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Involving Your Children In Your Wedding Ceremony

  • Posted on March 22, 2012 at 9:27 pm

When you or your fiance have children from a previous marriage, it can be both enjoyable and beneficial to involve them in your wedding ceremony.

You can choose to have the children be a part of the wedding party and walk down the aisle in a variety of roles – from being bridesmaids or groomsmen, flower children, or ring bearers.  Children can also give the bride away!

I have officiated some very touching wedding ceremonies with wedding vows that say how much your children mean to your relationship.  You could say something like this in your wedding vow:

“CHILD’S NAME,  I love your mother/father very much, and I love you too.  When I take your mother/father as my wife/husband, I also take you into my heart as my own child.  I want you to know that you are important to me, and I will care for you always as your parent.”

Often a parent will offer a token – such as a watch, locket or rose – to the children, as a way to say that they love them.  Sometimes new parents will offer rings to the children as well and include them into the ring ceremony.

~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ Marryus Custom Wedding Ceremonies

Are You Feeling Overwhelmed Planning Your Wedding?

  • Posted on January 19, 2012 at 5:36 pm

If you are, you’re not alone. In fact it’s common for couples to feel anxious when they begin planning their dream wedding. Here are some ideas to help.

Start Planning Early

It’s never too early to start planning, so don’t procrastinate. There’s an enormous selection of books and websites that will help you with important wedding decisions, budgets, and planning.

Create A General Plan and ‘To Do’ List

This will make your vague dreams specific and achievable. If at first this list seems insurmountable, prioritize! Pick your Number One goal. Determine the very next, small achievable action and take it. Repeat.

Don’t Try To Do It All Yourself

It’s important to delegate – but only to those people you absolutely know will get the job done. (Otherwise, you’ll be looking over their shoulder as well, and doubling your work load!) This is what your wedding party and family are for. (And they’ll likely enjoy helping!)

If It’s Too Much Work – Get Professional Help

You don’t have to blow your budget on a full wedding planner package. Consider a one-time meeting to get you started in the right direction, or a ‘day of wedding’ package.

Be Your Own Best Friend

Be easy on yourself. Remember: everyone attending your wedding cares about you. If the final result is not flawless, no one will mind. What your guests will likely remember is the love you expressed and demonstrated to your partner. That doesn’t cost a thing.

My E-book Can Help You

I write Unique Custom Wedding Ceremonies. For each couple, I provide my E-book (‘Creating Your Unique Wedding Ceremony’) with everything you’ll need– from Vancouver’s very best wedding vendors and venues, to the logistics of the ceremony, special rituals, vows, readings, music selections, wedding rehearsal tips, and much, much more.


Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs

Who Will Be In Your Wedding Party?

  • Posted on November 2, 2011 at 9:15 pm

Here are some things to consider when selecting your wedding attendants.

  • Bottom line: you should select the people with whom you are closest! Being a member of the wedding party is an honor you extend to your best buds and favorite family members. That said, you might also consider including a future sister- or brother-in-law or stepchild as a nice gesture – even if you aren’t yet that close to them.
  • The number of attendants you choose is entirely up to you. If you’re having a small, informal affair, you may only want one or two attendants. Formal weddings tend to have more attendants – anywhere from five or six to twelve or more. Just keep in mind that the more attendants you have, the bigger chunk of your budget you’ll need to earmark for things like flowers and wedding party gifts.
  • If you have more special friends and family members than you can include in your bridal party, consider asking them to perform other tasks of honor. For example, they can do readings, sing, or distribute wedding programs before the ceremony.
  • Ask your attendants-to-be well in advance of the wedding. Let them have a few days to decide.
  • If someone declines (often due to geography or their financial situation), be gracious. Being a bridesmaid or usher is a significant commitment of time and money, so be understanding if someone is unable to take that on. It’s not a slight against you, and on the plus side, they’re saving you the difficulty of having an attendant who’s not fully invested in the wedding.
~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs 

Would You Like To Elope?

  • Posted on September 17, 2011 at 8:44 pm

There are so many reasons to elope. Here are a few that my Elopement clients have mentioned:

  • Elope to avoid the hassle and expense of a traditional wedding. (You want to save your money for another purpose. Going into debt for a large wedding isn’t worth it.)
  • Elope for privacy. (You don’t have to be a celebrity to want to keep things just between the two of you. Perhaps you don’t want to share your sweetie with others on such a special day; your vows of love and commitment are a deeply personal matter. You’d rather have it be just the two of you; maybe with a party later…or not.)
  • Elope for a tax break. (If it’s the end of the year and you know you’re going to get married soon, why not get a write off on your income tax?)
  • Elope because you never got around to it. (I have married many couples who have been living together so long that everyone thought they were married.)
  • Elope due to illness or accident. (Don’t wait. Life is too short.)
  • Elope because it’s fun. (It is!)

~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs 

Should You Create A Wedding Website?

  • Posted on August 2, 2011 at 3:29 pm

Imagine having a beautiful wedding website – filled with your photos as a couple and your favorite music. Creating a wedding website takes a little work – but it’s worth the effort! You can share your personal love story, plus details of the proposal that  led to the countdown to your wedding day.

Here are the categories you might consider:

  • Welcome
  • News & Updates
  • Proposal
  • Ceremony (where and when)
  • Reception
  • RSVP
  • Calendar of Events (featuring outings for out-of-town guests)
  • Accommodation Ideas
  • Local Activities
  • Gift Registry
  • Directions
  • Contact Information
  • Address Book
  • Guestbook

Here’s a sample of a Welcome from one couple’s website:

Welcome everyone to our wedding website! For those of you who will not be able to make it to our wedding, we thought this would be a great way for us to share all of our experiences with you. For all of you who will be attending, all of the information you could ever want to know about us and our wedding will be available for you here.

After twelve wonderful years together, we are looking forward to having a small and intimate wedding with our friends and family on ­­­___. We have chosen to have our wedding ceremony and reception at ___ in downtown Vancouver. The venue is absolutely beautiful and it reminds us our trip to Italy where we got engaged.

Most of you will be coming in from out of town so we have provided you with many wonderful suggestions of places to stay. Hopefully some of you will decide to make a vacation out of this and extend your visit following our wedding. For any of you who will be coming into town early, the Celebration of Lights fireworks festival starts on Saturday July 30th, with shows on Wednesday August 3rd, and Saturday August 6th. Please see our local activities page for more details.

Please RSVP through our website and we would love to receive messages in our Guestbook from anyone compelled to do so. Please check back often as we will be making frequent updates to the website as the plans progress

We are looking forward to seeing everyone in just a few months. Thank you to all of our friends and family for supporting us and loving us over the years.

~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs 


How Important Is Sound In Your Wedding Ceremony?

  • Posted on July 27, 2011 at 10:09 pm

Let me answer the question with two other  questions. First – what’s your favourite movie? Now – imagine watching it with terrible sound. Perhaps it is barely audible, maybe there is noisy static, or possibly  the sound is intermittent. Would your movie be as enjoyable? The same is true for your wedding ceremony!

I have a rule of thumb: For weddings with over 30 guests (particularly if it is outdoors), a sound system is essential. Don’t get me wrong: with a background in theatre, I can project my voice with the best of them. But how romantic would it be standing with your loved one on your wedding day, while the Officiant in front of you is speaking as loudly as they can? By having a wireless, head set mic, my system is almost invisible and I am able to speak to you and your guests in a regular conversational manner.

Remember: guests that hear your ceremony will not only enjoy your ceremony, but feel included. Isn’t that why you’re inviting them?

~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs 




Choosing A Photographer

  • Posted on July 9, 2011 at 6:43 pm

Photographs of your weddings are one of your top priorities. When determining your wedding budget, the photographs can easily represent 10% of your total cost.

In addition to wedding photographs, I personally love a video montage (set to music) of still wedding photos. The average price for this (when added to your total wedding photography package) is around $225-$300.

Before choosing a photographer, think about what style of photos you want. Do you prefer vintage looking photos or modern? Do you want all black and white or bright, bold colors?

Then, start looking at tons of photos. Read blogs. Ask your friends. See who they recommend and why. Nothing beats a great recommendation from a trusted friend.

 ~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs 

The Information You’ll Want For Your Outdoor Wedding

  • Posted on July 1, 2011 at 3:46 pm
Whether you’re planning your wedding ceremony – or your  photographs – to be outdoors, these resources can help with your preparations.
Temperature and rainfall patterns are the two main weather variables that couples think about. Check this link for historic Vancouver weather information to help plan your wedding day.
Sunset, and Sunrise Times
The sunset time is a common question couples ask when planning a wedding. Please consult your photographer to ask their advice. Sunset times and usable light for great wedding photos, are often very different.
Tide Tables (For Beach Weddings)
Beach weddings and water front vistas can look and feel quite different with different tides.
~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs 

Your Wedding Venue

  • Posted on June 26, 2011 at 1:47 pm

There’s a saying in Vancouver: ‘If it isn’t raining, it will be!’

While many brides dream of a lovely outdoor wedding, it’s essential that Vancouver brides have a ‘Plan B’ in case of rain. This means making plans for the rental of a tent, or selecting a venue that can accommodate you both outdoors – and indoors if there’s a sudden down pour!

Here are two great venues that can offer you both, should you suddenly need it. The Furry Creek Golf Club has beautiful mountainous vistas and ocean view; indoors they offer lovely rooms surrounded by forested green and waterfalls. The Brock House, located by the water’s edge in Point Grey provides a gorgeous backdrop – inside or out.

Your choices are many! And my e-book (‘Creating Your Unique Wedding Ceremony’) provides a complete listing of venues for the couples I ‘marry’.

The Importance Of Music In Your Ceremony

  • Posted on June 17, 2011 at 8:27 pm

How do you envision your wedding? Would you describe it as traditional, fun, spiritual, romantic, unique?

The music you select for your wedding ceremony – from the time your guests first arrive, to your processional, to the signing of legal documents and recessional, to the time your last guest leaves – is so important! Music sets the emotional tone you wish to create, and ideally is a reflection of you as a couple.

Here’s what the experts have to say:

  • “Music is the shorthand of emotion” ~Leo Tolstoy
  • “It’s such an extraordinary thing, music. It is how we speak to God finally – or how we don’t. Even if we’re ignoring God. It’s the language of the spirit. If you believe that we contain within our skin and bones a spirit that might last longer than your time breathing in and out – if there is a spirit, music is the thing that wakes it up. And it certainly woke up mine. And it seems to be how we communicate on another level.” ~Bono
  • “Music is so important. It changes thinking, it influences everybody, whether they know it or not. Music knows no boundary lines.” ~Irving Berlin
  • “Music is one of the ways we can achieve a kind of shorthand to understand each other.” ~Yo Yo Ma
  • “Music is an outburst of the soul” ~Frederick Deluis