It is so much fun supporting couples getting married. This year the venues have been incredible! Here are a few to explore.
At the Ocean’s Edge
When the bride told me the address and such for this wedding I did not realize it’s exact location. The gray house the the right in the photo at the corner of the yard next to the ocean. The lighthouse is the Eastern Point Lighthouse in Gloucester, MA. Stunning views. I had to speak loudly and protect my microphone a bit so as not to compete with Ole Posiedon’s kisses with the land!
Eastern Point Lighthouse, Gloucester MA
View from the Yard
Nadia, Michael, & boys
At the Farm
Another fun venue I have been to before is the Smith Barn and the Felton Senior and Junior Houses at Brooksby Farm in Peabody MA. The venues is managed by the Peabody Historical Society and Museum. Weddings are held in the back yard of the houses in a sweet courtyard area. Receptions are held in the Smith Barn across the Street.
Looking out to the orchards.
Dancing and Food in the Smith Barn
Nicholas & Michaela
Boston Public Library
One final venue was at the Boston Public Library in downtown Boston. I had never been to the library even though I am an online member. The courtyard is in the center of the library. The couple worked with a wedding planner for about a year and a half. A huge shout out to Ashley Elaine Events for a well coordinated event. I look forward to seeing the professional photos taken.
Jenna and Connor
Finishing prep in the courtyard.
Chamber Music Group
Gardens in the courtyard.
Many more places to explore the rest of the summer into the fall. All different and all lots of fun for guests and the couples alike.
Recently, I have been officiating more funerals, celebrations of life and memorial services. This is a time for families that can be overwhelming and not all families want to use a funeral parlor for these particular rites. I partner with some area funeral homes for people who may want interfaith, secular, or just spiritual rituals.
At times, I have also been asked to be at the internment of the deceased. This is sometimes not also requested up front, and it is important as an officiant to make sure you ask if you will be needed.
I am still learning that it is okay to ask lots of questions. Some of these are:
Will services be for a memorial service, and/or the internment at the cemetery?
Do there be any special readings to include? Will others be speaking?
Do you want to invite the people present to share or not?
Will there be any military, fraternal, or similar organizational style presentations?
Do you have a copy of the obituary to be read?
Who will deliver eulogy (eulogies)?
Do you have specific music you wish to be played?
Are there specific prayers, poetry, or readings you would like read?
Will there be a meal after the service you want family and friends to be invited to?
If you are needed at the cemetery for the internment, where will it be and at what time? How long do you want the service to be?
Will there be military rites at the burial? Which branch of the military?
Will you have pall bearers?
What do you want to say publicly about the deceased?
Will the ceremony have a religious, spiritual, or secular feeling?
The funeral parlor should have all of this information for you. It is also useful to double check when you meet with the family also.
There is no such thing as asking too many questions. The ones you do not ask might create upsets or breakdowns. Miscommunications happen and you want to make sure you have done everything you can to be clear.
The final thing I remind myself is that grief is love. It is a deep love. Be honoring of it.
We all get so busy with life that we sometimes forget to keep up with things like our websites and posts! Last year was a lovely array of ceremonies. I officiated weddings in a castle, on beaches, historic homes, and backyards. Each time I just fell in love with the support couples welcomed in creating the scripts for their special day.
The organization’s is “a professional membership organization dedicated to the promotion and advancement of the wedding officiant profession worldwide. With a strong focus on professional standards, industry outreach, and education, the IAPWO operates as a leading voice for professional wedding officiants both inside and outside the wedding and events industry.”
IAPWO offers continued training and development to better serve officiants in supporting the couples they work with.
Ceremonies and Passages is also now a member of the North of Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (NBCVB). The NBCVB promotes the towns and cities north of the Boston region as a destination for corporate and personal affairs and travel. Established by legislation as one of the state’s 16 regional tourism councils, NBCVB is the official liaison between the North of Boston region and the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism. The NBCVB has been in existence since 1955.
The NBCVB also supports couples who are planning weddings with resources such as venues and services. Couples needing information can go to the website to research or call for a copy of their destination planner.
I want to thank all of the wonderful couples I have had the honor and privilege to marry over the past couple of years. You are some of the kindest and loving people I have met and I wish you all the best in your visions for the future together.
For those planning their wedding this year, give me a call. There are weekend dates still available for the 2016 wedding season.
Live. Laugh. Play. Love.
Edited 10/14/2020: As of 2020 we have disassociated with Thumbtack/
Time flies so fast and I have not been able to acknowledge the fabulous couples I worked over the past few months. Each wedding was unique, fun and brought an appreciation for how important crafting a ceremony is. All of … Continue reading →
How fun is this! An award for being in service to the many couples who used my wedding officiating services this past year!
I LOVE working with couples creating the ceremonies of their dreams. It is an honor and pleasure to support everyone with their dreams. Thank you for the gifts you each have been and for those who are considering working with me.
There is a growing trend with photographers asking couples to invite their guests to not shoot photos during the ceremony. Some even give discounts for it. Many couples are beginning to ask for an announcement to be made before the service starts about this.
In the past and in many religious traditions, photographing a wedding during the ceremony was and sometimes still is seen as inappropriate. Today with smart phone technology I really feel for couples. Imagine going through the most important day in your life, turning around and looking up after a kiss to a sea of cell phones and time cameras pointed at you instead of beautiful faces of your family and friends. It is unsettling.
Viewing life through “the box” is not the same as being present with a couple during this sacred time. It is also difficult to walk down the aisle with multiple flashes going off and your life being broadcast all over social media before the time to “seal it with a kiss” happens.
I suggest you speak with your photographer and ask them if they have a preference. It certainly makes their job easier and you stand a better chance of someone’s flash not going off at the same time as the professionals and ruining an important moment. Your photographer will be grateful you brought the subject up!
Then, let your officiant know so they can make a gentle announcement on your behalf before the wedding service starts!
In Muslim traditions garlands are bestowed upon the couple. They were so beautiful and smelled so incredible.
Wedding season has begun for me this year. In April I had the honor of supporting a lovely couple who had taken a journey through many countries for many years before getting married. It was a wonderful opportunity to expand my own knowledge and bring compassion and the love of my craft to the forefront. She was from Bangladesh and the US and he was from Belgium. A multi-cultural and multi-religious collective desiring a non-denominational ceremony. Working with the couple and family members we created a beautiful ceremony enjoyed by all.
in writing the ceremony, we put important pieces in to place to honored the brides roots. A family friend led the placing of floral garlands made of carnations around the couples necks. Two young cousins brought the garlands forward to the stage. Next, another cousin brought a cup forward of a sacred juice for the bride and groom to drink from. After the ceremony, various friends and family members came forward offering prayers and stories. This ceremony was incredibly beautiful and the couple left for new adventures in Singapore a few days later.
What will you need to incorporate into your ceremony to honor your family and cultural traditions? Let me know! Together we can craft any ceremony you dream of having!
What an incredible year last year was bringing happiness to couples from around the country at their ceremonies! This year is shaping up to be even more incredible!
If you have gotten engaged get your bookings in if you are planning your wedding for this year. At this point the phone is ringing off the hook and there are many interviews happening. I have resources I can share about possible venues and services aside from my own.
Weddings and commitment ceremonies are steps in your future as a couple. The words you speak that day shape the rest of your life and how you interact with one another. It takes time to craft special written ceremonies that represent who you both are and the integrity of your relationship.
I create ceremonies geared to both of you. From readings, vows, to those special wedding traditions like candle ceremonies, honoring those who have passed and are there in spirit, to traditions that no one has ever done.
Humorous light-hearted ceremonies are fun too. Quotes from movies, characters in novels, and themed weddings can be a lot of fun to research and create.
With Valentine’s Day coming up, I am looking forward to hearing from you and being of service for your special day!