Unusual readings in a marriage ceremony

Unusual readings in a marriage ceremony

Unusual Readings

This story is about readings for your wedding ceremony.  As an example let’s look at the wedding Danielle and Karim, married at Tiffany’s looking out over the Glasshouse Mountains.

But first let’s glimpse their wedding day….

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Meeting your love

It is one of life’s richest surprises when a chance meeting of two people on a stairway leads them to love.  It is one of life’s finest experiences when this love grows into a permanent relationship.  It is a sacred day when these two people realise that they wish to make it forever in a marriage.

And it is joyous day when the wedding arrives and family gather from all over the world to marry on the Sunshine Coast Hinterland in the presence of spectacular views from the Maleny Range.

This meeting and this growing are what led to the wedding day for Danielle and Karim, who indeed met by chance five years ago on a stairway in a hostel in Scotland. The pipes may have played for them that day, or the angels sang, for they both knew that they had met someone special. Through being ruthlessly and wonderfully themselves, they fell in love and chose to get married, to begin the journey and ride the waves of life together.

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A wedding ceremony in French

Now being French, Karim wished to make sure his mother could understand the service.  So when this couple came to me it was with a special request, that their ceremony be in English AND French.

I am always happy to include other languages in a ceremony, and indeed speak French and Indonesian.  However I have been known to get training to use other languages in a wedding ceremony.

Readings are often a part of a marriage ceremony.  You can choose to have a close friend or relative to read, or indeed ask your wedding celebrant to read for you.

A reading can expand on your reasons for marriage, or describe the feeling of love in a way we may never be able to find the words to say out loud. A reading is a moment to pause in the ceremony and and reflect.

For this wedding, Karim’s mother, Nelly chose a poem for this special day.  And of course it was in French!  AND of course it is about love (l’amour)!

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A Poem in French

Éloge de l’amour   par Jean de La Fontaine 

Tout l’Univers obéit à l’Amour ;

Belle Psyché, soumettez-lui votre âme.

Les autres dieux à ce dieu font la cour,

Et leur pouvoir est moins doux que sa flamme.

Des jeunes coeurs c’est le suprême bien

Aimez, aimez ; tout le reste n’est rien.

*****

Sans cet Amour, tant d’objets ravissants,

Lambris dorés, bois, jardins, et fontaines,

N’ont point d’appâts qui ne soient languissants,

Et leurs plaisirs sont moins doux que ses peines.

Des jeunes coeurs c’est le suprême bien

Aimez, aimez ; tout le reste n’est rien.

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A Reading from Bob

The second reading they chose is from Bob Marley, in English this time:

Only once in your life, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more.

You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful.

There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life. A phone call during the day always brings a smile to your face.

Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and soul mate, who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they will be part of your life, forever.

There are so many beautiful texts to help illustrate a wedding ceremony.  I keep a folio of ideas and samples for my couples.  I also have several books with unusual readings and quotes.

You may find something from a song lyric, a film script, or written on a graffiti wall that inspires you.

Thank you to Focus Films for the images of Danielle and Karim’s English/French Wedding ceremony.

For other stories on French Weddings:

Something Very French

With a French touch

Totally in French 

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An unusual wedding ceremony

An unusual wedding ceremony

Wanting an unusual wedding ceremony?

I have never returned home on more of a high, than at the wedding of Jas and Linton, married at Weddings at Tiffany’s on the Maleny ridge.  I knew when I met this engaged couple, that it would be a splendid ceremony.  They are creative and fun, willing to have a go, and embrace something a little unusual, yet meaningful and heartwarming.  It is wonderful to meet a couple who truly want something bespoke for their wedding ceremony.

Jas and Linton create something unusual.

Tradition can still carry meaning, can be captivating, can be absolutely memorable for the couple and guests.  Jasmine and Linton agreed, and allowed a pretty free rein to design a ceremony that stood out for everyone.  They jumped on the creative bandwagon and prepared something special to set the scene; a video.

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How did it begin?

Like this….

A full chapel of guests. But no sign of the bride or the groom!  We could see a movie screen set up at the end of the Chapel.  As their marriage celebrant, I began to explain the absence of a couple to wed. “Before we start today’s wedding ceremony, there is something we need to watch. Fasten your belts and here we go,”

The guests were privy to an elaborate video story of the couple from childhood to now along their courting path.  Photos interwoven with dramatic music wove a humorous story.

guests watch a video at a wedding

Enter bride and groom

Suddenly, just as the out-music played on the screen, the wooden, smokey-glass doors of the delightful Tiffany’s Wedding Chapel burst open and the happy couple entered holding hands.  They walked down the aisle together.  A huge cheer erupted as they walked to the dais, overlooking the Glasshouse mountains behind us.

bride and groom entering the chapel together

When they first met

As we saw in the video, when Linton first met Jasmine, she was a garden gnome!  Jas has since grown into a delightful woman.  Linton is pretty happy about that! As we just saw, unusually for most couples, there is actual footage of their very first encounter on a film set, he the cameraman, she the actor. After the first day of filming was done, Jas told her mum, “There was a lovely cameraman there and if he asked me out for a coffee I would say yes”.

Coffee happened, if some time in the making…..and the long romance began.

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A wedding promise

Jasmine and Linton’s wedding promise was not something new, yet was a confirmation of a commitment to each other and celebration shared with those who have been through the journey with them, and invited as guests of their wedding.

Callie’s photos in the rain reflect their ability to have fun and find creativity whatever happens.  And yes they did get rather wet during the photo shoot.  Wouldn’t you love images like this?  The rain did not deter them at all.  In fact Jasmine had the forethought to bring an alternative “reception” dress to change into.  She looked just as divine after the shoot.

I hope I am around for their 50th wedding anniversary!  Should be a hoot.

Thanks to the photos of Callie Marshell of Florido Weddings.

Unforgettable ceremony

Theirs was a ceremony no-one will ever forget.  Jasmine, the bride,  said afterwards,

“The ceremony was my FAVOURITE part of the day…I am so glad we got to share that with so many of our friends and loved ones…I even feel more connected with everyone after that amazing experience. The warmth, buzz, excitement just exuded from everyone and made the day even better than we could have hoped it to be!”

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The Bride’s comments

“After stumbling upon Kari’s website and reading through the information and testimonials, I thought, “This lady seems like our kind of celebrant!” We then met with Kari and instantly knew she was ‘the one’ for us.

From day one we felt completely comfortable with Kari, which was very important for us. Kari is warm, friendly, professional and has a genuine enthusiasm and love for what she does – and it shows. Not knowing where to start, Kari provided fantastic recourses to help us get started. She takes all the stress and uncertainty out of all the legal components and ceremony part of the wedding. Planning the ceremony was a breeze, because Kari did all the hard work! I never once worried about it – which is awesome for a bride, with other things to worry about!

 I had always thought wedding ceremonies were a bit boring and all the ‘same’, but after one meeting with us and talking a bit about ourselves and the type of ceremony we wanted, Kari wrote a beautiful, creative and fun ceremony that was just perfect – and so very us!

The ceremony actually ended up being my favourite part of what was the most fabulous day – we had so much fun, it was so special. After our ceremony, we had numerous comments about how wonderful our celebrant was and how much she ‘added’ to our wedding day. We also had people say it was the best ceremony they had ever been to!

We feel very lucky to have had Kari as our celebrant, because our wedding would not have been the same (or as fabulous!) without her!

Thank you Kari… “Jasmine and Linton

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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