Claire made her first appearance in "big church" on Easter Sunday. We went to the 7am service and thought it would be a good time to see how she did. You know, why not throw a 3-year-old into the mix of visitors, early morning service and other Easter service craziness.
She did amazing and she was so sweet. She loved the choir music and praise songs and sang right along ... loud and proud ... despite the fact that she didn't know the songs. We sat in the back so we could make a quick exit if necessary. Will and I took turns holding her so she could see. Will started tearing up a little when he was holding her and she was just singing with all her heart. Then, she raised her hand in praise (she saw someone in front of us do it) and that just opened up the flood gates for both of us (Will and me). Later on, while Will was still holding her and we were standing up singing, she reached over and hugged me around the neck pulling Will and I both to her. After the service, the man sitting behind us said "she is so cute" and "I liked the double hug". Well, we did too!
We made it through the sermon without incident thanks to a note pad and bag of crayons. I think we will wait a couple more years before this is a regular occurrence, because I did not get much out of the service trying to keep her occupied. But, it is nice to know she could handle it if necessary. It was definitely nice to have almost all of our immediate family close during the Easter service. What a special reminder of God's many blessings.