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Posts Tagged ‘same-sex weddings’

Gay Marriage White House Lit

It’s 5 years ago today  – June 26 – that the Supreme Court upheld Marriage Equality.

Prior to that, when same-sex marriage finally became legal in California in 2013, my event colleagues and I experienced same-sex couples coming in droves from across the nation, so they could be legally married.

I was thrilled to live and work in a state that recognized these couples, and happy to welcome them and help them live their dreams.

One couple in particular has stayed with me always: two Black women from Texas, with their young daughter.

Of course I suggested a ‘toes-in-the-sand’ beach wedding – an iconic San Diego experience.

They declined and instead requested the ceremony be in a small park near the hotel where they were staying.

I kept pressing them that you couldn’t beat the gorgeous San Diego beaches.
Finally they had to say to me, that they so often have insulting slurs hurled at them as a same-sex couple, that they didn’t want to risk a wedding on the beach – so very public – and the possibility that some passerby could shout a horrid remark, not only on their very special day, but in front of their young daughter.
I felt so naive and heartbroken upon hearing that.

So, when the day came we gathered at the park. Just the two of them with their daughter as flower girl, and found a lovely stranger in the park who agreed to serve as witness.
Their love and caring toward each other made it quite apparent that the surroundings were the least important thing that day. They declared their “I Dos” and could legally call each other “wife” from that day forward.

Oddly, I’m happy that I no longer have an onslaught of same-sex couples from across the nation requesting officiating, because that means they are now able to get legally married in their own home town, surrounded by friends and family.

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How do you create a ceremony in the round? With focus, intention and logistical magic.

Gee and Jen were one of the most creative and fun-loving couples I worked with last year. Their motto for life and love: Be Good, Do Good, Always try your best

While staying true to the inherent tradition of a wedding ceremony, they certainly made it their own.

With friends and family being so important to them, Gee & Jen wanted to feel surrounded in their love. What better way than in a circle? The beauty of Temecula Creek Inn created the perfect setting.

Fantastic Photography by Melissa Abiador

Photo by Melissa Abiador

Photo by Melissa Abiador

A program fan is a great way to share great information with your guests, and help keep them cool, too! Photo by Melissa Abiador

A program fan is a great way to share great information with your guests, and help keep them cool, too! Photo by Melissa Abiador

socks

Fancy feet! Photo by Melissa Abiador

ceremony trees

The majesty of the trees extended the ceremony circle in their embrace. Photo by Melissa Abiador

Wedding attendants create a beautiful human backdrop outside the circle. Photo by Melissa Abiador

Wedding attendants create a beautiful human backdrop outside the circle. Photo by Melissa Abiador

A ceremony table would feel a bit awkward in the circle. Ask your wedding party to bring the ritual to you! Friends held the time capsule while Gee and Jen placed their letters to each other inside, along with a bottle of wine, and hammered it closed, to be opened on their fifth anniversary! {Wood is the element of the five-year wedding anniversary}

Photo by Melissa Abiador

Friends hold the wedding ‘time capsule’ while Gee and Jen place their precious cargo of love letters inside. Photo by Melissa Abiador

timecapsule box

Hand-crafted wooden wedding ‘time capsule’. Photo by Melissa Abiador

With this ring, I thee wed. Photo by Melissa Abiador

With this ring, I thee wed. Photo by Melissa Abiador

I now pronounce you! Photo by Melissa Abiador

I now pronounce you! Photo by Melissa Abiador

Congratulations! Photo by Melissa Abiador

Congratulations! Photo by Melissa Abiador

Rustic love. Photo by Melissa Abiador

Rustic love. Photo by Melissa Abiador

"Gayle, Thank you again for officiating our wedding! It was truly a pleasure to have you be a part of our big day - we couldn't have asked for a more perfect day!"~G&J- Photo by Melissa Abiador

“Gayle, Thank you again for officiating our wedding! It was truly a pleasure to have you be a part of our big day – we couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day!”~G&J Photo by Melissa Abiador

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I’m meeting with an engaged couple and they are telling me what is important to them about their wedding ceremony.

“We just want it to be short and simple.”

When you say “short and simple,” what do you really mean?

If you want to get it over with, you can easily pop down to the county clerk and make it happen today. Here’s all the info for a San Diego wedding: https://arcc.sdcounty.ca.gov/Pages/marriage-licenses.aspx

Short and simple.

Maybe what you really mean is that you don’t want to be bored, or to bore your guests. Maybe you don’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable with flowery language or emotional vows. Or that the wedding ceremony seems like such a big unknown and it’s a little nerve-wracking to go exploring.

Or maybe what you really want is to be authentic. An opportunity to experience this momentous occasion in a way that feels natural and true to you.
I can help you with that.

An emphatic "I Do!". Photo by Cassidy Hall

An emphatic “I Do!”. Photo by Cassidy Hall

Because it’s not about how long the ceremony is. It’s about connecting to the experience. As a nondenominational minister and officiant of sacred ceremonies, I can help you find ways – through readings, rituals, and expressing your personal story – for your family and friends to connect, too.

When it’s authentic–truly you–every moment of your wedding ceremony will feel good and exciting and inspiring.

When it’s authentic, you will create a memory that is so vivid you will be able to describe it in detail for the rest of your lives: when your kids ask you about your wedding; when you celebrate your 50th anniversary.

Authentic is unforgettable. Photo by Cassidy Hall

Authentic is unforgettable. Photo by Cassidy Hall

 

 

Short and simple is ok. Authentic is unforgettable.

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