creative ceremonies Archives - Ann McKenzie
 

Tag: creative ceremonies

 In December , Eric ( my fiance’) and I went to Arizona and were inundated with majestic views everywhere we looked.  At times , I felt overwhelmed with emotion. The majesty of the Grand Canyon https://www.nps.gov/grca/index.htm at sunset was breathtaking. We stayed for dinner and had the pleasure of seeing the stars over the Grand Canyon too. Boy what a day! I have always been in love with  trees and water but the desert has its own kind of magic. The photo seen here is from Antelope Canyon- you have to book a tour through the Navajo Indian Reservation https://www.antelopecanyon.com/

Since that time I have been busy officiating weddings most weekends. I am fortunate that the majority are outside in nature but it is not the same as taking time for yourself without any obligations to others. 

This was truly a rejuvenating trip for our energy and soul. Gratitude comes easy when you are blessed with beauty all around you.

 

I realized recently how much nature means to me. We had not been on a trip in nature by ourselves for 6 months. That is a long time for us. We traveled to Elkin, NC so I could officiate a wedding at the Barn at Blueberry Hill While in Elkin, wttp://www.blueberryhillweddingbarnelkinnc.com/


For more information about wedding officiant :http://www.annmckenzie.net/

 

 

 

 

 

 

While in Elkin, we camped at the the the Bryd’s Branch Family Campground http://byrdsbranchcampgroundcom/   

This was our breakfast nook. After running the rehearsal and officiating the wedding, it was relaxing to come back to nature without any commitments. This was time well spent recharging our energy. Another bonus was a waterfall that we  hiked to 1/2 mile away.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We came back to civilization on Sunday afternoon before our trip home to enjoy a trip to a local winery https://www.jonesvondrehle.com/

We got caught in an unexpected rainstorm. I can think of worse places to be stuck. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The following weekend I officiated a wedding at Thorndale Oaks in Oxford, NC http://www.thorndaleoaks.com/

This is a beautiful venue an hour north of Cary . It was a wonderful wedding, but it was time to recharge again with nature. Eric and I traveled to Carolina Beach that evening and spent the next two days swimming in the ocean while staying with my child hood friend, Diane. 

 

 

 

 

 

It seems after the lengthy  dry spell of very little time in nature since December , we were at  it again for the third  weekend in a row travelling to Spartanburg, SC for Brenda, Eric’s stepmom’s 80th birthday party. We had the fun time staying at her daughter and son in laws’ pond house by ourselves. What a serene place after visiting with family and attending a very large party on Saturday night. Sometimes being around a lot of people can drain your energy. As much as I love socializing, I find the need time to myself in solitude or nature . It recharges my energy and brings me back to a firm foundation with my inner spirit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We decided to  have a little extra fun in Spartanburg exploring . We found a Rock Bottom Moonshine, where they make their own legal moonshine infused with fruit or charred wood( delicious and smooth) http://www.rockbottomdistillers.com/

As well as an authentic Cuban restaurant https://www.facebook.com/ACaribbeanSweetness/?hc_ref=NEWSFEED&fref=nf

Many of us can feel our energy drained after being around some people, as well as others who seem to give us energy.  As I grow spiritually throughout my life, I realize that I have started focusing more of my time with my energy boosting friends. I love all my friends but you have to take care of your own spirit and limit your time with others who do not want to take responsibility for their own happiness. I am always willing to work with others who want to find more joy and happiness  in life if they are willing to take the time and effort for this life-changing spiritual journey http://omnigirl.net/contact/

It is a real commitment with desire coming from your soul, to find self-love and happiness in everything  you do. It is a practice with daily steps , but well worth the reward to live a  joy-filled life. Everyone can do, but not everyone is willing to make the change. Your heart and soul will thank you for it. Start by spending more time in nature- it is truly a way to recharge your energy.

Also, taking time to meditate or just quiet your thoughts for a few minutes, can bring peace to a hectic day.  This is something I learned in my 30s and it has been the path I have followed since then. My life is filled with joy, and when I experience negativity in myself, I take time to think of everything I am grateful for. I also remember to talk kind to myself just as I would to my friends and loved ones. I wish you peace, love and joy in your life- you deserve all the happiness you can find!

Weddings are focused on the couple as they should be. But sometimes the couple wants to acknowledge the role their mothers have had in their life and honor them at the ceremony. One example of the Rose Ceremony is found here https://www.greatofficiants.com/mothers-rose-presentation

Red Rose Ceremony

I have done this in many weddings using  red roses  but any flower can be used. Both mothers are always appreciative of being recognized as a key factor in the couples life up until this point.Rose and rings The ceremony ends with “These Roses are a promise that no matter how far away you are that you are not forgotten and that you are always in their hearts.” This is very touching and fun to be a surprise at the wedding. Photo by http://www.lindsayaikmanphoto.com

 

 

 

Mothers Holding the Rings

Another way to honor both mothers is to have them hold the rings and bring them forward for the ring exchange during the ceremony. This a way to include your mothers and also make it easy for the wedding party to keep their hands free for bouquets, helping with bride’s dress, etc. 

The Last Kiss as a Single Person to the Mothers

The last kiss as a single person before you become a couple includes the mothers https://celebrateintimateweddings.wordpress.com/2010/11/06/last-kiss-before-the-first-kiss/

 In this blog the officiant invites the mothers up just before the couple kisses to give them one last kiss as a single person.

“These mother’s their lips were the first to kiss them and bring them into this world and today a mother’s love – together with their blessings – will be first to send them on their way to their new life together as wife and husband.

Mothers. . . please kiss the Bride and Groom!”

Another way to do it is to surprise the mothers by having the couple go to them early in the ceremony and give them a kiss, with the officiant saying : “At this time ( the couple) would like to have their last kiss as single people……they would like to have that kiss come from the two people who taught them love and gave them their first kiss, their mothers.” .

If you would like more ideas about ceremonies  please contact me at http://www.annmckenzie.net/contact/

I will be happy to help!

Unity Ceremonies can be included in your wedding ceremony. They symbolize the couple’s separate lives becoming joined into one future life together. One of the most popular is the candle lighting ceremony , where the couple lights an individual candle then uses each separate candle  to light the center candle. It is a beautiful ceremony. Pinterest is a good source of information for Unity Ceremonies : https://www.pinterest.com/castlefarms/unity-ceremonies/?lp=true

I has been my privilege to help direct many  types of Unity Ceremonies. The Sand Ceremony  can include children from a previous relationship such as the sand ceremony. The couple as well as each child has a different color sand. They pour them together in a vase and realize the individual sands once joined can not be separated . It is a fun way to include children. This is from Vicky and Jessica wedding and including Jessica’s  3 children .

 

 

 

 

 

The Hand-fasting Ceremony is also known as  “Tying the Knot” . It is done by draping pieces of cord or cloth over each couples hands and arms , then the couple pulls the strands apart and it forms a knot. It symbolizes the couples’ devotion and connection to each other.   This was a very creative way for Andrea and Ian to say their vows to each other. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The pebble ceremony includes the guests during a ceremony. Each guest holds a stone during the ceremony, making a wish for the couple and then drops it in the jar near the end of the ceremony. The couple may light a candle over the pebbles.  Kathryn and Rich chose this ceremony. 

 

 

 

 

 

The Unity Painting is a really fun ceremony but can be a little messy. A blank canvas with an interlocking heart in  the center, made from masking tape, is placed on a table covered by white paper for spills. The couple and even the family can be included. Each person pours a tiny can across the top of the canvas ,letting the paint drip down. It makes an abstract painting. When you remove the masking tape, you are left with an interlocking heart in white in the center of the painting. Kendra and Matt decided on this fun unity ceremony.

Photo: Lindsay Aikman Photography

 

 

 

 

 

 

I would love to discuss ways to add an extra level of participation for you and your partner in your wedding. You can contact me at http://www.annmckenzie.net/contact/

Your Wedding! Your Way!

| 4 Comments

The wedding ceremony is intended to show your love story to your family and friends. It is an expression of the love you have for one another and a way to share this with the people that are important to you. I always impress upon couples that it is their ceremony, it can be anything they want http://www.annmckenzie.net/ceremonies/.

I find that couples like the structure of a traditional ceremony: opening words, the gathering of friends, declaration of support, marriage address, vows, exchange of rings, and the final words. This is true for weddings whether they are spiritual, secular or religious. I began officiating weddings in North Carolina when we changed the laws to allow LGBT couples to marry. I was upset with some of the NC government employees, who did not want to do their job and marry all couples. I had become an ordained minister to open an Energy Healing business. It allows you to console someone with a touch on the shoulder, hand etc. A friend saw that I had become ordained and asked me to marry him and his fiance. Thus I began this new career three years ago. 

One of my favorite parts of a ceremony crafted the way the couple wanted was with Molly and Jordan. They both wore long white wedding dresses and both of them had their father give them away. This wedding took place in Farmville, NC, a small rural town at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Benjamin-May-Lewis-House/825608430841590   It was a pleasure to see tradition being challenged and the full embracing of this change by guests and family.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another wedding with a different twist was Jessica and Vicky’s wedding in Clayton, NC at the http://www.wagnerhouseclayton.com/

The three children were included from a previous marriage, they all joined in a sand ceremony. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fred and Christopher wanted to be married at Pullen Park in Raleigh https://www.raleighnc.gov/parks/content/ParksRec/Articles/Parks/Pullen.html

since it has been part of both of their lives for many years. The ceremony was performed under the gazebo on the lake, with the final vows taking place on the carousel with all of the

 guests riding with the wedding party.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Look for an upcoming post on the Medieval Wedding I officiated.  Thi was one of the most unusual weddings that I have participated in. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feel free to contact me for any ideas to make your wedding unique to you and your fiance. http://www.annmckenzie.net/contact/

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