Sunday, December 25, 2011

A Very Merry Christmas

Brayden is crashed out after a full two days of family and fun, and now it’s time to reflect on this year’s lovely Christmas season.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


In lieu of Christmas gifts, please send money to seed Brayden’s future therapy fund.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Delizioso! A saucy Sicilian adventure

A good friend, Shelle, is the keeper of her Sicilian grandmother’s secret pasta sauce recipe. She very generously made some for Brayden and me, and yesterday we feasted like we were in the Old Country.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Gymboree Jamboree

What’s Gymboree? A baby gym on steroids. Brayden took his first class on Thursday and had a blast bouncing, swinging and sliding all over the place.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Grampa’s protégée

What is it with boys and tools? Whether young or old, no man can resist them, and it’s shocking to see how quickly little ones pick up how they work.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Tale of Two Thanksgivings

Brayden enjoyed not one – but two! – Thanksgivings this year as he celebrated on Thursday with Daddy at a friend’s house and on Friday with Mommy, Nana, Grampa and Uncle Ryan.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Baby art and sciences 101

Brayden an inquisitive baby full of energy. Daycare does a great job of keeping him stimulated so I decided to start integrating more experiences into our home life starting this weekend with coloring and a trip to the Nevada Discovery Museum.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Holy molars

Remember those molars I mentioned the dentist saw during Brayden’s first dentist appointment? The ones where I said, “We didn’t even know he was teething!” Um, well, we know it now.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Mr. Thirsty does WHAT?!?

In another step towards little manhood, Brayden had his first dentist appointment on Wednesday. We didn’t know what to expect, and if you’re like us and don’t know much about pediatric dentistry, this post will answer a lot of questions.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Operation Tiny Tiger Treater

Happy Halloween! We just got back from a fun-filled hour of trick or treating, and our little tiger cub is totally tuckered out and fast asleep.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Lil’ pumpkin’s first patch

Brayden is officially a little boy. He has stomped, fallen in and eaten dirt. And where did this happen? During his first visit to a pumpkin farm!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Toilet Paper Caper

A mystery has befallen Jewell Family Manor! Brayden and Avery are prime suspects in this “who spun it” thriller.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Brayden killed a mouse with his hands and ate him

In the spooky spirit of October and Halloween, Brayden ripped apart a “mouse” and munched on him.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

If the shoe fits

Now that Brayden is walking we realized it was time for his first pair of shoes. And this is a true first. He literally has never had shoes on his feet (only socks!) before Thursday.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Put one foot in front of the other…

…and soon you’ll be walking cross the floor. This may as well be Brayden’s theme song for the week because only six days after taking his first step he’s already up to a whooping 14 steps in a row!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Brayden takes his first steps…and builds a house

Kids nowadays achieve in ways we never dreamed of. It seems like the news is filled with third graders doing astrophysics, 10-year olds with college degrees and teenagers making millions off their IPOs. Brayden, not to be outdone, took his first steps AND built a house today. I hope someone from Harvard is reading this…

Monday, September 12, 2011


Brayden experienced another rite of passage – the first haircut. With each snip of the scissors his caramel honey curls fell to the floor, and I watched my baby grow closer to toddlerhood.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Brayden’s First Birthday Party!

If you ask me, first birthdays are just as much about parents surviving the year as they are about the baby’s big day. So even though Brayden will only know what happened through the photos and video taken at the party, Brian and I wanted to host a celebration worthy of our family’s milestone.

Friday, September 2, 2011

It’s a ONE-derful world!

Brayden is one! It’s been a crazy year. Five days in the hospital, four rounds of antibiotics, three ear infections, two bouts of RSV and one case of croup couldn’t keep Brayden down. And you’ve been with us for every step (and story) along the way.

Sunday, August 28, 2011


I’m feeling very nostalgic at the moment. It’s a time of great change for the Jewell family on many levels. This week is my last at IGT and, even more importantly, Brayden turns one. This post reveals unknown details or unseen moments from the past year.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Standing tall

Brayden is officially standing. He stood for five seconds on Friday and has been improving ever since. There is nothing in this world like watching your sweet baby release your hand and stand on his own two feet without needing your support. That moment was a precursor of so many things to come.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

No cheesy puff uncrunched

In this episode of The Adventures of A & B, Avery and Brayden find nirvana in a tub of baby snacks.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Tiny bubbles

Brayden learned how to blow bubbles into his food while I feed him. Oh joy. And conveniently, he discovered this neat new trick while eating bright orange mangos. This picture from the momentous occasion teeters somewhere between absolutely hilarious and totally bizarre.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Here kitty, kitty…

There is an epic battle of skill and cunning being played out between Brayden and his fur brother, Avery. Brayden moves fast; Avery moves faster. Brayden stealthily hunts Avery; Avery can hear him a mile away. Brayden grows by the day; Avery jumps higher. This picture perfectly captures their duel…

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Planes, trains and automobiles

This post is part flashback, part current day look at Brayden’s experiences with all modes of transportation. Besides the cuteness of the pictures, it’s neat to see how the little man has grown over the past several months.

In November 2010, we visited Grandpa Jewell in Sacramento when we bought the Acura MDX. While we were there, Dick (Brian’s dad) brought us to see his airplane so Brayden could play pilot at 5 months old.


Forgive me for skipping the order of the post’s title, but our next stop down memory lane is going to be automobiles (or in this case, trucks.) Brayden’s Grampa (my dad, Bob) has always wanted a classic car, and this year he found a great cherry red Ford 1950s truck to fulfill his dream. Here are some pictures of Brayden and Grampa from June (when Brayden was 9 months old) in the truck snapped by my Uncle Henry. I can’t wait for Brayden to be old enough to cruise around town with his Grampa!

2011-May June Reno Trip 1802011-May June Reno Trip 1842011-May June Reno Trip 1862011-May June Reno Trip 192

That brings us to trains! Here are some pictures from today with Brayden’s new Alphabet Train. Yes, I realize this isn’t the train you were exactly expecting to see but I’m allowed some creative license with my own blog. Brayden is 10 1/2 months old and already doing such a good job standing and walking with help. And just look at that smile! It literally stops people in their tracks at the store. If I had a dollar for every compliment I got on Brayden’s cute face and smile, his college education would already be paid for!

07 24 11 - New learning train (1)07 24 11 - New learning train (2)07 24 11 - New learning train (5)07 24 11 - New learning train (6)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Chomp and stomp - Brayden's first steps (with help) and first bite

Brayden has joined the ranks of the elderly. He can take a few steps with a walker! And he also experienced his first baby-on-baby assault this week. As in, he was bit. In the face. Then head-butted. Seriously.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Baby Jail

Brayden’s doing hard time in cellblock Jewell. What was his crime? Being the fastest baby this side of the Mississippi and developing an interest in getting into everything and being everywhere in the blink of an eye. Yup, today was the day we installed a gate.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Craziest. Month. Ever.

Aliens have taken my child and replaced him with a crazed, moving machine. It’s like Brayden woke up on June 1, and said, “Watch out world. Here I come.” And he meant it.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Little fish in a big pond

Our favorite little fish is in the big time now! On Saturday, the Brayden floated in grand style in our neighborhood’s pool.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father’s Day Amazing Extravaganza!

This post has it all! Spectacular milestones, fun firsts, super sweet Father’s Day moments, a heart-wrenching injury and…an appearance by Mickey Mouse!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Thank you, sir! May I have another?

Well, that was quick! No sooner had Brayden's first tooth sprouted on Friday than a second one appeared on Monday. And, like promised, I have a picture...

Monday, June 13, 2011

This just in…literally!

Brayden’s first tooth is coming in! Most babies get their first tooth around 7 months, but Brayden took his sweet time and clocked in at over 9 months. And, considering our family’s shared teething experience so far, we’re happy it took so long!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Loch Ness Brayden

The elusive and mythical Brayden has finally been caught on camera demonstrating all his new skills.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Puff the Magic Sweet Potato

Brayden is officially a “multi-textured” man. Our baby boy has officially experienced the wonder that is puffs! For those of you unfamiliar with puffs, they’re small, airy rice flour snacks that melt in babies mouths and come in a wide variety of fruit and veggie flavors.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Movin’ and groovin’

To say Brayden moves around would be an understatement. He’s not crawling yet, but he’s mastered all the introductory methods of motion: rolling, pulling himself and leaning forward. And, as of May 28, he can officially…

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The littlest branch on the Jewell family tree

May has been filled with family! Grandpa Jewell has visited twice, and Grandma Karen came to town as well. Grandma Karen’s visit was especially fun for her because she hasn’t seen Brayden since he was two weeks old.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Flash back: Brayden's baby pottery

This flash back post was meant to be published in late April, but Brayden's hospitalization usurped it.

There's nothing like seeing itty bitty hands and feet captured in clay. When babies turn into kids who grow up into adults, those little molds always stand as a reminder of where they started no matter how big they get.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Our first Mother’s Day

Our first Mother’s Day was a wonderfully fun three-day event. Friday was a special celebration at daycare with a lovely breakfast and presents from the babies, Saturday was a visit at Nana and Grampa’s (which included playing with their new puppy, Bella, one of Lacey’s daughters) and then lunch and shopping Nana and Sunday was a happy family day with Brian, Brayden and me.

Brayden and Brian gave me a fabulous spa certificate for some pampering, and we went to dinner that night all together. Brayden was on his very best baby behavior, and all the waiters and waitresses at BJ’s stopped to say he was the cutest baby they’d seen all day. We would tend to agree…

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Eight is great, and save the date!

Today is Brayden is eight months old! And, with this first birthday in sight, we’d like to announce the day of his party – Sunday, September 4. So make sure to save the date!

Brayden has had an adventurous eight months. Here are his most recent stats:

Weight: 16 lb. 2 oz. (the doctor thinks he lost 1 lb. when he was sick in the hospital)
Height: 28 inches
Eyes: Still TBD but mostly blue with tinges of green and brown at the center
Hair:  A totally unique color – honey caramel with glints of auburn
Teeth: None yet (still!)
Sleeping: About 10 1/2 hours every night from 6:30p to 5a, sometimes waking up once
Personality: Brayden is very happy and social but also plays by himself nicely
Health: If you read the blog, you can answer this for yourself Winking smile

Here are three totally cute pics from the little man’s past month:

04 06 11 - All Business 5
Dressed for success

04 16 11 - Bathtime! 3
Bath time is happy time!

Fingerpainting at daycare
Fingerpainting at daycare

Monday, April 25, 2011

Renown hospital’s cutest patient ever

It all started with a phone call from daycare last Monday afternoon that Brayden had a fever. Little did we realize that we’d be rushing to the hospital 48 hours later…

Brian and I took Brayden to his pediatrician Monday afternoon once we got the call from daycare about his 102-degree fever. We thought he had caught something and would work it out over the next couple days. Well, instead of getting better, things got worse. Way worse.

We ended up at the doctors on Tuesday as Brayden’s fever kept rising and he got sicker, and then again Wednesday when he became dehydrated and started throwing up blood. The pediatrician’s office made the arrangements as we quickly drove to Renown hospital with a very sick baby.

Once we arrived, the pediatrics unit went into full throttle. There were IVs, blood draws, ultrasounds, X-rays, visits from doctors, surgeons and nurses and more tests than I could list here. It was 11p before Brayden was allowed to sleep. And all we had to show for the day was more questions than answers.

Each day included more testing, poking, prodding and meeting with doctors. Late on day three, Brayden’s temperature started to stabilize and his sweet smiles slowly returned. We were allowed to venture to the playroom, go for wagon rides around the pediatrics wing and enjoy visits from the Easter Bunny.

In all, Brayden was at Renown for five days. And although the tests indicated something was going on, no test could identify exactly what. We left on Easter Day with a healthier baby but no concrete answers. Sometimes these things remain a mystery.

We are so thankful for everyone who visited, texted, called and prayed for us. We are grateful beyond words. The photo album below is in chronological order so you can see the progression of our days, including the happy homecoming on Easter where Brayden was showered with love and presents.