Courtesy of Libby Jones. . . my very talented friend!!!!
I made these banners. . . .who's shocked?!!!! My mom sewed them for me. :) I also had a CTR banner, but forgot to take a picture of it.I can hardly believe Jackson turned 8 six weeks ago.
His baptism took place on Feb 11th at 12pm at the stake center and it was perfect.
Here's who came.
Mom, Dad, Noah, Ellie, Kate and Carson
Grandma and Grandpa Kohler
Grandma and Grandpa Smythe
Great Grandma Smythe
Aunt Megan, Addi, Allie and Evelyn
Aunt Rachel, Jimmy and Owen
Great Aunt Sissy
Shawn, Teri, and little kiddos
Nate and Gina Jensen, Kade and Skye
Stacey and Brent Criddle and Caden
Frank and James Lebaron
Betty and Coda Anderson
Sister Calleen Curtis (primary teacher)
Jeff and Taye Dickson
Jeff and Tanner Ricks
Mrs. Mills (2nd grade teacher)
We were lucky to have family come into town for a few days first and spend time with them before the baptism. I know how much my kids look forward to visits from grandparents and cousins.And now I'm going to tell about the day Jackson was baptized. Be prepared for spiritual talk. :)
Out of all the most spectacular days in my life, Jackson's baptism was one of the very best. It ranks up there with the day each of my children were born. It's a kind of feeling I was not anticipating and don't think I wasn't fully prepared for. I know how incredible it feels to bring a baby into this world. It's hard to describe that experience adequately. And watching your child be baptized and make such a sacred promise and commitment to God felt so very overwhelming. And in the best way possible. It is likewise hard to adequately explain.
Jason baptized Jackson and my dad gave the talk on the Holy Ghost. My dad's talk was perfect. He taught Jackson about the things most important pertaining to the Holy Ghost and its role that will now be a part of Jackson's every day life. I was touched by his words and am grateful he was able to speak to Jackson that day.
Jackson was baptized with another little girl from our ward named Mckayla. She went first.
When Jackson walked into the baptismal font I was really overcome by such an overwhelming, strong feeling. The tears swelled in my eyes watching my little boy choose to follow the Savior and do what is right. Even now as I sit here recalling that special day, I feel such a special feeling in my heart for Jackson and the amazing experience he was able to have on that day.
It was so great to have all the kids watch as their older brother took the first step in his life of serving the Lord and promising to keep all of His commandments. I'm so proud of Jackson.
Jason and I spent many nights talking to and teaching Jackson about what his baptism would mean and all the things he would be committing to do for the rest of his life. We tried very hard to be very clear about how important this decision was and that there was no turning back once he made that choice. I knew Jackson would be excited for his baptism and want to be baptized. However, I had NO idea how much of a spiritual experience it would be for me and for Jackson.
After he was baptized, he went to the bathroom to get all dried off and dressed back into his suit. I met him outside the restroom to comb his hair and when he came out I gave him a huge hug and told him how proud I was of him and how blessed he would be for choosing to be baptized. I told him I knew it was true and right and that Heavenly Father was so pleased with him. Jackson squeezed me back and cried on my shoulder. That was something he hasn't done since he was a small child. And never from feeling the spirit. I told him what he was feeling was the spirit and that from that point on he could have that feeling always. He just kept shaking his head and telling me, "I know. I'm so happy." We both sat there and cried for a brief moment and then Jackson leaned over to get a drink of water. Out of embarrassment (I'm pretty sure) he got upset at the drinking fountain for not working and did his typical turn away and ignore his emotions. :) But the experience had already happened and I won't ever forget it.
Jackson's baptism was a special day for me as well. It reminded me of all the promises I once made when I was eight. And it reminded me of my mission. I remember so well teaching many people about baptism and all the reasons why we do it and all that is means and all that it can bring into our lives. I learned in a very concrete and immovable way on my mission that baptism isn't something minor or something we can choose to ignore as life gives us problems and we think it would be easier to do things all on our own. It cemented in me the firm belief that baptism is MAJOR. It marks the path for the rest of our life. . .and into eternity. I hadn't felt the spirit so strong in a long time and am so grateful to have felt it that day. I have always known Jackson was a special boy. All children are. With Jackson there has always been a special something extra about him. And watching him be baptized, I was overcome with joy. It was incredible.
I have been meaning to record that day for awhile so I would never forget it. And so Jackson could always remember. Even weeks later as I would tell others about that day, I have yet to nor get emotional. Something very extra ordinary happened that day and I don't want to ever forget it. The spirit was as strong that day as I can ever recall in my life. I did not expect such an experience like that.
After the baptism, we all came back to our house for a lunch and it turned out perfect.
My mom made the strawberry spinach salad with won tons, candied cashews. . . etc.She also made the Cafe Normandy pasta salad. YUM! Thanks mom for helping me so much that day. I couldn't have done it without you!!!!
We had Jimmy Johns do all the sandwiches.
And my amazing friend Brooke Carn did all the desserts. She made mini mint brownies, mini coconut cupcakes and mini sugar cookies. Deeeeeelicious!!!!!!
After the celebration was over and the house settled down, we were all ready for a long rest!!!!
But lucky us, Jackson had his final Jr. Jazz basketball game that afternoon so we headed to that and Jackson had a GREAT game. One of his best. His team was undefeated! As they were in flag football too! :) We've got some sports crazy boys on our hands!!!