Smile and say “holy water”!
Yesterday was a very special day in the life of our family. Surrounded by friends and family, our three children were all baptized. As you can probably tell by the picture, our kids are not infants–they’re 2, 4, and 6–so this wasn’t an infant baptism, and it also wasn’t an adult baptism. That might seem a little weird, since Catholics usually baptize infants and Protestants usually get baptized as adults, or whenever they make a profession of faith. So what are we? Catholics or Protestants? Well, we’re Catholic now, but come from an Evangelical background. My husband and I joined the Catholic Church about five years ago, when two of our three children were already born. With our Protestant history, though, we never felt all the way comfortable with the idea of infant baptism. Still, baptism is a beautiful opportunity for the Holy Spirit to do its work in any person–infant, child, or adult. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says “Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit, and the door which gives access to the other sacraments” (CCC 1213). Believing this, we decided recently that the time had come. It was a truly momentous occasion, followed by a fun party with lots of (you guessed it) yummy food!
The afterparty started immediately after the baptism, which meant I was not home for the hour immediately preceding the party. (Kind of an event planning nightmare, to be honest.) I tried my best to plan snacks that could be made ahead of time, and settled on cupcakes, store-bought truffles, a layered fruit trifle, and a little build-your-own trail mix station.
For the fruit trifle, I layered about two cans of sliced peaches (drained), about one pound of grapes, 7 sliced kiwi, two pounds strawberries, and 12 oz. blueberries. In my experience, people get excited about anything in a trifle dish. Maybe it’s because it just makes everything look pretty. This held true for this fruit salad–it was gone even before the cupcakes. A simple, healthy, pretty party treat!
For the build-your-own trail mix station, we had a variety of bite-sized, mixable goodies: honey roasted peanuts, yogurt raisins, salted almonds, and (my favorite) key lime yogurt pretzels. This could be endlessly modified to include dried cranberries, cashews, M & Ms, cereal, candy corn–whatever your trail mix-loving heart desires!
When it comes to party food, presentation can elevate your menu from the everyday to the unforgettable. Because this was such a big event in our kids’ lives (and because we had about 60 people attending!) I wanted the food presentation to make a visual impact. So, using a gold-flecked burlap runner from Michael’s, I formed the shape of a cross on our rectangular kitchen table. Then, when the cupcakes were done–an assortment of jumbo and regular-sized chocolate and yellow cake with white and turquoise frosting–I placed them on the runner to enhance the image of the cross:
I thought it turned out cool!
Lastly, a couple pics of other decorations–delightful tissue paper puff balls (which I think I want to be a permanent fixture in my kitchen):
And a customizable banner (thanks, Party City)!
Aaaaand a few awesome, newly baptized kids!