Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year, etc… :)

Hi everyone!

Yeah, I know. It’s been forever. There are behind the scenes reasons for my absence, but I wanted to reach out this holiday season and let all of you know that I hope you are doing well, enjoying the festivities and have the best 2017 imaginable!

My sissy and her hubby came out for Christmas this year and her husband and my husband finally met after 9 years. Holy moly! So it was the 4 of us, plus Mommy. It was such a wonderful day and I’m still full from all the naughty food I ate!

Here’s a little glimpse into the massive love we had this year.

 

May you all have the most wonderful week and know I’m sending tons of love!!! XOXOXOXO

 

Wedding Vows for the Pagan and Christian Alike!

GASP! You mean a Southern Baptist and a Pagan can get married? Who’d have thought? I believe strongly in God and Jesus, but I don’t force my beliefs on anyone. If my honey finds peace in Buddhist/Pagan/Wiccan beliefs, then I’m just happy he found it. Of course, coming up with wedding vows that talk about The Goddess (for him) and God (for me) and don’t make my mom die from stark horror was not the easiest task. But I was determined! And luckily, once my mom met him and realized that we were perfect for each other, she didn’t really care anymore if the word “Goddess” was in the vows he said. She was just thrilled that we were together.

Because of our somewhat unusual situation, I wanted to write the ceremony from start to finish. I borrowed a lot from much better writers than me (Kahlil Gibran, the Bible, Lao Tzu, Antoine de Saint-Exupery) in hopes of making everyone cry. It worked! I’ve never seen so many happy tears in all my life. It was wonderful. 🙂

I thought that since we all know each other so well now that I’d share my ceremony with you. Then, any of you out there who are about to get married, especially if you and your betrothed share different beliefs, can see how it can be done.

We had two people officiate our wedding, so that’s why you’ll see the names, “Susan” and “Isaiah”. We wanted to make it easy so we clearly spelled out who was to say what.

Here ya go!

Our Wonderful Wedding

Susan:      

“With joyful hearts we ask you to be present at the ceremony uniting Jodi and Grant.

On this day, Grant and Jodi will become one with each other, as best friends, the one they laugh with, live for, dream with, and love.

All paths of belief have led us here today to rejoice with Grant and Jodi as they join together their souls.”

Isaiah:

“The law of life is love unto all beings.  Without love, life is nothing, without love, death has no redemption.

Loving is not just looking at each other, it’s looking in the same direction.

This union is a bond to be entered into only after considerable thought and reflection.

As with any aspect of life, it has its cycles, its ups and its downs, its trials and its triumphs.

But there is no fear in love; perfect love casteth out fear.

With full understanding of this, Grant and Jodi have come here today to be joined as one in the bond of marriage. “

Susan:      

“Others would ask, at this time, who gives the bride in marriage, but Woman is not property to be bought and sold, given and taken.

We ask simply if she comes of her own will.”

Susan shall turn to the bride and say:  

“Jodi, is it true that you come of your own free will and accord?”

(And the bride shall respond:)

“Yes, it is true.”  (I actually said, “You bet your ass!”)

Isaiah:

“Please join hands and listen to that which I am about to say. . . . .

Above you are the stars, below you are the stones, as time passes, remember. . .

Like a stone, your love should be firm; like a star, your love should be constant.

Let the powers of the mind and of the intellect guide you in your marriage.

Let the strength of your wills bind you together.

Let the power of love and desire make you happy.

And the strength of your dedication make you inseparable.

Possess one another, yet be understanding.

Have patience with one another, for storms will come, but they will pass quickly.

Be free in giving affection and warmth.

Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are.

When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.

Have no fear and let not the ways of the unenlightened give you unease, for God and the Goddess are with you always.”

Susan:  

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.

Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous.

Love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly.

It does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered.

It does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

You were born together, and together you shall be forevermore.

You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days.

You shall be together even in the silent memory of God.”

(THE UNITY CANDLE)

Isaiah:

“Marriage brings two people into a unique relationship.

While each is separate, we arrive here with a past full of love and remembrance.

In this union you will share many experiences as if you were one, yet each of you retains your identity.

I invite you now to light this candle as a symbol of the union of your lives.

May your love so endure that its flame remains a guiding light unto you always.”

 

(The bride holds the candle while the groom lights it).  

(THE EXCHANGE OF RINGS)

Susan:      

“The circle of the ring speaks of the continual nature of love for it has no beginning and it has no end.

May this circle of love declare the unity and oneness of your life together.

And may these rings represent a love glowing with increasing luster through the years before you.”

Susan shall then say to the Groom:  

“Grant, I have not the right to bind you to Jodi; only you have this right.

If it be your wish, say so at this time and place your ring in her hand.”

(And the groom shall respond:)

“It is my wish.”

Susan shall then say to the Bride:  

“Jodi, if it be your wish for Grant to be bound to you, place the ring on his finger.”

(And the bride shall place the ring on the groom’s left ring finger.)  

Susan shall then say to the Bride:  

“Jodi, I have not the right to bind you to Grant; only you have this right.

If it be your wish, say so at this time, and place your ring in his hand.”

(And the bride shall answer:)

“It is my wish.”

Susan shall then say to the Groom:  

“Grant, if it be your wish for Jodi to be bound to you, place the ring on her finger.”

(And the groom shall place the ring on the bride’s left ring finger.)  


Then the Groom shall say:  

“I, Grant, in the name of the spirit of the God and Goddess that resides within us all,

and the love that resides within my heart,

take thee, Jodi, to be my chosen one.

I promise to love thee wholly and completely,

in sickness and in health,

through good times and bad,

in life and beyond.

For hearing my thoughts,

understanding my dreams,

and being my best friend…

For filling my life with music

and loving me without end…

I will love you throughout all eternity.”

Then the Bride shall say:  

“I, Jodi, in the name of the spirit of God that resides within us all,

and the love that resides within my heart,

take thee, Grant, to be my chosen one.

I promise to love thee wholly and completely,

in sickness and in health,

through good times and bad,

in life and beyond.

For hearing my thoughts,

understanding my dreams,

and being my best friend…

For filling my life with music

and loving me without end…

I will love you throughout all eternity.”

Isaiah:

“May the sacred curve of Her arm enfold you.

May the stars of Her dark veil cover you.

Would either of you wish to speak now, one to another?”

(Bride speaks of her love for her Groom.) (There was lots of crying during this part!!)

(Groom speaks of his love for his Bride.)

(THE BINDING)

(Susan explains briefly the symbolism behind the ribbon binding, while Grant and Jodi join left hands and Isaiah begins the binding.  Ribbon is tied so that couple can remove their hands without untying the ribbon.)  

Susan:      

“‘Tying the knot’ did not start out being an abstract term.

The lovers’ knot that binds two hands together represents an eternal union.

And the tying of a knot is still practiced as a symbol of love, affection, faith, friendship, and duty.

Love made lasting by tying together.”

(Susan removes the ribbon, still tied.)  

“Now you will feel no rain,

For each of you will be shelter to the other.

Now you will feel no cold,

For each of you will be warmth to the other.

Now there is no more loneliness,

For each of you will be companion to the other.

Now you are two bodies,

But there is only one life before you.

May your days be good and long upon the earth.”

Isaiah:

“Where there is love there is life.  Who, being loved, is poor?

Love fills the moment, and the moment begins eternity.

Love fills a lifetime, and our lifetime begins this hour.

Go together in peace and joy as partners in life, sealing your union with a kiss.”

(Jodi and Grant kiss)

“Ladies and gentlemen, I have the honor to present for the first time: Grant and Jodi Ambrose.”

I hope you enjoyed our ceremony. I thought it was the best day of my life, but it just keeps getting better and better. 🙂 🙂