Creative writing

Creative writing

creative writing for your wedding

Creative writing

This story will be about a dance, eventually.  But it starts as a story about creative writing, something as a marriage celebrant I do all the time for my couples.  Every wedding ceremony is unique and new written just for two people. Often I seek ways to hone my writing craft.

Creative writing is key to a great wedding ceremony. As your celebrant, I practise writing to hone my skills for your wedding.

Recently I attended a creative writing workshop with marvellous teacher, Glenda O’Sullivan.

Writing Workshop

A few months ago, a dear friend of mine and an inspiring workshop queen, ran a creative writing day.  Glenda invited several budding writers to gather.  She invited us to open our minds and let loose our pens.

I don’t usually call myself a writer.  Perhaps I imagined one has to be pumping out novels, or contracted to a magazine to claim that title.  Of course there are many more writers in the world than one would imagine.

On reflection, I realised I do write.  Every day in fact.  I write this.  A blog, a collection of stories really.

I write wedding ceremonies. I write eulogies.  I write for couples.  I write for families.  I write for people.  

Yes, I write every day.

So, with a little trepidation, I went along.  

The gift of writing

Glenda gave the group a wonderful gift that day.  She took us along the road to writing creatively.  She began with simple tasks to get our pens sliding over the paper.  Then she upped the ante, interrupting our train of thoughts with unusual stimuli; a gesture, a flower, or a compulsory word or two.  As the day progressed we played word games, wrote lists, turned the lists into prose, the prose into poetry, and back again.  Each time we had  to produce a piece of writing on the spot, on paper, and on time!

I’d like to present some of the pieces I wrote that day.

Word Games

We played a word game.  The game produced a list of words.

Write, she said, using all the words on your list    … and she gave us 10 minutes…. Speed writing is very creative writing!

So I wrote.

my darling, my darling, my love

A necklace for your sanity … my darling, my darling

Your neck will just surrender … my love

Relegate sizing to your tailor … my darling, my darling

Measure your team of suitors … my love

__

I salivate with surprise … my darling, my darling

Your tears send a sinuous shiver … my love

Lean to my sincerity … my darling, my darling

Tenuous yet necessary … my love

__

Undulate, manipulate .. my darling, my darling

Ululate the timing … my love

Sing your man a lullaby … my darling, my darling

Be my eager minstral … my love

__

 

Round and round the duckpond … my darling, my darling

Mad as a team of yabbies … my love

Eat my words on Sunday … my darling, my darling

And tell me that you love me … my love

*****

writing creatively for your wedding helps your story lift off the page

 

Writing wedding ceremonies

Some couples might wonder just how I create unique wedding ceremonies.  I draw on creative writing skills to achieve a perfect marriage ceremony for you.  I chat with you and we laugh.  I get to know you.  We talk about life, meaning and wedding wishes; about family and feelings.  You tell me your stories. I tell you mine.  You get to know me, and feel comfortable with me as the person who will conduct the ceremony on your wedding day.

From all this I weave a tapestry about you, your love story and  your  wedding day.  You also get chances to alter and change, delete and add.

a story lifts off the creative writing page

Creative writing workshop

The poem above, is by no means part of a marriage ceremony.  It was written within a different context; a creative writing workshop.

If your wedding celebrant can write creatively, you know you can expect a truly unique ceremony, all about you, and your ideas on your marriage.  Not just any old ceremony with your names slotted into the gaps.

You want something that is a reflection of you.

Something meaningful, to you.

Something memorable for your family and friends.

Something just a little different, pitched right.  Your style in words.

Contact me if you’d like a ceremony written just for you.

And to finish this article, here is another piece I wrote under time pressure that day…. about the dance.

*****

creative writing with a lily behnd the ear for a tango piece

Tango Lily

The floor is smooth.  Wooden floor boards polished by feet.  Slide together after every step.  Bring the left together with the right, across the boards.  Smooth the timber.  Caress the wood.  Foot does not leave floor.  Slide… together…slide … together. Ready for whatever may come. There is no past. No future.  Just now.  Just this moment. Just this step. Then that step.  That’s Tango.

 She tucked a lily behind her left ear.  Not the right ear.  It would get in the way.  She wore a flower on the right once.  Never do that again.  Well it was a fake rose anyway.  But it tickled and scratched his face when he took her into the close embrace.  He fluffed and blew it.  She had to throw it away; out of her hair, onto a chair, to dance.

The flower was on the left.  A lily; simple, plain, a tiny bit jaunty. Like the tango.  She was the lily.  And the lily was the dance. Subtle but with intent.  

This year I have begun to learn Tango.  I may never finish learning Tango.  I relish the opportunity to let go of control; to release, to stop helping, to simply allow someone else to lead the way.  To follow the lead, to rest my head on a shoulder and allow my steps to follow.

and who brings the rings?

and who brings the rings?

Wedding rings brought by Ruby the black labrador

Who shall be the ring bearer?

At your wedding, who do you choose to be the ring bearer? A charming little nephew?  An eagle? The Best Man? The Best Woman? Mum? Or your pet? Congratulations Diane and Patrick,  for choosing Ruby. They married in the charming pergola at Tiffany’s, looking out over the Glass House Mountains from the Maleny Ridge.  They wanted a creative, fun and relaxed wedding. They chose Tiffany’s for the view, for the incredible feeling you get when gazing out over the vista of the Glass House Mountains. What an extraordinary place on the edge of the ridge, what a splendid sunny day. AND what a charming ring bearer!  More of her later….

Planning a memorable wedding

Diane and Patrick wanted their wedding to be memorable, unforgettable in fact, and a bit of fun for their guests.   All they wrote on the wedding invite was a date, a time and ‘surprise location’. The guests had no idea where they were going and what to expect.  A bus collected them all, to take them to Tiffany’s.  The bus was there again to continue the adventure to Clovelly Estate for a classy reception banquet.  What fun!  Everyone arrived at the ceremony full of intrigue and with smiles already on their faces.

 

Bide arrives in the red kombi with her parents

Diane arrived in retro style in the divine Red Kombi. Just bride and her parents. A gentle and relaxed bride, Diane just glowed on the way to meet her Patrick.  She arrived on the arms of both her parents, one on each arm.  It is a tradition that is very heartwarming, when a parent accompanies their daughter to her wedding day.  In these modern days of equality we still have room to remember an ancient custom, that of a bride being accompanying to her wedding.

Diane chose to arrive with both her parents.  In this way we know that father and mother are supportive of the bride and groom and their decision to embrace marriage.  And indeed there is room too to thank the parents for the Groom for all they have done to bring their son to his wedding day too.  Diane and her parents brought a charming tradition into the modern world. But what about Ruby?  The other important family member.

Bride arrives with both her parents

Ruby the ring bearer

Ruby the black labrador dressed for the wedding Diane and Patrick wanted their special family, Ruby, a black Labrador, to be part of their special day and found a a way to include her in the ceremony. Their dear Ruby was a feature guest for the day.  Sporting a ribbon on her neck, most of the guests just thought she was there for the ride.  She was the perfect ring bearer.

Ever thought you’d be able to have your pets at your wedding?

At this wedding, it was the Ruby the ring bearer who stole the show.  When the wedding bands were called for, Ruby bounded down the aisle towards her favourite people to deliver the rings.  She happily sat while Patrick took the rings from her neck, to place on the finger of his bride. Patrick retrieves the rings from Ruby the ringbearer

Ruby stuck around for photos and I’m sure would have enjoyed the canapés, but she had other treats in store.

Kylie from Lovable Pets arrived in chic sporting attire.  Ruby was whisked away for a long walk on the beach and a sleep over at Kylie’s.  Lucky Ruby. To top off a beautiful afternoon, Di and Patrick invited their guests to the divine and classy  Spicers Clovelly Estate for a three course banquet around a continuous table. Beautiful plant arrangements by A Sculpted Leaf, the boughs of the Jacaranda tree hanging down beside the pavilion, and an array of sumptuous food from the Clovelly French styled chefs.  You may think Ruby was wondering who got the best deal.  She didn’t even know, as she frolicked on the beach with Kylie, or perhaps by now she was snoring on a large cushion.  It was an important day for Ruby, delivering the rings to the ceremony on cue!  She deserved her rest. Peek into other moments from their wedding day. Photos by Tania Stanley.

a Tiffany’s affair

a Tiffany’s affair

married at tiffanys leaving the chapel

A Tiffanys affair

Congratulations Alison and Graham, married at Tiffany’s, on the Sunshine Coast Range.

This is a story about a place really; a place of extraordinary beauty for a wedding. A place that is old and is new, that is borrowed for your wedding day and is blue.  So every bride can fulfil the traditional rhyme for her wedding day.

This is a place to treasure.  A special wedding venue.

[dt_gallery_masonry bwb_columns=”desktop:3|h_tablet:3|v_tablet:3|phone:2″ image_border_radius=”0px” project_icon_border_width=”0px” include=”40374,40410,40411″]

The view of the Glasshouse

Certainly every time I, as a Sunshine Coast wedding celebrant, arrive at Tiffanys Maleny, it takes my breath away.

Whilst the wedding chapel at Tiffany’s may be quite new, the place is ancient.  The spectacle of the Glasshouse Mountains is the backdrop and the main character in this story.  Unions have been made on this ridge for millennia, so it is apt that couples choose this magnificent view as the backdrop to their nuptials. 

The new Tiffany’s wedding chapel frames the view through huge glass panels, as the backdrop to a couple for their wedding ceremony.

Alison and Graham chose this place for their wedding, a place of unusual splendour, and a magical quality to lend to special occasions such as this.

Flowers by Kelly and her team complemented the chapel, with a bright coloured floral scheme chosen by the couple.

[dt_gallery_masonry bwb_columns=”desktop:3|h_tablet:3|v_tablet:3|phone:2″ image_border_radius=”0px” project_icon_border_width=”0px” include=”40348,40349,40383″]

A special area

On a personal level this place is very special to Alison and Graham.

  • Every time they have driven to this area has been a special occasion, a time of personal celebration.
  • They had their first picnic outing together at Mary Cairncross Park just down Mountain View Road along the ridge.
  • They were engaged close by in Montville.

Their wedding day was a day of extra celebration and sharing with the people they loved.  And no-one could be missed out, so they filled the chapel brimful of their friends and family.  Every chair

and pew was filled so they could be married at Tiffanys with their closest.

married at tiffanys leaving the chapel

Tie the knot at Tiffanys

As part of their ceremony they chose to “tie the knot”.

When I asked Alison and Graham their favourite colour they both answered blue.  Then Graham clarified his choice as navy blue, and Alison as ocean blue.  It is very fitting, that whilst they have much in common, the two blues symbolise that two individuals are also different.  Their marriage will be strong from their similarities and gain further strength from their individual differences.

Using two cords, one of navy blue, and one of ocean blue, Alison and Graham tied their lovers knot after the exchange of rings. May their knot never come unravelled.

And that is how they were married, at Tiffanys looking over the magnificent view.

Todays’ story is accompanied not by photos from a professional wedding photographer, but some snaps I took on a glorious day, as they left the Chapel for official photos.

Married by the beach

Married by the beach

Beach wedding

Congratulations Kylie and Todd Peters, married in view of their favourite surf break.

Why the beach?

When I met with Kylie and Todd they told me that they had to have a large wedding, as they simply could not exclude anyone from the guest list.  So a large wedding it was, with family and friends gathered outside by the beach to accommodate all.

We have heard the traditional wedding phrase, “we gather here today…”

So let’s ask why?

The beach has always held a special place in Kylie and Todd’s lives. They surf, fish and live by the beach, enjoy the outdoor life. A lifestyle around water is intrinsic to, and a significant part of who they are, so it is very appropriate that they chose an ocean view for their marriage ceremony.

In View of the surf

They chose one of their favourite surf breaks, Point Cartwright.  Which was possibly a dangerous choice, as the surf was quite divine that day. Might there have been a temptation to delay the wedding and hit the break?  The guests had politely left their boards back in the carpark, I imagine, as there were no board shorts in evidence as the ceremony began!

Todd resisted every wave temptation, as the temptation of his bride was far more important.  Kylie was more than gorgeous in her pure silk, filmy wedding dress by Elizabeth de Varga.  Her red shoes gave a delightful splash of colour as she strolled down the path on the arm of her Dad, negotiating high heels and the grassy park, with panache.

I’m beginning to know the extended family quite well, as I have now done a few weddings within this circle of family and friends. It puts me in the wider picture, of generations.

Three generations of women

One of the beautiful things about weddings is the evidence of the continuum of life through the generations.  At the occasion of milestones, we witness the extent of families.  Parents, grandparents, children are all present.  It is a time to remember other weddings, in the near or distant past.  It is a time for children to know their place in a wider family.

A favourite photo that I could not resist taking, is of Kylie with Mum and Grandma, three happy, strong, down-to-earth matriarchs.  Kylie’s Grandma is a Great Gran many times over.  And she still practices yoga!  I’m sure Kylie gets some of her gentle and quiet strength and determination from her Grandma’s legacy.

The view was a guest

Todd and Kylie wanted a simple wedding ceremony; not too long, but not too short either.  Something reflective of who they are. Given I write each ceremony from a fresh canvas, all their wishes were accommodated.  The view was a guest at the wedding, the weather was perfect, and the guests could relax in the park setting, watching the perfect rollers in the background.

Photos by Karen Buckle, and a couple of my own.

something very French

something very French

Something very French

How about something very French for your wedding ceremony.

You may be French.  

You may want a little something French for the sheer chic of it.

You may simply wish to toast your love with champagne.

Whatever the reason there are many French marriage traditions that are delightful.  And of course others that you don’t want your friends to find out too!

As a Sunshine Coast Hinterland wedding celebrant I am always seeking new ways to create ritual within ceremony; finding ways to show something, rather than say something.  And there are so many multicultural rituals to draw from, and rework to fit two people getting married, like Lucy and Neil did.

Lucy and Neil had spent a long and memorable holiday in France.  They remembered it as a very special time in their relationship; in their burgeoning love.

So when they decided to marry they wished to include something a little French in their marriage ceremony.  In fact they had brought some special Champagne back from France, from the real Champagne region where they make the only true Champagne.  (Everywhere else produces sparkling wine did you know?)

Champagne and roses

Now in the region of France where champagne is created, the traditional vineyards often cultivate roses at the ends of each row of grape vines.  They look wonderful, yes, and smell fabulous when in flower, but it is not for the romance that the grape growers plant the roses.

Why the roses in French vineyards?

The rose plays a special and important role in the production of the grapes.  Being extremely sensitive to changes in the soil, reacting quickly to disease or invasion, they are the canary in the vineyard.  The same diseases attack the grape vines, but the rose gives an early warning that something is amiss.  The grower gets a head start in making the necessary changes.    If the blooms are beautiful and abundant, then everything is fine.  Should the rose wither or wilt, grow mould or develop leaf curl then the growers know something is amiss and they take action before their grapes are affected.  The rose works for its keep!

A partnership between rose and grape

We have therefore a partnership between the rose and the grape.  What does this have to do with wedding ritual?  We’re getting there….. and read on.

The Rose de Reims biscuits

In the district of Champagne France, there is another culinary tradition.  In a typical French style where food is closely linked to every aspect of life, the rose petals are used to flavour special biscuits, les biscuits rose de reims – a crisp sweet treat that melts in the mouth. It is not your usual Sunday afternoon tea cookie. The Biscuits Rose de Reims are twice baked and become crisp and not crumbly, delightfully crunchy without falling apart.

A tradition used to celebrate special occasions is the partnering of the les Biscuits Rose de Reims and real Champagne.

Imagine the crossroads of bubbles and roses.

On a special occasion the biscuits are dipped into glasses of champagne and eaten with the celebratory drink.

Individually they are unique and very special, Rose de Reims and Champagne.

But put them together and WOW! What a pair.

What a pair

Is this the kind of symbol you could have to celebrate your union in marriage?

So having decided on something a little French, where else to be wed than the Spotted Chook Ferme Auberge, a French provincial styled country Inn in Montville on the Sunshine Coast Hinterland Range.

Congratulations to Lucy and Neil, married in Montville, with Champagne and Les Biscuits Rose de Reims.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kari is a special person with a beautiful spirit and a unique gift of putting people at ease. She was so adaptable and knew when to step in to help us and offer some creative and fabulous ideas; however, she also knew when to listen to what we wanted. We were a little nervous about the whole process but Kari made us feel comfortable and excited about our ceremony. On the day, Kari created a loving and relaxed atmosphere amongst all of our friends and family and our ceremony was a dream. Both my husband Neil and I agree that the ceremony was the most special part of our day. We are so happy that we worked with Kari as we now have beautiful memories that last a lifetime. Thanks, Kari. Lucy and Neil

Photos by AWPP of Montville

Read another story about a French wedding