Monday, August 26, 2013

Han Solo Shot

We were finishing up a family biking trip this afternoon, which culminated in a short shuttle ride that dropped us off a few blocks from home, when we realized as we departed the shuttle that, after sprinkling for a while, it was now beginning to rain in earnest.

After riding a few miles, and playing hard on the beach for the afternoon, Lukas was pretty tired and had fallen asleep on the bus ride.  We had taken the bus to avoid a pretty steep grade we would have had to navigate had we decided to ride all the way home.  We're practical like that.

Anyway, so as we arrived at our stop I unloaded the bikes from the front of the bus while Mrs. LIAYF stepped off the bus with a sleeping 6 year old hanging off of her neck.  To that point we hadn't bothered to don our rain jackets, but with big drops coming down I fished our jackets out of the bike panniers.

Mrs. LIAYF set Lukas down and I told a now bleary eyed Lukas to hold out his arms while I slipped the light blue rain jacket over his shoulders and grabbed each side so I could straighten it across his little chest.

It was at that point that he looked up at me, and with the look of a tired boy still in his eyes said.....

"Snap it up, Fuzzball."

Then, and only then did he let a wide smile cross his face.  Of course, the unexpectedness of that zinger caused me to laugh out loud.  I mean, his timing was spot on and took me by complete surprise.

To that I could only say.  "Well played young Padawan.  Well played."

The comedic force is certainly strong in this one.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Got Milk? Drama + Dairy = #SuperMilkMan. Not a Camel

Hello Readers.  I can tell you with unflinching conviction that Milk for breakfast really does do a body good. How's that?

Well, I used to be a milk producer, that's how.  I was actually in the business for the first 32 years of my life, and I've been drinking tons of milk all my life too.  That being said, save for a hairline fracture in my foot from a high school football injury, I haven't broken any bones in my 4 plus decades on this rock.  Impressive, right?  Much more so than my High School football career.

In fact, my father and brother still own the family organic dairy, and I can tell you how they pour their hearts and souls into producing delicious, nutritious, protein packed milk each and every day of the week.

That's why it was a perfect fit when I was contacted by Life of Dad to see if I wanted to participate in an ad campain/contest sponsered by the fine folks at Milk.  Duane Johnson, AKA The Rock is their current spokesman and he has a hilarious Milk commercial, which first aired during this past Superbowl where he was a #SuperMilkMan.

Here is the print ad version:

For the contest, we were asked to create a short Instagram video depicting how Milk can help us be a #SuperMilkMan too.   There are several very cool entries, and some folks with obviously better editing skills than I have, but you can see my entry below.  It was a lot of fun to make, with the obvious help of the lovely Mrs. LIAYF.

And, Introducing Miss Annabelle in her first dramatic role.   A star is definitely born folks.

Let me know what you think.  And don't forget to drink your milk, for goodness sake.

It really does do a body good.

FTC Disclaimer : I am working with The National Milk Mustache "got milk?" Campaign. Life of Dad, LLC is providing me compensation for this post and to be a part of the #SuperMilkMan contest.  But, like I mentioned, this is a natural fit for me since I know better than most the benefits of Milk in your diet.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Dad Bloggers....Like FBI Guys

Hey readers, I have a questions for you.  Are you a dad?


Well, do your kids make you  belly laugh, smile, tear-up, or occasionally curl into a sniveling ball in the corner of the room? Do they make you frustrated, angry at times, thrilled during others, but more often exceedingly proud?  Are you lacking proper sleep, struggling to make ends meet, or constantly worried about the well beings of your offspring? 

Do you keep some form of camera constantly at the ready so that you can record every magical moment with them for posterity?  

Do you consider an infant pooping itself so magnificently that it soppingly reaches all the way up to its tiny little neck hilarious, and a great story to tell later?  Do you think your child's pre-school art projects are so good they should be hanging in an art gallery somewhere? That they're way better than some of the 'professional' crap you've seen? 

Do you possess the ability to articulate yourself reasonably well with the written word? 

Are you okay with the complex feelings and competing forces that come along with writing about loving your children, and actually spending time showing them that love?

If you answered yes to all these questions, maybe you can be a Dad Blogger just like me.  Dad Bloggers are a growing fraternity. It's true.  It's impossible to tell exactly how many of us there are out there, but there is at least one awesome Facebook community which now has over 400 members. 400!

Of course that is world wide, and we are always losing some.  So like FBI guys, there is a definitely a need for more Dad Bloggers.  

If you do decide to start your very own Dad Blog, I have to tell you the most important step outside of actually having kids is to choose a name.  A successful Dad Blog needs a name that will draw attention to it.  One that will compel readers to bookmark it and come back to it often for a read.  One like, well.... like  'Luke, I am Your Father'.  Yep, I nailed it with that one.

There were other names I could have chosen though.  Here are a few.

1.  The Sherpa Dad  - Seems appropriate every-time I haul stuff in from the car.
2.  Dad, Blasted -   And a related title for older dads Dad Gum it.
3.  Don't Stick that There! - Unconventional, but appropriate.
4.  Hoosier Daddy - If only I lived in Indiana.
5.  The Encumbered Dad - For Dads who are the opposite of  'unencumbered'.

I could go on and on but these are good ones. And available.

Of course, none of these will see the light of day unless you, a dad who answered all the above question in the affirmative, decide you want to use one of them.  And become a Dad Blogger.

So what do you say?  Are you interested Dad? (slowly waving arm towards me).  Come on, climb aboard.  We're expecting you.

Just don't expect to make much money off of it.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Cache-ing In

Happy Saturday readers!

It seem hard to believe, but the start of school is only a couple of weeks away here in Seattle.  How exactly did that happen?  It always seems like once we are just getting into our Summertime rhythm here, September happens and messes it all up.  I guess that is because the real Summer weather here in the Emerald City usually doesn't kick in until sometime in mid to late July, so almost all the Summer themed events are crammed into an 8 week stretch.

We were actually lucky here this year though, since there was a stretch from Lukas' birthday in late June, to the first week in August where there was no measurable rain.  Yes, in Seattle.  Believe it folks.  Anyway that did help to stretch our Summer to a more reasonable window this year.

Despite all of the exceedingly fun things we have been doing this Summer - Hiking, Biking, Festivals, parties, concerts and the like, there has been one thing I have personally been wanting to do for some time now, especially with Lukas turning six years old recently.  We finally got a chance to do that thing today.


I had previously created an account at the website, but that is as far as it got because I didn't have a GPS device and I was under the mistaken assumption the app I would need in order to use my iPhone would require an operating system of 4 or greater, while mine is an IOS3.  But once I saw online this morning that today was International Geocaching Day, I decided that it was time.

After a couple of extra Google queries I realized that, while not ideal, I could still load the app on my iPhone 3 and it would work well enough to get us started.

So I did just that. It was a quick and easy load, but a little pricey as far as apps go, ringing in at $9.99.

Later, while out for a walk through the neighborhood with the kids -and after we stopped for snack - we decided it was time to pull out the phone and see if there were any cache's in the area.   As it turned out there was one listed not far away!  The hunt was on.

About 10 minutes later, after wandering the streets with smart phone in hand,  Victory! was ours.  Lukas had found the LIAYF family's very first Geocache.  And he was rightfully excited.  Heck the idea of a treasure hunt is still appealing to me, at 45.  I can only imaging what was going through his six year old mind.

After logging into the enclosed book, logging our find on the website, and picking a small treasure to take with us, we enclosed another small item for the next treasure hunter to find.  And with that, we were hooked on a brand new hobby.

I'm not sure how many geocaches we will be finding in the weeks to come, but by looking on the app, and on the website there are countless opportunities for fun waiting for us just outside our door.  Plus, we are already making plans to hide out very own treasure cache in the near future.   Maybe one of you will even one day find treasure in our neck of the woods.

Good chance it'll be something Lego.

How about you, readers?  Have you tried Geocaching yet?

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Instant Satisfaction

Happy Tuesday readers.  

This is normally the part where I apologize for not having posting in several weeks and explain how busy life is with an infant, a full time job, and plate full of summertime activities.  However, whenever I've previously made such proclamations I always wish I hadn't, because after I hit publish I realize that no one really had noticed my absence.

So, I am NOT going to be giving any such explanations in this here post.  I'll just reiterate that I'm still here, but just keeping my priorities in order.

With that being said, I wanted to let you know that I signed on for a fun project/contest sponsored by my friends at LifeofDad, and Starbucks.  The idea was to create a short Instagram, or Vine video highlighting a fun and humorous moment when Starbucks Instant Coffee product Via would come in  handy.

I signed on pretty quickly, since I am a huge fan of Starbucks (Mermaid Spotting is still one of my all time  most commented on posts) and also a drinker of Via, which I love to take on our annual "Camping" trip.

My First Attempt was a Vine video, which you can see here.  But, I had trouble embedding it into the blog post - so last night I decided to make an Instagram version instead which is my Official Entry in the contest (you can see all the entries at the LifeofDad link above).

Honestly, it was my first attempt at an Instagram video, so don't expect me to be posting about winning the top prize anytime soon, but it was a lot of fun to make off the cuff.   One can only imagine what I could have done, "if I only had the time....."

Here it is.  Let me know what you think, unless it's a negative thought.  Then you can fudge the truth.

In accordance with FTC regulations, I will disclose that I was compensated, and provided with product in exchange for my entry into this contest.  However, what I mentioned above about loving Starbucks, not influenced at all by this.  I mean, come on, it's Starbucks!