We had to get up super early because her baptism was at 9 and we had to be there at 8:30. Luckily, I was responsible (truly, a miracle) and had everything ready to go (ie. clothes ironed, kids showered, food prepped and ready, etc) the night before. Andy and I got up and ready, got the kids up and ready, and we were off to the chapel (and actually a bit early, another miracle). We decided to do it at Andy's parents stake center because his dad is a bishop and he was able to preside over the meeting.
The cute older couple in charge of baptisms for the stake were so sweet and went over everything with us and were so patient with all of our questions, as we had never done this before! Laylah and Andy changed into their white clothing and we had time to snap a few picturs and set up our table.
My sweet hubby spent a long time perfecting and printing these programs for me. He rocks :)
When all of our guests arrived (totaling around 60-70! We have big families :), the program began. Andy's sister Breanna was our chorister and my sister Rachel accompanied. My sister Kaylie said the opening prayer, and then my mom gave a wonderful talk on baptism. After that, it was time. I could hardly keep the tears from running down my cheeks as all of the little children gathered up front to watch Laylah be baptized. Andy reached his hand out for her and brought her down into the warm water. With the priesthood that he worthily holds, he baptized her a memeber of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, with Andy's dad and my dad as witnesses. When she came out of that water, dripping and wet, she couldn't stop smiling. She looked radiant.
Andy had made Laylah and me a bet that we wouldn't be able to beat him out of the changing room, so we were set and ready to go. Laylah dried off, changed back into her dress quickly, and I had done her hair as such that I would just have to twist it into a bun. We put her jewelry back on, and we were out. We beat Andy by about 8 minutes. We rock :)
After that, we finished up the program with a beautiful musical number by my brothers, Doug and Nate. They sang Baptism (Laylah's request and one of my very favorite's). It was beautiful and, of course, I cried some more. Andy's mother gave a talk on receiving the Holy Ghost, which was wonderful as well. Afterwards, Laylah was surrounded by all of the worthy men in her life, priesthood holders who love her, and recieved the gift of the Holy Ghost from Andrew. The blessing that followed was wonderful and just thinking about how special it was still brings tears to my eyes. I have always known Laylah is a special spirit in our home and in many people's life. She is an amazing little girl. The program was closed with a prayer by Andy's brother, David. Then, of course, a lot of pictures followed :)
Grandparents and mom and dad
Great-grandmothers, Darlene (my dad's mom) and Marge (my mom's mom)
Laylah and her best friend in Utah, Kajia
Oh, my Cristan, I love ya :)
Andy and his brothers and father-silly boys
As soon as we got home to my parents house, I had to grab a few quick pictures while everyone still looked decent in their church clothing
We had to do a little bit of quick food prep and then our delicious brunch was served: Spinach, mushroom, and sausage quiche with salsa, bagels and cream cheese, croissants with honey butter or jam, fresh fruit and fruit dip, orange juice and lemon water, and lastly, mini cinnamon rolls and brownie cookies for dessert. It was pretty fantastic, and I think everyone was sufficiently stuffed.
We were so thankful for all of our wonderful family and friends who were able to join us in celebrating. We love them all SO much.
Andy and his brothers and father-silly boys
Great-grandmother Roth (Andy's mom's mother)
Laylah with my brothers
Aunt Annette and Laylah breaking in her new scriptures
Laylah was SO thrilled to finally receive her first set of scriptures along with a scripture case. She's been asking for some for over a year. Besides this gift (from Andy and I) she received many kind and thoughtful gifts from family and friends. Everyone was so generous on her special day. She was so happy and Andy and I are so grateful and proud that she made the right decision to be baptized. We love Laylah so much and truly cannot imagine our family or our lives without this sweet girl. We love you Laylah!
It truly was a beautiful day.