Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Perfect Timing

I am sitting at my kitchen table, trying to enjoy a healthy snack of an almond chocolate bar, goldfish crackers and a dr. pepper (no, I have no idea why my belly is measuring two and half weeks ahead, why do you ask?), listening to my two year old screaming in her room and kicking the headboard on her bed. It's been going on for an hour.
If she hadn't been doing this every afternoon for the last week, I'd brush this off as a random event. However, I fear she might be trying to make a habit of this. Given that baby #3 is set to arrive a week from today, I find this worrisome. I need naptime, people. Any suggestions?

Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas 2008

Just like birthdays, we like to drag our Christmas celebrations out as long as possible. We started on Christmas Eve and decked the halls until Saturday afternoon. The girls had a really great time this year and we loved watching them experience the magic and joy of Christmas.

Our first stop was at Nana and Grandad Jack's house on Christmas Eve.

Claire was super-excited to receive this gift, which she wanted last year but was recalled before Christmas.

Arden can't get enough of the princess experience, and really, who can blame her?

After the festivities at Nana's, we went home and got ready for Santa. The girls were extra excited because cousin Connor got to spend the night with us this year. The kids wrote a note to Santa and got busy setting out carrots for the reindeer and a plate of (store-bought, kind of stale) cookies for Santa.

Claire was extremely worried that Arden would get out of bed and Santa wouldn't come. I guess I over-emphasized the whole "Santa only comes after all the children are asleep" thing. Luckily, everyone went to sleep and the grown-ups were able to assemble all the fun things Santa had selected for the kids, including a four foot wooden dollhouse that came with two pages of instructions. Two pages of steps 12-20 of the instructions. No 1-11 to be found anywhere in the box. Santa seriously needs some quality control up there at the North Pole.

Later that day we were off to "The Farm" for more Christmas fun, including a hay ride (I did not participate this year), skeet shooting (didn't participate), four-wheeler riding (also did not particpate) and lots of trampoline jumping (again with the non-participation). Now that I think of it, maybe I should've joined in on some of those activites. Maybe I'd be holding the new baby by now...

We continued our Christmas experience all the way until Saturday, spending time with Aunt Ashley and Uncle Thad and Aunt Darla, Uncle Butch, Alsion and Nana Vel.

We had a truly wonderful Christmas this year. The girls were gracious with their gifts and only asked for additional presents a few times. I consider this a big accomplishment for a two and four year old. And, in case you were wondering, Santa came through for Arden with the makeup...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What a Difference a Year Makes

Last year's visit with Santa did not go so well. This year, Arden has been really excited to sit on Santa's lap and tell him that she wants him to bring her make-up for Christmas. Claire, of course, has always loved Santa and has never had the kind of freak-out that Arden had last year when she came face-to-face with the man in red. Since both girls were so eager to visit Santa, we bundled them up last night and braved the freezing temperatures to go see Santa.

We picked a perfect night. There was no line at all and the girls walked right up and got to spend several minutes with Santa without having to hurry through. Arden took full advantage of this, telling Santa over and over that she wanted him to bring her some make-up. Claire was very polite and asked for a two wheel scooter and a baby doll (not the dollhouse that she told me she was going to ask for).

All in all, it was a successful visit. Now "Santa" just has to come up with some non-toxic, stain-free make-up and figure out what to do with the dollhouse he has in his trunk.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Flip Flopper

Is it possible that all those crazy contractions last weekend were Baby Amelia trying to turn herself over? If you said "yes," you would be right!

I went to my regular doctor appointment on Thursday who confirmed that Amelia is not only head down, but is also low enough that she shouldn't be able to flip back over. Actually, what he said was she is "locked and loaded," a phrase that conjured up some not-so-pleasant imagery but ultimately translates into "your internal organs will not be laid bare on an operating table any time in the near future."

Now that the fear of a c-section is gone, I feel ready to have this baby. Well, actually I need to get my hair cut and colored one more time and then I'll be ready.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Even My Uterus is Irritable

After a weekend filled with contractions and back pain, I found myself in Labor and Delivery yesterday, hooked up to monitors and blood pressure cuffs and answering weird questions like "Do you have stairs in your home?"

I was monitored for several hours before it was determined that I have an "irritable uterus". Although I suspect this might be a made-up diagnosis that they tell over-reactive paranoid moms, it makes perfect sense to me: everything else about me is irritatble these days, why not my uterus too?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

One Little Indian

Yesterday was the Thanksgiving Feast at Mother's Day Out. Arden's class dressed up like Indians and, as you can see from the pictures, she thought she was pretty cute. Not sure about the historical accuracy of a blond haired, blue-eyed Indian at the first Thanksgiving, but who cares about details when you look that cute with a headress on?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Heads Up

In case anyone missed the news, I'm pregnant. 32 weeks pregnant, which looks about 65weeks pregnant in "third pregnancy years". Yesterday Claire asked me if my tummy would get even bigger. When I said yes her eyes got really wide and she said, "How?". A valid question, I must admit.

Note: the above photo was taken by Claire (which is why I look like a giant) and is being posted at her request.

It's hard to believe that in eight weeks we'll be holding a new Bramlett girl. I think about her all the time, wondering who she'll look like, what her personality will be like, whether she'll be a good sleeper, and most pressing of all: will she flip herself over before delivery?

Yes, friends, my third baby has decided to go her own way and has been in a breech position for a while now. Her little coconut head is lodged firmly under my rib cage and when she kicks, I fear that a foot might come out. Although there is still a decent chance she might flip over, she seems all too comfortable right where she is. I can't blame her for wanting to stay in the upright position but from a purely selfish perspective, this complicates things.

A breech baby equals a c-section. I've never had a c-section before, or any other surgery for that matter, so I'm a little freaked out at the idea. Plus, I've seen a c-section delivery on Discovery channel and I'm pretty sure they laid the poor woman's intestines right there on the delivery table (I could be wrong about this part, as I watched most of the show in horror with my hands over my eyes).

If she stays in the breech position, my doctor will attempt to flip her manually sometime in December. This involves a great deal of pushing on the outside of the belly and has been described to me as feeling like an "Indian burn on your insides." What's not to love about the sound of that?

Whether she flips or not, I know that I'll be holding my sweet precious in less than two months and that is almost enough to calm me down about all this. Almost.

Monday, November 10, 2008

I Would Like to Be the New Spokesperson for Dell

I don't want to brag, but since my blog is called "Shameless bragging," I guess you kind of expect it. So here goes. I got a new laptop and not only does it have an operating system that was developed in this decade, it also has something I didn't even know existed: a memory card reader. Right there on the computer. No cords required. Do you know what that means to someone who broke her camera and can't upload her pictures???

That means I can show you this

And this

And this

Not to mention this (which has nothing to do with Halloween but is too cute not to post)

Three cheers for technology!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Do Not Allow Me Near Expensive Appliances/Electronics

I'm pretty much the only loser mom in the blogworld who hasn't posted super-cute pictures of her kids in their Halloween costumes. For now, you'll just have to take my word that the Bramlett girls were the prettiest Little Mermaid and Cinderella around.

It's not that I didn't take plenty of pictures. I did. I got lots of good shots of the two of them enjoying our WEEK long Halloween festivities. It's just that, well, there was an unfortunate accident involving my new-ish camera at the fall carnival at church and now said camera is rendered unusable. Since the cost of repair is somehow more than the cost of a new camera (defying various laws of economics or gravity or something), I guess I'll be buying a new one. Until then, no pictures.

On a slightly related note, I dyed the inside of my dryer orange last week. The good news there is that it doesn't seem to be effecting the performance of the appliance. It does, however, seem to indicate that I am single-handedly ruining every big ticket item in our house.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I Should Feel Bad About This

While Arden was napping this afternoon, I raided the treat bag she got at her Mother's Day Out Halloween party today. I ate all the chocolate. I sense that I should feel badly about this, but come on, she's two. She still thinks smarties are just as good as mini milky ways. Amateur.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

How We Spend Our Evenings

Alternate Title: Because the Razorback Fight Song sounds so much better when sung with classical music playing in the background

Monday, October 13, 2008

Have I mentioned this?

Arden started a ballet/tap class this fall. She loves it and, like everything else she does, goes at it full force. Unfortunately, her future in the class is a little uncertain after she pummeled another little girl during last week's session. If we do stick it out, mark your calendars for late May. That receital will be a must-see.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Last Thursday night, Claire scored her first goal ever (assuming you don't count the one she scored for the other team a few weeks ago). Since then, she's been on a scoring rampage. On Friday night, she scored five goals and couldn't wait to call someone to share the news that she got the "high score".

Jason and I, who normally consider ourselves to be highly reasonable people, have turned into those parents. You know, the ones who are jumping up and down on the sidelines and yelling "Stay with it, Claire! Straight to the goal! Wooo-hoooo!!!" while the other parents think to themselves, "They do realize this is four year old soccer don't they?"

Yes, we do. But it's so fun to see your little one accomplish something and be so proud of herself that we're willing to sacrifice a little of our dignity to celebrate it with her. However, f you see us on the soccer fields and we're a little, um, over the top, please feel free to tell us to tone it down...

Monday, September 29, 2008

Things I Want to Remember

I looked at my girls yesterday and was hit with the sudden realization that they are getting bigger by the second. When did Arden start talking so much? How long has Claire been refusing to wear bows? Weren't those soccer shorts a lot longer last spring? Why does that dress seem too small (oh. it's an 18-24 months)?
I know once this new baby gets here the girls will seem even bigger and before I know it, I'll have forgotten what this stage in their lives was like. So here are some things I don't want to forget...

*Says "willn't" when she means "won't"
*Totally obsessed with jewelry--at any given time, she's wearing several necklaces, a few rings and an armload of bracelets
*Can't wait for kindergarten and asks nearly everyday how much longer it will be until she goes to her "Big Girl School"
*Runs around the soccer field with a huge smile on her face
*Is just as happy to have "almost" scored a goal than to actually have scored one
*Loves to perform and can't wait to be a grown-up so she can be on stage somewhere
*Spent thirty minutes trying to master the monkey bars at the park on Saturday
*Wants to pick her own clothes and accessories and does not limit herself by adhering to fashion boundaries such as "plaids and stripes do not go together" or "if the back of your heel is hanging over the edge of those Hello Kitty wedge sandals you love so much, they're probably too small"
*Can't wait to be able to read
*Thinks the big girls across the street are totally cool
*Likes to kiss the baby in my tummy
*Sleeps with a blankie, a puppy named pup-pup and three princess dolls
*Doesn't nap anymore

*Repeats everything Claire says, even if she has no idea what it means
*Loves her "pappy" (that's what she calls her paci and yes, she still has it. Want to fight about it?)
*Thinks using the potty means sitting on it or standing in front of it
*Cries when I leave
*Loves to give hugs and kisses
*Gets so excited when someone comes to the house that she runs into the living room and does somersaults
*Loves to sing back-up for Claire, although I'm sure she'll want to take the lead before too long
*Calls my dad Jack instead of Grandad
*Terrifies me when I take her to the park
*Loves to eat olives
*Thinks she is just as big as her sister
*Loves to paint and use glue sticks
*Tried to feed baby in my tummy chips by laying them on my belly
*Sleeps with two lovies, two blankets, three princess dolls, one puppy and, of course, her beloved pappy
*Says "Ontchoo" when she means "I want you"

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

A Confession

I just made a box of brownies for the sole purpose of having something chocolate to eat this afternoon. I purposely left a generous amount of batter in the mixing bowl so that I could have something to snack on while I was waiting the excruciating 25-29minutes for the actual brownies to bake. I opted not to let the brownies cool and instead, dug right in for a huge, gooey, falling apart piece of chocolaty goodness. And then I had seconds.

And I wonder why this baby is measuring two weeks ahead of schedule?

Thursday, September 11, 2008


I'm not a political person. I sit on the fence a lot. I like to tease my sister about her thoughts on global warming, but the truth is, I'm a global warning agnostic. I feel that way about a lot of issues. Things are rarely black and white for me, although sometimes I wish they were. Life seems simpler for those who see only two colors.

Today as I was driving home, I passed two men standing at a busy intersection holding signs that claimed "9/11: Bush did it" and "9/11 was an inside job." All I could do as I drove slowly past them was roll my eyes and say, "Seriously?"

As I drove away, it occurred to me that they were serious. And that there were probably more just like them. That realization got me thinking about outliers.

In statistical analysis, it's common practice to remove any "outliers" before attempting to analyze data. Outliers are data points that fall way out of range with the rest of the data. By removing them, you get a more accurate analysis.

Those guys today? Outliers. Those people on the web who actually think that Obama was calling his opponent a pig? Outliers. Those other people on the web who think that Palin is somehow an unfit mother/unacceptable candidate because her teenage daughter is pregnant? Outliers.

Someone please tell me that those folks, although I'm sure well-intentioned, don't represent the whole of America. Please tell me that if we remove those extreme views to the right and left, what's left behind is a group of people who can at least entertain the thought that maybe, just maybe, the other side has some valid points.

Change is the word this election year. But I think the change America wants has far less to do with what our politics are than the way that we practice them.

And that's all I have to say about that.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Right. I have a blog.

So I haven't blogged in a while. And since this blog is my way of documenting the girls' experiences, I always feel guilty when I fall behind. Here is my penance--lots of pictures!

We made a quick trip to Dallas and stayed with Grandad and Mimi. That means there was lots of swimming and good food. The girls would've stayed in the water all day if we'd let them.

First Razorback game of the season. We left the girls at home for the game but game day always provides a good excuse for wearing your cheerleader outfit and striking some poses outside the stadium.

First Day of School. This is Claire's last year of preschool and Arden's first. Guess who wasn't that thrilled to be going (hint--the one with the paci and blankie). Claire is going to the same preschool she's been at the last three years and Arden is going to Mother's Day Out at our church. Oh, and did I mention that I'm the director of that Mother's Day Out? That might help explain my recent blogging drought.
So far both girls are enjoying their schools, although Claire is torn as to whether she wants to stay with her buddies at her "old" school or come with me and Arden. I'm letting her chose, which means a lot of running around for me.

Fall soccer started and Claire's team is named "Fire". Not "The Fire". Just "Fire". For some reason, this really bothers me. But Claire is excited because they get real uniforms and she is number 5. She considers being five years old to be the pinnacle of existence, so getting wear 5 on her back makes her day.

I'm not sure that soccer will turn out to be Claire's calling in life. She has fun playing, but seems to have inherited my level of aggressiveness (none). I overheard her coach telling her to try and take the ball away from the other team and Claire replied, "But I could share it with them and that would be so nice". Not sure how Coach answered that one.

And finally, here is what Arden looks like at Claire's soccer games. She is having a hard time grasping the concept of being "too young" for certain things. We spend the entire game chasing her off the field. When it's her turn to play next fall, I don't think we'll be worrying about her level of agression though.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

His and Hers

Yesterday at the grocery store a lady approached me and asked if my girls were sisters. When I said yes, she exclaimed, "I can't believe it! They don't look anything alike!" I just smiled and nodded politely. "Yes, they do have different features."

She went on and on about how she'd never seen two sisters look so different and look! one has blue eyes and other brown! And this one has blonde hair and that one brown! It's so strange!

I considered telling her they had different dads, just to shut her up, but was afraid Claire would repeat it--probably in Sunday School.

***for the record, they do have the same dad.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Good Fight

Two weeks ago, Jason's Papaw went to Heaven. That's how we explained his passing to Claire. She thought for a minute and then asked if Grandma Norma was sad. When we said yes, we were all sad, Claire looked puzzled and got quiet. Then with great confidence she said, "We don't have to be sad. Papaw is in Heaven with Jesus and God."

Thank goodness for children, who see so clearly what we as adults often complicate and ultimately screw up. Yes, Papaw is in Heaven with Jesus and God. There is no doubt. He was a man of great faith who was fully devoted to his God and family. All you have to do is look at his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren to see that.

My girls probably won't remember Papaw. That makes me sad. But his great influence on their dad will carry through to them. That fills me with joy. As Jason said at the funeral, Papaw didn't leave behind riches or material things, but his legacy of faith and love will be felt for generations to come.

I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me a crown of righteousness.
1 Timothy 4:7-8

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Arden vs. The Potty--Round 1

Round one goes to Arden. She is a stubborn girl and has completely refused to have anything to do with the potty. Occasionally, she will sit on it for a millisecond and then jump off, proudly proclaiming, "I did it! I did it!" Um, not exactly.

Arden's current strategy of potty training avoidance involves shifting the blame.

Me:Arden, are you stinky?
Arden (wide-eyed innocence): No, sissy.
Me: Sissy is not stinky. She goes on the potty.
Arden: Daddy.
Me: Daddy is at work. It's not Daddy.
Arden: Cow poop.

Efforts to shame her into going on the potty have failed as well.

Me: Arden, big girls go on the potty.
blank stare
Me: Sissy goes on the potty.
Arden: Daddy?
Me: Yes, Daddy goes on the potty.
Arden: Mommy?
Me: Yes, Mommy goes on the potty.
Arden: Nana?
Me: Yes, Nana goes on the potty.
Arden: Jack?
Me: Yes, Grandad goes on the potty.
Arden: Maw-Maw?
Me: Yes, Grandma goes on the potty.
Arden: NO!
Me: Yes, she does.
Arden: No! No No Maw-Maw potty.

Round one may go to Arden, but we're not out of the fight yet. I do have a bad feeling I may be buying one of those musical potties soon though.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

No Boys Allowed

I think this must be posted somewhere in my uterus, because baby #3 is a GIRL!!!!

Three girls. That's going to take some time to sink in. But who wouldn't be excited about the thought of all those sweet sisters and a houseful of hot pink tutus and ribbons and barbie dolls?

Jason, of course, is already fretting over financing three weddings, but not to worry--we've arranged their marriages to the Bowman boys.

Claire is disappointed that she won't be getting a brother after all. She said she has enough sisters already.

And Arden is too busy wreaking havoc to care too much about the baby in my tummy.

Three girls. Sounds just about perfect to me.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Oh, The Irony

So remember how last week I threw kind of a tantrum about not getting scheduled for an ultrasound? No? Well, don't read the previous post. But if you do remember, I have an update for you.

I am fortunate to have married into a family with connections--medical connections. And when they heard about the Great Ultrasound Fiasco of '08, they got riled up. And started making things happen. Now, I'm not saying we're like some kind of rural health care mafia or anything, but--badabing--the next thing you know, I'm getting an ultrasound at an undisclosed location (I just said that to make it more dramatic)this morning and the new OB clinic is calling to schedule one for next week.

So I got my way. The Big Ultrasound. The Am I Keeping All This Pink Stuff or Buying New Blue Stuff? Appointment.

Unfortunately, I did not get an answer to that question. Seems Baby #3 is a bit modest and wasn't too keen on the invasion of his/her privacy. Baby even flipped all the way around during the ultrasound, keeping his/her legs tightly closed the entire time.

The good news is that all the important things looked great and baby is healthy and growing. Just very uncooperative.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Problem with Being Pregnant

I'm normally a pretty nice person. At least, I think I am. Although after seeing a picture of myself in a local magazine, I have some serious doubts about the perception I have of myself and reality (side note: how long has my hair been that dingy color and why didn't anyone tell me? also, do I have a lazy eye?). I have my moments but generally, I'm nice enough.

I'm not always the most rational person, especially in situations that aren't going the way I'd like them to go. But luckily, the "nice" factor keeps the irrationality in check.

Unless I am pregnant. And unless the situation at hand is in reference to my pregnancy.

Several months ago, the geniuses that run the hospital where I delivered Arden concluded that all women are morons who don't know how to choose their own health care providers, because clearly, if we knew what we were doing we'd choose a female doctor. This conclusion prompted the severing of ties with all the male doctors in the women's clinic affiliated with the hospital (incidentally, the practice was started many years ago by the very doctors they let go).

I have nothing against female doctors, obviously. The OB who delivered Claire was a woman and I absolutely loved her. She is, without a doubt, the most dedicated, patient, kindest doctor I've ever known. If anyone has ever met their calling, it is Dr. Hays. But the fact is, I didn't choose her simply because she was a woman. I chose her because she was dedicated and patient and kind (also incredibly smart and had very cute hair).

When we moved here, I was very newly pregnant with Arden. I had to chose a new OB and I found one that I liked very much--who just happened to be male.

When word of the hospital's forward-thinking new policy on women's health choices spread, I knew what my choice would be. When the day came, I would follow my OB to his new practice, even if it meant driving an extra 20 minutes out of my way.

That day has come and I found myself calling the new clinic this week to schedule an appointment. The Appointment. The Ultrasound appointment. The Am I Keeping All This Pink Stuff or Buying New Blue Stuff appointment.

I was mildly (extremely) disappointed when the receptionist informed me that the first available appointment was a month away. If this were my first pregnancy, I'd be panicking at the thought of going six weeks between appointments, but this time around I'm just irritated at having to wait an extra two weeks before finding out the gender of this baby. After making a few grumbling comments about how I was glad I called the clinic instead of waiting around for them to call me like they were SUPPOSED TO TWO WEEKS AGO, I decided to let it go. On to more important details.

Me : So this will be my ultrasound, right?
Her, surprised: No, we've never seen you before. I can't schedule an ultrasound for you without ever seeing you.
Me: But I'll be twenty weeks! It's The Appointment.
Her: Well, we've never seen you before. And we don't even know Dr. P. We can't do an ultrasound until we have a diagnosis.
Me, confused: Diagnosis of WHAT?
Her, pausing slightly as if I should already know this answer: Pregnancy.
Me, laughing hysterically and looking at my soccer ball belly: You want me to take a pregnancy test?!
Her: Well, we need to see you before we schedule anything else.

I won't recap the whole thing here, but let's just say the conversation went downhill from there. Add to that the fact that I called again today to rehash the whole situation and I'm sure I have a big "CRAZY PREGNANT LADY" (or worse) stamp on my chart now. I definitely didn't come across as nice. Or rational.

But at least I can blame it on my hormones. Wonder what HER excuse is?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Whatever Happened to Plain Ol' Barbie?

I just got back from Target, where the girls picked out a birthday present for one of their friends. I was pleased with how quickly Claire picked the toy, as she usually spends twenty minutes showing me everything she'd like to have before finally remembering that she's there to buy something for someone else. She showed me the Barbie and pet dogs that she picked and I agreed that it was a great choice.

Once we got in the car, Claire announced, "These dogs pee."

What?? I snatched the box away from her, and sure enough, it said right there on the packaging "Puppy is thirsty...Then makes a puddle!"

The dogs pee. I don't know what disturbs me more: that there are actually toys that pee, or that I just bought one.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Destin 2008

Alternate title: "That Time We Went to Destin and Everyone Got the Stomach Virus (or Possibly Salmonella)"

Another Destin vacation with the Bowmans has come and gone and I've found myself already counting down the months until next year's trip. Although, seriously? We'll have six kids between us by then and that's a little scary. Maybe we should just ditch the kids and go back to Iberostar. Kidding! I kid. Sort of.

It was a great week, even with the stomach situation that quickly took down the condo on Thursday/Friday and carried over onto the ride home on Saturday (good times). We hit all our favorite restaurants and added a new one to the rotation as well (note: Pompano Joe's, you are officially on probation). We hung out at Destin Commons, rode rides and go-carts at The Track, fed the alligators at Fudpucker's and got in plenty of beach and pool time.

Here are some other highlights of the week:

Claire didn't love the beach at first, but finally warmed up to it once the waves died down a little. She fancied herself to be quite the surf girl.

Arden didn't really love the ocean, preferring to have snacks under the shade of the umbrella instead.

Eating at Fisherman's Wharf--a new fave on our list.

Bowman and Bramlett kids

Fun at the Track

Claire was so excited to get a hair wrap just like one of her friend's at school got over spring break. We took her to a local souvenir shop on the our last night in Destin and obliged her. Too bad we didn't know it was going to cost $30. She loved it though and couldn't stop looking at herself in the mirror.

I know it's a completely touristy thing to do, but we can't resist dressing the kids in all white and letting them run around on the beach while we snap a million photos in the hopes of getting that one perfect shot.

Monday, June 30, 2008

There's Something I've Been Meaning to Tell You

Good news for everyone out there who was worried that there just aren't quite enough Bramletts in the world. Another one will be making his/her debut in January.

Get ready people, we're taking over the world, Brad and Angelina style.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Arden is Two!

Dear Arden,
Today you are two. I know this is the way it's supposed to happen, but can you please explain to me how you went from this

to this


You are such a joy to us. From the moment you wake up, you're in a good mood and ready for the day ahead. You run and laugh and entertain all day long until finally (mercifully) you crash in your crib at naptime. I hope that you will always have your sunny disposition, that you will look upon each day as a fresh start.

To say you are spirited is an understatement. You are a girl with a mind of her own, certain that you are capable of doing whatever you feel like doing whenever you feel like doing it. Most of the time, you can. I hope that you will always be confident in your abilities, that you will stretch yourself to try new things and that you will not be discouraged when things don't work out the way you planned.

You love your big sister. She is your best friend, although you don't always show it in the most conventional way (note: biting is not an appropriate way to show affection). I hope that you two will always be close, that you will lean on each other as you get older and that the teenage years don't cause too many wrinkles for me.

You are loved more than you can ever know. Never forget that. Never forget that.

Happy birthday, sweet AK! We can't wait to see what this year has in store for you!

Scenes from a birthday party: