Ok so before I start, this post may read as a little naive and seem as if I look at the world through rose tinted glasses. But is this such a bad approach to take, to hope for the best and not look for the worst?
I wouldn’t say Chris and I are devout Christians, we would probably be described as part time church goers, usually visiting mostly for weddings, funerals and Christmas Carols. However deciding to get Devon Christened was a unanimous decision, to us religion isn’t about clocking up those hours in church it is about having belief and a hope that there is something more. You want to give your child the best start in life and introducing her to a church and making her a part of a bigger family seemed a natural step for us.
This beautiful little church within which we Christened Devon has become very dear to us, it has seen the happiest of times and the saddest, to me it represents more than religion, it is the final resting place of all my grandparents, it was the location of my parents wedding, then my own and both my brother and I were Christened there. Sitting in that church makes me feel safe, I instantly feel connected to my family that are no longer here and by playing out some of the biggest moments of our lives within its walls I feel they continue to be a part of our future. Devon wore my families Christening gown, passed down through my mother’s family it must be over 100 years old. Washing and ironing it was terrifying, after all that time I didn’t want to be the one to ruin it! A beautiful traditional long cotton lace gown, she melted my heart just that little bit more as she sat beaming away during the service.
I have always wanted Devon to feel included, to feel protected and to be surrounded by people who would always look out for her, even if it is with just a passing smile. The road I grew up on was always full of friendly faces, coming from a very small family neighbours became substitute aunties and uncles. The church has always been the focal point of that road, the hub that draws people together. People stop to talk, they ask how you are and there is always a smile. I wanted Devon to be a part of that. Sadly the area we currently live in is the opposite, most people walk by head down with little acknowledgement of anyone else.
Devon won’t remember her Christening, she has no appreciation for the time spent planning or the effort that went into creating the perfect cake table, I am a Venue Stylist so of course everything had to be perfect. But her guests will, ok she may have slept through most of her party and not been a polite host and socialised, but by inviting friends and family to spend this day with us we were encouraging them to forever be a part of Devon’s life. I trust that her God Parents will always hold a special place for her and will always make the effort to be involved in her life.
In a time when Church numbers are dropping and Christianity seems less relevant in modern society, the Church of England is changing, it is becoming more inclusive, less strict and more welcoming, there is no more ‘obeying’ in the wedding vows and God Parents don’t themselves have to be Christened. The key underlying values and teachings are still the same and I wanted our daughter to be introduced to the same Christian lessons I grew up on and when she visits the church she was Christened in I want her to feel the same protection I do. Yes most of the bible can seem sexist and are we honestly still meant to be believe that God is a man? Like any of the religious books the words can be twisted and manipulated to suit the views of others. But within those pages lie stories of hope, compassion and love and that is the message I want my daughter to understand.
Getting Devon Christened was about introducing her to a belief and making her part of a bigger family. Then as she grows letting her decide if she wants to hold onto it.
Photography: Claire Graham Photography
I have always had a creative soul which I am lucky enough to get to express through my small business The White Emporium. With an ethos for everything relaxed and wild I believe in creating wedding ambiences full of a couple’s personality and their story together, I cherish nurturing relationships with my couples and being part of one of the most important days of their lives. Based in Bedfordshire with my hubby Chris and spoilt fur ball Smudge, I love trips in to London but am a country girl at heart, inspired by open fields and big sky’s. You will often find me scouring the local charity shops or rummaging through car boot sales and reclamation yards as I constantly grow the treasure trove of hire products.
A natural dreamer I love nothing better than curling up and getting lost in a good book or losing myself with a pencil and sketchpad. My favourite things in life include walks along deserted beaches, exploring new places and going out for a good meal. Baking and cleaning escape me, whilst I am an enthusiast for exercise indulging in pole dancing and the great outdoors.
I am excited to take you on my journey from growing a small business through to growing a bump and then raising a little bubba. The up’s, the downs the constant juggling and the happiness this next crazy adventure in our lives.