First Communion Week {Preserving the Memory} Pictures & Gifts

 Welcome to First Communion Week at Team Whitaker!

This is the third post of a five-part series:
Preparing Your Heart (What the Sacrament Means)
Looking Your Best (Invitations and Clothes) + FREE Printable & Veil GIVEAWAY
Preserving the Memory (Pictures and Gift Ideas) + Rosary GIVEAWAY
Feeding the Troops (Flowers and Food) + FREE Printable
Saying Thanks (Notes and Godparents) + Bowl GIVEAWAY

trendy traditions_blog

No doubt, you will want photos of this special day. Chances are, you will forget to charge the battery, lose the camera card or be crying so hard you’ll forget to snap the pictures. I mean, not that I’ve done any of those. {ahem}

First things first. Find out if your parish will have a photographer at the Mass. Our parish does not allow ANY photos to be taken during the actual Mass. However, our religious education director hires a photographer and he provides the pictures of the entire Mass, as well as any photos you want taken afterward, FREE of charge, all in digital format. I, for one, think that is brilliant. It eliminates the parent paparazzi and allows everyone to focus on God. It may not be too late to ask if your parish is willing to provide this service.

If your parish does not hire a photographer, ask the priest or religious education director if photos during the Mass are okay. Again, if they say no, suggest that photographer. Our families happily put away their cameras because they know the photos will be fabulous. You might also consider asking a good friend who’s handy with a camera to accompany you to the Mass. It’s nearly impossible to document the day AND enjoy the day. If you have to choose one, enjoy it. You can stage photos later 🙂

Speaking of taking photos before or after the big day, I highly recommend it. Most parishes conduct a practice Mass before the actual day. Use that opportunity to take a few photos of your child. You know, prayer hands and all. It gives you an idea of how the lighting will be, and who knows, those photos might end up being your winners after all. I took these photos of our second son in our backyard a few weeks before First Communion. I loved them so much, I made copies and included them with the invitations.


It may sound silly, but if there are some photos you really want to capture, write them down. That way, when your brain goes to mush, you can look at the list sticky-taped to your camera and know what photos to take. Maybe there’s a lovely statue outside your parish, a well-lit alcove in the narthex or a shady spot near the prayer garden – all those make for great backdrops when taking photos.

fc_will, blog

Warning, this is bossy Kathryn talking:  don’t forget to take a picture of you WITH your child. I know you don’t like your hair/dress/shoes/makeup/extra weight. Do it anyway.

fc_will, mom, dad, blog

We’ve chosen to buy our children a religious gift to commemorate First Communion. Quite honestly, there are a million options. My kids are usually most happy with the default gift:  money! However, I’m always on the lookout for a special gift for my child. One can never go wrong with a rosary. Any religious gifts, like medals, rosaries, books or crosses, can be blessed by the priest following the Mass. Just talk to your religious education director beforehand and find out what’s preferred when it comes to blessing gifts.


trendy traditions, blog

I’ve been wanting to giveaway one of these rosaries by Trendy Traditions for-evah! Melanie, the crazy talented Rosary Chick from Trendy Traditions, is hosting today’s giveaway for a First Communion rosary of your choice. She really goes the extra mile. Not only are her rosaries beautifully handcrafted, but the wrapping and prayer cards she includes really reflect the importance she places on her craft. I. Love. That. You can enter to win one of her lovely creations. BUT, the deal gets sweeter. We all win, really.

Just log on to Trendy Traditions and use the coupon code “TEAMWHITAKER” at checkout for 15% off your entire order. Offer valid now through March 15, 2013. Melanie rarely puts her pieces on sale and I’m so honored she’s doing it for my sweet Team Whitaker readers.

The giveaway ends March 13, 2013 at midnight. The coupon code is good through March 15, 2013.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

TOMORROW:  Feeding the Troops (Flowers, Food and a FREE Printable)


  1. Laura Teran on March 6, 2013 at 9:01 am

    I’m praying, I’m praying, I’m praying! These rosaries are beautiful!

  2. Dana on March 6, 2013 at 9:17 am

    I absolutely love the Personalized First Communion Rosary in purple & pink. My daughter is receiving her First Communion in April and she would just love this!

  3. Marie Bernadette on March 6, 2013 at 9:38 am

    I absolutely love this “wedding rosary” that I found. How beautiful to wrap through the bride’s bouquet for the family that is coming together in the sacrament.

  4. Jenn B on March 6, 2013 at 10:06 am

    Love the Irish rosary!

  5. Jules on March 6, 2013 at 10:07 am

    What beautiful rosaries! In case any one is looking for an alternate gift….

    my go-to First Communion gift for my cousins, Godson, etc. is actually not a rosary since I figure they will be getting one – or more! – on their special day. I have found beautiful pewter crosses that honor their patron saint. This obviously won’t work for everyone, but for children who share their first name with a saint they are a lovely personal gift. I have ordered mine from O’Byrne religious goods in Missouri (which does not seem to have a website anymore!) but have also found similar products at Saint Patrick’s Guild.

  6. Lisa on March 6, 2013 at 11:11 am

    Thank you for the opportunity! Such beautiful rosaries.
    We are preparing for my daughter’s First Communion this April.

  7. Lisa on March 6, 2013 at 11:20 am

    Oops! I forgot to say which rosary is my favorite. Such a difficult choice, but I think I would select the April birthstone rosary, as my daughter’s birthday is also in April. 🙂

  8. Bea on March 6, 2013 at 11:22 am

    Diggin the lime & turquoise but have my eye on the football rosary for Caleb. You never see boy ones! Beautiful rosaries- I’m a collector of them & found the right one comes to you when you need it.

  9. Lisa Schmidt on March 6, 2013 at 11:59 am

    I love Melanie and want to move next door to her family. Did I ever tell you about the lovely thing she did for my family when Jude was born? Remind me next time we Skype …

    My favorite? Any one, really. The zebra one is gorgeous – gave that one to my sis-in-law when she joined the Church last year. I would love one, too!

  10. Meghan on March 6, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    I am enjoying this series!

  11. Liz on March 6, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    I love the Irish Rosary!

  12. Valerie Phillips on March 6, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    My middle son will be making his first communion this year and we have all started praying the rosary more frequently. These are all such beautiful rosaries!!!

  13. Jessica on March 6, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    I absolutely adore Trenndy Traditions, and have ordered Rosaries from her for several gifts. Lately I’ve been eyeing a couple of them for my own daughter for her first Comminion!

  14. Christie Sclafani on March 6, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    Love it. My girls are a few years away from making their first communion but that doesn’t mean I can’t buy one for them. Thanks for the giveaway!

  15. Jacquelyn on March 7, 2013 at 1:41 am

    My daughter is only in Kindergarten, but I could stash the rosary away until the big day. 🙂

  16. Kim Paulus on March 7, 2013 at 11:43 am

    I recently purchased the infant/pregnancy loss rosary for the daughter we lost to stillbirth in 2009. It is pink and beautiful, and has her name – Grace Marie. I adore it!

    • Kathryn on March 7, 2013 at 12:04 pm

      Kim, I’m so sorry for your loss. I pray the rosary (and your daughter’s memory) bring you some peace. Her name is absolutely beautiful. Our oldest daughter’s middle name is Grace and I smile every time I hear it. Have a blessed day today 🙂

  17. Carrie on March 7, 2013 at 7:45 pm

    I love the birth stone rosaries she makes. I gave one to my niece for her First Communion, and plan to give another one this year! Love her work and passion for this

  18. Holly Gomez on March 7, 2013 at 7:52 pm

    Last year our family was graced with our daughter’s first communion. Melanie created a beautiful name bracelet for her to wear. And I was able to create a one of a kind mommy rosary. We have four more first communions in our future and we will continue this special gift as long as Melanie is able to create them.

  19. Laurel on March 7, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    Each of these rosaries is simply lovely. I’d love to have one for my biggest when she makes her First Communion next year.

  20. Lena ~ JOYfilledfamily on March 7, 2013 at 9:14 pm

    lovely creations!

  21. Blair on March 7, 2013 at 11:10 pm

    Oh I love the purple & pink First Communion rosary. I have a little communicant this year and know she would LOVE it!

  22. Laura on March 8, 2013 at 7:36 am

    Melanie at Trendy Traditions does BEAUTIFUL work! We have ordered several from her and have been very pleased with all of them!

  23. Katy O on March 8, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    Loving all these posts – thanks so much for sharing! Another great gift idea for my daughter – love the April birthstone rosary – those diamond babies are so lucky!

  24. Katrina on March 9, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    I love all the info on this blog post! Glad I stumbled on it 🙂 My daughter would absolutely love the purple/pink First Communion Rosary. Her big day is coming up in May!

  25. Laura on March 10, 2013 at 6:41 am

    The m

  26. Laura on March 10, 2013 at 6:42 am

    Mothers rosary Is an amazing way to pray for your children!! Great week of posts!!!

  27. […] the perfect gift. All the giveaways are still going on, a lovely veil from Dainties by Denise, a rosary from Trendy Traditions and a First Communion bowl from Clarey Clayworks. Make it a great weekend […]

  28. Debra on March 11, 2013 at 9:15 am

    I think this is the giveaway I am MOST excited about!

  29. Samantha S. on March 11, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    These are lovely. Thanks for the chance to win!

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.