Thursday, September 25, 2008

I need some new Washington friends!

My sister is about roll her eyes at my John Mayer reference (come to think of it, so will Cameron). I don't care, I unabashedly love John Mayer, corny love songs, weird facial expressions and all. Anyways, anyone know that song by one of my faves entitled, "Comfortable"? There's a line in it that reads, "Our love was, comfortable, and so broken in". Despite the clear romantic love reference, it reminds me of friendship in some ways.

I've been thinking a lot about friendship lately. Mostly, because since we've moved to Washington, I don't really have too many friends, I need some but yet I don't really like the friend making process. Its uncomfortable, awkward and can be superficial. It feels like I'm dating again (oh, wait I didn't really ever date that much for this reason!!) There is a pressure of being unoffensive, because unlike with old, close friends, these new friend candidates don't know your heart and what you REALLY mean when you say something stupid and slightly offensive.

Don't get me wrong, I need new friends and love it when hearts connect because of a single common thread. I need to step out of my comfort zone. Its a good thing. But sometimes I wish I could just bring my old friends with me. So this is what I'll be looking for in my *new friends:

*Editor's note #1: If you're an old friend, rest assured that I am not giving you up. If you've been with me this long and still want to be my friend, NO WAY, JOSE, I am not letting go of you!

Tiffany- Tiffany and I met when we were doing an internship called Twentyfourseven in Birmingham, AL. She has beautiful red hair that matches her fiery personality. She was the first person (besides my family) to know that I wanted to lead worship and she didn't even laugh (when some certainly discouraged me). Actually, she forced me (very forcefully, I must add) to do something about my dream. She pushed me to not be afraid of uncertainty.

Sara- Sara Martin is one of the coolest girls I have ever met. She's fun, funny, laid back, smart, hot, and has the best laugh ever! We met because she was dating (and is now married to) my friend James. I remember really hanging out with her for the first time in Steamboat Springs and the Lord clearly told me that she was someone I needed as a friend and to make the extra effort in pursuing our friendship (and it wasn't because she said she was my biggest fan either!) I don't even think I've ever told her that. When I think of her, I immediately think of the tender way in which she speaks of Jesus. Like someone who really knows Him.

Jill- My hippie, friend Jill. In a time when Cameron and I were really depressed about living in Enid, we met Phil and Jill, the perfect anecdote to our sadness. Although Jill and I are very different, we connected quickly over our lunch dates. She was always trying to convince us that we need to buy some land together with them so that we could live on a commune together and raise our own organic crops and cage free chickens. Haha. And there was nothing like a game night with Phil and Jill (and our dear friends, Steven and Yami) to raise our spirits. But it is her childlike heart and optimism that I admire and value. PS: I think Cameron and I look really funny in this picture. Isn't my hair huge? And Cameron is looking really excited. haha.

Eryn- Eryn was my room mate at the Holt Manor (as we liked to call it). I met Eryn when I was in the School of Worship and she worked in the Worship Department at New Life. I'm not quite sure how we ended up being friends, all I remember is a trip to Denver with Jen Strube, eating hot peppers and James (as mentioned above) doing the running man in Cheesecake Factory. The rest is a blur. Eryn was always my sounding board, my lazy Saturday morning friend, my accessory store (she is the accessory queen) and my partner in our "If I ran the world" conversations. I value the depth of her insight, the shallowness of our shared humor, the width of her knowledge and the breadth of her love.

Lydia- My oldest sissy. We met when she was three and I was coming out of my mother's womb. Ha ha, nothing like a little birthing humor to lighten things up a bit. I'm not sure if she really wanted a little sister like me (full of energy and always trying to get a rise out of her), but took care of me nonetheless. She is even-tempered, not stirred by much, stubborn as all get-out, most compassionate and one of the most beautiful beings of the human variety that I have ever seen. Seriously, she could've been making millions as a model. But what I treasure the most of our friendship is the delicate balance that she has always walked with me, telling me the truth on one side, but being my biggest encourager and lifter on the other.

Whoo people, I'm getting a little teary over here. I promise I'll do a funny post sometime soon.

Sarabeth- my best friend. We met when we were in 5th or 6th grade but didn't really become friends until Twentyfourseven. When we both were reading a Brio magazine article out loud, mocking it endlessly, I knew we would be fast friends. The verse in Proverbs 27 comes to mind, "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." Iron hitting iron isn't always comfortable, it isn't always pretty, dull parts has to be removed, but it produces something remarkable. And so is our friendship. There so much to say about what I love about Sarabeth, but when it comes down to it, I love our friendship because we have a loyal commitment to one another. When life is good, we celebrate with one another. When life is bad, we cry with each other. When painful truth needs to be spoken, it is gently but firmly spoken. I know that she wants me to succeed. She knows that I want her to succeed. And we both will do whatever it takes to help the other person in that process.

*Editor's note #2: Just because I didn't mention you here, doesn't mean that I don't love you and admire you....

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I am such a yuppie mom

It has been a busy week...well, we've been trying to stay busy anyways. Cameron has been gone to some fun, interesting, mysterious places. So Malone and I have been trying to get into a routine without Cameron. Luckily, he will be home VERY SOON! I'll give you the round up of this week.

1. Did I mention that we're working on the whole separation anxiety thing with Malone? A couple of weeks ago, we put her in the nursery at church for the first time. It was not a complete success and I felt like my heart was getting ripped out of my chest. Then the next week she did a bit better (and I did too), but I still had to be called to come and get her. Then last week, I kept on checking the number in my pocket to see if I was looking for the right number on the screen. #205 was NEVER called. I was so surprised that halfway through service I even went to go and check on her. But, she did fine. At the gym she's still a little nervous, but hopefully she'll get used to it.
2. Monday I had to take one of my finals for school (GASP, yes, I'm STILL in school). So I got Malone all packed up, took her to some wonderfully sweet friends of ours who has a little boy, Matty who is just a few months younger than Malone. As soon as we walked in the door, Malone started screaming. Agghhh, I felt so bad leaving a screaming baby with people. But luckily she did great and even taught Matty how to sit up. (Insert witty comment here about Malone's skills with the that inappropriate?) So I drive back to the base where I'm to take my final and to my horror none of the material on the final looked familiar. After a few moments of sheer panic I realized that they had sent me the wrong final! AHHHHH, fist of fury to you Oral Roberts University!!!! You wasted my whole day!!! So I went back to go get Malone who was happily playing with her little friend.3. Tuesday, Malone and I got up early and went to our first playgroup, ever! It was a playgroup with some moms from Cameron's squad. We had fun and met some new people. I think Malone was nervous thinking I was going to leave her there with someone. She would not let me go more than 4 feet away from her. Awww, how sad is that?!!
4. We got home on Tuesday and Malone had a little incident involving the stairs. She's fine. My mom said so. The pediatrician said so. And all my mommy friends I called said so. I think I was more upset than Malone. Needless to say, we are investing in some good baby gates and baby proofing the whole house.
5. This morning Malone and I went to the Little Gym class. It was a class for ages 4mo-10mo focusing on developmental issues like motor skills, hand/eye coordination and so on, using fun activities, kind of like a tumbler class. It was so cool. Malone was clearly a little nervous and overwhelmed by all the people and stimuli. The words, "She does usually smile" actually came out of my mouth trying to convince people that she is a happy child. But in the end, I think she enjoyed herself. I think Malone's favorite part was watching and popping the bubbles the instructor was blowing. Hopefully, we'll get to go back next week.

All this "mommy and me" activities has really made me feel like a suburban, yuppie mom (which I am, of course). All I need now is my Volvo SUV (which I love) parked in the driveway with my Upside down Caramel Macchiato (which I am craving) in hand. And I love it!

PS: Cameron took the camera, so the pictures are ones we took this afternoon on our computer.
PS2: Anyone else super excited for the premiere of The Office? I can hardly wait for tomorrow night. What's going to happen with Pam and Jim? What about annoying Michael and the love triangle between him, his baby-mama Jan and the new HR lady, whose name I can't remember? I'm dying with anticipation.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A letter to my baby

Dear Malolo,

I'm sitting in the living room with quietness surrounding me. You are asleep and I miss you already. Even though you are only a few rooms away, I miss your smiling face, your little babble and hearing the little shuffle of your crawl around the house. You are one of the biggest joys in my life and I just wanted to write you a quick note sharing some of my thoughts about you, with you.

Your sweet spirit is evident to anyone who meets you. You smile at everyone and even if you don't befriend them right away, you will soon thereafter. You have such a warm smile and your giggle is infectious. I can't help but laugh when you laugh, and then you just laugh more and then I laugh more. Its a laugh cycle. :) The Lord has answered my prayer by giving you a joyful heart. People stop mommy and daddy everywhere we go, telling us how beautiful you are. Although you are definitely incredibly beautiful, I think that it is your sweet spirit and kind, gentle heart that draws people to you.

I admire your courage and fearlessness even though you are only a little baby. Not much scares you and you are willing to take chances (and steps) even when you know that you might fall. I look at how fearless you are and it stirs up courage in my heart to do the things in life that is not easy, but necessary.

I treasure the special moments we share. A laugh here (I swear we have our own inside jokes), a game there (Oupa's African Belly Biter is my favorite) and the sweet moments I get to steal right before you go to sleep. It is these moments that reminds me of the enormity of the love you are versus the smallness of the weariness from the uncertainty about how to parent you best.

I love you enormously.


Your favorite Mama in the world!

Friday, September 12, 2008

3 week round-up

Ahhh, I feel overwhelmed by guilt (I have not updated you all in FAR too long and sooo much has happened) and anxiousness (this is too exciting to tell you about in a parenthetical sentence). There is a wonderful smell coming from my oven a.k.a a nice Rhubarb pie and I can hardly wait to put a dollop of vanilla ice cream on the warm, gooey, tart pie. I just discovered Rhubarb pie thanks to Claire (Cameron's wonderful stepmom) and I think its my new favorite pie.

ANYWAYS! Gosh, I can't even remember what I wrote last and what has happened since. Let me think......something to do with hell, Science Fiction Museums, lobster tails, an additional tooth and some new moves. Sounds interesting, eh? OK, before you die of excitement let me explain.

First, my sister, Lydia and brother-in-law, Joel graced us with their presence for a while. It was so great to have them here. They are such kind, fun, and cool people. And Malone absolutely loved them. We tried to get out of the house quite a bit, because although our house is cool in aesthetic, it was not cool in temperature. We found ourselves in the middle of the Tacoma Heat Wave of 2008. It was crazy! We went to the Glass Museum in Tacoma and Experience Music Project and then something we never thought we would see....the Science Fiction Museum. We learned a lot and I think Lydia and Joel were in Science Fiction heaven.
Picture 2: Lyddie, Joel and Malolo at the Seattle harbor Picture 3: The Museum of Glass and Lydia's glorious head
Then the day after Lyddie and Joel left, Cameron's dad and stepmom came for a little visit on their way to Oregon. Malone loves her Grandma Claire and Grandpa Jay. We enjoyed just visiting with one another. By the way, they bought us a "little" gift, a not so little lobster tail. Its the biggest thing I've ever seen. Here's the pictures. We haven't fixed it yet. We're saving it for a very special occasion.
Picture 4: Malone with Grandma & GrandpaPicture 5: Malone and Granpa Jay enjoying a coffee breakPicture 6: The infamous lobster tail Picture 7: Look how big it is compared to my arm

Then, our friend Justin came for visit. Justin is one of our oldest friends and we enjoyed catching up with our dear friend. And now, my old roommate Eryn is here for a visit. I love Eryn and so does Malone. I think they are new best friends.

So there you go. You are semi-caught up on our happenings. Oh yes, and Cameron has gone back to work and started flying. He is loving this new phase of his job (actually getting to DO his job). I now call him my "international man of mystery".

Lastly, Malone is on the move!!! She crawls as fast as a cougar (does a cougar crawl?) and get this....the other morning, I went into her room and guess what she was doing?! She was STANDING in her crib waiting for me. Standing?????Umm...we are so not ready for that. Needless to say, it was not a fluke. She is currently pulling herself up by just about anything she can get ahold of. Which also means she is bonking her head quite often. I spend so much of my time keeping an eye on her now and moving her and lots of objects. She's growing up so fast. She's even reading now (even upside down!!! So smart!)

Here's some pics of her in her Alabama onesie. These pictures are dedicated to my family in Tuscaloosa and Brian and Brandi Steorts (we miss you guys!!)

Monday, September 8, 2008

What has happened?

Don't worry, I haven't slipped and broken both arms leaving me incapable of typing, I haven't fallen into the volcano that is nearby (known as Mt. Rainier) or been deported back to South Africa. I'm ok, really. Compared to the excuses mentioned above, my real excuse...ehm...reason sound pretty lame. But the truth is I just have been trying to keep up with the dishes never mind my blog. Sorry, Cameron wrote it into our wedding vows that clean dishes and clothes are a must. :)

Every time I think about everything I need to update you on, I get more and more overwhelmed. Not to worry, eventually I will tell you guys everything that's been going's just a little bit to whet your appetite. Malone is crawling...yes, she is everywhere. But even more importantly (or more scary?), she is pulling herself up onto things and is standing and unfortunately, falling as well. That is also part of my time dilemma. I feel like all of a sudden I have to be with her constantly for fear that she will split open her lip, get her eye poked out by the coffee table's corner or pull the tv onto her (not likely if anyone has ever seen our bohemoth of a tv). I realize she has to learn and my fears are somewhat irrational but it just takes a little more time to keep an eye on her and hold her hands while she is wanting to walk everywhere.

Excuses, excuses, I know! Just know that the Schaefer clan loves you all dearly.