If you are going to do a unity ceremony, make it personal!
Ah the good old debate, should you do a unity ceremony or not? To some couples it seems kitchy and overdone, it just doesn't make sense to them. Some couples love the idea of adding a little touch of something unique. Either way your right. Yep, you don't have to have one and...you can totally have one.
Here's my view on the subject of wedding cermeony unity ceremonies...IF you choose to have one, then make it personal. Do it in a way that when your guests see you do it, they go "oh, that's perfect, it's so them!"
Here's how to make your wedding unity ceremony personal. First, think about what the two of you have in common...do you like to drink wine or beer? Do you love nature and being outside? Are you foodies, hopeless romantics, artists or love your heritage?
Once you have that one thing in common or that you both love then look to build a unity ceremony around that idea. Here are some examples of twists on traditional wedding unity ceremonies:
Like beer or wine? Do a wine blending ceremony. Bonus-you get to have a drink mid ceremony!
If Nature is your thing, consider a tree planting ceremony where you use soil from both your family homes, you can even have your parents assist with "planting" the tree.
For the foodies out there you can do a chocolate sharing!
Hopeless romantics? Tie the knot...a lovers knot (this takes practice)
If your artistic consider doing a joint painting or blending of glass
If you love your heritage then start researching some of the traditions and let's talk on how to incorporate them in today's wedding ceremony.
The point here is this...there are options, don't just do a sand pouring unity ceremony because you think you should or you thing it's cool - make it personal bring sand from your favorite beaches, have a friend read a special poem during the pouring.
Lets work together to think outside the box and create the perfect wedding unity ceremony for you.
It's the question I get asked most...Do I have to have religion in the ceremony?
No, the short answer is no, you don't have to have religion in your ceremony. In fact, it's the reason I began this career path as a wedding Officiant.
Many couples today are mixed faith or more spiritual than religious or have developed their own personal relationship with faith that they don't necessarily want it to be the center of their wedding ceremony.
I aim to write a wedding ceremony that is personal to your relationship, a wedding ceremony that speaks about your love and draws attention to how you got to be standing in front of each other...getting married!
I will work with you to talk about all the options for your wedding ceremony and to help you determine the voice of your ceremony and the tone we should take, be it light hearted with a few laughs, romantic and swoon worthy or short and sweet.
The simple fact is, it is your wedding day and I want you to be the focus, I want your guests to leave the ceremony knowing that your relationship is the most important thing and that your love is the focus of the day.
Seems simple enough, call the courthouse, schedule a quick elopement or justice of the peace ceremony. But, did you know that not all courthouse's provide the service any more, and those that do often have a long waiting list (think months)...Yikes!
Rest assured, I can help! We can schedule your elopement ceremony outside of the courtroom - just pick a local venue, like a resteraunt or click here for suggestions, arrange for two other guests to attend with us as you will need two witnesses to sign the marriage license and just like that you are booked!
The bonus of booking with me is that you are not stuck in a courtroom! There are many great options for your ceremony location. Heck, you can even have an outdoor winter cermony - it only takes about 15 minutes for the entire ceremony and signing of the license.
So, if your ready to elope - just email me and we can get it scheduled!
Often times couples want a friend of family member to perform their wedding ceremony so that it is personal, and well...cost effective.
I totally understand this, heck that's how I got my start as an ordained officiant. My younger sister was getting married and I got ordained just for her. It went fine but it's safe to say writing my first ceremony was daunting and looking back had I had the experience I did now her ceremony could of been so much more. But alas, you can't go back...unless you do a vow renewal (wink).
So, let me tell you how you can save money, have that personal touch and still have a flawless ceremony. Allow me to write the ceremony for you and to pass off some tips and tricks to you and your friend that is going to perform the ceremony.
For a small fee I will write the ceremony for you and then meet with the three of you to review the ceremony and offer some tips and tricks to the person performing said ceremony. Heck, I'll even show them how to get ordained if need be.
The point is, I know every couple wants something different and unique to them and having a friend or family member perform the ceremony is amazing! But, put yourself in their shoes, I'm sure they are honored you asked them, but let's face it, writing the ceremony may not be their forte or passion...it is for me. So, let's work together to allow your ceremony to be everything you want it to be and so much less pressure for you newly ordained friend.
You may be considering asking your guests to refrain from taking pictures - but your worried you may offend someone, what should you do?
Creating an "unplugged" wedding ceremony is a wonderful thing. Before smartphones and iPads took over our time and attention guests would actually sit back and enjoy a wedding ceremony. They would be part of the joining of the couple in marriage.
Today everyone has a camera in their hand and at the ceremony they are all looking to "get that shot". Trust me, I understand, it's exciting and you want to document it and send those amazing photos to the couple. But let us think about this...
If we ask the guests to put down the camera's, cell phones and recording devices and to actually bear witness to your wedding ceremony. The ceremony that you took such care to create, the time you spent making sure the wording was just right. Then when the professional photographer takes those photos it will include your guests emotions and reactions - not just their face covered with a cell phone. It will document that awe inspiring moment that they saw you walking down the aisle and their reaction to the grooms face. It will capture their happiness and joy as your pronounced husband and wife.
So I say, take the time to create an unplugged ceremony.
Write a note on your wedding website to include the wording "We are honored to have you all as witnesses to our vows and the beginning of our marriage. We invite you to be truly present at our ceremony, and respectfully request that all cameras and phones be turned off. We look forward to sharing our professional photos after the big day!"
-oh and if you have doubts, just google "guests cameras ruined ceremony" those images will certainly persuade you to at least consider it.
Often times you just want a little elopement with a few family members - but where do you have this? Not the courthouse - hmmm...
I tell couples to look to their local favorite restaurant - they may even have a little back room you can use. And generally this is cost effective solution as well.
Feel free to browse the locations on my site as well; /venues-and-pros.html
Your wedding ceremony should be a work of art - a reflection of the two of you - it should speak the words of love that your relationship should stand upon - oh heck, it should be whatever YOU want it to be!
When your reviewing officiants/ministers/pastors - whatever their title may be; make sure to ask how they create your wedding day ceremony and if you can review it before your wedding.
My approach to writing a ceremony is to first ask what you would like; if you don't know that's ok to. We will work together to decide if you would like short and sweet or simple or personal and romantic. Once we know the tone of the ceremony then we can work to create a wedding ceremony that is perfect for your day!
It is my belief that creating your ceremony should be more than me asking you to pick this or that, it should be a discussion, maybe you answer a few questions so I can add a personal tone to it and then we work together to perfect it.
It's your wedding day, take charge of what is said and what your guests will hear during your ceremony.
To include children:
Presentation of the children: Have an older child wheel the baby down the aisle in a decorated wagon. This can be done at the same time that the flower girl and ring bearer walk down. Decorate the wagon with tulle, fabrics and flowers. If your baby isn't big enough to sit up, be sure to put her in something that is secure so that she will not fall out.
Gift: While the couple speaks the vows, allow the baby to be a part of it. Present the baby/children with a trinket, such as a small piece of jewelry, to formally show that the baby/children is as much a part of this new union as the couple.
Vows: Recite vows or a poem to the children/baby after you recite your own vows; speak to the love of joining a new family today.
Sand Ceremony: Let your baby/children help with the sand ceremony. Since a baby cannot hold and pour the sand, designate a special vase just for him. While the mother or father holds the baby, have the wedding Officiant announce that the vase represents him as part of the family. Then the mother or father can pour the sand in the vase for the baby. Save a bit of the sand from that day and keep it in an enclosed vase to display in his room, up high on a shelf, as a keepsake for him to treasure for years to come.
How do you plan to include your children in your wedding ceremony? (new ideas are always a wonderful thing to share)
Justice of the Peace services in Michigan
Simple, easy, quick, no fuss...these are some of the things couples are looking for when looking for a Justice of the Peace service for their Michigan wedding.
I am happy to say that I can provide a happy, simple and even romantic elopement or Justice of the Peace service for you.
We can meet at a local restaurant or park or even home and we can do a simple signing of your license or a simple and sweet ceremony. The only requirements are that you must obtain your marriage license and bring along two witnesses over the age of 18 to sign the license with us.
Whether your planning a out of state or country wedding or simply just don't want to do any planning contact me and together we can plan the perfect wedding for you!
The Rose Ceremony
The Rose Ceremony is simple yet profoundly moving. The bride and groom exchange two red roses, symbolizing the giving and receiving of their love for each other throughout their entire married life. The Rose Ceremony also conveys how to use the rose and its symbolism in difficult times in order to forgive each other.
Words for the rose ceremony:
“Your gift to each other for your wedding today has been your wedding rings – which shall always be an outward demonstration of your vows of love and respect; and a public showing of your commitment to each other.
You now have what remains the most honorable title which may exist between a man and a woman – the title of “husband” and “wife.” For your first gift as husband and wife, that gift will be a single rose.
In the past, the rose was considered a symbol of love and a single rose always meant only one thing – it meant the words “I love you.” So it is appropriate that for your first gift – as husband and wife – that gift would be a single rose.
Please exchange your first gift as husband and wife. In some ways it seems like you have not done anything at all. Just a moment ago you were holding one small rose – and now you are holding one small rose. In some ways, a marriage ceremony is like this. In some ways, tomorrow is going to seem no different than yesterday. But in fact today, just now, you both have given and received one of the most valuable and precious gifts of life – one I hope you always remember – the gift of true and abiding love within the devotion of marriage.
_________ and _____________, I would ask that where ever you make your home in the future –
whether it be a large and elegant home – or a small and graceful one – that you both pick one very special location for roses; so that on each anniversary of this truly wonderful occasion you both may take a rose to that spot both as a re-commitment to your marriage – and a re-commitment that THIS will be a marriage based upon love.
In every marriage there are times where it is difficult to find the right words. It is easiest to hurt who we most love. It is easiest to be most hurt by who we most love. It might be difficult some time to words to say “I am sorry” or “I forgive you”; “I need you” or “I am hurting”. If this should happen, if you simply can not find these words, leave a rose at that spot which both of you have selected – for that rose than says what matters most of all and should overpower all other things and all other words.
That rose says the words: “I still love you.” The other should accept this rose for the words which cannot be found, and remember the love and hope that you both share today.
__________ and ________, if there is anything you remember of this marriage ceremony, it is that it was love that brought you here today, it is only love which can make it a glorious union, and it is by love which your marriage shall endure.”