Master the Ride of Relationships

Planning A Child’s Funeral Service

Of course, any time you lose a loved one, it is almost always a difficult and sad time. However, when a child’s life is lost, your feelings are especially tender. You may be asking yourself, “How could this have happened, when there are elderly people who are just waiting desperately to leave earth?” On the other hand, if the child has battled a terminal illness for a long time, you may be experiencing the sweet realization that they no longer suffer and that they are with her Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.

No matter how the child died, planning a funeral is ahead of you, and you want it to be comforting and uplifting. Hopefully, you have somebody close to you who will be helping you. As you plan, there are steps you can take to make it a sweet event.

A Display Table – This is an opportunity for you to let family friends know your child better. The funeral home will provide a table for you for this purpose. Set out your child’s favorite toys, crafts he has made, and items that represent his hobbies and interests. A collection of pictures from birth to more recent ones, including family vacations, photos of him with his friends, with family pets, and one central portrait, as well.

The Music – Did your child have favorite hymns? Some to consider are Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam, Jesus Loves Me, I Am A Child of God, and I’m Trying To Be Like Jesus. Remember that your child’s friends and young family members are grieving, too. They might be comforted if they are invited to participate in a children’s choir. Remember, the music doesn’t have to all be religious. Consider adding lovely songs like Toy Story’s You’ve Got A Friend In Me and Tarzan’s You’ll Be In My Heart. A special closing song is Abide With Me or ‘Til We Meet Again. 

The Service – People usually attend funeral services to support and comfort the family of the deceased person and to seek comfort for themselves. When you ask special friends and family members to speak, consider asking them to make their talks uplifting ones. Provide special stories of humorous incidents and of special incidents that occurred in your child’s life. These might include his achievements at school, participation in sports, or events that happened on family trips. Share things about your child’s personality and their young philosophy of life. If siblings or close family members are comfortable speaking, it is very appropriate for you to ask them to relate special times they remember of time spent with your child.

A Keepsake – As people leave the funeral services, consider sending them away with a special keepsake. A bookmark with the words from The Lord’s Prayer, a small photograph of your child, or a copy of their favorite story are some suggestions.

Hopefully you, too, will be comforted by the lovely funeral, like those held at Christmans Funeral Home Inc, you have planned for your beloved child.

Evening Wedding? Go For All-Out Glamor With A Deco-Style Event

If you’re planning an evening wedding and looking for something to make it glamorous and memorable, try a super-sophisticated black tie Art Deco ceremony and reception. Here’s a start at hosting the event of your dreams while leaving your guests feeling like they’ve stepped out of the pages of “The Great Gatsby” or a Noel Coward play.

It’s All in the Details

An Art Deco wedding is all about building a total image with small details and paying attention to historical accuracy. Start with the invitations. Use Art Deco design and a 1920s font to create an authentic look to your invitations.

The invitation is a perfect place to specify that your wedding will be a black tie event, so friends and family can dress to the nines. Invite them to join in the theme by wearing their own 1920s-style gowns and tuxedos. Your photographs will be that much more amazing if all your guests look the part. And speaking of photographs, make sure to have your photographer make some black-and-white or sepia prints for that old-fashioned look to your wedding portraits.

Have Fun with Style

If you’ve been less than wowed by traditional bridal gowns, this is your chance to break free of limitations. Of course, you can always wear a vintage white gown, but there’s no reason you can’t wear an evening gown in silver, gold or pale pastels—a classic Deco look. Also, a new trend with many brides is electing to wear a more colorful and less restrictive bridesmaid dress instead of a wedding gown. Go to sites that specialize in special-event dresses for more ideas about the different stylistic options.

The benefits of going with an alternative dress are many:

  • saves money
  • gives you more variety in cut and color
  • offers more comfort
  • lends itself to more creativity with accessories
  • provides a wider selection of 1920s-themed gowns
  • makes it possible to shop at department stores and boutiques, as well as bridal shops

With a 1920s theme you can go with any number of elegant hairstyles, including a flapper bob under a feathered headband, pin curls or a beaded cap. Drop earrings, vintage shoes and 1920s makeup (powdered face, smoldering eyes and dark, bowed lips) will give you a beautiful old-time image.

The groom and his party should be in black tie, with pocket squares and pinstriped silk vests for a matching look. A high shine on the shoes, pearl cuff links and slicked-back hair complete the picture.

Give the Venue Historical Charm

It may be tricky to deck out your venue in authentic Deco style. Even if you’re doing the rest of your wedding on your own, consider hiring an event planner for this part of the set-up. They can help you find set pieces, linens, china and glassware that looks historically accurate. You’ll want strong geometric lines in the architecture softened by elaborate centerpieces using flowers, beads and crystals in your theme colors. Black with gold or white was extremely popular in that era, as was glittery silver.

Don’t Forget Themed Food and Drink

Go for fun with your food and drink. If you’re on a budget, consider throwing a cocktail party reception instead of a seated dinner. Have waiters pass trays of oysters Rockefeller (all the rage back then) and build a tower of champagne glasses. Don’t forget about a Deco-style cake, too. You can even send your guest home with themed favors to keep them talking about your fabulous black tie event as you and your new hubby zoom off in a 1920’s roadster.

5 Creative Alternatives to a Funeral Guest Book

You have probably been to several funeral services where you wait in line to sign a guestbook. When you have the unfortunate but inevitable passing of a close loved one in your life, why not create try different ways for you to remember who attended and for those who attended to help remember your late loved one?

1. Memory Tree

It is always nice to know what others thought about your loved one. These memories are ways for you to feel happy when thinking about this person, rather than being depressed. Use a hole punch to put some holes into index cards. Have little ribbons out too, along with many pens. Each guest can write down what they remember about the deceased person. They can tie their note onto a small tree or branch so you have a beautiful tree of memories.

Lanterns

You can buy paper lanterns for your guests to sign. Later in the evening after the funeral services, light the lanterns and let them go. This is like reminding your deceased loved one that everyone cares about him, as you all send your lights up to Heaven.

Seed Packets

Why not have your guests plant flowers to allow your loved one’s spirit to continue to grow on for years to come? Give guests a package of seeds. Include a little saying, such as, “Plant these seeds so Fred’s spirit can continue to grow on forever.” Ask guests to take pictures of their growing flowers and send them periodically to family members so you all can have a little smile while remembering your loved one.

Picture Canvas

Purchase a large, blank artist’s canvas. Put a picture of your loved one in the middle. Have guests sign around the picture. Get the canvas framed after the funeral. Instead of having a book gathering dust in your closet, you now will have a piece of art to put on your wall.

Cookies

If your loved one had a special cookie that they really liked or, better yet, one that they made that everyone loved, bake up many of these to serve at the funeral. Not only can guests have a sweet treat while celebrating your deceased one’s life, you can also give them a recipe card for the cookie along with the name of your family member on it. This way guests will always remember how special that cookie is.

Funerals should be about celebrating the life of the one that passed, even as you mourn their passing. These sweet ideas are great ways to do just that.