Meet Tyler, my baby brother who just turned thirty-five years young.  We celebrated his birthday at my sister's house yesterday, with family and friends.  He is my baby brother by seven years, and tends to remind me of that often.  It all started when my sister Tanya and I wished for a baby brother.  We would attend Camp O'Tanya every summer, as we were very active in Camp Fire.  At the end of each week-long session, we would go to White Sands Beach and light candles that would float down the river.  If the wish boat stayed lit and floated around the bend, then our wish would come true.  The year my Mom was pregnant, my sister's wish boat stayed lit, as did mine, and floated around the bend.  I should have recognized that as an omen.  My sweet, baby brother.

1.  He slobbered, a lot.  Always slobbered on himself, my baby dolls, my barbies, my books, my everything.  

2.  He smelled of apple juice, all the time.  He had this ice-cream cone bottle that stayed filled with apple juice.  (He had a baba at night up until he was four).  I still can't stand the smell of apple juice, it is one of the most disgusting smells of all time.

3.  He always wore a diaper, and nothing else.  I know my Mom would dress him in the morning, but by the time she picked us up from school, he was naked.  And, smelled.

4.  He always wanted to play in my room, with or without me in it.  He even snapped the heads off my barbies, and made a small "head" pile.  My parents installed a baby-gate across my door, but Tyler always found a way to break in and play with my toys.

5.  He always followed me around, like at-my-heels follow me around, asking "what you doing?".  Always wanted to know what I was watching on TV and what I was eating.  

Funny, how growing up we always take our siblings for granted.  Now, I am so very thankful that Tyler is my little brother, even though he is still very annoying.  He is one of the kindest, smartest, loving individuals I have ever known.  He has had a lot of ups and downs, more downs than most.  But, he stays in it to win it, and tries his best to be better with each passing year.  One of my most favorite people in the whole world, and whom I am truly proud to be his sister.  I love you, Bubba.  Here's to 35 years more!