Larry James' CelebrateIntimateWeddings BLOG

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Tying the Knot ~ A Nice Addition to Your Wedding!

Filed under: Add-on Ceremonies,Wedding Ceremony,Wedding Tips,Wedding Video — Larry James @ 7:30 am
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Thomas Witham, Guest Author

“Tying the Knot” is a wedding ceremony that can be added to the main wedding ceremony whereby a couple ties a fisherman’s knot as their ceremony’s Primary Option. As a primary option, it is used after the exchanges of vows and rings. The couple, using large colored cords, ties this knot as the officiant reads a commentary. That commentary appears below. The theme of the commentary is that, like a fisherman’s knot, marriage strengthens and supports the bride and groom through life and, like the knot, their marriage grows stronger under pressure. A YouTube.com video of my first couple to use this option, Jeremy and Melanie, appears below.

Below is a sample of a “Tying the Knot” ceremony.

_____ and _____ have just sealed their relationship with the giving and receiving of rings. Today their relationship is further symbolized by the tying of a fisherman’s knot; a true lovers knot, for it is the strongest there is; its bond will not break, becoming ever stronger under pressure.

These two cords represent each of you as individuals – as the unique and special gifts you bring to your marriage. As you fasten your pieces together, these actions represent the joining of your two lives into one common purpose. The completed knot represents your future, secure in the knowledge your relationship will continue to be strong, despite the inevitable changes life brings.

Although the fisherman’s knot is one of the simplest to tie, it is also one of the sturdiest. As stress is applied, the knot becomes ever stronger. It is the goal of marriage to achieve a blending of hearts and lives, but like the spaces between these cords formed by the knot, let there also be spaces in your new life together, so each may encourage and nurture the individual growth of the other.

I ask that you now pull on this rope to see it strengthen under pressure while still allowing us to see the individual cords – just as your support of one another as beautiful and blessed individuals strengthens your union. As you hold one another in mutual concern and shared respect, may you continue holding each other tightly in your hearts and form a strong bond, now and forever. Let this knot indicate the strength of your love and be a symbol of your unity from this day forward.

The above words for the “Tying the Knot” ceremony were written by Thomas Witham, Wedding Officiant. Larry’s NOTE: When I get a request to add the “Tying the Knot” ceremony to the wedding ceremony, I allow the bride and groom to edit the words in any way they choose.

Copyright © 2015 – Thomas Witham. Thomas is a leading Chicago Wedding Officiant. As a wedding minister/wedding officiant, he performs wedding ceremonies in any state. He also play a central role in helping couples plan their wedding. Visit Thomas’ Website: www.DayofDreams.com

How to Tie a Fisherman’s Knot

Step 1: Grab ends. Grab a hold of both ends of the rope. The end in your left hand is end B, and the end in your right hand is end A.

Step 2: Cross ends. Cross end B in front of end A so that the end B is behind the loop and pointing down.

Step 3: Pull end B through loop. Pull end B up through the loop and to the left, thus creating a small loop on top of the larger loop below.

Step 4: Pull end B through small loop. Pull end B through the small loop from back to front with your right hand.

Step 5: Tighten knot. Tighten the knot by pulling end B with your right hand, while holding the part of the large loop next to end A in your left hand. You should now have a knot on the top of your large loop, and end A should be able to slide back and forth to make the loop larger or smaller.

Step 6: Pull end A through large loop. Pull end A through the large loop from behind, pull it up, thus creating another small loop on top of the larger loop below.

Step 7: Pull end A through small loop. Pull end A through the small loop from back to front, and pull tightly with your left hand.

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Larry James is an award winning, non-denominational wedding officiant and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: Cell: 480-205-3694. Pre-maritial relationship coaching is available and not required. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Something NEW about weddings is posted every 4th day on this Wedding BLOG. Check Larry’s availability.

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NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Monday, May 4, 2015

Wish Lanterns for Your Wedding

Make your guests “ooh” and “ahh!”

Here’s how to get that true wedding day glow! The best part is there are tons of beautiful lighting options to choose from for your big day. Picking the right one can really set the tone of your wedding and add a sweet, romantic feel.

WEDWishLanternsWish lanterns are a long-time tradition at Asian festivals for thousands of years, paper lanterns were used to celebrate the Chinese New Year and as a signaling device. Countless were launched to rid the people of their worries and to decorate the city’s sky with light. The flame would symbolize knowledge and wisdom.

Search for the kind of wish lanterns that are biodegradable, wire free and made from the highest quality flame resistant paper. Wish lanterns are traditionally made out of oiled rice paper stretched over a bamboo frame, containing a small candle or flameproof fuel cells. When you light the candle, the air heats up, and the lantern rises into the air. The lanterns will make a fantastic evening even more magical.

Most are stylish and elegantly designed, and are suitable for many events, including weddings and can be decorated or drawn on. Light your lantern, make a wish for the bride and groom and watch it float up into the evening sky. These lanterns are a perfect send off for the bride and groom. Paper lanterns for weddings symbolize a couple’s love for one another, bringing light and even more joy to the special day. It a wedding lantern display that will stun your guests and is sure to stay in the minds of everyone for years to come.

Once they come down, in time they are absorbed into the ground, since they are completely biodegradable. For material to be defined as truly biodegradable, half of it must break down within 180 days.

“If you decide to invite your guests to launch their own wishes, make sure you provide colorful markers so they can write down their well wishes for your future. Guests could send off their lanterns as you emerge from the chapel or outdoor alter, anytime during the reception or just as you are departing to start your new life together. It will be much easier to gather your sober guests at the beginning of the event, and having someone pre-fill the lanterns will save precious time.” ~ Nicole Kidder

While the flame is lit, wish lanterns can fly into the air for up to 15 minutes, traveling several miles in distance and up to 1,000 feet in altitude before the flame goes out and the lantern floats safely back to the ground. To maximize the visibility and enjoyment of a sky lantern release, and because they can travel such long distances, wish lanterns should always be released outdoors in a clear and wide open space without any overhead obstructions like trees, power lines or buildings.

To determine the best place and time to launch the lanterns at your wedding, it may be best to talk with your wedding consultant/planner.

LanternsImagine the finale to the big day, when the happy couple, and all their guests, release dozens of lanterns, bearing messages of love and luck, into the sky. This is usually done immediately after the bride and groom are pronounced husband and wife and after they have their final walk down the aisle from the alter.

Wedding Sky Lantern Ceremony: Before sending up your sky lanterns, have the Minister/Wedding Officiant or Master of Ceremonies share a little about the symbolism of the wish lanterns and the following heart felt poem by Author D. Simone with your wedding guests.

May light always surround you, hope kindle and rebound you.
May your hurts turn to healing, your heart embrace feeling.
May wounds become wisdom, every kindness a prism.
May laughter infect you, your passion resurrect you.
May goodness inspire your deepest desires.
Through all that you reach for, may your arms never tire.
You may now release your wish lanterns.

Another way to achieve the wow-factor during a Rocky Point, Mexico beach wedding is to incorporate Chinese sky lanterns into the ceremony or reception.

Please check with your wedding venue and local marshal to see if it is legal to use in your state before you purchase. If you do decide to integrate a sky lantern release into your wedding, make sure you adhere to all safety warnings and proceed with extreme caution. Available at Walmart and other places. Google: “Wish Lanterns for Your Wedding.”

BONUS Article: Wish Upon a Lantern

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Copyright © 2015 – Larry James. This information is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website and Wedding Blog. Larry James is a non-denominational minister and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: Cell: 480-205-3694. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Check Larry’s availability.

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NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Sunday, January 4, 2015

Marriage Quilt Wrapping Ceremony

Although this “add-on” quilt wrapping ceremony is not the most popular ceremony in the Valley of the Sun – Greater Phoenix Area – it is something for some brides and grooms to consider (perhaps where the weather is not so hot). 😉

QuiltCeremonyIn some Native American traditions, couples are wrapped in a blanket to signify their coming together and their new life together. This ceremony is also inspired by the way Tahitians have married for centuries. The vows culminate with the wrapping of the couple in a traditional and colorful Tahitian wedding quilt.

Instead of signifying unity through a candle lighting ritual, some couples are wrapped in a quilt made from the fabric of friends and family to signify unification, the warmth and support of friends and family that are needed to sustain a healthy relationship, the comfort we bring to each other, and the bond between us that will continue to develop.

Some couples ask family and friends to send them fabric scraps in a specified size. You can sent some away to folks who are not able to attend in person. Then they have a quilt made which they are then wrapped in by their Wedding Officiant at their wedding, symbolizing how the love and warmth of others would nurture and strengthen them together. This is a quilt which has been signed with love, from family and friends. Some couples choose to use the quilt as something to stand on instead of wrapping it around them.

QuiltCeremony2Together within this blanket, they will sign their marriage license. This usually comes right before the kiss. Next, the Wedding Officiant/Minister announces the kiss… they then embrace and kiss to celebrate that they are now officially united. The quilt would then be removed by the Wedding Officiant/Minister and placed on the altar table or handed to someone to hold.

After the ceremony, some couples display it at the reception and ask the guests to sign this very special quilt as their guest book. The marriage quilt could also come out again for the couples first dance, wrapped around their shoulders as they twirl slowly around the dance floor. It can be used as a prop in their wedding photographs.

One couple had the marriage quilt made with 26 squares to represent the letters of the alphabet with the intention of using it as a baby blanket at sometime in the future. Another bride and groom chose to kneel before me just before the kiss as I draped them in the marriage quilt, shoulder to shoulder. The brides’ father came forward and asked a blessing.

Here are some words that I have used in the past. Keep in mind that in my ceremonies, the bride and groom are asked to edit anything they would like to add, change or delete. Some prefer to shorten this part of the ceremony.

QuiltCeremony3Minister: (Before the kiss, the couple moves to a table that contains the marriage license and the minister lightly wraps the quilt around their shoulders). This quilt signifies the warmth and support of family and friends that are needed to sustain a healthy relationship. It signifies the bond between them and the closeness that will continue to develop day after day. And, it signifies the comfort and beauty they bring to each other and will continue to bring to each other.

_____ and _____, take a moment to just breathe, and simply enjoy your friends and family who have gathered here to spend this day with you. This group of loved ones may never be together in the same place again. Take some time to think about how they have touched your lives, and why they’re here with you today. Marriage isn’t just the joining together of two lives, but the joining together of two families and who have cherished and loved you for all your lives.

Let me draw special attention to the bride and groom’s families. Today, as parents, you look with love and affirmation on the faces of your children, whose independence you’ve nurtured with your love, guidance, and support. Not withstanding all the challenges of their upbringings, they now represent the fullness of your lives. Each one of you is an enduring part of who they are, having made an indelible mark on their characters. May you be for both of them now, what you were to the one: accepting, supportive, caring, and with a generosity of spirit that always includes them both.

Ladies and gentleman, your presence here is a visible expression of your love and respect for their decision to marry, and reminds them that they don’t belong to one another alone, but to a larger community of friends and relatives who wish them well. As a part of that community, I invite all of you to play your part – by lending an ear, a hand of kindness, a voice of experience, an encouraging smile, and the gift of your company. Stand beside them, and never between them. Offer them your love and your support, but not your judgment. Support their union with your friendship.

At this time, together, within this blanket, they will sign their marriage license. _____ and _____ (two witnesses) will now join us to make this part of the ceremony official.

BONUS Articles: More “Add-on” ceremonies!

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Copyright © 2015 – Larry James. This information is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website and Wedding Blog. Larry James is a non-denominational minister and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or 800-725-9223. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Check Larry’s availability.

comment2Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Watering the Tree Ceremony

Filed under: Add-on Ceremonies,Wedding Tips — Larry James @ 7:30 am
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The tree planting ceremony can be used to symbolize the joining together of two individuals or the joining of two families.

On a table behind the Wedding Officiant/Minister you would have a potted tree or sapling, something perhaps with special meaning to the couple or taken from a special place. You would also have two small buckets of dirt, two gardening trowels as well as a small watering can placed on the table. Planting a tree – even a small sapling – can be messy so most couples prefer to have the tree already planted and at the appropriate time use two small watering cans to only water the tree.

WateringTheTreeAfter the ceremony, the couple plants the tree in at their home or a special location to symbolize the putting down of roots, longevity and strengths in their marriage.

Watering the Tree Ceremony

Wedding Officiant: _Bride_ and _Groom_ will now take part in a Watering the Tree Ceremony, to symbolize the roots of their relationship, and the continued growth of their love, as they become each others family today. It will symbolically represent the growth of their love for one another. Please follow me to the table behind me.

Love is the essence of human experience and emotion. It is the root of all and everything we, as humans, do. Love enriches our experience, and fills our lives with meaning. It gives us a firm base from which to grow, to learn, and to change. Your Love must weather the challenges of daily life and the passage of time.

Just like the tree they have planted, marriage requires constant nurturing and nourishment. As they provide the sun, soil, and water for this tree, they will provide the encouragement, trust, and love needed on a daily basis to consciously nurture and nourish their connection to each other.

Wedding Officiant: Let your relationship and your love for each other be like this tree you have planted today. Let it grow tall and strong. Let it stand tall during the winds and rains and storms, and come through the desert sun unscathed. Like a tree, your marriage must be resilient.

Wedding Officiant: Let us now provide some water for the tree.

Wedding Officiant: Remember to nourish each other, with words of encouragement, trust, and love. This is needed on a daily basis so you each can grow and reach your fullest potential – just like this tree. The Bride and Groom will plant this tree in their backyard to always be a symbol of their love for each other.

(Optional) Prayer for the Watering the Tree Ceremony

Wedding Officiant: Dear God, we stand before you in awe as we witness the miracle of your creation – this young tree. Unique and original, just like the bride and groom and unlike anything that ever was before or will be. Each began with a single seed, concealing a complex potential that miraculously unfolds with each passing day. We pray that the roots of this tree will gain hold and spread deep, drawing nourishment from the fertile earth.

We pray that the trunk of this tree will grow healthy and strong, withstanding the forces of nature and to be able to support its canopy of branches and leaves. So may this couple possess a healthy body and a strong moral spirit, holding steadfast to their own integrity and understanding of the tempests and temptations that could weaken them. They will watch these branches bud and blossom, giving shade and beauty for all to enjoy. Help them to nourish and nurture this tree so that they may both mature and prosper, fulfilling to the greatest extent possible the potential for which God placed them on earth. And so it is. And so it is. Amen.

BONUS Article: Watering the Tree Ceremony

CelebrateIntimateWeddings

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Copyright © 2014 – Larry James. This information is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website and Wedding Blog. Larry James is a non-denominational minister and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or 800-725-9223. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Check Larry’s availability.

comment2Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
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Friday, December 20, 2013

Create a Wedding Time Capsule

Invite guests attending your wedding to write you a note that will be read on a future anniversary. The notes can include well wishes, advice for married life, favorite memories of you two together, or anything else they’d like to include. Make it easy for your guests by either including 2 cards, one with instructions and another to write on with your invitations, post about it on your wedding website, or have nice stationery and pens available at the venue.

winebox2Pass around a box during the reception for your guests to drop in their notes. Next, seal it up until your anniversary! What could be better during an anniversary than to read the blessings of loved ones at the time of the wedding?

Another twist is to craft a “Love Letter and Wine Box.” Before your big day, gather a wooden box, a bottle of wine or the alcohol of your choice, and two glasses. Write love notes to each other, explaining your feelings as you prepare to start your new life together as husband and wife. Seal your letter without allowing your partner to read what you’ve written.

Toward the end of the ceremony, place the love notes inside the wooden box with the wine and glasses. Take turns hammering the box shut, one nail at a time, until the box is sealed.

Agree to keep the box sealed until a special anniversary, like your 10th or 20th, unless you hit a rough patch. Then, break open the box, pour the wine, read the letters, and remember what is was that brought you together in the first place! Take a look at the words you can use for the “Love Letter and Wine Box Ceremony” here. You can order a custom made wine box with two keys here or another version of the Wine Box here.

BONUS Articles: 20+ Add-On Ceremonies for Your Wedding!
Create a Romantic Wedding Time Capsule…

CelebrateIntimateWeddings

Click logo to go to Wedding Website!

Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. This information is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website and Wedding Blog. Larry James is a non-denominational minister and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or 800-725-9223. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Watering the Tree Ceremony

Planting a tree to celebrate a marriage is an ancient tradition that is shared by numerous cultures around the world. It is also a ritual that is catching the eye of modern brides who are looking for a clever twist on the unity candle or sand ceremony to symbolize their newly intertwined lives. The tree planting ceremony not only incorporates a visual of togetherness, but it provides a memorable “take-away” that will continue on with the couple far beyond their wedding day.

weddingtreeIt’s also a great ceremony for the environmentally conscious. Trees take many years of growth to reach their version of “adulthood,” and they are a symbol of longevity, tranquility, and life itself.

Preparation: Purchase a small potted tree preferably in a clear pot. Display it on a table behind the Minister/Wedding Officiant with one or two decorated watering cans. Toward the end of your ceremony, the bride and groom walk over to sprinkle a small amount of soil to complete the planting and water the tree together, symbolizing the tender care a relationship requires but also showing the beautiful growth that results. Some couples choose to have their parents, attendants or guests to participate as well. After your wedding, take the tree home and plant it in your yard. There you can watch your love tree bloom and grow throughout the years… just as your relationship will grow.

The best tree to choose is one that has special meaning to you as a couple, perhaps one that you shared a first kiss under or that represents your hometown. You can either buy a sapling or propagate a cutting from a tree from a meaningful location. Sometimes the bride and groom each select a tree, or in the case of a remarriage with a blended family, the children can each have their own. We might call this tree the “family trees.” 😉

Commentary by Ann Keeler Evans: “One of the many reasons to use a tree as a metaphor at your wedding ceremony is the incredible symmetry of trees. The root system of a healthy tree is as large and beautiful as the canopy. As you stand beneath the leafy spread, you stand on ground that is held together by an expansive root system that enriches and supports the earth. There is nothing that a marriage needs more than the same sort of grounding a tree has. We must plant the tree, and our marriages, in soil that will nourish and support it (and you). Carefully cultivated, and protected, those roots will flourish and provide nutrients for the tree to grow.

The trunk of the tree can be relied on to support us. With good roots, we stand firm in one another’s love. We can lean on one another when we’re tired or shaken. When we hold one another and relax into that embrace, we can feel the roots of our love. And the canopy spreads out above us, sheltering us from the sun in the summer, turning brilliant colors in the autumn, tracing lacy patterns against the sky in the winter and bursting into bloom again with the return of spring. So our marriage moves with the seasons, things change, but the essence of the marriage remains, strong and flexible, rooted deep into the earth.”

NOTE: A favorite plant can also be substituted for a tree with a few word changes in the ceremony.

Suggested Words for the Watering of the Tree Ceremony

WateringPlantOfficiant: _Bride_ and _Groom_ will now take part in a Watering the Tree Ceremony, to symbolize the roots of their relationship, and the continued growth of their love, as they become each others family today. It will symbolically represent the growth of their love for one another. Please follow me to the table behind me.

Love is the essence of human experience and emotion. It is the root of all and everything we, as humans, do. Love enriches our experience, and fills our lives with meaning. It gives us a firm base from which to grow, to learn, and to change. Your Love must weather the challenges of daily life and the passage of time.

Just like the tree they are planting, marriage requires constant nurturing and nourishment. As they provide the sun, soil, and water for this tree, they will provide the encouragement, trust, and love needed on a daily basis to consciously nurture and nourish their connection to each other.

At this time, please put on your gloves and sprinkle a small amount of soil to complete the planting.

Officiant: Let your relationship and your love for each other be like this tree you plant today. Let it grow tall and strong. Let it stand tall during the winds and rains and storms, and come through unscathed. Like a tree, your marriage must be resilient. It must weather the challenges of daily life and the passage of time. And just like the tree you are planting, marriage requires constant nurturing and nourishment.

Officiant: Next, provide some water for the tree.

[They both hold the watering can and water the tree and set the watering can down on the table. The couple may want to wear some planting gloves. The groom will hand a napkin to the bride to wipe her hands, if necessary, then he wipes his hands.]

Officiant: Remember to nourish each other, with words of encouragement, trust, and love. This is needed on a daily basis so you each can grow and reach your fullest potential – just like this tree. The Bride and Groom will plant this tree in their backyard to always be a symbol of their love for each other.

Optional Prayer for the Watering the Tree Ceremony

Dear God, we stand before you in awe as we witness the miracle of your creation – this young tree. Unique and original, just like the bride and groom and unlike anything that ever was before or will be. Each began with a single seed, concealing a complex potential that miraculously unfolds with each passing day. We pray that the roots of this tree will gain hold and spread deep, drawing nourishment from the fertile earth.

We pray that the trunk of this tree will grow healthy and strong, withstanding the forces of nature and to be able to support its canopy of branches and leaves. So may this couple possess a healthy body and a strong moral spirit, holding steadfast to their own integrity and understanding of the tempests and temptations that could weaken them. They will watch these branches bud and blossom, giving shade and beauty for all to enjoy. Help them to nourish and nurture this tree so that they may both mature and prosper, fulfilling to the greatest extent possible the potential for which God placed them on earth. And so it is. Amen.

BONUS Articles: More Add-on Ceremonies

Larry’s NOTE: A few words were borrowed from a similar ceremony by Penny Reynolds. Thank you, Penny!

Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website. Larry James is a non-denominational minister and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or 800-725-9223. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Loving Cup Ceremony

Filed under: Add-on Ceremonies — Larry James @ 7:30 am
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The use of the wine cup or Loving Cup at a wedding is an ancient tradition. By the 15th century it was common for the Celtic people to toast each other with a ceremonial Loving Cup. In Scotland this cup is known as a quaich, which comes from the Celtic word cuach, meaning cup. The Loving Cup ceremony also has its roots in Irish, French and Jewish cultures.

lovingCup2Today there are different versions of the Loving Cup. The traditional quaich is shaped like a 2 handled bowl and often has a inlaid Celtic design. Loving Cups come in many designs, shapes, sizes and colors. Some couples choose use a crystal wine glass and have their names and the date of their wedding etched in glass.

lovingcup3The purpose of the Loving Cup ceremony is for the bride and groom to share their first drink together as wife and husband and to show the coming together of two families.

Special words can be added to include the Bride and Groom’s parents (and friends) as part of this ceremony.

The cup is then passed down from generation to generation, ensuring happiness and good fortune to all who drink from it. This is a special moment for the couple to toast their love, devotion, and friendship and usually comes toward the end of the wedding ceremony.

Click here for my words to the Loving Cup Ceremony.

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Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. Larry James is an award winning, non-denominational wedding officiant and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or Cell: 480-205-3694. Pre-maritial relationship coaching is available and not required. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (96 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Something NEW about weddings is posted every 4th day on this Wedding BLOG. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Sunday, March 31, 2013

The Blending of the Sands Ceremony

The “Blending of the Sands” ceremony (often called the Unity Sand Ceremony) can be a beautiful and meaningful alternative to the “Unity Candle” ceremony. Like a Unity candle the pouring of two different colored sands together is used to symbolize the joining of the bride and groom or the joining of their families.

tamarablendThe “Blending of the Sands” concept was originally created by Geneene L. Thornton in 1993 and was used primarily for beach weddings in the San Diego area. The problem with the Unity Candle, especially on the beach, is the least puff of wind and the candles usually blow out.

Like a Unity candle, the symbolism for the Blending of the Sands is similar. This ceremony is usually added toward the end of the wedding ceremony.

This ceremony requires three small vials or vases, one for you and your fiancé to pour the sand into and two for each of you to pour the sand from. Each of the two vials of colored sand symbolizes the separate lives of the bride and groom and their families. The two outside vials or vases can be used later to display fresh flowers following the wedding. Some couples pour the sand from two sea shells. You can put your vase containing your combined sand on display as a constant reminder of your special day!

If your wedding ceremony is being performed on a beach, have the minister scoop up a little sand from the beach with a sea shell and pour it into the small bottle to symbolize the building of the foundation of the relationship and to give you a momento directly from the beach. (Larry’s Note: Yes, I know… you don’t build a foundation on sand! Let’s not get picky, picky! 😉 )

ForeverFrameUse two different colored sands which you can find at most arts and crafts stores and Bridal Shops. Small glass bottles or vials are usually found there as well. A nice touch is to pour the colored sands into a small “heart-shaped” bottle. Later, you can melt some wax to seal it to hold the sand in place, then seal it with a cork or lid. Have your names and your wedding date etched in the glass bottle prior to the ceremony.

After the Wedding Officiant or Minister reads the text for the ceremony, the bride and groom pour the two containers of sand into the third container simultaneously. You may wish to leave a small amount of sand in each vial to symbolize that although you are now joined as one, you are still free to express your own individuality.

This is also a great way to include children or step-children (blended families) into the ceremony. Obtain several extra vials with a different color of sand for each child. See the Blending the Sands Ceremony #2 – for Bride, Groom and Children or we can customize this ceremony to include portions of the Blended Family Ceremony.

The combined sand makes a wonderful wedding keepsake for the bride and groom and a constant reminder of their promises on their wedding day.

BONUS Article: The Blending of the Sands with a “New” Twist! – The Forever Frame!

Click here for many other suggestions for “add-on” ceremonies for your Wedding.

Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. Larry James is an award winning, non-denominational wedding officiant and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or Cell: 480-205-3694. Pre-maritial relationship coaching is available and not required. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Something NEW about weddings is posted every 4th day on this Wedding BLOG. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Monday, November 19, 2012

The Lasso Ceremony

Filed under: Add-on Ceremonies — Larry James @ 8:30 am
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The Lasso Ceremony unites Two Souls in the “Lasso” of Everlasting Love! This tradition is usually associated with Hispanic and Filipino families.

LassoCeremonyLasso (sometimes called, “lazo”) or rope is placed around the bride and groom’s shoulders (groom’s shoulder’s first) in the form of an “8” (the infinity symbol) – after they have exchanged their vows – to symbolize their everlasting union. This is usually done by the officiant, however, family members can also take part in this ritual. The couple wears the lasso throughout the remainder of the service.

It is sometimes made of rosary beads, white ribbon, orange flowers, fabric, silver, crystal or elaborately painted wood. It can also be placed around the couple’s necks, or wrists. If you have children; they may also be included as they will definitely be a part of the new family.

The Veil and the Lasso are both associated with a wedding prayer during the ceremony. Special additional members of the wedding party may be in charge of “lassoing” the Bride and Groom together after they kneel for the wedding prayer. They drape what is usually a white satin circle of cord around the shoulders of the kneeling Bride and Groom.

After the Lasso, the Veil is placed over the shoulders of the Groom and the shoulders or head and shoulders of the Bride. It may have to be pinned in place in order to stay. Thus tied together symbolically, the couple remains kneeling for the optional prayer.

After the prayer and before either attempts to rise, at the end of the ceremony, the lasso is removed by the same people who put it on and given to the bride as a memento of her becoming the mistress of the groom’s heart and home.

Different is good and added ceremonies like the Lasso Ceremony will keep the guests interested in the ceremony and make it very special for the Bride and Groom.

For more ideas and ceremonies that can be added to the Wedding Ceremony, click here!

Copyright © 2012 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s “romantic” Wedding Website. Larry James is an award winning, non-denominational wedding officiant and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or Cell: 480-205-3694. Pre-maritial relationship coaching is available and not required. You will find more than 470 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Something NEW about weddings is posted every 4th day on this Wedding BLOG. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A Chocolate Lover’s Wedding

And now… for something completely different!

Since 2002 I have been performing “romantic” wedding ceremonies. Recently while interviewing a couple they told me that they both had a passion for chocolate and instead of adding the Unity Candle or the Blending of the Sands ceremony to their ceremony they wanted me to come up with a way to have chocolate be a part of the ceremony.

WEDChocolateThemeAfter a little brain-storming with the bride and groom our creative juices began to flow and we came up with “A Chocolate Lover’s Wedding!”

I suggested that their invitations, their guest book and pen set, the ring pillow and the flower girl baskets be a light shade of brown. The guest pen wrote with brown ink.

chocolateheartsToward the end of their wedding ceremony I had the bride and groom profess their love for each other by offering each other a taste of their favorite chocolate truffles.

Two hand-made Romànicos chocolate truffles were presented by the mothers to the bride and groom and were wrapped in a tiny box with special paper with the word “Love” all over it. I called this part of the ceremony “Chocolate Unity.” They each took a bite from one truffle and the remaining truffle was put back into the box to be enjoyed on their first anniversary. Larry’s Note: I doubt seriously if it lasted past their honeymoon. 😉

“Chocolate Unity” was a simple addition to the regular wedding ceremony and was a fun idea of how couples can customize a ceremony with fresh words to make it memorable. The guests loved the brief ceremony and each guest was given a chocolate truffle to share with their partner as they left for the reception.

hersheykissThe colors at the reception were a milk chocolate brown. Ceremonial chocolate kisses were scattered over each table. A white chocolate dove on a nest of dark chocolate twigs was the centerpiece at each table. The children were served an iced chocolate drink with chocolate chip cookies.

There was an ice cream sundae bar with vanilla and chocolate ice cream and bowls set out with different things for the guests could add to their sundaes; chocolate sauce, sprinkles, nuts, cherries, whipped cream, chocolate chips, and much more.

chocolatefondueThe adults offered a special toast to the bride and groom with their choice of a Godiva Chocolate Liqueur or a shot of Vincent Van Gogh Chocolate Vodka.

Perhaps one of the most dramatic chocolate wedding “favors” was the chocolate fountain. Holding court at the end of a table with a chocolate-colored table clothe, this aromatic structure invited the guests to grab a fork and dip an array of chocolate-friendly treats, fondue style.

A 4-tiered chocolate cake was served with some of it ending up on the bride and grooms faces as they each took a bite. The wedding cake topper featured a chocolate statue of the bride and groom in an embrace.

chocoatetoufflecakeA beautifully wrapped box of Ghirardelli Intense Dark Chocolates was presented by the bride and groom to the parents at the reception.

The creativity expressed during the ceremony and the reception was a terrific way for the bride and groom to demonstrate their love of chocolate and their love for each other in very unique ways. It also illustrates the ways – that with a little imagination – wedding ceremonies can be customized. It was definitely a wedding and reception their guests will not soon forget.

chocolatebottleAfter the wedding another couple told me of a wedding they attended that also used chocolate. The groom was in the Navy and they were married on a boat in front of the Statue of Liberty. They wrote a love note to each other, put it in a chocolate bottle and tossed it into the water.

chocolatehotelAnd the honeymoon? They honeymooned at The Chocolate Boutique Hotel in Bournemouth, England, the only chocolate themed hotel in the world! The boutique hotel has 13 unique chocolate themed bedrooms which provide accommodation for up to 25 people ensuring a great night’s sleep.

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Click book cover for info!

If you want to know more about chocolate, the book to the right will tell you more about chocolate than you could ever imagine. Larry’s Review: Cal Orey’s book, “The Healing Powers Of Chocolate” blends my two favorite things. . . chocolate and romance (not necessarily in that order). This book will rev up your romance and titillate your sensibilities. Treat yourself and your partner to all the truth about chocolate that’s fit to print! P.S. Check out page 147.

BONUS Article: Chocolate Themed Wedding, Destination: Belize

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Copyright © 2011 – Larry James. This information is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website and Wedding Blog. Larry James is an award winning, non-denominational wedding officiant and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: Cell: 480-205-3694. Pre-maritial relationship coaching is available and not required. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Something NEW about weddings is posted every 4th day on this Wedding BLOG. Check Larry’s availability.

the-archives2Click for Archives! ~ Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

commentNOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Lots of Wedding Ideas on: Larry’s Pinterest Page

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