy pardners. Greetin's from ol' Col'rado Springs. But enough of that. Here is Isobel running around in the back yard in daringly bright shorts.

Robert and Casey visited and we went to the Denver aquarium and saw...THIS!

Isobel went to Nursery for the first time and enjoyed this napkin.

Up the stairs in a pretty green Easter dress.

Royal Gorge.

Isobel got thrown in the slammer for spouting her revolutionary political views around the wrong people. We're gonna bust her out as soon as we get a long fuse connected to a barrel of black powder.

And....we're moving to Greensboro, North Carolina where I will begin yet another Masters Program in School Administration. Here's to looking forward to fried food, hot summers and occasional trips to the Outer Banks!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The Zoo and Pennsylvania, or: I wish that I knew what I know now, when I was younger.

The Shiffler family proudly strode around the zoo this last weekend, much to the delight of our youngest member, Whatsherface. Here I am, sniffing the air with my tongue. I found the scent/taste of poo poo to be offing.

Below you will see Helga Swegenfaaaasbordismansdooooter who adopted our gypsy baby "Stanka," meaning glorious government. In English, Stanka means "she who has few teeth and will not go more than an hour without suckling her binky".

Owen Mains had his very first wild shindig of a birthday party, and tiny tiny midget people from all over town came to celebrate in the hairy-footed festivities. One of them did a jig on the table, but alas, this photo was taken before the pixie sticks were passed out.

Isobel: One written word is worth a thousand pieces of gold.
Caroline: Books are fun. The Wiggles are fun. Johanna steals my toys and Grandma and Papa said I can have a big piece of chocolate!
Johanna: 1-2-3 fishy apple.
Isobel: Ba! Meow! ya ya ya. hasof?

Valkyrie Isobel the Vanquisher spreads terror and woe amongst the humble townsfolk of Harrisburg International Airport.

Next we have Uncle Brian at the airport with Caroline. If their smiles were energy, they would power the entire island nation of Nauru.

Larry, Krista, and Ava visited from Utah while we were visiting Pennsylvania. We had a nice lunch and talked about grownup things for nearly an hour. Here we see Ava and Isobel who, looking skyward at the exact same moment, said in unison: "A UFO! Finally a sign that there is intelligent life in the universe besides you and me and the chimpanzees!"
But, wouldn't you know it, those tricky E.T.s were gone in a puff of smoke as soon as we grown-ups turned around.

*photo by Larry Furr

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Picture Tag THIS!

Here are the rules:

1. Go to my documents/pictures.
2. Go to the 6th file folder.
3. Go to the 6th picture.
4. Blog about it.
5. Tag 6 people to do the same.

I am fortunate enough to be using a mac, so I did iphoto - 6th event - 6th photo.

This is a picture of the lovely Nicole Shiffler, circa Christmas 2004. It appears to have been taken in Brooke's paternal grandfather's kitchen. We weren't married yet, so I wasn't there, but I believe this was around the time that Bobby and Nicole announced that they were expecting their first baby. Everyone (including me, from afar) was SO excited and happy for them. Now they're expecting TWINS, babies 3 and 4. My, my, how time flies! Nicole is even more beautiful now than she was then, though I suppose my opinion might be skewed by the fact that I know her so much better now. I love you, sister!

I hereby tag the following lucky ducks:
The Wags
The Swifts
Da Furrs
and of course, NicoBob

Monday, March 16, 2009

Alas and Alack

Mom and Dad Shiffler visited a lil' while back and we gave them the royal treatment. By that I mean we drove them to a remote park outside the city in single digit weather and told them to smile for pictures. Isobel is seen here yodeling in the cold.

Papa Fanucci smiles at his good fortune.

That my friends, is a marble with rings around it; not unlike a miniature version of Saturn without all the metallic hydrogen and rocky debris and dust.

Oh the shame. Christina got a speedin' ticket and had to go to court to defend her honor. It was a very Judge Judy like moment for us all. In the end though, we paid alot of money. I hate the rule of law.

Our little Martain baby sits in a forward-facing car seat now!

I don't think these next two pictures need any explanation.