In addition to having her first birthday party last weekend, Niecy was dedicated at Debra and Lance's church in Dothan. For those unfamiliar with the term, many Protestant denominations practice infant dedication as an alternative to infant baptism. It's a little ceremony signifying the parents' commitment to raise the child in a Christian home. It was extra special to have this pastor dedicate Niecy, because in addition to being Lance's former youth pastor and now his current boss, he also married Debra and Lance!
I don't have any pictures of the actual ceremony, but Niecy behaved perfectly. By now she's used to being the center of attention in a crowd. :) After church, she toddled around in her pretty dress from Baby Gap while we took pictures. And rolled around too, because hey, why not?
the whole gang
My parents bought a baby seat for Debra's bike and a little helmet for Niecy. After installing the seat, my dad showed her the helmet and demonstrated it on her doll. She watched the whole thing carefully, and when it came time to wear the helmet, she was fine with it even though she doesn't like hats. I'm amazed by how much she seems to understand at such a young age.
This was my first trip to Dothan, so Debra and I escaped one afternoon for a couple of hours of Hermanas Only tourism. She drove me around "the circle" and through downtown (such as it is) so I could get a good idea of the area. We also stopped at the mall to visit Altar'd State, which she had been dying to show me. (I bought a dress!) Commercially, Dothan has almost everything you could want, even a McAlister's. Plus it's only an hour and a half from the beach. I officially approve.
On the drive home, my parents and I stopped at some Alabama attractions: an isolated warehouse store selling mainly jeans and shoes, and Durbin Farms, where we ate lunch. Lance's dad had rhapsodized about their homemade peach pecan ice cream, and I was not disappointed.
So that's what I've been up to. Next week should be more normal in every sense!