Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Random Sweetness...

Asher and Sonny try to do "doughnuts with Daddy" at least once every 2 weeks. This past Sunday I was feeling pretty under-the-weather so Sonny said he would take Asher to get doughnuts first and then to church so I could rest when Zoee took her morning nap. Sonny showed me some pictures he took of Asher on their little outing and I laughed so hard I almost cried... isn't this the sweetest little face- all covered with chocolate sprinkles!! Yummy!!

This past week we have done a lot of resting since we all seem to either have allergies/colds. I have no idea why we cannot get over this stuff but since we haven't been feeling great, we have used the time to hang at home. We have watched one of Asher's favorite movies Rise of the Planet of the Apes (which he calls the "Monkey Movie") and Cars over and over. When we were hanging out in the office, Sonny caught some pictures of Asher "resting" on my treadmill. I guess that's one way a treadmill can be used right?

Lastly, the kids have really enjoyed their version of "coloring" lately. We made some signs for Daddy because he has been working a lot lately and we thought he would enjoy them when he got home from a long day. Sonny took a picture of our signs when he came up the door... We sure do love him so much and are so thankful for how hard he works!!

Sorry there are not any pics of Zoee in this post- she's doing great! We all have coughs but every day we are getting better. Rest. Healthy food. Herbs. Tylenol. Hand sanitizers. Hot Tea with Lemon. Airborne.... these have been prevalent in our house this past week! Hoping they help!

Thursday, February 23, 2012


When I was younger, my Dad really wanted me to become a professional tennis player. I think I started playing tennis seriously when I was about 4 or 5. By the time I was about 8 I was competing regularly in tournaments. At the time I had a love/hate relationship with tennis. I loved winning but didn't like to practice. I played at least 5 times a week until I was about 12 years old. I remember my dad telling someone that if he could get me to like tennis as much as I enjoyed babies, I would go pro!! I was ranked by the time I was 11 or 12 but then I got burnt out. I stopped playing in 6th grade and took a 2 year break. I realize now that I should have been so much more grateful to my parents for paying for all those lessons and tournaments. By the time I went back in 8th grade I could still play but had lost a lot of momentum. I think I was just a rebellious kid who did not want to do what her parents thought was best. I should have spent more time enjoying the game and maybe I could have gotten a scholarship. Maybe. Oh- well... now I just enjoy it from time to time for fun. Sonny really likes to play me because I am a big challenge for him (neither of us are really good right now because we do not play enough). We decided that it was time to take our mini-Howards out for some tennis lessons. They were SO excited about their rackets that Daddy bought for them. That's as far as their tennis excitement went.... Asher hit the ball about 3 times and then wanted to play with his cars. Zoee enjoyed chasing the balls but had no idea what to do with the racket. We ended up having a good time. It was nice to just be outside and getting exercise. Sonny and I "played" for a while (we had to stop almost every minute to help the kids with snacks/cars/water/runny noses so there was not much tennis going on). After "tennis," we took them to the park to make sure they were exhausted before nap time.

It was a great family day! I look forward to many more Howard tennis games! Here are some pics from the day. Asher has been camera shy lately so please excuse his "thrilled" face...

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Zoo!!

My wonderful parents got me a wonderful birthday present- zoo passes for an entire year!! We are able to go as often as we want and bring some friends each time we go!! The kids love the zoo- it obviously has interesting animals but it also has an awesome playplace and petting zoo. Last week we went with our friends- Jake & Kristen and their daughter Kinley and they also brought their friend Josh that Kristen watches nannies (He has Autism but is such a goof ball! He loves hugging Asher and Kinley and loves to make everyone laugh =) )

Here are some of the pictures from the first of many zoo trips this year!!

The Howard Family...

The Beller Family...

Zoee and Kinley playing with the goats...

Little Kinley with her adorable bow...

The crazy monkey with really weird coloring...

Josh giving Asher hugs...

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Dear Asher...

Dear Asher,
I have to be quick with this post because we are heading to the park in just a few minutes. I just wanted to document some things on your toddler life before you grow up and I forget everything (I have a terrible memory)!! Right now you are laying next to me on the couch watching your favorite movie- CARS! You love walking around the house quoting Mater and "Queen" then saying "That's what Mater says Mommy!" It's so funny to hear the things that you choose to quote. You are growing up so fast just like your Sissy. Here are some things going on with you lately...

1. You love to talk! You talk all day long and even after we put you to bed at night, you talk to yourself every night for at least an hour. The other day I heard you yelling at the top of your lungs while you were in bed and I ran to your door to make sure you were okay. As I got to the door I hear your yelling "NO NEMO NO!!!!!" (you had watched Nemo that day because we had a long car ride to the zoo and we let you watch movies in the car). It took everything I had not to start cracking up.

2. You love everything that has to do with cars, trucks, monster trucks, trains, and tow trucks. Anything with wheels makes you happy!

3. You are not as great of an eater now as you were when you were smaller (even though you will eat almost anything that I ask you to as long as you only have to take a few bites... except squash- the texture almost made you throw up the other day). I think now you have too many other things on your mind. One thing you constantly love now is "warm milk." You have it about 4 or 5 times a day. It's funny because I love warm drinks too so maybe you get that from me?

4. You love music and love to sing. I came in the other day and you were singing to Will Reagan's "No Place I'd Rather Be." It was precious to see you singing such a great song. I pray that those words will be a reality for you one day.

5. You love coloring (more than reading right now). Your favorite colors are orange and brown (a future longhorn maybe??) and sometimes yellow and purple. When you color, you rarely use any color other than those.

6. You love sweets. Cupcakes... doughnuts.... chocolate..... anything with sugar! We try to limit it but it can be difficult when you (and Daddy) love sweets so much =)

7. You are Daddy's boy. You tell me (and everyone else) often that he is YOUR Daddy. I love it!!

8. You are continuing to potty train. It is a slow process for you but each day we seem to be making progress. I am not stressing yet =)

Asher, you are just so full of life and joy. Even though you still have very emotional moments from time to time, you are learning to deal with things better and it has been neat to watch you grow in that area. You are a delight. You bring Daddy and me so much joy. We are honored to be your parents. We pray that you will continue to grow in wisdom and that you will be a man who seeks Jesus with all that you have. We love you Buddy!


Monday, February 20, 2012

Dear Zoee...

Dear Zoee,
Oh my crazy little spice ball!! How we love you sweet girl! You are seriously growing up so so fast. I cannot believe that you are not a little baby anymore. You have started talking so much more lately and telling me exactly "what you think" about things. You have such an intense, yet joyful and spunky personality. You and Asher are so different from one another in so many ways (you are both very joyful though and you both love to make people laugh). Here are some things going on with you in your almost 16 month old life...

1. You have SO much energy. You started Mother's Day Out recently and they tell me that you RUN almost the whole time you are there. You never stop!!

2. You love to smile and laugh. You are one of the most joyful girls that I have ever seen and I pray that you continue to be that way. It's so much fun being around you when you and Asher are being silly and making each other laugh.

3. You enjoy reading (or me reading to you). You love books with Elmo and Zoe in them and you also love any books with animals.

4. You like to watch Baby Einstein (especially the one with animals).

5. You LOVE to dance and sing. We keep music on almost all day and you will randomly start dancing to your hearts desire. I love when you do that.

6. Your favorite nursery rime is either "Pop Goes the Wiesel" or "Itsy Bitsy Spider."

7. You still love to eat. You actually love vegetables and fruit. You will eat a whole bowl full of veggies at least once a day! Amazing!! (you are allergic to dairy right now so that has made it more difficult to fill your large appetite!!)

8. You LOVE LOVE LOVE your Daddy! When he walks in the door you literally yell "DA-DDY!!" It is so precious to see your love for him continuing to grow. It melts my heart!! He is the only person that you will randomly come up to to give kisses to. Love it!!

9. You have learned to say Asher's name and your own and it's so cute to hear you say it. It sounds more like "Ach-ee" and "Yo-ee" but we definitely know what you are saying.

10. You seem to like soccer. I was paying with you and Asher outside the other day and taught you to run around and kick the soccer ball. You really enjoyed it. Even though I am not the hugest fan of soccer- anything with lots of running is great with me (especially because you have SO much energy you need to get out of your system!!)

I think that's about all for now. I am pretty tired because you and Ash have had runny noses and have been a little more "work" with all that comes with allergies and such. I love you, baby girl. You are a joy! I am so incredibly thankful for you and your Daddy and brother. I am honored to be your Mommy. I pray that you will come to love and adore Jesus with all of that intense personality He has given you. I pray that all of your passion will be for Him. Daddy, brother and me love you so much!


Date with Mom =)

If anyone has heard me talk about my mom, they will know exactly what I think about her. She is amazing! I know many people say that about their moms, but honestly my mom is one of the most selfless and joyful people that I have ever met. Even when she is having a rough day- you wouldn't know it. She is a joy to be around. Our kids adore their Mimi. About a week ago Mom and I got to go to brunch at La Madeleine's in Katy while the kids were at Mother's Day Out. It was so refreshing to hang out with Mom and actually have a whole conversation without having to pause to get someone milk or make sure the kids are not jumping off the couches! I really hope to get to have more dates with Mom now that both kiddos are at MDO =).

Friday, February 10, 2012

Playdate in Katy...

Well, the kids are sleeping really late so I am using this time to catch up on uploading all the pictures I have in the camera. About a week ago we got to go on a playdate with our friends Jimmy and Kelly and their daughter Lively. Lively and Zoee are about 2 months apart and both their names mean "Life." We met at Katy Mills mall and us adults talked/kept kids from falling while the kids played. It really was so refreshing to hear about what the Lord has been doing in their lives. Honestly, with kids it can be harder to have deep conversations (you often have to hit the pause button to rescue a daring child) but being in the Katy Mills playplace was so much more conducive than most places to talking. The kids ran around and played the whole time. It was great!

Our sweet little Zoee... I just cannot believe how big she is getting!!

Asher loves anything "car" related so we let him pretend to be racing... Asher has been camera shy lately so it takes all the convincing I can muster to have him let me snap a picture of him... I have had to get more action short rather than posed pics of him...

Sweet little Lively...

Trying to get a picture where both girls were looking was quite a challenge!!

Little bundles of "LIFE"

Asher being brave...

Jimmy, Kelly, and Lively...

The Guys...

The Girls with Asher... still cannot get both girls looking...

Ya-ya and the Kids

I want to document everything but there just isn't enough time. I saw these precious pics of the kids with Kaitlyn and asked her to send them to me. I am so thankful for the friends that we have that are so involved in our lives as well as Asher and Zoee's lives. We are so blessed to have people that love and help us so much. I have heard that raising kids requires an entire village- I believe it! Thank you EVERYONE who helps us raise our wonderful, crazy kids!

Zoee and Daddy

Zoee is just growing up so fast. I remember so vividly trying to teach her to crawl, then walk. Now I am fixing her hair and teaching her to talk! Where does the time go? The other day I started putting her hair in small "fountain" pony tails. She just looks so cute and it helps people see that she is not a boy (her hair is taking forever to come in- just like mine did- so she sometimes gets mistaken for a boy!!). The first day that I fixed her hair this way, I just had to take pictures. Here she is with her Daddy! She will randomly come over to him and give him kisses. I think she does this because she sees me doing that. It is just so sweet. She actually only does this with Sonny- she has yet to give me a kiss without prompting. Gotta love the love of a girl and her Daddy!