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.

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Walking Down The Aisle

Walking down the aisle

Another dilemma that often comes up when planning a wedding is who will walk who down the aisle. Although traditionally it is the father that does this, the plethora of step-families has made it a more difficult decision. This is especially true when the step parents have been in the children’s lives for a long time.

Breaking tradition

A bride that has both a step father and a biological father may opt still to have her biological father walk her down the aisle. This can be a way to show her family bond as well as stick with tradition. In the case of a bride that hasn’t been close to her father, she may opt to have her step father walk her down the aisle. This is a newly emerging sight at weddings, and quite touching.

Of course, if the bride loves both of the men and wants to include them, there’s nothing wrong with having both walk her down the aisle. It honours her relationship with both men and lets them have the chance to hold her arm.

This also holds true for the groom. He can choose to escort both a step mother and his biological mother down the aisle at the beginning is she should choose to. Or the best man can do so, as is tradition.

If the father has passed on, the bride may opt to have an older brother or an uncle walk her down the aisle. Likewise, if the mother of the groom has passed, then a sister or an aunt may want to walk with him.

Dealing with difficulties

While this all seems like a loving and simple solution to include everyone in the wedding, some parents may still have issues with their ex-spouses. And this can lead to bitter feelings about your choice in who walks who down the aisle.

Should you fight for what you want? That’s entirely up to you. If walking with both fathers makes you happy, then you should do that even if the opposite partners are not pleased for whatever reason.

If you feel that it may cause more trouble than it is worth, then you may opt to stick with tradition. Just be sure to include your step parent in some other part of the wedding so they don’t feel left out because of biological status.

In the end, remember that it’s your day and your decision.

We would love to hear your thoughts.

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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 !

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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!

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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

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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 

10 Must Have Gift Ideas For The Wedding Party

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A photo album complete with a picture of you and the bridesmaid or the entire wedding party can be another unique gift idea for the bridesmaids. You could purchase photo albums with the date of your wedding engraved on the front cover and start the photo album with a picture of you and the bridesmaid. This is a wonderful gift idea because the bridesmaid can place her photos from the wedding day in the album and will always have a precious souvenir from your wedding day.

Gift certificates to a spa or a salon also make unique gift ideas for your wedding party . They most likely spent a great deal of time and energy in helping you to plan your wedding. The week prior to your wedding was also probably especially hectic with a great deal of last minute details to attend to and errands to run. While you will have your honeymoon to relax and renew your energy your wedding party do not have this luxury so by honouring them by presenting them with a gift certificate to a spa or salon you are giving them the gift or being pampered and the gift of relaxation.

A few more unique gift ideas for your wedding party gifts include handcrafted or homemade gifts. For example you could put together a CD of some of favourite songs. You could make the CDs different for each person and include a photo of the two of you on the cover and include a heartfelt poem on the inside of the CD cover.

You could also create a scrapbook for each person . You could either make the scrapbook a memory of your entire friendship together and include photos and other items from your various adventures throughout the years or if you plan ahead and take many photos documenting your wedding preparations, you could create scrapbooks as a remembrance of the wedding planning that you shared.

Any item that relates to a specific hobby that your partner enjoys is a great idea for a wedding gift . This is a popular choice because giving a gift that relates to one of his/her hobbies demonstrates that you understand their likes and that you want them to continue to engage in activities that they enjoy.

Another unique gift idea for is a gift certificate to a local restaurant. Assisting in your wedding preparations was probably extremely stressful and time consuming for the wedding party and they certainly deserve a night on the town and the opportunity to not have to cook for a night. This simple gift lets them know that you appreciate their efforts and that you want to thank them for all that they have done to support you.

Unique gift ideas can also stem from the wedding theme. For example if you are having a beach themed wedding you might want to give a gift of a tote bag, a beach towel and a novel to enjoy on the beach. This unique gift idea ensures that your friends will remember your wedding fondly the next time they are at the beach.

Although the tradition of exchanging gifts on the wedding day is beginning to fade, many couples still wish to honour this tradition. Many couples spend so much money on their wedding and reception that they feel as though they cannot afford the additional expense of buying gifts for each other. While it may be true that the couple cannot afford one more extravagant gift it is also true that a truly thoughtful gift for the groom does not have to be overly expensive. If the couple is partaking in this tradition it is advisable that they exchange gifts that truly reflect the personality of their spouse.

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