Sunday, December 21, 2008
Right about now I wish I could still say Mele Kalikimaka! We are certainly having a white Christmas this year. In my old age, I have come to accept certain limitations, one of which is that I am incapable of sending out Christmas cards. However, with the miracle of blogging now in my life, I can post a cyber Christmas card and rid myself of any guilt I may have been carrying each time I opened the mailbox and found another card from a dear old friend.
We have had a very good year in the Schaefer household. We are quite happy in Logan and in our current situations, While all of our celebretory days in 2007 seemed to be jinxed, 2008 proved the opposite and we partied hardy all year long. Birthdays and holidays were filled with family, friends, food, and fun. We were able to see extended family on both sides many times this year. Because of this, our children are well aware that other people like them as much as we do. We're hoping for a repeat next year.
Michael has enjoyed and excelled in his job. We are so proud of him and his business partner Dave for building a business from scratch that can sustain us and allow me (and Dave's wife Lacie) to stay home with the kids. He loves what he does and hopes to never work for "the man" again. His internet based recruiting business has undergone some changes due to the economy, but they have rolled with the punches and we're still doing fine. For now, instead of recruiting truckers, they recruit health care workers. They named their new business Cebola (which means "onion" in Portugese) but they thought it sounded cool and medical-like-ish. Hopefully the healthcare industry will be more economy proof. Michael spends most of his spare time shopping. Oh, wait, that's not him. He spends most of his spare time with the family. He is an extremely fun and attentive husband and father. He's hoping in 2009 he'll be able to delve into past hobbies such as photography and sculpture.
Summer spends her days at home with the kids and most days she loves it. This year she got a bit better at juggling a productive life with two kids, although that is not to insinuate that she makes herself presentable daily. She likes to shop and gets a kick out of finding bargains. Its the only talent she's willing to develop. She has a handful of fabulous friends here in Logan, so many days are filled with them and their children. She continues to try to wish her parents out of Florida. So far its not working, but at least at the moment they have come to spend the holidays with her. She's still the same outspoken, quirky, all over the place Summer.
Avery is three and a half and growing up so fast. In fact, he just informed Grandma of that. "I getting really big. I don't touch boobs anymore." And its true. He doesn't. Usually. And he's potty trained. I should capitalize that. AVERY'S POTTY TRAINED. He was just ready, so he pretty much did it on his own. That's how he rolls. He's so sweet (especially when sugar is void in his system). He tells us many times a day: "I sure love you. And that makes you happy." He's right, it does. He keeps us laughing all day long with his boy-ness. He watches lots of Disney movies and acts out the parts. He also memorizes books to read to us. Avery is sooooo excited for Christmas. He wants fish candy, Christmas cookies, cake, and green soda more than anything. Oh, and a pink toilet.
Quincy is a bit of a freak of nature. I mean that in the nicest way. She's tiny for her 17 months, but speaks like a 2 year old. I can only begin to list the things she says: "I'm sick", "Avery's sad", "Summer!", "medicine", "I don't know", "Amen", "okay", "I want out", "I'm stuck", "I dunno", "Where's Daddy?", "make-up", ETC... . I remember being excited that Avery said "lights" at her age during the holidays. She is so independent, friendly, opinionated, and snuggly. She's already used the potty a couple times after telling us she had to go. She's pretty much amazing. I'll post more of an update on her when I make a Quincy 101.
We've had a fabulous and fun Christmas season filled with baking, shopping, tree decorating, gathering pine-cones in pj's, ugly-Christmas sweater work party, Grandparents, and stray cats. Fabulous. Fabulous. Fabulous. Except that we were supposed to go see my brother Shane and his family in Las Vegas, and due to a blizzard with impeccable timing, we remained in the land of Mormons. Sad. Grandma has helped out with every aspect of this busy holiday season, including reminding me to teach our children the Christmas story and its true meaning (via a nativity set and books). Its easy to get so busy that we forget our Savior. So I guess it was in the true Christmas spirit that Grandpa "adopted" stray cats for us. Grandpa started by putting out warm milk and leftovers for the cats. Then he decided to cut a door in a cardboard box and include a blanket. Then of course the box needed weather-proofed with plastic wrap. Grandpa then decided to purchase a heating light and a candle warmer to keep them warm in the snow. A stray kitty home wouldn't be complete without an outdoor thermometer to monitor how cold their home gets. So our kids sit and watch the cats from the safety of our sliding glass door. Its all very adorable.
We wish our many loved ones happiness, joy, peace, prosperity, and goodness, all of which are achieved through our Savior Jesus Christ. Happy Birthday-ish to Him!
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
If you're interested in your Schaefer BS degree, you need to become proficient in the most fabulous little boy ever: Avery. He's pretty much amazing and very unique. He was born August 24, 2005 (a month early) with an alarmingly blue swollen face. It wasn't cute. He shocked Michael and I with his dark brown hair and long dark lashes. Avery was opinionated from day one. He was adamant about being held, snuggled, and nursed most of the day. When I had to leave him as a baby, Michael would hold him with a worn shirt of mine and he would stop crying. It seemed that when our friends came over, he was on his worst behavior (esp. if those friends were considering having children... Mike and Rozel). He used to make some elongated goat bleat. It was adorably strange, especially during the silent moments at church. People commented everyday on how beautiful he was. Absolutely everyday. Except they usually said "she" was gorgeous. Cool. He could have been a twin to the Gerber baby. He has two crazy cowlicks bordering his Eddie Munster widow's peak. It's endearing. Avery was a baby with impeccable timing. He would have a poop blowout right before church (regularly), he would belch in the middle of prayers (remember Schaefers?), and he would spit up (almost exclusively) on store floors. He has the most infectious laugh I've ever heard to this day. From an absurdly early age, Avery was mimicking the noises and movements of animals, even obscure ones like lemurs. He performed on demand until he realized that's what we wanted. He knew a lot of words in sign language too. Avery's never been a good sleeper. I nursed him to sleep for a good 2 years. He slept in our bed longer than that. We thought for a while that he might be "that" kid that wouldn't leave our side EVER. Then he began to make friends and we became significantly less important. His best buddies so far have been Dylan (in AZ), Jaden, Caleb, Sam, Wynn, and cousin Tyler. He also thinks Caillou (the French Canadian cartoon bald boy) is a good friend of his. Like his Dad, Avery is very loyal to the select few friends he chooses, yet despite the loyalty, peer pressure means nothing to him. He does not waver in what he does and does not want. He tells us all the time how much he loves his friends... and what they want for Christmas. He also loves his grandparents on both sides very much and talks about then regularly. He loves to snuggle with me and I love to snuggle back. Its snuggletastic. He still comes in our room in the night for just such a purpose. I don't have the heart (or desire) to kick him out. And he gives the best little boy puckered kisses. He now goes to bed in his own room with a book and a prayer, although recently the idea of monsters have caused a hitch in our convenience. We gave him "monster spray" (aka: Febreze) and he about smoked us out of the house with it. But there are no more monsters now. Avery does things on his own time. I've learned its better that way for all involved. He crawled, walked, and weaned later than the average tike. Potty training is following suit. I think somehow he was born with a constitution of rights in his own little mind that he is certain he's entitled to. Seeing as only certain things he won't be pushed or hassled on, I let him have his illusions of importance. Like when he would not, could not go inside the house if Dad unlocked and opened the front door. It had to be me. Sure, sure Avery. No problem. Amazingly, Avery has been able to survive on Ramen, chicken nuggets, pancakes, hotdogs, apple juice, pb sandwiches, and the occasional round of fries. I suppose I shouldn't forget the candy, cake, and cookies he's willing to choke down. In fairness, he was quite allergic to dairy and eggs for the first couple years. Now he won't touch the stuff and he absolutely refuses to try new things. Soon he might have no choice because he has become "sugar sensitive." A short time after consuming sugar and some "white" food, he goes certifiable. He gets infuriated over anything and seems to feel his soul has been injured to the core. In his words, "sugar makes me mean." Its true. We're on three days sugar free and he's had no fits of rage. Amazing. Avery has long been a poop-denier. He'd be pooping (OBVIOUSLY) in his diaper and we'd ask him if he was. He'd say "NNNNOOOO" in a very strained voice with a red face. Recently, he started to say, "Mom, I pooped, and that's the truf." Its hilarious. Avery enjoys being a dog or a dinosaur on occasion. One time after nursery, his teacher told me he stayed under the table most of the day roaring at the other kids like a lion in a den. Avery loves Quincy... but he's kinda mean to her. She spoils his plans. So he has been known to push her down then run himself to timeout or hide from me. He is a sponge ready to learn. He loves books, puzzles, cartoons, animals, Monster trucks, and most boy-ly things. He's very smart and observant. He sees and points to things that I just can't seem to find. He loves to cook, and has an obsession with squirt bottles. He says the funniest things, like one time after sugar intake, he was fuming over something irrational and yelled, "I don't wanna follow Jesus!!!" Or on the sweet side of things, after eating out once, Quincy was walking the wrong way as we were leaving and Avery said, "But we will miss her so much!" He's often very polite. In his sweet squeaky toddler voice, he often exclaims, "OH! Thanks MOM!" Melts my heart. We love Avery so very very much! He's got us wrapped around his crooked little pinky. (It really is crooked). Class dismissed.
A peek into our window
- Quincy says "Where's Avy? I dunno." She talks sooo much and she's so small (5th percentile) that is seems like she shouldn't be talking at all.
- She roams wildly during church and has become quite the scavenger approaching anyone with food. Its embarrasingly adorable!
- Quincy's vocab has exploded to include the words, "please, thank you, outside, sucker, candy, Avery, Grandpa, slide, ride, hold you, ni-night, water, bird, doggie, airplane, etc.....! She seems so little!
- One of the most "wow" things she has done is climb one of those HUGE blow-up slides and slide down REPEATEDLY, ALL BY HERSELF!!!
- Quincy (with great effort) threw the upper couch cushions on the floor and then proceeded to dive off couch, climb back up, repeat.
- She says"I want: cookie, go, this, that, drink, wa-wa, play." She also says no, baby, hello, bye-bye, and peek-a-boo. And of course she says "Mom and Da."
- Quincy talks a lot now. But first thing in the day and then 100 more times: "I want coo-kie." Very telling about her love affair with food.
- A day after being educated, Avery pulled down his pants and touched his boyhood saying, "Hey Grandma, these are my private parts." HA-larious!
- (After using the bathroom) "I made a waterfall. Then I made it stop."
- "Hey Dad. This is my [invisible] friend Caillou. Will you be a monster and scare us?"
- "Grandpa, what's in your belly?" says Avery. Mom says, "What do you think is in there?" "A baby?" guesses Avery. "Nope. Just lots of cherries," says Grandpa Schaefer. HAH!
- Quincy was crying in the middle of the night and Avery said, "Take a deep breath, Quincy." It was sweet.
- Quincy was screaming like a pterodactyl for Avery's food, so he snapped "Chill Out Quincy!"
- In Avery's first attempt at being a smart-a, he was playing with his friend Jaden Knight and we were asking the boys their full names. Avery responded that his name was Avery James Day. Might have had to be there.
- Avery still tries to stick his hand down my shirt. When I won't let him, he occasionally asks if he can stick his foot down my shirt instead.
- I told Avery that Heavenly Father lived in heaven. He thought I said he lived 'with Kevin', so in alarm he asked, "With Kevin and Melissa?!!!"
- Avery was out cold and we had to go. It was odd how I couldn't wake him, so I threw him over my shoulder and started heading out. All of the sudden with startling gusto, he yelled "I see Jesus." I thought he was a visionary, but turns out he woke up just as I walked past a picture of Christ.