Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A Blessed Event

One of the most important days, if not the most important, in the life of a Catholic, is his or her baptism day.  Our Oliver was christened this past Saturday, 21 April 2012.  Our dear friend, Deacon Tom Ryan, offered to baptize Ollie privately, and so we had our private baptism in the Saint Joseph Chapel of Saint Catherine of Siena Roman Catholic Church.

His godparents are my cousin, Emily, and her husband, Miguel.  Emily and Miguel are good practicing Catholics who really embody the love, joy, and kindness that we associate with God's grace.  They were so excited for his baptism that they planned to drive the twelve hours to be there, even before we asked them to be godparents!  

Along with Emily and Miguel traveled my aunt, Vera, who is my godmother.  Our friends the Soergel-Harrises and the Brociouses were there, along with the engaged couple we mentored, Courtney and Mark, and Deacon Tom's wife, Ann.  Our extended local family (my parents, brother and sister-in-law, and sister) were also there, of course.

At the beginning of the rite, Deacon Tom invited anyone who would like to trace the sign of the cross on Ollie's forehead, so I walked him around for everyone to bless.

When it was time to bless the holy water in which he would be baptized, he invited all of the children present to come up and help by each putting a hand in the water while he blessed it.

During a baptism, there is a Gospel reading and a homily, and then the actual christening takes place.  Sometimes a shell is used, but Deacon Tom used his hand to gently pour water over Oliver's forehead.

The two important symbolic pieces of a Catholic baptism are the white garment and the candle.  The white garment symbolizes purity and is a very long gown for both boys and girls (although lots of boys wear a suit these days).  Oliver wore the same gown that Gabriel did, and Matt before them.  We have a bonnet, but Ollie did not wear it, and Gabriel only did for a few minutes, if I remember correctly.  The candle symbolizes the light of Christ which dispels darkness.  Ollie's godparents, Emily and Miguel, held this candle for him.

Here we are with our newly baptized son:

Here are all of the family members who were present on that day:

Here is Deacon Tom with little Oliver:

We ordered his cake from Gabriel's bakery in Marietta.  We designed every detail of it and were very happy with the way it came out.

We reserved a picnic shelter at Swift-Cantrell Park in Kennesaw for our reception.  It had been a rainy few days, but the weather turned very nice for our celebration.  As the rain resumed later, perhaps this was a prayer answered.  We had a great time eating and relaxing with our friends, and we were so happy to look around and see all of these people who care so much for our sweet baby.  It was such a special day for such a special baby, and we are overjoyed that he is baptized.

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"Ready For His Big Day"

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"Shopping Trip"
(taken at Publix)

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012


We have had a lot to celebrate lately, and we have found a lot of special moments in every day, too.  Here are a few things that we have enjoyed in the past week.

Brothers watching television together - Ollie's first time watching TV.

Our superstar soccer player.  He is the best defender!

In the bounce house at Jackson's birthday party.  He came up with lots of fun tricks in there.

Ollie in the bounce house.  It was tough to get in through the tiny doorway with a dress and an infant!

My birthday at Buca di Beppo.  I was truly surprised at my awesome "big gift":  an iPad that I named - what else? - Paddy.

Fun birthday dinner.  Laura took the photo.

This last one has a little story.  Matt took this one a couple days ago.  That morning, Ollie had woken up with reflux, so I put him up on Matt's pillow to tilt him up a bit.  I fell back asleep, too.  Ollie squirmed all the way over to me and squished his face up against mine, and we slept kissing each other.

We are so lucky to have such a great bond!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Bed Hog

Somehow, this seven-week-old has pushed me to the edge of the bed. I had to get up because I had no place to put my left arm!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Happy Easter From The Angles!

We had a great spring break, although we didn't do much other than visit the zoo.  It was just great to be together and to let G play all week.  We are big believers that kids need to be kids, and since we make him work so hard during school days, he really does need the time off that he gets.

One thing we did this week was to cut off (!) Ollie's long hair at the back of his head.  When he was born, everyone commented that he had really long hair (he was a 42-week baby, after all).  Even though he also has an adorable swirl at the crown of his head, it was this lock at his nape that we decided to save.  Here are photos of Ollie's first hair cut:

Ollie was born with lots of hair at his nape.

Since he has curly hair, I pulled it out so you can see how long it actually is.  Incidentally, you can also see one of his birthmarks there at the back of his neck.

His lock is ready to be cut and saved.

And there it is - for posterity.

Easter, being the most important day of the year for us Catholics, was a great celebration.  When we woke up, we found that the Easter Bunny had visited us overnight!  For the first time ever in this house, there were TWO baskets on the front porch.  What a welcome sight that was.

Gabriel and his Easter basket.

Oliver and his Easter basket.

Our little bunny.

A couple of cute little Easter bunnies.

After baskets, G went on an egg hunt for all of the Easter Eggs the Bunny left behind:

We went to church, where the boys sat together and I played handbells in the choir loft.  They got great seats with lots of room, Ollie actually slept through the entire mass, and it was a beautiful mass.

Afterwards, the boys changed for a casual get-together at our neighbors' house - at their driveway, actually.  We ate hotdogs and hung around for a couple hours, before we got our church clothes back on for dinner at Bun's and Papa's house.  Jack and Jen and boys went there, too, and we realized that G and Jackson had dressed pretty much alike.  Here are some photos from dinner time:

My boys looked so cute yesterday.  By the way, dig those shoes on Oliver!

Jax, unsure of this whole posing thing, went for his belly button just like G used to do! 
They were both asleep when we started eating dinner.  With all those clothes on, Ollie didn't quite bend at the middle quite so well.

We hope that you had a special day yesterday and that today finds you happy and peaceful.  It is a happy time.  As my Ukrainian relatives say, "Khrystos Voskres!" [Christ is risen!]

The View From My Shoes

If I knew I would have this for a family, I might have skipped a few years to get here sooner.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Our Son, The Blogger

G has started his own blog!  He will be covering such topics as bike riding, Skylanders, and his little brother.  You can follow Gabriel's Super Samurai Life at http://gabrielssuperlife.blogspot.com/.

Parents' note:  We will be looking into security for his site, so you may need a password to view it in the future.