How To Stay Sane While Planning for Your Wedding!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Video Of the Week!

In its most basic wording, these are the “traditional vows” ~

I ______ take you _____ to be my wife/husband.
I promise to be true to you
In good times and in bad,
In sickness and in health.
I will love you and honor you,
All the days of my life.

If you want some glimpse into what these words actually mean, then check out this 2-mnute video!


Thursday, May 28, 2015

You're Having A Stripper?!

true story
It was six weeks before their wedding and Chad and Lisa (names changed) still had not hired an officiant. Towards the end of our meeting, the conversation turned to Chad’s upcoming Vegas bachelor party weekend.

After Lisa humorously warned him that nothing better happen, he reassured her with these immortal words: “Don’t worry. Nothing’s going to happen even if she goes into the bedroom with me.” She? Bedroom? I’m stunned. Lisa slapped him in the arm.

Seems Chad’s boys told him that they’re going to get him a stripper. He didn’t want a stripper, but how could he tell them that? He didn’t want to ruin their fun and besides, it’s tradition!

That Lisa found out about Chad’s plans while at a meeting to discuss the ceremony, speaks volumes about the quality of their conversations. That he wasn’t able to tell his buddies what he did and did not want, speaks volumes about his ability to assert himself. 

Without being able to express what it is you’re thinking, feeling, wanting, needing, it’s going to be hard to offer an “I Do” that is authentic, confident, and that expresses your willingness to DO all that is implied in that “I Do.”

If you can’t be honest with your partner before your wedding day, there’s no reason to believe that you’ll be able to be honest the day after your wedding day.

Are there things you haven’t told your partner? Topics you’ve been reluctant to bring up? What are you afraid of?  Now’s the time to talk.

The following are questions I think every couple needs to talk about before they exchange their vows. If you’ve not already considered any of these questions, then I suggest you make a date, grab some wine (or ice cream) and surprise, challenge and encourage each other.

·      Who are your role models for marriage? Why are they models? How realistic a model are they?
·      What are your expectations of each other? Do your expectations make each of you the best you are capable of being?
·      What is your biggest fear for your life together?
·      What are three specific instances where you felt closest to your partner?

·      When people speak of your wedding, what three words do you want them to say? What three words do you not want them to say?
·      Is your wedding day a beginning or a touch point in your life together?
·      What was the most moving wedding you’ve attended?
·      What do you want to be the most joyful moment of your wedding day?

Remember: you protect and keep each other safe when you talk with each other. Really talk—openly, trustingly, from the silly to the serious.

You can’t plan your wedding without talking!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Growing Old Together - In Under 5 Minutes!

Here's a video that is fascinating, odd and poignant all at the same time! 

 It will make you look at your partner in a new way!


Tuesday, May 5, 2015

"Pieces Of My Mother" – A Tribute To Melissa Cistaro

Because this blog is dedicated to my work as an officiant, I typically limit entries to wedding related items. However, this posting is different – it has nothing to do with weddings, but, hey, please keep reading!

My friend, Melissa Cistaro, has her first book published today – a memoir – “Pieces Of My Mother”

This is my tribute to Melissa – Enjoy!

On Tuesday, May 5th, “PiecesOf My Mother,” a memoir by Melissa Cistaro, arrives at bookstores.  Melissa is a friend and so, yes, in a way, this is a shameless plug!  However, I’m writing not just to plug her book.  I’m writing about Melissa because she inspires me and I enjoy nothing better than writing about people who inspire me.

As a child I became a voracious reader – from the Hardy Boys to “David Copperfield.” Early on I became fascinated with writers.  What kind of person could twist words with the slight-of-hand of a magician and so conjure worlds from the almost familiar to the outright exotic?  Although I was a good Catholic boy, I considered nothing more sacred than a book.  I loved the sheer physicality of a book – open the covers and another world tumbles out. 

I never aspired to be a writer, but I very much wanted to be friends with writers.  I wanted to sit in the company of my heroes and “saints.”  When I got to Fordham University I landed my own radio show, “Bluestockings”, where each Thursday night I’d interview poets, novelists and literary folk.  I was mentored by Marguerite Young who at that time had written the longest (1198 pages) novel in English, “Miss McIntosh, My Darling.”  She introduced me to Anais Nin, legendary feminist and diarist.  I believed they lived life differently from me and that somehow they had the eyes to see, the ears to hear and the hearts to feel in ways I didn’t.  

And now, all these years later, here’s Melissa – prettier than Marguerite and far less hedonistic than Anais – a friend with whom I’ve shared many a pot of tea.  She’s so wonderfully “not different” and yet from the ordinary dimensions of her daily life she’s written a memoir of her mother who abandoned her and her brothers and father.  She’s told the story of her anything but ordinary childhood.  This week her book physically appears on bookshelves after more than a decade of writing and rewriting, after having been rejected two score over.  And I am in awe.

I was seduced unabashedly by the romanticism of Marguerite and Anais.  But I know Melissa too well to shroud her in any romanticism.  In the harsh glare of everyday life, I admire her for raising a family, loving her husband and staying true to her children.  I celebrate her for being faithful in giving meaning to what was unfathomable.  I cheer her for slaying dragons and calling a truce with demons, as she offered peace to her childhood memories. 

To find the extraordinary in the ordinary – that is what goes into making us human.  And writers show us how.

Thank you, Melissa!

Monday, May 4, 2015

I'm On "Style Me Pretty" !!

I officiated Robyn + Eddie's wedding last year – 
and now you can see all the details at this
Style Me Pretty link :  SMP



Monday, April 20, 2015

Tips On How To Save Time While Planning Your Wedding

Earlier this month I had the honor of being on a panel sponsored by WIPA (Wedding Industry Professionals Association).  Myself and half-a-dozen other wedding professionals were asked to offer our advice on “how to save time.”  This is a highlight reel created by the incomparable Perryfield Films.

While the panel was speaking to fellow professionals, I think this reel offers some basic, practical tips that could help you as you go about planning your wedding.


Wednesday, April 15, 2015

A Wedding Blessing – non-conventional!

I recently came upon this poem by Jane Hirschfield and I was totally taken by it.  Perhaps you will be, too!

A Blessing for Wedding

Today when persimmons ripen
Today when fox-kits come out of their den into snow
Today when the spotted egg releases its wren song
Today when the maple sets down its red leaves
Today when windows keep their promise to open
Today when fire keeps its promise to warm
Today when someone you love has died
or someone you never met has died
Today when someone you love has been born
or someone you will not meet has been born
Today when rain leaps to the waiting of roots in their dryness
Today when starlight bends to the roofs of the hungry and tired
Today when someone sits long inside his last sorrow
Today when someone steps into the heat of her first embrace
Today, let this light bless you
With these friends let it bless you
With snow-scent and lavender bless you
Let the vow of this day keep itself wildly and wholly
Spoken and silent, surprise you inside your ears
Sleeping and waking, unfold itself inside your eyes
Let its fierceness and tenderness hold you
Let its vastness be undisguised in all your days
― Jane Hirshfield, Come, Thief