Jewish Wedding Traditions

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The Jewish faith is one that is deeply rooted in tradition. A traditional Jewish wedding follows a number of beautiful traditions that date back for thousands of years. The traditions include the signing of the Ketubah, the use of the chuppah as well as traditional dances that are performed at the wedding. The rings exchanged during a Jewish wedding also have traditional connotations.

The signing of the Ketubah is the traditional start to a Jewish wedding ceremony. The Ketubah is a written agreement that not only asserts that the bride is not already married but also outlines the expectations that the couple hold for each other in the marriage. This ornate document can later be framed and prominently displayed in the couple’s home as a reminder of their commitment. After the bride and groom have signed the Ketubah, the groom takes one final look at his bride before lowering her veil and beginning the wedding procession. This tradition has biblical roots and recalls the story of Jacob who married the wrong woman because she was veiled and he did not realize his mistake in time.

The wedding party traditionally precedes the couple in the wedding procession. The bride and groom then proceed down the aisle together accompanied by both of their parents to symbolize that their union includes the union of both families and not just the bride and the groom. The couple ends their procession under a traditional canopy called a chuppah. This canopy symbolizes that God is present and that he is sheltering and protecting the couple.

After the couple exchanges their wedding vows, a Rabbi reads 7 traditional blessings. After the blessings the groom steps on a wine glass to break the glass in a symbol of human frailty and the suffering that members of the Jewish faith have endured and this with a final blessing from the rabbi concludes the ceremony. Unlike other traditional weddings, there is usually not a receiving line at the conclusion of a Jewish wedding. Tradition holds that the couple spends a few minutes alone immediately following the wedding so many members of the Jewish faith honour this tradition by leaving the ceremony immediately and waiting until the reception to offer their well wishes to the couple. This togetherness time was traditionally an opportunity for the couple to consummate the marriage but in modern times it is more of chance for the couple to reflect on their wedding ceremony and the start of their life together before the chaos of the wedding.

Even the rings that a couple exchanges during a Jewish wedding have traditional values. Tradition holds that the couple exchange very simple rings that are devoid of gems, engravings or other distinguishing marks. With nothing to distinguish the beginning or the end of the ring, it is a beautiful symbol of a love that endures forever with no clear beginning or end. This symbolizes both the couples love for each other as well as Godís love for his people.

A traditional Jewish wedding reception features many dances. An energetic dance called the Hora is performed at many traditional Jewish weddings. In this dance the bride and groom hold a handkerchief between them while they are seated in chairs and hoisted into the air by their guests. This dance is a celebration of the bride and groom and recognizes the significance of their union.  If this wedding represents the last son or daughter of one of the parents to be married there are a few more traditional dances that may take place. If the bride was the last in her family to be married, she and her sisters may honour their mother in a tradition known as Krenzi. The mother is crowned with flowers and her daughters honour her in the form of dance. Also, if either the bride or groom was the youngest to be married both of the parents will be honoured through the Mizinke dance. In this tradition all of the guests circle the parents and shower them with flowers and praise.

The Jewish faith is a faith that is full of history and tradition. Many couples and their guests choose to honour these traditions by incorporating them into their wedding ceremony and reception. Many of these traditions are the defining moments of the celebration and they lend an atmosphere of historical significance to the wedding.

We would love to hear your thoughts.

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Photo Credit: tinkermel via Compfight cc
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Hashtags For Your Wedding

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Social media has taken over pretty much every aspect of our daily lives . That being said it may be something that you want to include in your wedding. The idea of a hashtag is something that more and more couples are using . It is an excellent way to to keep all the photos and other posts in an easy to find format .

When creating your hashtag you definitely want to choose something that is unique but not too unique. You might be the only Jack and Jill that you know but understand that the world wide web is world wide and forever. Instead of #jackjill you might want to add the married last name or even the date or year. #jackjilljonesjune2015 is something that is specific without being too obscure.

We see continually see long hashtags in use but in this case it might be something to avoid. Imagine your friends posting a picture they just took and taking five minutes to type in your hashtag. Chances are they will give up after the first two posts.

Make sure that the hashtag you choose actually works . Keep it to simple letters and number combinations. Adding spaces, punctuation or symbols are a no-no for hashtags.

Even if you believe that you have a unique hashtag that no one else will ever think of there is a good chance someone all ready has. Try your hashtag out on social media prior to sharing it. That way you can alter it if is already too popular.

Once you have the hashtag that works then spread the word. Add it to your invites, programs, signage,website and anything else that you would use as a communication tool. Then you are ready to go !

We would love to hear your thoughts.

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Paying For Your Wedding

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Many couples are opting to pay for their weddings themselves. Some couples decide to pay for their own weddings because they have not other choice, some do so as a matter of choice. The best reason to pay for your own wedding is because you do not want to compromise on how, when and where you get married and you are ready to pay for it all on your own.

The average cost of a wedding in the North America is over $25,000, so financing your wedding requires a serious financial commitment. The sooner you start planning and saving for your wedding, the more time you have to come up with the necessary funds. The average time between the engagement and the wedding day is 12 to 18 months. Such time frame gives you an opportunity to plan and save for your wedding. The most important task you have is to determine the total amount you wish to spend on your wedding. Then, divide the amount by the number of months to determine how much money you need to put aside each month to meet your goal. If you estimate that your wedding will cost $25,000, and you have two years until your wedding, you need to save about $1042.00 per month. Realistically, not everyone can put aside a thousand dollars each month. If you are unable to save enough to cover all the costs, you may need to start cutting costs until you come up with a figure that you can meet. Aside from cost cutting, you can do a lot by saving one everything you do. You can save by taking your lunch instead of going out, spend less on clothes and entertainment. You could also, take on a part time job to help you with your budget. You have many options.

Opening a separate savings account for your wedding may help enforce the need to save. Even if you start with a modest amount a special wedding savings account should help you make the right spending and saving decisions.

You can find ways to save money by learning as much as you can about the products and services you need for your big day. The more educated you become about prices, the more you can bargain with vendors to make sure you get the best possible deals in town.

We would love to hear your thoughts.
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Why Hire A Wedding Planner ?

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Are you trying to decide whether to hire a professional wedding planner or do it yourself? Take a look at this rudimentary collection of chores and details to be attended to in order to pull off a successful wedding. You’ll probably want to run, not walk, to find the nearest professional wedding planner or consultant.

There’s the church wedding, and all it entails, from providing your baptism certificate to choosing between confetti and biodegradable rice. Then there are such items as who sits where, ushers, bridesmaids, best men, flower girls, music, wardrobe, hairstyles, flowers, and rings. Not to mention the vows. And all the rehearsals.

There’s the reception. Finding the right venue and the right caterers can be a really stressful task. Then you have to plan the menu, the bar and the service, all the while hoping against hope that everything comes out okay. Not to mention the wedding cake!

There’s the photographer. And do you want stills and videos too? What kind of transportation will you use? What about the invitations; how to know what to put on them, who to invite? What about all theother vendors?

Are you getting the picture yet? The above list shows only the tip of the iceberg. The myriad chores involved in completing just one of those tasks is enough to make one elope to Las Vegas or Mexico!

In fact, the only reason you might hold back on hiring a wedding planner is your budget, but that reasoning is not well thought out. A professional wedding planner not only has the know-how and the contacts to get you the best deals around, but also will hold you to your original budget with an iron will and the experience to back it up. Without someone like this on your side, things can get out of hand pretty fast.

Make your dream wedding a memory to cherish forever, not a nightmare full of stressful problems to solve. A wedding planner will stick with you through thick and thin and be a shield and a comfort, so you can relax and enjoy the best day of your life!

We would love to hear your thoughts. 
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Transform Your Event With Uplighting

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I am pretty sure that by now you have heard of uplighting . It is currently one of the most popular choices to enhance a space .

Uplighting can turn an average room into a breathtaking event venue.
A few ways to utilize uplighting include lighting the exterior walls,lighting behind the head table or even lighting any poles or stands in the room.

The basic idea is to add accents and ambiance by strategically placing the lights throughout the given space. The lights are made up of red, blue and green LED’s ( light emitting diodes) that when combined can create almost any colour. The impact of uplights provided a stark contrast to a room without them.

We now have added the ability to combine an uplighting add-on with any of our current packages

We would love to hear your thoughts. 
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The Jewel Event Centre

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If you are familiar with the Woodbridge area in the GTA then you know that we have a ton of event venues. I recently had the pleasure of executing an event at The Jewel Event Centre.

I am always interested in seeing what there is that made my clients choose the venues that they do. The answer here is simple, they are GREAT ! I went out of my way to scrutinize website reviews of The Jewel and they were all excellent. All that being said the proof is in the “pudding”. My initial site visit was really good. They knew all the things that I needed and anticipated every question. I got to view both indoor and outdoor ceremony options , the bridal suite as well as the reception area. The day of the wedding I arrived early and the staff were more than accommodating throughout setting up of the ceremony and reception. During the night the staff helped make every transition seamless . Pina and the rest of the staff made sure that everything and everyone had been looked after . Then there was the food . In one word WOW every single course blended together to make the whole day phenomenal. All in all I applaud the The Jewel Event Centre for being a first class venue with top notch staff and service. I look forward to working with them again soon. They are a venue to consider when you are looking for a class venue .  The Jewel on Facebook  and The Jewel on Instagram 

Amy & Jerry #agyemangwedding2014

Amy & Jerry #agyemangwedding2014

Amy and Jerry

From the first instance I stepped into Marquis Gardens on the waterfront in Burlington I knew we were going to be part of something special . I was excited long before my site visit and even before my first consultation with Amy . I had heard of the venue but literally , seeing is believing . The outdoor service was breathtaking. Who would not love to be married in such a beautiful setting with the gorgeous backdrop of the lake to fill the picture out ? I don’t lend to cliche very much but to watch Amy and Jerry say their nuptials literally had me choked up .When you witness what was being expressed you just know you are seeing true love at it’s finest.

After the ceremony was done the wedding party went inside followed by the guest . It was my understanding that there was to be cocktailing outside for a bit while pictures were being taken . I saw the guest and their big smiles trying to get to the new husband and wife . How could you not want to just hug and congratulate them after what you just saw. I grabbed my camera as soon as they came inside to make sure to capture the moment !

Amy and Jerry Smiles

Speaking of capturing the moment John and Veronica Photography were a pleasure to work with . Their same day edit left very few dry eyes while their picture booth had everyone smiling and laughing to out due each others silly pictures. Every image they’ve captured is breathtaking.

 Jessica Bres and the staff of Marquis Garden helped to make it a smooth transition from cocktailing to dinner and then to dancing . That in itself is no small feat . There are many venues that can’t pull this off correctly . There were a few changes as the night progressed but they continued to execute . My hats goes off to them.

  Amy and Jerry’s hard work with the littlest of detail was prevalent all throughout the room. From the toast from Mayor Rob Ford to the African dancers everything was unique .The rest of the night was full of love and laughter , tears and joy from this newly blended family . It was a pleasure to be a part of their special night .

Amy and Jerry African Dress

Amy & Jerry #agyemangwedding2014

Neal McFarlane/ DJ XTC

www.djxtc.net

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