Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Halloween Wedding!!

One of my favorite days of the year is Halloween. I'm not a fan of the gory, scare-the-daylights-out-of-you stuff, I lean more towards the cute & fun Halloween decor. Plus, the candy is an added bonus.

So, imagine my delight when I my friend asked me to officiate her Halloween wedding. And - it's a costume party wedding. I have died and gone to heaven!!!

So, for the ceremony, I think I'm going to keep it simple and wear my black pantsuit, but with some Halloween touches. I think skeleton earrings are in order, as well as an orange scarf. Maybe a spider pin?

But the big question is...... what do I wear for the reception? I dressed as a pirate wench last year. A gypsy queen the year before that. I'm thinking Bride of Frankenstein may be the way to go this year. I had better get to work!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

When Uncle Ben's Just Won't Do......

Since many venues don't allow rice throwing after a wedding, it has become necessary to get creative for the grand finale.

I have had several couples whose guests blew bubbles as they walked down the aisle together, and the effect was beautiful - and really fun!

Here are some other options:

  • Rose petals - Guests can shower the bride and groom with flower petals as they sashay down the aisle
  • Confetti - Distribute little packets of confetti before the ceremony. You can even shred your junk-mail or old magazines for a colorful, recycled alternative. It's fun and eco-friendly!
  • Streamers - Tossed streamers can be a beautiful effect, especially when the colors coordinate with your theme. Just make sure your nephew doesn't try to show off his pitching arm.
  • Kazoos! - instead of throwing stuff, why not make a little music together? I'll bet your Uncle Ernie would love to play the kazoo as you walk down the aisle. And keep playing it..... all night long! (Um, you may want to think twice about this one.)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Butterflies in Your Bouquet!

Two weeks ago, my kids and I released the butterflies we raised from caterpillars. As our painted ladies fluttered away, I marveled at their delicate beauty. I was reminded of Mrs. Donahue, an elderly neighbor from my childhood, who had an amazing collection of butterfly brooches. It was a lovely morning.

As you can imagine, when I saw this butterfly bouquet at the Martha Stewart Weddings website, my heart skipped a beat.

So pretty - and simple to make on your own. And if a whole bouquet of butterflies is a bit too much for you, maybe just one or two would do the trick. Our painted ladies would appreciate it.

Monday, September 21, 2009

The wedding dress they'll talk about for years!

Well, I saw this dress and couldn't resist the urge to share.

I checked it out on where I learned that it was worn by professional belly dancer, Anna Atamanchuk, for her civil wedding ceremony in 2007.

This photo shows her performing in the dress. Now, imagine this dress as she walked down the aisle....

So, any brides out there daring enough for a gown like this one?

Friday, September 18, 2009

Friday Q & A: Wedding Blues

Question: Blue is my favorite color. How can I incorporate this into my wedding?

Answer: The easy answer is to have blue decorations, blue in the bridal bouquet, a blue cake.... you get the idea.

Since blue is so special to you, you may want to take it to the next level. In literature, blue often represents wide open spaces - the ocean and the sky.

If you like the ocean, you may want to consider a beach theme. Your ceremony can include a sand ceremony, with different shades of blue sand. Another option is a blessing ritual in which guests make a wish or bestow a blessing on seashells. The seashells are collected and placed in a decorative container which is then a pretty and meaningful keepsake for you.

A water-themed reading you can help you illustrate your blue ocean theme.

A great example is the poem, "Beach Chairs" by Joyce Ebrecht:

Sitting on the beach chairs
watching the setting sun
holding hands and reminiscing
how it all begun

Sitting on the beach chairs
watching the ships out on the sea
holding hands and smiling
together we're meant to be

Sitting on the beach chairs
watching people walking past
holding hands and knowing
that our love will always last

Sitting on the beach chairs
watching the waves along the shore
holding hands we realize
our love is stronger than before

Sitting on the beach chairs
watching the changing tide
holding hands with happiness
to be by each others side

Sitting on the beach chairs
watching the sunrise
holding hands with tears of joy
there are no more good-byes

Don't be afraid to be creative. But most of all, let your personality (and your love of blue!) shine through on your wedding day.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wedding Ceremony Class at Oakton Community College

I am pleased to announce that I will be teaching a class at Oakton Community College's Alliance for Lifelong Learning. The course is called "Creating a Unique Wedding Ceremony" and its purpose is to enable participants to create a wedding ceremony that is unique and personal. The class will cover topics such as selecting readings for your ceremony, identifying rituals to include in your ceremony, theme weddings, and finding ways to personalize your ceremony. There will also be a question and answer period, so participants can get specific advice.

The class will be offered at 7 p.m. on October 7th at Maine West High School and again on November 19th at Niles West High School
. You can register for the class online by clicking here.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Martha's Wedding Cupcakes!

As much as I try to dislike Martha Stewart, I can't help but love her fabulous cupcakes.
I know, I know - I'm weak!

Well, I just about fainted when I was waiting in line at the grocery store checkout and saw these in the latest issue of Martha Stewart Weddings.

Curse you, Martha!!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday Q & A: A Cermony Without Religion?

Question: My fiancee and I are not religious. Can we have a ceremony without religion?

Answer: Absolutely! I have worked with several couples who did not want a religious ceremony. We were able to create meaningful, personal ceremonies in every instance.

Recently, I married a couple who enjoyed a lovely ceremony (one of my favorites!) that was completely secular. I shared some funny anecdotes about how they met (a great story that had everyone in stitches) and how their relationship blossomed into love. They also participated in a Tasting Ritual, which none of their guests had ever seen before. After the ceremony, they received many positive comments. A few guests told the bride that theirs was the best ceremony they had ever witnessed.

So, don't worry that your ceremony will seem like something's missing. There are many rituals that are non-religious, so you have many, many options. Look into handfasting, wine sharing, exchanging leis or garlands.... be creative!

Most importantly, your ceremony should be a reflection of you. If you don't want a religious wedding, there is no reason you can't have an amazing, sacred ceremony - minus the religion.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Ben & Jerry's Celebrates Gay Marriage in Vermont

Ben & Jerry's
changed the name of Chubby Hubby to Hubby Hubby for this month in celebration of Vermont legalizing gay marriage. Although I'm disappointed that it will only be sold in Vermont, I think it's a wonderful expression of support - and celebration!

Now, if only I had a carton of Hubby Hubby to display next to my "Americone Dream

Monday, September 7, 2009

Wedding laughs!

When the Big Day finally arrives, even the most calm and collected people can get a bit nervous.
I have seen this lead to a few (unintentionally) memorable moments during the ceremony!
But, none have been quite like this. Notice the bride's reaction when the groom says "waffly wedded."

Friday, September 4, 2009

Friday Q & A: Why Hire a Celebrant?

Question: I never heard of a Celebrant until recently. Why should I hire a Celebrant for my wedding?

Answer: A Celebrant is an professional who works with couples to create a personalized ceremony that will reflect you and will represent your unique love story.

When asked how I'm different from a minister or a judge, I explain that a minister is an expert in his or her particular faith; a judge is an expert in the law; and a Celebrant is an expert in creating ceremonies and rituals. I was trained and certified by The Celebrant Foundation and Institute, of which I remain a member.

As for the details - a Celebrant will give you ownership. You will have complete authority over what is said and done during your ceremony. There are no strict rules to which you must adhere, so with a Celebrant, no one will tell you that you must do or say certain things - it's all up to you. If you have ideas for your wedding day (no matter how off-beat or non-traditional they may be) a Celebrant can help you make it happen!

In short, a Celebrant will help you make your wedding ceremony exactly the way YOU want it!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

What Ever Happened to Sleeves?

I have noticed something disturbing and wanted to bring it to your attention.

Sleeves have disappeared. It's true.
But don't be alarmed - this phenomenon appears to be limited to wedding gowns.

Seriously - just about every wedding gown I've seen in the past year has been sleeveless. So, where the heck did the sleeves go?

Well, I went on a mission to find out - and to see if wedding dresses with sleeves even exist.
It wasn't easy. I googled "long sleeve wedding dress" and "sleeve wedding dress" and tried other similar searches. Very often the dresses that showed up were (you guessed it!) sleeveless. One of the searches even resulted in my finding babydoll pajamas. I'm still trying to figure that one out.

But, I searched on and did ultimately find some lovely dresses.

So, for you brides out there who aren't as confident as Michelle Obama and may want to cover those upper arms - there is hope! It may take a bit of work, but your dress is out there.

Here are two of my favorites:

The one on the left, with the long jacket, is from ebay. The smoky-colored dress is by Jovani and listed as a bridesmaid dress, but I think it would be gorgeous for a bride.