Thursday, October 22, 2009


There are lots of reasons why our family is a Walmart family. We like other stores too, but really don't mind (and even like!) going to Walmart. I won't get into the whole Walmart debate here, but I will say that we do appreciate the diversity that we oftentimes see there...real people doing real stuff. This is a conversation I had today when I when to check out...I indicated everyone's race that was involved because you have to know that to see the humor in the conversation.

Me (Asian American): Hi!
Cashier (African American): Hi! Oh, your baby (1/2 Asian, 1/2 Caucasian) is so cute! How old is she?
Me: She's a little over 7 months.
Cashier: My baby is 4 months old, but he is huge compared to her. He looks Mexican too.
Me: Well, he must be a good eater! Is he part Mexican?
Cashier: No. I love the little bow in her hair.
Me: Thanks! Does your little boy have a lot of hair already?
Cashier: Oh my goodness, yes! That's why he looks Mexican.

...We proceed with the checkout...

Me: Thank you.
Cashier: You're welcome. Bye, baby! You and my son look like you could be cousins!

The whole dialogue just had me chuckling to myself for SO many reasons. But at the end of the day, the cashier and I made the mommy connection, even if it was through a somewhat unique way :)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Gone Too Far...But Got Chocolate

Today I realized that my couponing has become a little crazy. Matt probably could have told you that a few weeks ago. I went to the mailbox today and had a nice surprise...four coupons for free chocolate came! That's not the crazy part. That's the happy part. Read on.

The crazy part is that I noticed I signed up myself, Matt, Abigail, and Jackson in order to get four coupons (it was 4 per household). So there was a coupon addressed to Jackson. Two crazy things about it:

1) A coupon was addressed to Jackson Schoolfield

2) It was a coupon for chocolate...I know from experience that dogs and chocolate don't go well together.

P.S. - You might think that it was also crazy that I signed up our 6 1/2 month old for chocolate too, but at least she's human!

Monday, September 14, 2009

An Update From Abby

Abigail here. I am now 6 months old and loving every day of it! I enjoy spending the day with Mommy and giggling at the funny stuff she does. Bath time with Daddy is one of my favorite things and I'm pretty good at splashing around. My new best buddy is Jackson and I look for him when I get up from my naps. He likes to lay next to me on the floor and give me big doggy kisses. I'm growing like a weed and the doctor says I'm tall for my age. It's probably all the yummy fruits and veggies I eat. Mommy takes me on all my errands and I flirt with everyone I meet - the people at the grocery store know me by name! I'm still working on sitting up all by myself and learning to crawl. I also like playing with the baby in the mirror...sometimes it's a little confusing, though.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

I've Become My Mom

One childhood memory that I have is of my mom clipping coupons. I remember understanding the concept, but not fully appreciating the motivation behind it. All that has changed as I have become obsessed with coupons. Ok, I know it's rather lame, but I NEED to figure out a way to not exceed our grocery budget for the month - something that I've managed to do for the past five years. I decided that enough was enough and delved into this weird online world of couponing. Can you believe there are blogs and forums out there specifically devoted to this stuff??? I didn't, but then I was brainwashed and now check these things hourly (I told you I was obsessed!). It's kinda like a game to try and figure out the best combination of sales and coupons. I do believe my obsession will wear off once I figure out how to do this all, but I did want to share some of my favorite blogs:

Common Sense with Money -
Frugal Coupon Living -
Moms Need to Know -
Money Saving Mom -
Coupon Geek -
Coupon Cravings -
Frugal Mom of Three Boys -

Now that I'm a stay at home mom, I actually have time to do some of this, so I'm taking advantage of it. And hopefully I can stay within our grocery budget for the first time ever. And by the way, my mom was never this obsessed...

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Go Noles!

Football season is upon us and we thought it appropriate for the littlest family member to have some gear. Go Noles! By the way, she does have some Illinois stuff, but donned the FSU colors for their game against Miami the other day. Sad game, but cute baby.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

You know when you're grown up when...

The purchase of a new purse last month got me thinking about growing up. See, this purse wasn't a usual purchase for me. It was a very calculated attempt to try and merge the belongings of my former purse, diaper bag, and coupon organizer together. Convenient? Yes. Trendy and cute? No. But I went with the convenience aspect because I was tired of lugging around so much stuff during errands.

Anyway, what I started thinking about was circumstances over the years that made me realize that I was growing up. Here are some of them:

- Being excited about healthcare benefits at work
- Clipping and organizing coupons (I used to make fun of my Mom about that)
- Wearing sweats out and not caring what I look like...and I know I'm not looking that good
- Being able to buy myself all the sweet, bad for you cereal with no one telling me no
- Having a baby
- Being called "Ma'am" by clients, fast food workers, and grocery store workers
- My stomach not being able to make it through all the roller coaster rides anymore
- Finding gray hairs
- Making the final call to hospitalize client due to his mental state and watching him climb into the ambulance
- Buying my own Christmas tree

I'm sure there are more, but those are some for now. What are some of your "Oh my goodness, I'm an adult!" moments?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Funny Stuff

About a year ago, Matt and I saw this book while we were checking out at Barnes and Nobles. We delayed our checkout to browse through this hilarious commentary. The thing that makes it so funny is that it's mostly true. Yes, there are exceptions and what not, but overall, we laughed because we found many of these perspectives to be accurate. Later, I found that there is a website dedicated to this. Check it out.

Disclaimer...yes, I do love white people. I married one. Just wanting to put that out there :)

Friday, August 21, 2009

The Best Dog in the World

There is one member of the family that has definitely been a trooper lately...Jackson. He's endured much less attention and much more impatience from me since Abigail's been born. And with Matt being so busy with church stuff, he hasn't been able to walk him on a regular basis for quite some time. Sometimes I feel so guilty, watching him mope around the house. He doesn't complain, though. He just continues to ask to play or finds new ways of entertaining himself, such as sunbathing. Although he is still quite persistent in getting attention and finding someone to play with him, it isn't an annoyed persistence. Thanks, Jackson, for being such a great dog!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Changed Lives

Today was a day of firsts for Fellowship Raleigh. Not only did we have our first service at our new building (post and pictures to come), but we had our first baptism! How awesome it was to be able to go to Falls Lake and celebrate with Josh and Angie. I love these two people and was so excited to be able to witness their external display of the internal work that God has done in their lives. This was also Matt's first time baptizing anyone and I think he did a great job!

Yeah, Angie!!!

Josh explaining his story of God's work in his life

We love these guys and are so happy they are a part of our family!

Monday, August 10, 2009


I've been feeling quite anxious lately, but can't figure out why. I've noticed myself become slightly OCD, which usually is an indicator that I'm anxious. There are a lot of things going on in my life right now, but nothing too extreme. It may just be all the little things piling up that I'm having a hard time handling :(

For the first time yesterday, I felt very protective of Abigail. One instance was about her physical safety, and another, about her feelings. Don't get me wrong, I always am concerned about her, but I experienced the "protective mother" concern. It was rather strange and it made me laugh a little. Having a child grow up in a ministry family is something I'm just barely starting to navigate...How to explain to her why someone who used to be a friend has been rude to her since leaving the church, how to balance church life and home life, how to give her a healthy view of the church and ministry life so that she will not despise it...stuff like that. Fortunately, she is too young to understand this and I will be able to have a better grasp on it myself by the time she is older. Then the therapist side of me realized that some of my fears for her mirror fears that I have for myself. Weird how that works, huh?

Well, these verses came to mind as I have tried to sift through the maze in my mind:

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things." (Philippians 4:6-8)

Sunday, August 9, 2009

My Sweet Girl

Happy 5 month birthday to Abigail!!!

Well, on another note, I have not been very good at keeping this thing updated. I will try to get my thoughts together and post more often :)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Little Beach Bum

Abby went to the beach for the first time this past weekend with some friends from church. It's amazing all the stuff you have to bring for a baby! She was a little scared of the ocean (it may have been too cold for her little feet) and preferred to sit in her little sun hut.
She even was able to take a little snooze...
Which made for a very happy baby! Her favorite thing was to walk around with Daddy, look at all the new sights, and listen to all the new sounds.

And she was pooped by the end of the day (we all were)!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Fun with the FR Girls

We had a Fellowship Raleigh women's night this past Friday. It was so good to get out and have adult conversation - thanks, Matt for watching Abby! Even better was getting to hang out with some new people and seeing how our church is changing and growing. The food was yummy and dessert, amazing (thanks to Allison and our dear Abuelita the Chocolatier). We we made fools of ourselves trying to play Mad Gab, this crazy word pronunciation game. Here are pics from the night:

Thanks to Allison and Angie, the organizers of the evening
Samone, Kathy, and Erin

Chrystal (and Baby Holder at 30 weeks)

Trish and Allison cooking up some fried plantains...yum!

Angie, Katherine, Erin, and Kathy

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Dog Walk (Choose Your Own Adventure)

I just came back from walking Jackson around the neighborhood and remembered why I have to be strategic about timing our walks. Unless I take him between the hours of 10:00am-3:00pm on weekdays and NEVER on weekends, I will inevitably run into this problem:

1) Jackson starts out walking well, staying next to my side and walking in a straight line. I spy another dog walker coming towards us, but Jackson has yet to see him/her and the other dog. I can either:

A) Turn around, avoiding having to walk past the other dog walker. This can only happen if the other person hasn't seen me yet. Or else I would appear to be quite rude. I mean, what would you think if every time you saw me walking around the neighborhood, I would turn around and run away without even acknowledging you? (Continue to #2)

B) Be brave and continue walking towards the dog walker. I do this all the while tightening up the leash and trying to remain calm, as Cesar Milan advised on an episode of Dog Whisperer that I once watched. So, in other words, I try to trick Jackson into thinking nothing is the matter. How stupid am I? (Continue to #3)

2) Now that I've either escaped without embarrassment or thoroughly offended my neighbor, I hurry back the other way. I do have intentions to continue walking Jackson, but am too paranoid that the person saw me run away from him/her or scared that we'll bump into another neighbor that I simply cut the walk short and go home. This sometimes happens after walking just 200 feet. Oh well. THE END

3) As we walk towards the other dog walker, Jackson sees the other dog and begins pulling on the leash and barking furiously. Since I have already tightened the leash to about 2 inches, there is no slack to pull. Therefore, he pulls me and I lean back to try and counterbalance the weight. I am such a avoider of conflict that I try to remain friendly looking towards my neighbor and try to continue walking. I probably look really stupid. The closer and closer we get, the crazier Jackson gets and the more I try to smile at the neighbor, apologize and offer a weak "Sorry!", and yell at Jackson at the same time. By the way, the yelling is less for Jackson (he never listens to me anyways) and more for the neighbor. I want him/her to think I at least try to control my dog.

A) The dog walker gives me a dirty look and hustles past with his/her perfectly well-behaved dog. I swear the dog always ends up giving Jackson a dirty look too. I walk away, arms sore from holding back a 70 lb. dog, and thoroughly embarrassed, wishing I never bump into that neighbor again. (Continue to #4)

B) The dog walker gives me a dirty look and picks up his/her little toy dog, shielding it away from the onslaught that is Jackson. The little dog either cowers in its owner's arms or gives Jackson a dirty look. I walk away, arms sore from holding back a 70 lb. dog, and thoroughly embarrassed, wishing I never bump into that neighbor again. (Continue to #4)

4) Jackson and I hurry home. I even contemplating cutting across some yards to get home faster and avoid any other dogs that might be out for a relaxing stroll around the block. But I don't. Jackson is not embarrassed, only proud that he showed himself dominant over the other dog (and me). I amble up the driveway and, defeated, enter my house, trying to make a more strategic plan for our next walk. THE END

Ok, maybe Jackson is getting back at me for making him walk around the neighborhood like this Halloween 2007. Jackson, it's almost been 2 years! Please forgive me!

Friday, May 15, 2009

The South

Today Matt is coming home from trip to Nashville where he attended a worship conference. I had some good, quality time with Abigail, but am happy he is coming home today. I wish I could have gone with him, since I really love Nashville and the family members that he stayed with. And all this got me thinking how a Chinese girl from Chicago got to love the South so much. Here are things I've come to love:

- Cheese grits
- Slower pace of life
- The accent
- Weather
- Sweet cornbread
- The ACC (well, kinda...I think I've developed more of an appreciation for it)
- Moss on the trees

Moving away from Chicago has made me proud of being from there...I like telling people I'm from there :) I do miss aspects of the North, but am thoroughly enjoying life as a Southern girl!

Oh, and Abigail is elated that Daddy is coming home today too!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Horror Movie in My Car

I was listening to a song on the radio the other day while I was driving. I was kind of in a know the state of mind you get in when you're driving and your mind wanders. Well, all of a sudden I hear this eerie child's voice. The type of voice you'd hear in a freaky scary horror movie. So I snap back to reality and it takes me a few seconds to realize that it's coming from the radio. Evidently, the song wasn't over and the artist decided to do one of those "I'm gonna have a little kid sing and talk at the end to make this song cute" moments. What's the use of that other than to scare the living daylights out of your listener??? So to all my composer/recording friends out there, please do not put the scary child voice at the end of your songs...thank you.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Introducing Abigail Mei

Hi, everyone! My name is Abigail Mei Schoolfield and I'm the newest member of the Schoolfield family. I was born March 8th and weighed in at 7 lbs. 10 oz.

Evidently, Mommy was in labor for a while and rather sick, but I don't remember that part. What I do remember is finally being held by Mommy and Daddy for the first time!

After being loaded up in the car and my first car ride home,

I got to meet my big brother, Jackson! He loves to give me kisses.

Here's one last picture of me for now...there will be more later, I promise!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Harlem Globetrotters!!!

Last Friday a group of us brought some kids we mentor through the Community Hope program to the Harlem Globetrotters game at the RBC Center. What a fun night it was! The kids had a great time cheering, stuffing themselves with sugar, and expending TONS of energy. As you can see, we just let them have fun and be kids :)

What exactly do I need to do to keep them from running around like crazy children?

Eating sugar...and more sugar.

The Globetrotters were very entertaining and pretty amazing to watch. I personally enjoyed the balloon-like mascot the best. All in all, it was a great way to spend a Friday night...the adults were exhausted by the end!

Doing the YMCA with the Globetrotters

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


I am so uncomfortable now and unable to sleep (thus the 1:00 am post), so I'm trying to do stuff until I get tired. It beats staring at the ceiling and trying to go to sleep.

So my wonderful friends threw me a baby shower this past weekend and I am so grateful for all that they put into it. Both my mom and mother-in-law were able to fly in to Raleigh to celebrate with me too. This was my mom's first time on an airplane in about 20 years - I am very proud of her! As I was looking at the pictures from the day, I realized just how transient my life has been the past few years. Everyone at the shower (minus my mom and mother-in-law) was someone I've met within the past year and a half. And these are the main people in my life right now. For some, new relationships are a norm, but for me, it is something I think I'm still getting used to. I love my new group of friends and am wondering if (and hoping) there will be a little more stability to who I know.

To all of you that came and helped me celebrate, THANK YOU! I had a great time and really appreciate the your kindness :)

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Hard Times Cafe

Fellowship Raleigh recently moved its office a few blocks south on Glenwood Ave. Besides the new office being MUCH better than the old one, it is right across the street from my new favorite restaurant, Hard Times Cafe. The specialty there is chili, and evidently you can get it plain or over spaghetti or cornbread. And there are four types of chili they have you sample when you first sit down...kinda like an appetizer. Ever since our drive to Chicago where we ate at Skyline Chili in Ohio, I've really enjoyed chili over spaghetti with LOTS of cheese on top. So needless to say, I like this place. The atmosphere is nice too, and they have root beer :) Go check this place out if you are in Raleigh!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Done at Holly Hill Hospital

Today was my official last day of work at Holly Hill Hospital. Matt and I decided that I would take a little time off before Abigail comes to rest and get ready. For those of you who don't know what I did, I'll explain because my job is apparently still quite a conundrum to even those who do know. According to Holly Hill Hospital, my official job title is Therapist/Social Worker/Case Manager. I guess they're a little confused as to what to call us. To best understand my role, the hospital must first be explained. HHH is a private psychiatric hospital that has 5 units: Adult acute, adult recovery/substance abuse, adolescent girls, adolescent boys, and latency (children). They also have an outpatient day program where people come from 9am-3pm for intensive therapy. To be admitted to HHH, one has to be in harm to themselves or to someone else. To put it bluntly, suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts, substance abuse/detox, homicidal thoughts, aggressive behavior towards others, and psychosis (hallucinations, paranoia, delusions) are the main reasons why someone is admitted. The average length of stay is about 5-10 days, or about enough time for the person to be stabilized and referred to an outpatient psychiatrist and therapist.

My job entailed running process groups and psychoeducational groups, completing psychosocial assessments, holding individual and family sessions, and case management. Since I worked part-time, I was not assigned to one particular unit, but floated around to all the units and did whatever was needed by the full-time therapists on the unit.

So as of today, all of that ended...they did keep the door open for me to come back whenever I want because they could always use the help. I might take them up on that offer a few months from now and work a morning here and there, but for now I am done. It was a great experience and I realized that I do enjoy the organized chaos of working at a psych hospital. My co-workers were awesome to work with and I will miss their dry sense of humor and ability to laugh at the ridiculous things that happened during the day. And during my time at HHH, I was also able to get my counseling license, which will allow me to do private practice stuff and be more flexible with my counseling options. All in all, my year and a half at HHH was well worth it!

I know that the last day of work is usually not that momentous of an occasion, but for me it does have some existential implications :) Transitioning into a new role has always been somewhat of a challenge for me and this role change will definitely be a huge one. I am very excited about being a mom and focusing my time and energy at home and on our family. I'm sure there will be times that I will miss working professionally, but the trade-off will be more than worth it. I'll keep you all posted on my existential process as it progresses...just kidding.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Highlights from 2008

Visit to DC - March 2008

Fellowship Raleigh retreat to the Vineyard Camp - May 2008

Trip to NYC with Matt for both our birthdays - June 2008

Finding out we are pregnant - Ultasound of her hand (see her little fingers?) and head

Mom & Dad's visit to Raleigh and our weekend trip to Topsail Beach - August 2008

Fellowship Raleigh launch at Broughton High School - September 27, 2008

Thanksgiving in Tallahassee with Matt's family - Our niece and nephews (Shelby, Trace, Drew) - November 2008

Christmas in Chicago with Kristin's family - December 2008

Saturday, January 10, 2009


Apparently pregnant women develop a more intense nesting urge as the due date approaches. I don't know about that for me...I think I've always been a bit anal about organization and having things in their place. So I guess I can chalk up my recent urge to organize to it being the beginning of 2009 (who doesn't want to start fresh?), the pregnancy thing, and my God-given anal tendencies.

This morning I woke up at 8:15 am, which is a huge deal for me because I am not usually wide awake at this time. Let alone on on Saturday morning. I proceded to put on my bathrobe, get a drink of Gatorade, then put together a closet organizer for our downstairs closet. It now looks great, by the way. Oh, and my project last week was to paint the nursery.

My lovely husband is always up and about in the morning...don't try to make him be productive after 10 pm though. He quickly put together the crib and it looks wonderful! Here is a picture of him and his helper, Jackson, as they start the construction. Yes, Matt is still in his pajamas too.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

I Love Root Beer

Christmas and New Year's updates will have to wait...I have more important things to write about right now. Like how much I LOVE root beer. It is naturally caffeine free, tastes great in a freezy mug, and is the key ingredient to a good float. I bought a 2 liter on New Year's Eve and nobody that came over drank it that night. So, January 3rd is coming to a close and I just finished off the very last of the 2 liter. Yes, I drank it all by myself in three days.

And now I am afraid I am going to go through some withdrawal symptoms.


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