Saturday, May 24, 2008

Gabriella's Baptism

This morning we headed into Brooklyn to attend Gabriella's baptism. Our hosts, Joe and Debbie, put together an elaborate event worthy of the occasion.

Although scheduling issues prevented us from attending the ceremonial portion of the morning, you can bet we made it in time for the food. Two Italian parents throwing a party in Brooklyn? You know the meal will be good.

In our haste to get there, Monkey Sr. forgot that it's Memorial Day Weekend, and the cops in our town were out in full force. No sooner had we turned off our street to the exit for the thruway, then we were pulled over by a police officer for speeding. He clocked us at 41 mph in a 25 mph zone. Monkey Sr. and I were incredulous. There's just no physical way for our minivan to make it from zero to 41mph in the distance from the stop sign to the point where the officer was. We're talking big ass minivan here. Oh well.

Although the morning did not start off well, by the time we arrived in Brooklyn, things were looking more promising. Monkey Sr.'s plan was to attend the luncheon without the kiddos. All he wanted was a moment of peace to eat his meal and enjoy it without having to chase kids around. To make this plan a reality, we needed the help of the greatest babysitters in the world - Grandma H and Michael! Don't feel bad for the monkeys. They spent the whole morning at the park playing, running around, and stuffing themselves with pizza and chocolate chip cookies. Cookies made by Grandma H herself in the wee hours of the morning before their arrival, no less.

The star of the morning, Gabriella herself. She was such a good baby through the whole afternoon. Jeff and I remarked at how comfortable she was being held by so many people.

Many of our old friends from college attended. With kids. Here's Danny and Samantha sharing a dance.

And a close up.

And here's Jeff, enjoying his meal in peace. It's hard to begrudge him that. In truth, I missed the monkeys at the party. With all the kids running around, I knew they would have had fun. They would have had a good time, and I would have gotten a kick out of dressing them up for such a big event.

But then I watched many of the frazzled parents running around after their own little ones, and my craziness passed. I concentrated on the calm feeling of savoring each bite without having to jump up and get someone another serving, another drink, or more paper towels. It was strangely quiet too.

Oh the food.

The pasta course.

The main course.

Samantha approved.

We may have tried to leave our kids, but others found us. This one seated himself under our table.

A rare picture of the two of us. Even with my streaks of grey hair, I think we look pretty relaxed. That was a change of pace.

There were many lovely details of the party that caught my eye. Here's Gabriella's baptism dress hanging up. Now, on an unrelated note, can someone clarify whether it's appropriate to use the words Baptism and Christening interchangeably? I have no idea. Gabriella's invitation read Baptism. Is there a difference?

A little bit of prettiness upon departing. Our favors to plant at home.
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