1.24.2011

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Happy Birthday to my wonderful Dad!
I am so thankful for my dad. I wish I had a more recent picture to share (this was taken in March 2010) because he's lost over 60 lbs since then. I'm SO proud of him!! To say that this man's life is a miracle is an understatement! God definitely has His hand on my dad and is not through with him yet. When I was in high school he had a heart attack. When I was in college he had quintuple bypass surgery. He also had a pacemaker put in. When I was in South Africa as a missionary for two years he had a pacemaker/defibrillator put in. Last year he found out he had diabetes. So, as you can see, he's had some major health problems in the past 15 years. There were days when I wasn't sure if he'd get to walk me down the aisle or meet my child(ren). Obviously, though, through God's mercies both occurred and I'm so grateful!

He is such a sweet man. He will give the shirt off of his back for those he loves and never think twice about it. He is an amazing cook and always likes to spoil us when we're visiting by fixing our favorite meals. He LOVES his two grandsons...it brings me so much joy to watch him interact with Riley and CJ. He's a great husband to my mom, and I'm thankful to say that they'll celebrate 42 years together in June.

I love you, Dad, and I hope you've had a wonderful day! I sure wish Texas and Maryland were closer so we could celebrate with you! Know that we're praying for you today and every day!

1.20.2011

18 months

This big boy is 18 months today!

Riley, it's hard to believe that 18 months ago you entered our world. What an amazing, tiring, and surreal day that was! We are so thankful the Lord chose to create you and chose us to be your parents! You bring smiles to our mouths and hearts every single day. We are constantly amazed by the things you know and say. Here are some of the words we hear coming from your sweet voice (in a very random order):
daddy
mama
car!
truck ('druck')
orange ('ornge')
apple
banana
pear ('bear')
bear
dog
chair
phone ('down')
down
no (next to 'car', this is your favorite word right now)
yes ('shess')
shoe
jacket
hat
Jesus (melts our hearts to hear this!)
God
church
Bible
cereal
cracker
whale (we buy the cheaper version of goldfish called whales)
cookie
bread
pancake
yummy
yucky
peanut butter (not sure how to type it out phonetically...I'll have to get it on video sometime because it's hilarious!)
computer (also another funny one to hear)
washer
vacuum ('backyum')
hot
book
puzzle ('buzzle')
water ('bopper')
milk ('mulk')

And the list could go on and on! You really are a sponge soaking up everything going on around you. You love going to Bible study on Thursday mornings, and your teacher claims you're going to be a preacher based on what you say in class. If this is God's will for you, we want nothing less, but we're certainly not going to push you into anything. We know HE has a special plan for your life, and we're thankful to be able to walk beside you as you learn to seek Him. Daddy and Mama love you SO much! We pray God's protection and blessings on you every single day of your life!

Father, thank You for Riley Whitlow. Please continue to keep him healthy and strong. I pray for your protection over his body, mind, and soul. We desire nothing more than to see him come to know Jesus as his Savior and Lord. Father, show us how to parent in such a way that You are glorified and Riley grows up understanding who Jesus is and how much He loves him. Thank you for the ways you've taught Daniel and I through this small child. Thank you for the laughter and joy he brings into our home. May he grow up to love You above all else and obediently serve You all the days of his life. Thank You, Lord, for the perfect plan You have for him and for all of us! I love You, my Abba!

1.19.2011

Car!

As I've told you before, Riley LOVES any type of vehicle. To say this makes his daddy very happy is an understatement! I have many pictures in his short lifetime of him sitting/standing in the driver's seat of a vehicle pretending to drive. One was even taken yesterday...Every time we walk out of the house he says, "car!" and points to the car sitting in the garage. We then leave the garage and he says, "car! truck!" and points to the other two vehicles we own. The other day we went to Wal-mart, and on the 30 minute drive there he didn't say a word. The only word spoken was when we pulled into the parking space and there was a truck beside us..."truck!" Needless to say, he has an obsession with vehicles! I really didn't realize that type of thing could be passed on to offspring, but in this case, it certainly was! He IS his father's son! As part of Daniel's Christmas, he received from me a year subscription to a magazine called Autabuy. It is basically a classifieds magazine for old and new vehicles. Yesterday the first one came in the mail, and you can see below what my boys were doing for a long time after dinner...It cracks me up that a 1 1/2 year old can be completely satisfied with sitting on his daddy's lap 'reading' a car magazine. I've included a video below of what was said while he 'read' the magazine. :) Enjoy!

video

1.12.2011

Another January Birthday

I always wanted a sister growing up (preferably an older one). I can remember when I was little begging my parents to have another child in hopes that it would be a sister. Without fail, the answer was always, "no!" So, I had to wait until my brother got married. I'm so glad I waited, though! Jill is one of the best things that's happened to our family. We're not only sisters (in-law, but I never include those two extra words), but she's a wonderful friend! We have so much fun when we're together...even if it is just once or twice a year. It's been especially fun since we both had our boys because we're able to chat about the different stages of childhood and compare the little men (AND she graciously sends us clothes that CJ has grown out of. My son is clothed because of his aunt!!!).

Anyway, today is Jill's birthday, so Daniel, Riley and I wanted to say:

Happy Birthday, Jill! We love you so much!

1.11.2011

S-N-O-W!!!

We moved to Hughes Springs on February 8, 2010 (can't believe it's almost been a year!) and on February 11, 2010, we received a big snow. I was so excited! I thought, "finally I'm back in a place where we'll get snow every year!" And then I started hearing..."don't get used to this!", "this hasn't happened in 30 years!", etc. So I came back down from the clouds and got used to the idea that snow wasn't going to happen every year in East Texas.

Last week my mom sent me a text (from this post and the last you can tell we're a texting family!) saying we were supposed to get snow over the weekend. I didn't think much about it because I heard all of the above voices in my head. And then, early Sunday morning the sleeting began. It sleeted until Sunday afternoon when the flakes started falling! The winter wonderland came back for another visit! Yay!

Evidence of the sleet
Let the snow begin!
I tried to get Daniel to go out in it with me, but he wasn't 'feeling' it (bet you didn't know he melts when he gets wet!)
Our front yard on Monday morning
Bundled up and ready to go!
Heading out...his first time to walk in snow, and he loved it!
What a mismatched adorable little boy! :) Can you tell we're not prepared for this kind of weather?!
Had to get a picture with the truck! (look at the icicles hanging off of it!)
Daniel attempting (key word) to sled
Our house!
Thank you, Lord, for the snow! Looking forward to writing 2012 on the car next year...hint, hint! :)
The "layering" area. This experience made me appreciate mothers with young ones in much colder places than here! It took us 20+ minutes just to get ready to go outside!

What a fun surprise this snow was! I'm so thankful for God's perfect gifts that He chooses to share with us to make us smile! I realize snow doesn't make everyone smile (especially my relatives who live in the Northeast!), but it does for this southern girl! Looking forward to next year...

The Snowlett Family

Yesterday I received a text from Daniel's aunt asking if we wanted to participate in a little family friendly competition. You see, this crazy winter storm (which I'll post about soon) hit us first, then Daniel's grandmother and aunt in Little Rock, and then headed to Tennessee where Daniel's mom lives(we hoped...still not sure if Daniel's mom will get to participate or not...hopefully she'll get enough snow soon!). So, we were all supposed to build a snowman, name it and send a picture to the judges, Daniel's aunt and uncle who live in Singapore. They will then decide who wins The Moore Family Snowman Contest 2011. Well, of course we wanted to participate, and we went to work almost immediately.

I am proud to present to you...

The Snowlett Family
We'll start with "Big D Snowlett"
You might notice that all of his body parts are 'recycled materials' (bed posts for the arms, baby food jars for eyes, rope for the mouth, a broken pitcher for the hair, and a ball of wire for the nose)...some call them trash, but Big D sees that they are treasures!

The proud creator with his masterpiece

Next is "Ova C Snowlett"
All of the items Ova is wearing are from a country other than America (scarf=Peru, bowl=South Africa, pants=Burkina Faso, West Africa).

Ova and her creator

Last, but definitely not least, is "Whittle O Snowlett"
Whittle is very similar to his dad, Big D...recycled materials were used and he's holding a hammer so he can fix any problem that may occur.

Because his should-be creator was taking a nap, Riley didn't get to form Whittle. But, I made sure he got a picture with him!

And there you have the Snowlett family!

We're looking forward to hearing who wins the great Snowman contest of 2011. So far, our competition is fierce with "Sooie" the red-nose snowman who had a very hog snout nose!


Can't wait to see what comes from the great city of Clarksville, Tennessee! Thank you, Alan and Lynda, for agreeing to be our judges! We love you both and miss you much!

1.09.2011

Riley wants to say...

video

Don't worry, Grandma, Grandpa and GiGi...we're working on your names, too! :) We love you all!

He's 2!

No, I haven't gone crazy...I realize Riley doesn't turn 2 until July. BUT, my favorite nephew, CJ, is celebrating his 2nd birthday today! Here he is this morning with his cozy coupe and Tickle Me Elmo. Sure wish we could be there to see this all in person!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BIG BOY!
We love you so much!
Uncle D, Auntie Lala and cousin Riley

1.08.2011

Shoes!

In case you were wondering if Riley still had a thing for shoes...


Does this answer your question?! If not, watch this for further proof...

video

He keeps us laughing!

Another Anniversary

It's hard to believe that 2 years ago today I began this blog (click here to read that very first post!). Also, (this may not be exciting to you) this marks my 150th post! I'm so thankful I decided to take the plunge and begin "bramlett barometer." Not only are family and friends able to follow the little one closely, but I have an outlet to enjoy some writing therapy every now and then, we'll be able to share all of these fun stories with Riley when he's older, AND I got 50 FREE (did you see that?! free!) Christmas cards from Shutterfly this year just because I have a blog!

So maybe Riley can't count to 150 yet (or even 2 for that matter), but he's got ONE down as you'll see in the video below! We're having so much fun with this kiddo! How thankful I am the Lord entrusted him to us!

video

1.05.2011

The number 3

3 = Father, Son & Holy Spirit - without which, I am nothing!
3 = the number of vehicles we currently own (one of which does not have a motor in it...)
3 = the amount of people in our little family
3 = the number of years it's been since I stood at the front of FBC Hope, AR and said "I do" to the man of my dreams!

That's right, 3 years ago TODAY (and almost the exact time of this post), Daniel and I became husband and wife. I am still amazed that I am married. I wanted to be married for so long, and the Lord told me several times that I would be, but there were lots of days when I had my doubts. Most of my close friends got married right out of college, so after I graduated college and the Lord sent me overseas for 2 years, I began to wonder when I might meet "Mr. Right."

And then it happened...I walked into class at New Orleans Baptist Seminary in August 2006. I had just moved back to N.O. after a year away due to Hurricane Katrina. To say that I was less than excited to be back is an understatement! (Cue Daniel's entrance) Daniel came into class very excited about life. I had no clue who he was, but I remember thinking at the time, "Who is this guy, and why is he so happy?" To make a long story short, we met, became friends and ministry partners, began dating and the rest is history! And he STILL has that same amount of excitement for life! For this realistic (not pessimistic...there's a difference!), glass always half-empty person, he has been such an encouragement and challenge to me! I can honestly say that I am a much better person because of him. The Lord has used Daniel to refine me in ways I never realized I needed. I am so thankful for a husband who will hold me accountable and not just say, "yes, honey. Whatever you say is right." The day those words come out of Daniel's mouth, I will literally fall over dead! LOL! But, that's a good thing! I prayed and prayed for a husband who would lead me spiritually and challenge me in my walk with the Lord. God is faithful, and He gave me SO much more than I asked for.

I thought I'd take a little walk down memory lane with some pictures...

Our first picture together (2 days after we started dating)
Daniel's 1st trip to Maryland to meet my family
My 1st trip to Arkansas to meet his family (he's standing on a dirt mound...I didn't shrink)
Day trip from N.O. to Perdido Key, FL
Dinner in the French Quarter with great friends
The day we got engaged (7.1.07) - even after I was soaking with sweat from climbing a mountain, he still wanted to ask me to marry him :)
My favorite of our engagement pictures
Just us
The big day arrived!
What's a wedding without a kiss?? :)
Our wonderful wedding party - we love them all dearly and are so thankful they were able to be a part of our special day
December 2010
I'm excited to see where we're headed as a family!
I love you, Daniel Bramlett, and I can't wait to see what the next year holds for our family! Thank you for making me laugh, holding me when I cry, loving our son unconditionally, leading our family in following Christ, and reminding me daily of your love for me. You will always be "my man," and for that I am eternally grateful to our Lord! "So let's grow old together, hand in hand..." (song by Dennis Jernigan)

1.01.2011

Piano skills

Here's Riley showing off his piano skills a couple days ago. Expect to see him in the symphony in the next few years! :)

video

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! On this 1st day of the 1st month of the 11th year in the 21st century, we pray blessings on all of you! We are excited about walking into a new year and expectant about all the Lord will do in and through His people. May you experience Him in a fresh and life-changing way! We love you all and thank God for the roles you play in our lives.