Thursday, March 28, 2013

An interview with the Birthday Boy:

M: So... Zayden, you're one! You've just gone and grown up right before our eyes. 
What do you like most about being one?

Z: Oh, I love all the independence. I love walking around all by myself, I've almost mastered a fast walk/run move... it sure keeps you on your toes, huh mom? 

M: Yes, it does. I especially like when I tell you to come to me and you take off as quickly as your little feet will take you in the other direction. 

Z: Sorry mom, it's just too much fun watching your face. Will you forgive me?

M: Of course, you're just too cute. 

Z: Yeah, that's what I was counting on. I knew you couldn't resist my cuteness. 

M: So what's your favorite time of the day? 

Z: Oh, that's easy. I love mornings. I just love to stand in my crib and bang it against the wall until somebody hears me and comes in my room to pick me up. 

M: Yes, you shouldn't do that. It makes awful marks on the wall that mom has to clean off. 

Z: Sorry, it just makes the coolest noise. I like that loud noise, it sounds like the bass in a song-- and speaking of music, I sure love to dance. Mom can we dance? 

M: In a little bit. What's your favorite toy? 

Z: Well I REALLY like Dad's iphone... especially when it plays music. I just love to move and shake when I hear a great beat. 

M: What's your favorite song to dance to? 

Z: Gangham Style... I think it's hilarious. 

M: Do you have any other favorite toys? 

Z:Well, I really like those fuzzy books.

M: You mean the touch and feel books?

Z: Yeah, those ones! I like petting the animals. I really like cats and dogs. Why can't I run down the street to pet the neighbors cat?

M: Because it isn't really safe to be in the street on your own. You can pet the kitties when Mom's around though. 

Z: Oh, Okay. 

M: Do you have a favorite food? 

Z: Yeah, well I like lots of food. I like pears, bananas, crackers, string cheese, oatmeal, yogurt, applesauce, cereal, cooked carrots, pretty much any dinner you make. I'm not a real fan of those long green things though... 

M: You mean green beans? 

Z: Yeah, those things. Yuck!

M: Do you like playing with your brothers? 

Z: YES! Well, sometimes I try to play with them, but they get mad cuz they say I'm not doing it right. I'm not sure what's so wrong about knocking over those block towers that they make. Isn't that how you're supposed to play with them? 

M: Sometimes it's okay to knock them down. Other times they want to play with them while they're still  up. It's okay, I know you meant well. 

Z: Well, I hope they know I wasn't trying to make them mad. 

M: They know. What else do you like to do with your brothers? 

Z: I like to play cars with them and try and shoot balls in that tall thing. What's that called again?

M: The hoop. So you sleep through the night pretty good and you're walking, and you manage to eat quite a bit of food with those 3.5 teeth you have.... You're getting to be a big boy. Anything else you want to add? 

.... Zayden?? 

What are you doing?

Z: Oh sorry mom..... 
....I was expecting a phone call from my girlfriend. 
M: You don't have a girlfriend! 

Z: Nah, you're right. But you should have seen your face. Gottcha! I'm pretty funny. 

M: Yes, you ARE pretty funny. Now put my phone down. 
Z: Not a chance mom, someone's texting me. Can we do this later? 

I love you you little grown up man. You are one heck of a kid, always happy. I'm so lucky to be your mom. 
Happy Birthday Zayden! 

Spring has arrived!

Oh how we love Springtime... after so many months cooped up in the house for all those rainy cold months of winter my boys delight in the warmness of Springtime! The weather has been absolutely beautiful lately and we have spent every ounce of our time playing outside and soaking up lots of Vitamin D. 

You know you party too hard when...

You pass out like this in the car: 
These three were passed out within 10 minutes of driving away from Grammie and Grandpa's house. They just have TOO much fun there. So much running, and playing, eating junk food (Grandpa), and staying up 2 hours past your bedtime... at least they slept in the next day! 

St. Patrick's Day

I'm such a lucky mom to have these three adorable boys as my own! 
(If only Z's eyes were open!) 
Can you tell B's super excited about taking pictures? He's giving me his undivided attention. 
Finally a smile from Zee zee! 

Oh, it hurts. The smiling is just painful..... 
My grown up Q. 

Hoopin' it up Howard Style

These boys would play basketball every day if they could, especially when their dad joins in on the fun. They love doubling up on guarding him and think it's hilarious when they foul him to prevent him from making a shot. 
I just love that B is picking some crusty boogers in this picture. 
And speaking of boogers, that is why Z's eyebrow looks all askew... it got slimed by some of his boogs and stuck this way. Don't judge me, I'm not a terrible mom, I wiped it off later. 

Here they are in action: 

Too little guard, or shoot balls in the hoop-- though he does try. Mostly he resorts to playing with cars in the middle of the basketball chaos. 

I swear we don't beat our kids... but this little guy almost always ends up with these nasty bruises on his forehead.... 

Changing of seasons.

All these pictures were taken just prior to Spring starting. As you can see the weather was nice and sunny, but very chilly. And as any fellow PNWesterner would tell you, if the sun is out... you should be out soaking it up. Zayden loves walking around the driveway with his trucks and cars. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

A whole year's worth of life

My Dear, sweet, happy, little Zayden,

 It's hard to believe it, but you are going to be turning one!
You have accomplished a lot in your first year of life. 
You spent a good nine month being squished in my tummy before you made your big debut... 
 It was such a joyous day for me to see your beautiful face, to hear your heart beating in your chest.
 It was truly one of the happiest days of my life. 
I knew when I first laid eyes on you that you were meant to be part of our family. 
Your mission here on Earth is great. 
You met your Daddy next. 
He's the 'fun one', the silly one. 
He loves you just as much as I do.
 If you want to understand what makes a man great, look to his example, he will show you how. 
Next it was time for you to meet your brothers. They were so excited to see you in person. Quincy was a little more understanding about how gentle he needed to be when holding you. He's been a big brother before, you know. Braxton, however, was just a little more preoccupied with touching your tiny body, kissing you, and redressing you, in a not-so-gentle-way. He was at times a little rough, but don't be mistaken because he meant well. 

Both your brothers love you, fiercely
They will be your examples, your protectors, and most importantly, your friends. 
Don't ever forget that. 

You see, even they knew, with their young developing minds, that you were a part of our family. 
You belong to us. 
As April rolled around you started to become more aware of your surroundings. You spent a great deal sleeping, for which your mama is grateful for-- having three c-sections can definitely take its toll on one's body. And for how much your brother's were running around I was most happy that you weren't on the move with them. Though that didn't keep you from trying... to keep up with them. Whenever you were awake you were looking around, trying to get that little teeny body of yours to move in the ways you observed them moving. 
You celebrated your first Easter with us. 
We attempted to get a family picture of all of us.
 It was nearly impossible. 
This was the best we could come up with. :)
Soon it was May and I was thanking my Father in Heaven for how much of a easy-going baby you were. You slept when you weren't eating, and you hardly cried. 
By this time you have finally got the hang of nursing. 
May was also a special month because on your parent's 6th wedding anniversary you were blessed in our church and given a name on which the church records would officially read: 
Zayden Jace Howard
This was the first time you got to meet your other grandparents.
 Grandpa Kent and Grandma Teesy were so happy to see you. 
But who wouldn't be? 
You were so awfully cute, and still are. 
In June you kept us entertained by throwing around some of your incredibly cute smiles. You have sort of become known for them, by now, but at the time we could do nothing but soak in each and every adorable one. You have been deemed 'the happy baby'. 
A lady in our previous ward (who was a fellow mother of all boys-- 4 I might add, to which she immediately gets a ticket straight for Heaven for) bought you this Jordan outfit. Your daddy was thrilled. 
 You somehow manage to pull off innocence in such a pimp suit. 
In July the weather warmed up and we decided to have our family pictures taken, professionally. 
Our photographer, Chelsea, said you were an easy subject. 
No doubt, you had the cute factor down at this point. 
August was the month that you met your Uncle Scott for the first time. He was serving a Spanish speaking mission in Tempe, Arizona-- hence the major tan!--while you were born. He was happy to meet you in person. After all, he was the very first person in our family (besides your dad and I) to know what your name was going to be before you born. Everyone else had to wait. :) 
Because you were nursing so well, and so OFTEN, your pediatrician finally told me you could start eating rice cereal. 
You really liked this idea. 
And this was the start of what we like to call 'the chunky phase'. 
And of course with all that eating you had to do plenty of sleeping. 
You are a such a good sleeper at night. 
Thankfully. Your oldest brother wasn't exactly cooperative in this department.  
We had such a beautiful and warm September that we spent a great deal of time outside. 
Going on walks, and playing at parks with your older brothers. 
You are so happy. 
In October, we went to the pumpkin patch. 
You made an especially cute-- and happy-- little froggy for Halloween.

On an almost regular basis I hear people tell me how much you look like your brothers. 

And speaking of them... oh, how you love them! 
You want to be wherever they are. 
Despite the fact that they run circles around you, take your toys, and accidentally mow you over when they're playing a little too rough a little too close to you. 
You are drawn to their presence. I see a brotherhood already formed. 
You are now old enough -- or your mom is now brave enough-- to take baths with them. You usually end up being drenched in water that the're splashing around, but you're happy enough about it that I don't get too worried. 
You love baths. 
You love to splash and throw bath toys. 
You squeal with delight when you hear that water running. 
Unfortunately, in November your Daddy was in a car accident. He was on his was to work when a car from behind rear ended him. Thankfully, you (or your brothers or I) were not in the car when it happened. It was sad when we had to say goodbye to our Nissan. 
We got this new (to us) Honda Pilot. You and your brothers like that you have more room. Your Daddy likes all the technology stuff. And *I* like that we have room for friends. 
It was definitely a blessing in disguise. 
And most importantly, your Daddy was okay-- relatively speaking. 
We were all very happy about that! 
You love crawling over to him when he walks in the door and begging him to pick you up.
 He loves you too. 
By December, you have started to learn all sorts of new tricks: pulling up, crawling, and you have begun to master the skill of cruising. This picture below accurately describes how pleased you are about your accomplishments. 

In December you had lots of firsts.... 
...your first haircut. 
You did pretty good for your first time... and we took off quite a bit. 
See how much more grown up you look? 
... and because you were getting so grown up looking you started sitting in shopping carts like a big boy. You loved this. 
... you had your first-- well technically your second-- car trip to Idaho. 
... your first ride on a four wheeler. 
Your brothers LOVE this.
 See how their smiles reach from one ear to their other one? 
... and your first time meeting ALL your cousins on the Howard side of the family. Your Grandma Teesy and Grandpa Kent look pretty pleased having you all squished on their couch. It's so fun that you and your cousins are all so close in age. And how great is it that your aunt's-- Kelly and Heather-- are adding two more by July 2013? 
In mid-December your Grammie wanted to take some family pictures of the Lindquist side. So we had our friendly photographer, Chelsea, work her magic once again. She did a great job, especially considering it was raining the whole time we were taking them! I think we'll stick to summer family pictures...
How did I get three-- well four-- handsome boys in my life?  
This Christmas was the first year we spent at home. It was so nice not to have to travel anywhere. Your brothers were very pleased that Santa did not disappoint. Maybe this (2013) year you'll get a chance to open your own presents, as last year your brothers did most of that job for you. 
Look how cute you three look in your matching pajamas that Grammie and Grandpa Loren got for you!
On almost a regular basis I hear how handsome you boys are, and I have to agree. Also, people seem to think you all look quite a bit alike. I guess I can see it.... :) 
You are still a lover of baths. 
You're completely in heaven each time you're placed in that water. 
You entirely ignore your brothers and delight in just splashing in that sudsy water. 
You love your mama. Though you will tolerate Daddy when I'm not around.
 And you're still so dang happy even though you've been working on some teeth for a while now. 
(Still none yet, at this point) 
You always want to be with the big kids.
 I frequently find you wandering down the hall to the boys' room to play with your favorite toy
-- these monster trucks. 
You have the most juicy lips. 
In January we had a little dusting of snow. Your brothers insisted we go out and play in it. You had a hard time moving around with all your warm snow clothes on. Mostly you were content to just sit and watch everyone. 
But when you're not weighed down by layers upon layers of clothes... you are right in the action. Playing side by side with you brothers. 
By February you have 2 teeth. It's insane. Your brothers all had at least eight teeth around 8 months.
 I guess I'm happy because it makes nursing so much more tolerable. 
You love playing peek-a-boo.
 You like cars. 
You're taking a few steps here and there. 
You're growing up too fast. 
Mom, might be your favorite person in the world right now, but when Daddy walks through the door when he gets home from work, you're ALL about him. You love to snuggle him and smile at him, and give him "kisses"-- by leaning your face near his head so he can kiss you. You love playing with his socks and shoes when he takes them off. And you really love that he's a sucker for that whiny game you play called 'Dad you've got food, feed me (even though I already ate)'. He likes spoiling you with treats when I'm "not looking". It's agreed that we both love that guy. 
By February the weather is starting to warm up again. We took you and your brothers to the park. You went down a slide, with Daddy's help-- you weren't really digging that activity. Then we put you in a swing. Oh how giggled and squealed, and laughed. We couldn't stop laughing and smiling just hearing you. You bring such joy to our family. For that reason alone I'm thankful you got to come to Earth with a perfect, strong, healthy body to allow you to spread that joy to so many others around you. 
Although you're extremely cute you've been known to do a few mischievous things here and there. 
You have taken to sticking that little thumb in your mouth when you think we're not looking. I know it's awfully convenient when we can't find your binky fast enough, but it's a nasty habit we don't want you to form. So stop looking so cute when we tell you no! 
And remember how I've been telling you how much you love taking baths? Well look what you decided to do on your own, when mom turned her back for minute. You dived right into that tub, diaper, clothes, and all. You were quite pleased about this. 
You've also got into a little trouble from playing with remotes (some of your favorite 'toys'), unrolling the toilet paper, eating soap our of the baby wash dispenser, unlocking Daddy's iphone and getting into folders you're not supposed to (I'm pretty sure you think his phone is your personal boom box. Whenever you see it you demand music, mostly by throwing the phone at him and grunting. But your dance moves are pretty cute so we usually indulge. One of your favorite songs is Gangham Style), you also like to pull our cotton balls and wash rags from the bathroom drawers, and until recently you had a grand time getting into the kitchen garbage (mom outsmarted you with a simple rubber band) 
By March you're walking everywhere, and gaining speed by the minute-- you'll be running in no time. You have taken to snuggling on my chest before bedtime in a sitting up position with your chest against mine and your head nuzzled in my neck. I know I should just put you in bed to fall asleep  but part of me can't help that you're so willing to snuggle and wants to soak it all in. You like phones. You love music-- we all love your little moves.
 You like breaking your brothers creations-- usually block towers, or cars strategically lined up. You like string cheese, yogurt, bananas, ripe pears, applesauce, cracker, bread, eggs, most all of our dinners, and you love treats. You almost have 4 teeth, your top front two and your bottom front two. You manage quite well in the eating department for only having 4 teeth! 

You love books with buttons, and touch and feel pictures. You love going outside. You are still my happy baby... although part of me has to accept that you're not so much of a baby anymore. You're growing up. But each and every day I thank God for the blessing that you are in my life.