RITUALS + BLESSINGS
If you’d like to include some kind of ritual or blessing in your ceremony, but you’re not sure exactly what, here are a few examples that you may like to choose from, or may like to adapt to suit who you are as a couple.
Both parties hold a lit candle, and combine their flames to light a third, larger candle. Sometimes the couple's parents take on this task instead, to symbolise the union of two families.
This symbolises the blending of two lives and two families into one. You may choose to drink wine from the same cup, or pour two types of wine onto one glass, before sharing that. This “blending” is symbolic of your union and the life you’re going to create together.
Both parties present a single rose – a symbol of love – to their mothers early in the ceremony, as a gesture of love and gratitude.
Both parties pour a small container of sand or salt (usually in two different colours) into a larger container to symbolise their ‘coming together’ as a couple. You might like to use sand from your favourite beach spot.
If you already have children together, or there are children from a previous relationship, you may like to include them in this. The children could pour some sand into the container before the bride and groom, and then pour the rest of their sand on top of the couple’s sand.
Place meaningful items – like a bottle of wine from the year you first met, a favourite poem, a letter to each other, or another keepsake – into a box and then help each other nail it shut. You then open it on your first/fifth/tenth anniversary.
A twist on the time capsule, is to put a bottle of wine and two glasses into a large wooden box, along with love notes to each other explaining your feelings as you prepare to start your married life together. Hammer the box shut together and agree to keep the box sealed until a special anniversary (10th or 20th) unless you hit a rough patch. Then open the box together, pour the wine, read the love notes and remember why you got married in the first place!
This is where your hands are tied together. The couple holds opposite hands, to make a figure eight – representing infinity or eternity. Your hands are then tied together with ribbon to symbolise your union.
Pot a Plant
Pot a plant together during your ceremony, to represent the joining of your two families. It represents growth, which is something you will do a lot of as a couple over the years ahead.
Ring Warming Ceremony
If you already have children together, or have children from a previous relationship, this is a touching way to include them in your ceremony. Essentially, the celebrant asks the children to bless the rings by holding them in their hands. You could also get a grandparent or another significant family member or friend to be involved with 'warming' the rings.
Adding Flowers to the Bouquet
You could ask guests (or special individuals) to bring a flower from their garden and they could be handed over as you walk down the aisle. Or placed into the existing bouquet. This is a nice little way to include people who are important to you as a couple, in your ceremony. The gathering of the flowers is like a gathering of the people important in your life.