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Posts Tagged ‘spiritual wedding ceremony’

An intimate oceanfront wedding ceremony, at Pacific Coast Grill in Cardiff. Not only uniting a couple in marriage, but creating extended family, with daughters gaining sisters.

~What a treat for the guests to be serenaded with the talent of Israel Maldonado
~Gorgeous bouquets by Isari
~Wedding planned and coordinated by the ever professional and talented Laura Rizzo
~All images captured by the fantastic Boyd Harris

ceremonysite

Boulders, beach, and ocean waves at Pacific Coast Grill create a dramatic backdrop for a simple ceremony

rocks

Without a traditional aisle and arch, wedding planner extraordinaire Laura Rizzo created the personal touch, with names written on beach stones as place markers for the wedding party.

daughternecklace

Sweet image of daughter helping mom with a beautiful wedding gift from her husband-to-be, just before the ceremony

ceremony open

friendsandfamily

For an intimate feel, guests were invited to gather in a half circle around the bride and groom

happycoupleceremony

mrandmrs

Mr. and Mrs.!

kissingdoves

Everyone was feeling the love!

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I’ve lived in San Diego more than 30 years, and officiated all over the county for the last 9, and can’t believe I’ve never stepped foot inside this gem!

Thanks so much to event coordinator Heather Hayes for giving me the grand tour yesterday!

Junipero exteriorIf you have a love of the historical, the Junipero Serra museum might be perfect for your wedding.

Situated high on the hill above Old Town San Diego, the views are amazing. Inside the museum, beautiful artifacts line the space that is designed almost like a chapel, to reflect mission revival architecture.

Challenges:
~you need to bring in your own rental items, eg. chairs, etc.
~as a historical landmark, it is not ADA compliant, so not accessible for anyone in wheelchair
~no heating or air conditioning. Would be lovely in the summertime, but winter months you might suggest your female guests bring a wrap.

Good News:
~within the intimate indoor acoustics of thick adobe walls, oftentimes a microphone is not even needed
~unlike some small chapels, this venue can seat 140 guests
~they do allow unity candles during the ceremony (some sites do not allow open flame of any kind)
~two big getting-ready rooms!

Not to mention old-world charm and a unique venue that even some of your local guests might have not yet experienced.

junipero interior

Photo by True Photography

Check out the setup for a wedding ceremony

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Each time I meet with a couple to discuss their vision for their wedding ceremony, I ask them, “Why is this the one? Why is this the person you want to spend the rest of your life with?”
Some are able to articulate in detail the reasons why they want to marry each other. Others find it a bit more challenging, but often respond, “I just know.”

When people ask me why I do what I do, “why is this the profession I want to spend my life with,” I have a similar response: I just know.

And I can point to one very important reason: Connection

I love helping people connect. What do I mean by that?
In everything I do, it means something different:

Leslies heart

Richard Barlow Photography

WEDDINGS: Connecting with each other. At some point in every wedding ceremony I officiate, there is a moment I witness the couple truly connecting, in a profound way they might not have thought possible. It might last only a few seconds – but it’s there, and powerful. The sacred quality of a wedding ceremony allows for this connection to happen.

 

 

BABY BLESSINGS: Connecting with the profound responsibility and privilege that is parenting. While you are getting this parenting thing down and loving your newborn, a baby blessing ceremony elicits promises you make as parents, the kind of parents you want to be, and what you hope for your child.
Thinking about it, writing it down, and speaking it out loud in front of community is so very powerful in a way that the ‘doing’ of parenting might not quite reveal.

 

HouseHealimageHOME and BUSINESS ENERGY CLEARINGS: Connecting to the impact your environment has on your daily life and psyche. This includes receiving validation {“I KNEW there was a reason I didn’t like to spend time in that room“} or {“It’s such a simple project and I couldn’t figure out why I just kept avoiding it!“} as well as motivation. After an energy clearing you can reconnect with the feeling of sanctuary that is home or inspiration of your business.

 

MEMORIAL SERVICES: Connecting with the fragility of life; the Divine; and the depth of relationship. A memorial service creates an opportunity to feel deeply. In the midst of pain and loss, there is a true connection to life.

 

reiki stone

Jade stone with Reiki energy symbol

REIKI HEALINGS: Connecting with your higher self, inner strength, intuitive wisdom, and the potential of all that you are.

 

All of these in some way create a connection to your possibilities and potential. ‘Potential’ can imply the promise of perfection, which, for us humans, is rarely achievable. But that connection points you in a direction. And the very best thing we can do for ourselves is move, in a positive direction.

Whatever your Love Connections, may you celebrate them in style this season.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Weddings   Baby Blessings     Reiki Healings    Memorial Services     Home & Business Clearings

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For my final blog post of January 2016 , a memory of my favorite wedding last year. Yep, I said “favorite.” Here’s why:

I would never call favorites on any of the couples I work with. It has been my privilege to work with caring, creative, interesting, generous brides and grooms, and I have enjoyed them all – I’m not just saying that.

But Leslie and Ryan are different. Because I had the privilege of watching Leslie grow from a young college intern to a strong career woman. And lucky enough to have her as my assistant in San Diego for several of those years. When they asked me to officiate their wedding ceremony, I was over the moon.

It was a special treat to fly out to Raleigh, NC where they now call home. Leslie and her mother found her perfect gorgeous venue: Wakefield Plantation, a historic plantation-style golf resort. The plan: An outdoor ceremony looking over the sweeping lawns and trees, followed by cocktails and reception inside the beautiful ballroom.
Raleigh was sunny and hot all that week – except on wedding day, when the skies poured down rain and lightening and thunder rolled through. (And then, of course, it was clear and sunny again the next day.)

Leslie and Ryan were admittedly disappointed, but pulled themselves together and forged ahead with grace, style, and above all, flexibility.

With quick planning by her wedding planner and Wakefield staff, the ceremony came together beautifully in a cozy room with a fireplace.

Big thanks to Richard Barlow for the incredible photos! (San Diego newlyweds, if you want an incredible, easygoing, fun photographer with southern charm, contact Richard. He has plans to establish a Southern Cali office, so maybe we can lure him out to San Diego.)
www.richardbarlowphotography.com

in the rain

This bride won’t be deterred by thunderstorms! A giant golf umbrella and lots of friends to hold her dress – it’s off to the wedding!

ring bearers

Ringbearers carrying the groom’s family crest

waiting for Leslie

The groom and I watching his gorgeous bride head down the aisle

here comes the bride

Proud papa

ceremony welcome

While the storms rumbled outside, this cozy room with a fireplace made for a beautiful intimate ceremony

flowers to his mom

It is such a special moment during the ceremony, when a couple honors their mothers, in gratitude for all the years of love and supporthugging mom

Leslies heart

A little fun and levity during the ceremony

vows

I admit that, during their vows, when she got choked up, I got a little choked up.

happilymarried

Presenting Mr. & Mrs.!!

L&R outside

Of course the rain let up a bit after the ceremony, so the newlyweds grabbed their moment outside, with the beautiful expanse of the course as a backdrop

room shot

Cozy elegance: that’s how they do in Raleigh

countrydancers

This gal, a professional dance instructor, taught me how to line dance in 5 minutes while standing at the bar

linedancew:Leslie

So that I could join the fun with the bride! I rarely have the opportunity to be a guest at a wedding, so I enjoyed every moment. (Yes, the officiating suit came off and the party dress went on!)

Us3-crop

So proud to be their friend and officiant. Love you Leslie!

sparklers

Sparklers are illegal in California with our dry conditions, but in NC they light ’em up! What a great sendoff!

 

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These two love hiking, being outdoors, and weekends away, so the sprawling woodsy property at Milagro Winery in Ramona, CA, was a perfect venue for their wedding.

Christina and Greg put so much loving thought into every detail of their ceremony, expressing their love as well as their humor throughout.

So great to work with Janis Foley, and please enjoy her amazing photo stylings. She gets the shots and angles that not every photographer has mastered. I think some of her photos look like paintings.

Milagro sign

I can’t say enough great things about Milagro Winery – it fills the bill on so many levels for a magical wedding ceremony and reception. It’s a bit of a drive, but definitely worth it.

 

getting-ready house

This cute little house is right next to the ceremony site and the perfect getting-ready area for the bride and attendants. It is spacious, has it’s own large bathroom and best of all – air-conditioned!

ceremony wide angle

Fairytale wedding ceremony among the trees.

ceremony-backdrop

Boulders and trees serve as the arch and ‘altar’

bridein trees

A beautiful frame for a gorgeous bride.

Christine-dress

How stunning is her dress? The bride had it custom-made – a perfect creation for this woodland wedding.

dress corset

Intricate delicate details of custom flowers – a delicious confection

Gayle-Greg-aisle

Starting off the processional, the groom and I head down the aisle.

escorting bride

Such a special moment as father escorts his daughter.

awtg the bride

The look on his face as he watches his bride walk down the aisle – priceless.

flowersonbarrel

Rather than ceremony tables, Milagro Winery uses wine barrels! Functional and authentic aesthetic

hammering

The bride and groom hammering their Wedding Time Capsule closed. They’ve enclosed private letters to each other, along with a bottle of wine, and in 5 years (wood is the element for the 5th anniversary) they will pry open the box, read the letters, and again toast their union.

hammering-bride

withthisring

With this ring . . .

heartboxsign

A variation on the wedding ceremony stone blessing: each guest found a small wooden heart on their chair. They were asked to hold it during the ceremony and think wonderful thoughts and blessings in support of Christine & Greg’s marriage. After the ceremony they signed their heart and dropped it in a keepsake box for the couple’s home.

 

 

bubbles

Bubbles! Blowing bubbles is a fun way for guests to celebrate the I Dos!

 

couple at lake

A private moment by the lake.

feet

How gorgeous are her shoes?! And the clever little heel protector makes it easier to walk on the grass. At the reception, just pop off the protector and it’s back in your sassy heels for dancing.

staff

I love that Janis caught a picture of the Milagro event staff in action- Melissa and crew do such a professional job. Makes it a joy to officiate ceremonies at Milagro, knowing everything is handled.

guests to reception

Guests have the opportunity to truly take in this magnificent property, with a leisurely stroll from the ceremony site up to the reception building.

FG-RB on cart

Or they can catch a ride on the golf cart!

Gayle with couple

“Dear Gayle, Thank you for doing such a wonderful job officiating our ceremony- it was beautiful! We couldn’t have hoped for any better.” ~ Christina & Greg

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“Thank you so much for everything! You definitely fulfilled the service and did an amazing job! The most memorable parts of the ceremony for me:

-when you said some of the things we love about each other, noted from our first meeting

-when you asked us to take a moment to look around and soak it all in, loved this

Our first meeting was memorable too. I was having a minor panic changing our officiant at such late notice and by the end of our meeting I was so relieved. I remember you saying how much you love your job and for me, that was really wonderful to hear. You will always be a part of our wedding memories and we are so thankful to have had you.” ~ Best, Tiffany

A sunny September day by the sea! Tiffany and Andrew were so sweet and so clearly in love! It was so fun to work with these two, as they included so many personal touches in their ceremony:

~A friend to read a favorite scripture
~A ring warming
~Petal toss for the recessional

And what a great wedding team they had, led by the fantastic Paige Jensen of Bliss Events.

Gratitude to Aubree Lynn Photography for capturing the day so beautifully

seagrovesign

Seagrove Park in Del Mar offers sweeping views and wide open spaces: a special location for a beautiful wedding ceremony

ceremonywide2

Majestic views bordered by beautiful pines

mirrorsign

A clever and fun alternative to a ceremony program: A welcome and wedding party members listed on an oversized mirror! While reading the wedding party names, guests can fix their hair, too!

chairdecor

Not much decor was needed at this stunning setting, and delicate florals added a simple touch

market umbrellas

These market umbrellas bring such relief of shade to the guests in the bright sun and heat

petalscone

A petal toss is a sweet and natural way for guests to create a fun sendoff as the newlyweds walk back up the aisle

water

Even though the ceremony was by the ocean, it was a blazingly hot summer day. Offering refreshingly flavored water to their guests shows what a thoughtful conscientious couple these two are!

violinists

These violinists of Sensational Music Services were fantastic and their dulcet tones swept across the guests and created such a sacred and uplifting atmosphere

watching processional

As the first one down the aisle I have the joy of watching the entire wedding party processional

FG and RB

So sweet! Little ones are always a wild card and bring such sweet innocence to the ceremony

fg crown

A floral crown to adorn the flowergirl

parentspics

Both sets of parents had been married more than 30 years – Tiffany and Andrew honored this testament to love & commitment by displaying their parents’ wedding photos

Groom-aisle

The groom escorts his mother and grandmother down the aisle

escort aisle

Can you see where she got her smile? Much joy as Dad escorts his daughter down the aisle

processional petals

Though the petal toss was supposed to take place at the end of the ceremony, one guest couldn’t hold back their enthusiasm! I love this “mistake” as it added to the joy of father escorting his daughter

dad-bride hug

Sweet goodbye

transferhug

I always love this moment in a ceremony, when Dad hugs it out with the groom. It’s sometimes awkward or funny but always touching.

ceremony2

I should have brought a stepstool . . . 

reader

The bride’s cousin read from Colossians: “And over all these put on love, that is, the bond of perfection. . . .”

ringpass start

Ring Warming: Guests bless the wedding rings before the ring exchange. This is a beautiful way for all guests to participate and think warm wonderful wishes for the couple. The rings started with the bridesmaids in a small velvet pouch before making their way through every row of guests

IDo

“I Do!”

ringpass

The rings have made their way back to the groomsmen and to the best man, who hands them over to me for a final blessing before the ring exchange “These rings are now warmed with the love and good wishes of your community.”

withthisring

“With this ring . . . “

inowpronounceyou

“I now pronounce you . . . “

kissthebride

“You may kiss the bride”

justmarried

Presenting Mr. & Mrs.!

MrandMrs

Happily married, Showered with petals

 

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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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