Baptizing your baby is a personal preference and comes in many different traditions depending on your religious views. In no way am I pushing anything on anyone or my religion but I wanted to share my baby’s special day, what it means to us, picking God Parents, how we celebrated and the wonderful vendors.
Baptizing my baby was one of the most special days of not only his life; but mine.
Baptisms are my favorite celebration because it’s so sacred and life changing to me. I love celebrating any baby being baptized so imagine how emotional it was to have my sweet angel here on Earth with us and get baptized in the church. My faith in God is what kept me going in some of the most trying times in my life. I honor God in my daily life by living in His christian way as much as possible. It’s what I want instilled in my son’s heart as well.
In our religion, Greek Orthodox, his walk in faith starts early. Traditionally, after a baby is born, the Priest of the church comes to the house to bless the baby eight days after he is born. The mom and baby stay home for 40 days while the baby is building immunity, while mom heals, and mom and baby bond. 40 days later, the first time a mom leaves the house with her baby (besides doctors appointments) we go to the church for our 40 day blessing. And then, mom and baby are ready to go out into the world.
We planned Panos baptism to be in May over Memorial Day weekend and he was just about 10 months old. I would have liked to do his baptism sooner but because of holidays, Lent, lifes busy schedules that was the best time for us.
Picking God Parents
Picking God parents was really important to me. God parents are people you are bringing into your family, guiding your child in faith and in life. They are a key role in your Child’s life so it’s a decision made whole heartedly by all parties. I had to remember that it’s not just who I am personally close with or who will be fun or any other meaningless reason. But truly, who will be there for my child the way that I would be. I wanted the God parents to be people who had an authentic relationship and genuine love for my child since day one. Who was around him, loved him and who is an example of a good Christian and person.
For me personally, it was an easy answer. Panos God father, James and his God mother, Kathleen are two beyond amazing people who have loved him since before his arrival. James was already planning how he would take him to baseball games and share his love for the Chicago Cubs before he was born. And, I will never forget how I felt when Kathleen came to the hospital to meet this baby. She was overwhelmed with emotions and just broke out into tears seeing him. I had chills seeing the love she already had for him.
During the baptism ceremony when Pano began his journey as a christian, he stood in the back of the church with his God parents and the Priest as his God parents recited the creed. The Priest walked the three of them towards the Holy Alter, prayed for him, he then got changed into a white cloth and the Priest blessed the water in the baptismal font and anointed him with oil in the sign of the Cross.
His face, heart, ears, feet, and hands were all anointed with oil. Then completely covered in oil when he went into the blessed water three times. Pano was baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
His hair was cut in four places in the shape of the cross as an offering to God. He was changed into a beautiful white outfit and was gifted a cross by his God parents as a symbol of his new life in Christ.
Three candles were lit to show the light of Christ and he took his first steps as a Christian. We listened while the Priest shared God’s word and instruction and he then received Holy Communion for the first time. Our baby was presented back to us and we presented him to his family as a new member of God’s family.
(If you live in the Chicago land area: the vendors mentioned in this post were used for my son’s baptism and are highly recommended for your next special event)
To celebrate Panos baptism, we had an evening reception at Cotillion Banquets, Palatine, il to celebrate Pano’s new Christian life. We ate, drank and danced the night away.
If you are looking for a venue for an upcoming wedding, shower, baptism, go check this place out and tell the hardworking, passionate staff over there than Pano from Spoiled Milk sent you! We personally worked with Tom & I told him I wanted to share this beautiful banquet venue with you all and he said for all the Spoiled Milk lovers he would throw in free LED uplighting, 1/2 priced hand served hors D’oeuvres and $2 discount on chair covers!
Our delicious cake was a bakery recommended to my by Cotillion called The Baking Institute, Northbrook Il. and I will now be a loyal customer for all events. Check out their work on the internet and you will be blown away. And their prices are the best in the business! The cake we got was not only beautiful but so good! The staff there was easy to work with and so sweet.
Ok, so I’ve worked quite a bit with my florist, Donna from Donna’s Florist, Mundelein Il. and let me tell you what…this women is crazy passionate about what she does. She listens to my likes and dislikes, the vibe I’m going for and then she just runs wild with it and always makes me so happy. She even did these flowers on my cake just because she wanted everything to come together. She made me arrangements for the bathrooms when I didn’t even ask for them because she once you’re a loyal customer of hers, she just wants your event to come together magically.
Next time you need flowers, call Donna at Donna’s Florist, Mundelein, Il. Tell her we sent you! She will take good care of you! Look at this tree she let me borrow! How beautiful?
For entertainment, we used Sounds of Greece to MC/DJ Greek and American music all night. I have been to events where different DJs within their company host the event and never disappoint. For this event, we had DJ Pete and he’s just always a pleasure to have at your event. He plays great music, he does all the time organization, takes requests even though it’s a DJs nightmare I’m sure, he stayed all night even when it was just a few of us left dancing with no shoes and too many Titos. If you’re looking for a great host and party starter for your event, you cannot go wrong with Sounds of Greece.
Our night was so much fun. We were so happy to celebrate our Pano! We love and adore all of our friends and family who were there to celebrate him with us.
Everything worn on Pano and used for the baptism ceremony was all gifted by his God parents and crafted by Events by Argentos, Mount Prospect, IL. Owner, Eleni is so inviting, helpful and creative when it comes to shopping all Orthodox traditions and customs. She creates the most beautiful pieces of baptisms, weddings and showers.
My sweet sweet Pano, May God always guide you, protect you, heal you and comfort you. Mommy loves you soooooo much!!!!!!
This post is dedicated to Pano’s Godparents who hold the most special piece of my heart for the the love and commitment you made to my little love.
Find joy in all of your journey,