Stella thought it would be nice if she could take her unicorn to church because he matched her ensemble so nicely, but I told her the unicorn would have to stay in the car. He doesn't seem to have been too terribly lonely there.
The Evens both went through CCD, but all three of the Odds prepared for first communion at home. There are lots of good things about home sacrament prep, but it can be a perfectionist minefield. A few weeks ago I sat down in the adoration chapel and said, "OK, what's the bottom line here? What are the things I must have covered by April 30?" I sat down with her afterward and checked in about a few things. "Yes, Mom, I KNOW," she told me. And she did know.
Something I did not know about getting a daughter ready for first communion is that there are more details to deal with. Seventeen gazillion dress shoe options, all apparently with at least some glitter. A dizzying array of things to perch atop her head, many of them preposterously priced. But at length we got the clothes all sorted out.
I was pretty grumpy about veil/shoe shopping earlier this week on Twitter, and my husband is skeptical about the very idea of veils. But I don't see it as a pig-in-a-poke haha-you-wanted-Rachel-but-it-was-really-Leah-SURPRISE! kind of thing. I loved seeing my daughter as both element and emblem of the Bride of Christ, partaking in the wedding feast of the Lamb and dressed as the bride prepared to welcome him.
When I put on my veil to walk down the aisle on my wedding day I was saying something purposeful: "I am offering you my hidden heart; it is only for you." The greatest blessing of my 24-year marriage is that my husband has come to know that hidden heart well -- every good intention, every irksome flaw -- and finds it beautiful. That's the kind of faith I hope my daughter will find: one in which she is free to bring her whole self to the Lord, and to know that he finds her beautiful and loves her with a love stronger than death.
This weekend hit my BAKING = LOVE switch hard. I was making a cake to celebrate Petely's twelfth birthday and Stella's first communion, and I wanted it to be special. A person with Revelation on her mind can find plenty of twelves there too: twelve gates in that welcoming city, twelve foundation stones for the twelve apostles. So I decided their cake should have twelve layers.
Here they are: six layers of chocolate cake sandwiched together with six layers of ermine buttercream (vanilla, just barely chocolate, and more serious chocolate). It was yummy. I am tired. There are A LOT of clean dishes in my dish drainer. The end.