The long wait is over and you have finally been asked the four magic words “will you marry me”. And then all the planning and excitement begins! You have the location to decide upon, your wedding dress, accessories, wedding menus, the perfect photographer to capture your day, pretty flower decorations, bride’s maid outfits, cake, music, the first dance- oh the list is exhausting! You just wish someone could read your mind and work out everything for you! Yes – your wish shall be fulfilled – we present you with exactly this – the ultimate wedding planner tools to help plan, save and share the most special day of your life!
Visit our online wedding planning website at www.theweddingsite.ie . We have a whole list of tools enriched with wedding information, to get you through the entire planning process. Lets’ see – when you begin with the perfect location for your wedding, the one that you have been dreaming of ever since you were a little girl, we have a host of options listed for you all over Ireland. Our wedding venues section provides the most elegant and beautiful venues all over Ireland – the Keadeen Hotel, Loughrynn Castle, Fota Island Resort – to name a few. An exquisite backdrop for your wedding is a good place to begin your wedding plan.
Our Wedding Supplier Directory- here’s where you will find most of your answers! As promised, we are here to help you to the minutest detail. We have an expansive list of suppliers to aid your decision making process plus graphics to “show” you what the wedding dress or the accessories or the maid’s dresses look like. The My Planner tool is a virtual personal assistant. You can provide a budget, create a to-do list, keep a track of all your appointments, post the “preferred choices” to the “Inspiration Board”, create a guest list, and even plan the seating arrangements, RSVP’s and your very own personal wedding website! You can make changes online whenever you like, save online, e-mail or even print out. Wedding planning made easy!
Theweddingsite.ie has all the prerequisites for a wonderful wedding -the stylish tastes of today’s brides and grooms as regards to weddings bands and DJ’s, wedding apparels with a touch of exclusivity for all – the groom, the bride, moms’, dads’, maids and best men! Complete with tips on wine selection, menus for the wedding dinner, moreover, you can share tips and get some suggestions from other registered brides to be and grooms. And not to forget the honeymoon locations listed.
Look like a star – gleaming and radiant – on the day that you will look back upon for the rest of your life. Our health and beauty section gives you tips to get that “look” for your big day – the perfectly pampered skin and the perfect glow!
A girl’s got to do what she ought to do – but grooms out there – you have loads of options here as well – check out our tips on the ring selections, tips on the wedding speech preparation etc. We have a whole section especially to ease the process for you too-all wedding information in one place!
Don’t let today’s busy world ruin your wedding day! We at Theweddingsite.ie have everything you need to take the stress out of your planning and make your wedding day the most memorable day of your life. You’ve got a genie in your hands (or on your computer screen) – your wish is our command! Register now, it’s free and takes less than a minute. www.theweddingsite.ie – wedding planning made easy!
Ever wonder how your engagement stacks up against the rest? Do you want to fit in with the crowd or are you looking to flout it? Do you want to know how many couples are choosing to live together before marriage? How does that affect their chances at getting to their fiftieth wedding anniversary? How many pregnant brides are there? How long is a typical engagement? Here are some interesting engagement statistics to measure yourself against.
Ninety-five percent of women receive an engagement ring, but that number is falling. More and more couples are choosing to forego engagement rings for ethical or financial reasons. Of those who do get a ring, eighty-five percent get theirs at the proposal. In forty-two percent of engagements with rings, the woman helped choose the ring, but in most cases, eighty five percent, the man still paid for the ring himself. Forty-eight percent of women want their man to surprise them with a proposal, but it is easy to see why fifty-seven percent of men think ring buying is stressful: twenty-eight percent of women will turn down a proposal if the ring isn’t what they wanted. Still, forty-five percent of men do no research before buying an engagement ring.
The average age of women at their first marriage is twenty-five. The average age of men at their first marriage is twenty-seven and a half. Two-thirds of women want their partners to ask their fathers for permission to marry. Waiting to save up enough money for the ring of their dreams is a common reason given for postponing engagement. Waiting to save up for a house is another.
Six percent of new brides are pregnant when they walk down the aisle. This trend is on the rise. Whereas “shotgun weddings” used to occur mainly because teen-agers or young adults got pregnant out of marriage, many older couples are waiting until they have a bun in the oven to get married because it is a practical reason to get married and start a family.
Seventy percent of brides are on a diet on their wedding day. Ninety percent of women adopt their partner’s surname when they get married. Six percent of men propose over the phone.
A couple is engaged an average of sixteen months before they marry. Twenty percent of engaged couples break it off before the wedding. Sixty-nine percent of engaged couples have known each other for longer than three years. Seventy percent of couples live together before marriage, but of those that do, eighty percent won’t make it to their tenth anniversary. Only five percent of all marriages last fifty years.
Less than fifty percent of couples have sex on their wedding night. Hoteliers state that they most often hear that couples want to have a shower and get to sleep after a day of wedding festivities. Of those that do have sex, eighteen percent lose their virginity on their wedding night..
A marriage is made up of much more than numbers. No matter your chances, if you concentrate on building a marriage that is founded on trust, partnership, affection, humility, and a willingness to try again, you will have a good chance of making your own odds for many years to come.
In almost all the countries of the world, wedding commences with a ring ceremony of with exchange of rings. Ever wondered what the wedding ring actually signifies.
Heres an answer:-
The circle of a wedding ring symbolizes undying love and the continually renewed promises of the married couple. Since the time unknown, circles have been archetypes for not only timelessness, but also wholeness and homecoming. The circle also represents the constant round of the heavens, as well as the eternal return of the seasons, marked by cyclical ritual and celebration.
The endlessness of a wedding ring is the perfect symbol of oneness and unity that has no beginning or end. It is also a symbol of the sun, earth and universe, and represents holiness and peace. Even the caveman, our forefather, used to bound himself to his mate with a cord of woven rushes as a symbol that their spirits were one. In Ancient Northern, it was believed that a lover’s knot was a symbol of love, faith, and friendship. This knot was made out of the hair of the beloved. It was first woven into a knot that was then worn as a ring.
During the wedding ceremony, the ring is usually placed on a ring bearer pillow because of the fact that these rings are sewn or tied on the pillows. The ring bearer pillow has originated from the Roman and Egyptian customs. During that time, the pillow was used to carry silver and gold stones. But now it is used to carry the cherished wedding rings.
A wedding ring is a symbol of the matrimony; the words said during the exchange of rings should reflect the couple’s hopes for their marriage.
Some things one need to take care about the wedding rings:-
One should never wear a wedding ring before marriage as it is considered as presumptuous and bad luck.
If one loses or drops the ring during the wedding ceremony, one has to start the wedding proceeding all over again.
One is not supposed to wear someone else’s matrimonial ring unless their marriage is very successful with lots of love and happiness.
Wedding rings are something that we keep with us for a lifetime. So, it should be a jewellery piece that we cherish all our lives. Not only they should be beautiful but they should also enhance the beauty of out hands.
So, choosing a ring can be a very exciting and wonderful experience.
How to choose a wedding ring:-
Now that you know who is going to be your life partner. The next decision is to choose an appropriate wedding ring. First of all, you need to get your ring finger measured by a professional jeweler to ensure that you can ask for the correct size to try on when you are out shopping for the ring.
Another important decision is to think about the type of metal that will be suitable for your budget and lifestyle. The most popular precious metals are platinum, white gold and yellow gold for a ring. Platinum is the most expensive option, but it is also the strongest, so if you are looking for something stylish and durable, you may want to consider spending a little more on this stronger metal. But if you think you cant afford platinum, white gold is the option for you as it can be polished and brushed to resemble platinum’s ultra modern look.
The most conventional choice of a wedding ring is yellow gold. Remember that the carat designates the purity of the gold – higher the carat the more gold it contains. Jewelers usually recommend 18ct, which is considered as a good compromise between luxury and practicality.
Lat but not the least, think about your own personal style while choosing a wedding ring. If you are a bold, daring person there are lots of modern, exciting designs now available in the market. If you are creative, go ahead and sketch out a design of your own, and then get it custom made by a goldsmith. It is a tradition to wear matching rings, but you can add your own twists to the design, for example both wedding rings could be the same metal and pattern, but the bride could have the addition of some diamonds or some other precious stone.
Arranging your wedding ought to be something pleasant and energizing. Be that as it may, numerous couples discover this “employment” extremely upsetting in light of the fact that there are an excessive number of things to deal with. This is genuine that you should continue scanning on web and magazines for various thoughts and data about your wedding.
For some different couples, they simply don’t know how to begin their wedding arrangement. They think that its difficult to begin since they don’t comprehend what to do. The followings are the five issues you have to consider when you begin your wedding arranging.
1 The budget
You can do nothing without cash. The principal thing you have to consider is the financial backing. Firstly you should settle on the amount you will spend for your wedding. At that point you ought to begin to assign the financial backing to various things of wedding, for example, the venue, the providing food administration, wedding photography, favors, and welcome.
2 The scale
The second thing you can consider is the scale and many-sided quality of your wedding. Truth be told, you ought to have a harsh thought regarding it after you set your financial plan. A wedding with a bigger scale will most presumably mean a higher spending plan.
You may likewise need to take the advices of your folks. They may need a greater wedding while you may not. For this situation you have to examine with your accomplice and folks so that a common assention about the size of the wedding. At that point you may presumably need to audit the monetary allowance you have set. On the off chance that the monetary allowance ends up being too high for you, you will positively need to talk about the entire matter again with your folks.
3 Wedding theme
After you settle the monetary allowance and size of the wedding, you can begin hunting down your wedding topic. There are a great deal of wedding topic you can pick, a shoreline wedding and a winter wedding for instance. You can hunt on the web down various wedding topics and talk about it with your accomplice which will be the most reasonable one for you.
4 Wedding date
Some may feel that they ought to choose the wedding date at the absolute starting point. It is not absolutely genuine for sure. You may have an unpleasant thought regarding your big day yet you can’t generally settle it until you settle on your choice on your topic.
On the off chance that you are going for a shoreline wedding, you will in all probability have your wedding in summer. Despite what might be expected, you won’t have your wedding in summer on the off chance that you are wanting to have a winter wedding. Also, this is the motivation behind why you ought to have your wedding subject before settling the big day.
5 Wedding venue
After you have experienced the initial four stages, you can begin to pick your wedding venue. There is probably the wedding venue will be identified with your wedding topic. You will attempt to discover a shoreline on the off chance that you are anticipating a shoreline wedding. Looking and booking the venue as right on time as could be expected under the circumstances is extremely fundamental. In the event that somebody book that day for the wedding as your big day, you should either discover another wedding day or consider another wedding venue.
The above are just issues you have to consider when you start your wedding arranging. There are still more points of interest to be consider, for example, wedding welcome, wedding support and wedding photography. In any case, they ought not be something troublesome in the event that you begin your wedding arrange well.
If you constantly want to perform before people, the stage is best place for you. You may have been seen many fire shows, fire performers, fire jugglers, wedding entertainers, who provides wedding entertainment, around the world. But the question stay is how you can become a successful entertainer.
You need to be an open person to talk with people. It may happen that you are very good in performing but, you find difficulties in facing people which will clearly make you rather abnormal and audience wits it very quickly. Its very importance that a performer is very strong, bold but sophisticated too at the same time. S/he should be able to understand the audience properly. A performer is someone to whom people are used to give the space and take pleasure of the ride. But if ride is unmemorable, it will end extremely rapidly.
The performers skills are very important. If you are performing in fire shows, you should have the skills to perform well in fire shows. If you are one of the wedding entertainers, you should have the skills to perform well as wedding entertainers. Remember that a skilled performer always credited, for example a good skilled performer will make the fire shows enjoyable and good wedding entertainers will make the wedding more enjoyable. So to have skills is very important and it will add in total entertainment value. You need to blend your skills to your performances.
Marketing factor is also very important. But most important thing is the work you do, as there will always be someone in audience who will arrange a fire shows or need wedding entertainers for the wedding function. Many times it happens that a customer calls you and says that s/he got your reference from somebody who had seen your performance somewhere else. Customers always want a good performer, because no one wants to experience annoyed feelings which a bad performer produces. And, as a performer if you do a bad job, you will never get any work in the future.
So, try to be natural in the company of people. You should always have clear goal in your mind about your performance. Your performance should have the spark which can attract people for your shows. You should rehearse your shows again and again and left out parts which didnt actually work.
You should also practice your art well because its very important. You should review your shows yourself as you shouldnt take any risks regarding your shows and performances. You should have a complete script about your show and you should always follow it. Always keep improving as there is always a room of improvement no matter in what field you are. The most important thing for you as a performer is that after your show is over, you see the satisfied faces of the audience, thats the most important thing should be for you as a successful entertainer.
Dancing is an essential component at most wedding receptions. We look forward to the couple’s “first dance” and the bride’s special dance with her father. It’s also a place to get loose and funky, if you’re a guest or a member of the wedding party.
But what if the wedding planners decided to add some fun and surprise to the dance floor by adding fun activities there? This doesn’t mean a rousing version of the “Bunny Hop”, which, while maybe essential, is hardly unique.
There are, however, many fun games and activities you can add to your dance floor activities that are sure to be a hit.
Try a fun game of the “chicken dance”. Ok, so that doesn’t sound too original. But if most of your guests are just sitting at their tables, watching a few brave couples dancing, or just finishing their meals, you might want to get everyone up and having fun. Try this game.
The DJ announces a number. Everyone looks under his or her chair, where there is a number. Depending on the number of guests at the wedding, there might be only numbers “1” and “2” or more, up to 5.
So, say the DJ announces number “4”. Each person checks under their chair to see what their number is. These numbers can be written simply on a piece of masking tape and affixed to the underside of the chairs when the reception is being set up. Each “4” in this scenario will head to the dance floor to do the chicken dance with the other “4s”. Not only does this get people out of their chairs and on to the dance floor, they get to know other wedding reception guests they might not otherwise know.
One dance floor activity that’s gaining popularity is to bring in a dance teacher for the wedding reception. As a kind of pre-dance activity, the teacher will quickly walk people through their paces on the dance floor, perhaps teaching a bit of the waltz or, for something completely different, a little bit of the tango, before the music officially begins and dancing commences.
Having a dance teacher do a bit of teaching not only livens up the reception right from the start, but it gets people out on the dance floor who might otherwise be too self-conscious normally to get out there and let it all hang out. And practically speaking, it will likely make the wedding guests feel more confident in their skills before the “official” dancing begins.
Another fun activity to get everyone on the dance floor, including even the most reticent, is something you can refer to as the “snowball” dance. This is a good way to jumpstart the dancing at the beginning of the evening.
Here’s how the “snowball” dance works. The wedding party, bride and groom included, will head to the dance floor for a fun dance. The music for this dance should be fast, something with a disco beat or a fast song that most people have at least a passing familiarity with. After a bit of wedding party dancing, the music stops. The female members of the wedding party move into the crowd and bring back one male each. The male members of the wedding party do the same, but they bring in female guests. The dancing then begins again. This is repeated until all the guests are dancing. It’s truly a snowball effect!
MC’ing events and conferences at the top professional level is a real blast. The fundamental key is to make everyone else look like stars…then you’ll shine along with them. Forget the ‘Do’s and Don’ts’ lists – think positively, and just do the ‘Do’s’!
Do: Research the event.
The more information you have, the more relaxed you will be and prepared for eventualities. Is this an annual event? If so, what did last year’s MC do? If it’s a wedding, obtaining some back-history on the couple and their friends makes a lot of sense.
You may find that you don’t need to use this information specifically in your role, but the more knowledge you have, the more prepared you will be.
Do: Make early and professional contact with your main team.
On the corporate side, this is AV companies, event companies, keynote speakers, presenters and venue staff. For private functions this could be wedding planners, committees, club members etc.
Having great relationships in place ensures you are more likely to be able to enlist their help if needed, and means you are better prepared for any issues on the day.
Do: Case the joint.
Take time to walk the venues, the stage and other performance areas. Where are the bathrooms? What are the health and safety rules in the particular venue you are in?
Walking the route your delegates will take when using the above info will ensure you are able to give them the exact information, when they need it. If speaking to a group is new to you, spend time on stage visualizing the crowd and rehearse how you will address them.
Do: Acknowledge key support, particularly the sponsors.
I cannot stress how important this point is. Without sponsorship, conferences and events just cannot take place, and very likely, they will not be able to afford you!
Give the sponsors as much air-time as you can and find innovative ways to maximize their exposure. For any event, the function is supported by a number of groups; caterers, venue staff, organizational helpers etc. Make it part of your role to acknowledge them publically.
Do: Obtain each speaker’s specific introduction script.
Professional speakers know exactly how they want to be introduced, and lay-speakers will benefit from being asked the right questions about their presentation.
Not only will you be prepared for their time-slot, but you’ll be a legend in their eyes when you rattle off a specific, professional introduction that makes them look fantastic.
At the other end of the scale, listen carefully to their presentation -when the time comes to thank the speaker, you’ll be prepared with a succinct summing-up of their presentation as part of your outro.
Do: Have a backup plan.
Conferences and functions are dynamic, flowing events. Not everything goes to plan and the professional MC has an option up his sleeve to cover any late or no-show speakers that is in-keeping with the theme and feel of the conference or event.
Weddings in particular are well known for large time-lags. Discuss these eventualities with the key participants before the event and ensure everyone is aware of the possibilities.
Do: Use appropriate humour.
And that doesn’t mean playing to the lowest common denominator. Every audience deserves your respect and ability to entertain without resorting to off-colour material. If in doubt, choose something non-offensive. HANDY HINT – jokes where the audience don’t see the punch-line coming are the most effective.
You can go one further and research specific jokes, energisers, one-liners etc that are geared towards the industry or event you are performing at.
Bonus 8th tip:
Do: Enjoy every minute!
Although the MC’s aim should be to be almost transparent to the audience, you really are the person making the difference at the front of the room, the one who will be the lynch-pin, the captain of the ship and getting it right as a professional MC will pay huge dividends for your future.
May all your events go smooth!
With a small amount of focused effort, your sterling performance will be noted and you’ll be inundated with requests to host meetings and events. The above tips are only a hint at the possibilities for the professional (and professional-like) MC or meeting convener.
Take every opportunity to learn from other professionals around you and you’ll soon find yourself in demand.
When planning a wedding, one of the many things to choose is the bridesmaids dresses. This can be a difficult task when considering each bridesmaids unique size, shape, and style in relation to the look that you want them to have. It can be challenging to find one style that looks nice on all of the girls within a reasonable price range that they feel comfortable in and may want to wear again. Instead of choosing one style, you may want to consider a convertible dress for your bridesmaids. Convertible bridesmaid dresses are hot right now because they let you have the best of both worlds! These comfortable styles will make you love to wear these dresses over and over again. Plus it is fun and exciting to have one dress for the wedding ceremony that can convert into a totally new design for the reception!
There are different ways that bridesmaid dresses can convert. Weve laid out a few different styles that can be purchased, or custom made if you desire.
Imagine a dress that can be converted in various ways by twisting long straps in different configurations. Yes, just two long straps can create many different looks. These dresses are typically made of a lycra or stretch satin making them comfortable and easy to wear. During the ceremony you can have all of the girls tie this type of dress in one configuration, and then let them change it to their desired style for the reception. Your bridesmaids will be able to use their creativity and change the look of their dress so that they will enjoy wearing it again and again after the wedding.
A removable skirt is another great way that a bridesmaid dress can convert. A long elegant formal gown can easily become a sassy short cocktail dress for the reception. The skirt can remove with a hidden zipper or with a bow or elegant tie. The skirt on the dress underneath will grab some extra attention if it features a print, fun detail or a brighter color.
Removable outer dresses worn for the ceremony that reveal short fun dresses underneath are another great style this season. This look is perfect for cold weather and ideal for church wedding where modest dress is required. The removable layer with sleeves is a perfect alternative to the traditional jacket or shrug.
Convertible bridesmaid dresses will make your bridesmaids look great and they will be excited about the unique dress they get to wear. Transforming your bridesmaids from elegant and sophisticated to wild and fun will be an experience that is memorable and enjoyable to have on your wedding day. Everyone will be amazed and delighted by the change that will transpire!
Glass Block Crafts – How to Make Gifts and Keepsakes They’ll Love!
One of the newest trends in do-it-yourself gifts is glass block crafts.
Advantages include that glass blocks are readily available at your local home improvement and craft stores, they’re inexpensive, and anyone can do it!
What Can You Make With Glass Blocks?
Of course, the only limitation is your imagination!
Some popular glass block crafts ideas include making lighted holiday decorations, centerpieces and nightlights, both fresh and silk flower arrangements, coin banks, lamps, knife holders, decoratively etched display pieces, picture “frames” and more.
Glass block crafts are great because the blocks themselves are heavy and quite stable, so they are hard to knock over. They can be filled with sand or marbles, coins or even water with fresh flowers. They are well-sealed, so they don’t leak.
Where Do You Get the Blocks?
Any home improvement store will carry glass blocks, and they are typically cheaper there than at the craft stores. Block prices range from about $3 to as much as $10, depending upon size and style of the glass.
Glass blocks can be clear, or they can come in a wide variety of frosted or decorative glass styles. One style is where the glass has little circles on it, or stripes, or unique varying patterns.
Blocks can be as small as 4 inches by 8 inches, or as large as 12 inches by 12 inches. You can find glass blocks that are 3 or 4 inches thick, depending upon your preference.
One disadvantage to home improvement store blocks is that if you are intending to fill the blocks in any way, you will need to drill a hole in the block yourself with a glass drill bit. This is something that anyone can do, but it does require a little care. Use a 5/8 inch glass bit, and drill slowly so as not to crack the block. Make sure to wear eye protection.
You can also choose to buy your blocks at a craft store like Michael’s or Hobby Lobby. They will be more expensive at a craft store, but in most cases the blocks will come pre-drilled with either a one inch hole, or a 4 or 5 inch pre-cut rectangular slot on top.
Blocks from the craft store will range in price from about $8 to as much as $15.
Some Glass Block Crafts Ideas
Table Centerpiece. One idea for a party or shower centerpiece is to fill a glass block with holiday lights, either clear, white or colored. Try to choose a white cord for your lights since they are less likely to be noticeable.
Stuff a 20-light chain into your glass block. Leave the cord outside the block so it can be plugged in. You may choose to apply a vinyl message like “Fun!”, “Party,” “Enjoy!”, “New Baby!”, etc., on the outside of the block. Window clings work well also.
Wrap the block with a colorful ribbon and tie the top or side with a large bow. You can use this as a table centerpiece or mantel decoration. It looks very festive when the lights are on, and even more so when there are several blocks of varying sizes!
Snowman. Choose 2 or 3 blocks of increasing size, one for each ball of the snowman.
If you choose to paint your blocks, do so before you start to assemble your snowman. You can ask at your local craft store for the appropriate type of paint for glass. Allow the blocks to dry for 24 hours before assembling.
Fill the blocks with clear holiday lights, about 20 lights per block. You may choose to use a longer (50 lights or more) single string in order to make your project simpler. You may need to drill additional holes in the bottom of the blocks to allow the strings to go from top to bottom of your snowman.
Adhere your blocks together with glue at the top and bottom raised edges of the blocks. You can use silicone adhesive, or any glue that is designed for glass.
Decorate the snowman with buttons for his eyes and mouth. Glue twigs to the blocks at the seams for his arms, and add a carrot decoration or other piece for his nose. Some people will add a small hat or scarf, your preference.
Wedding or Shower Gift. This glass block crafts idea uses no lights.
Take a photograph of your choice that is slightly smaller than the glass block you’re using.
Cut a piece of adhesive, colored vinyl (craft store item) that is slightly larger than your block. Center your photo over the top of the vinyl so that it will form a border around your photo. The photo will stick to the vinyl.
Place the bordered photo against the outside back of the glass block. When you look through the block, you’ll want to see the photo.
Add a large ribbon around the block, and tie a bow on the top. You can add other things if you like. For example, a teddy bear or baby rattle looks nice for a baby shower.
Photo Frame. This is a simple glass block project that anyone can do.
Choose your favorite photograph. Coat the back with spray adhesive and place it on a piece of cardboard, laminate, or something firm but thin. Cut the backing to fit the photo.
Fill your glass block with sand, no more than 1/3 full. Place your photo inside the block and stick in into the sand. The sand will hold it in place. You can add seashells or other small decorative items as desired.
As you see, with a little imagination and creativity, you too can enjoy glass block crafts!
This is for all husbands and wives!
1) Spend some time to have quality conversations with each other everyday.
2) Every week, take some time off to go out on a date just like your courting days. You can go for a movie, take a walk at the beach or dine at your favourite food haunts.
3) Surprise each other with love SMS messages at any time of the work day. Keep it short and sweet. It shows that your other half is in your thoughts even when you are apart.
4) If your other half has a tough day at work, lend him a listening ear if he wishes to talk about it. Give him a soothing massage if he is physically tired.
5) Give him some time of his own to do what he enjoys, like reading a book or playing his video games. On the other hand, you get to enjoy your own private time as well.
6) Find an activity or sport that both of you enjoy doing on a regular basis. No more excuses about no time for each other!
7) Every morning before leaving for work, give each other a goodbye kiss. Every night before sleeping, give each other a goodnight kiss.
8) Take turns to do the housework. Your other half will really appreciate an extra pair of hands!
9) Surprise each other with little gifts once in a while. It doesn’t only have to be on special occasions like birthdays, but anytime you feel like it!
10) Hold each other’s hands when you are out just like dating days. Many couples conveniently forget to do that after having kids.
Historically, the Brahmins in india were divided into two major groups based on geographical origin of the people. the Brahmin groups that lived to the north of the vindhyas were referred to as Dravida Brahmins. Each group was further divided into five sections according to the regions of their settlement. the five (Pancha) Gowda Brahmin groups were Saraswats, Kanyakubjas, Gaudas, Utkals, and Maithilas. The five (Pancha) Dravidas Brahmin groups were Andhras, Maharashtras, Dravidas or Tamils, Kernatakam and Kerela Brahmins. Basically, Brahmins follow the principles of the vedas, as per the text of the Sruti and smriti, which are some of the foundations of hinduism, and they practice
‘Identity’ and not ‘Identity’ Brahmin weddings from Kasmir to Tamil Nadu. The weddings of the Brahmins are seen having a myriad of differences, while rediating the same level of enthusiasm. If the Panch – Dravida Brahmins of the south grow a plant seed as a symbol of the growth of the family, the maithil Brahmins of Bihar
mix and grind the seeds to represent the expansion of the family. Keeping the same belief intact, the Brahmins from each corner of india have different strokes which make their weddings an interesting affair to attend.
Pre – wedding traditions
The Brahmin wedding is decided by matching the horoscopes (kundlis) of the soon – to be bride and the groom. Once, the kundlis are matched, it is given to the respective Brahmins for Gun – milan (matching of sixteen points). After baithak (meeting), the elders decide the mahurat (auspicious time) for the wedding. However, the kundlis in the North differ from the South indian Brahmin. the Panch Guada Brahmins of the north give significance to the signs while the Brahmins of the South give importance to the Nakshatra (stars).
The Sagaai or the engagement ceremony symbolises commitment However, the South Indian Brahmin do not lay stress on the presence of bride and the groom in their Sagaai, rather it focuses on commitment between the parents of the grrom and the bride. ‘Latto’ i.e., ‘engagement plate’ Which consist of coconut, flowers, turmeric, betel leaves and betel nuts hold more impotance, in their engagement ceremony. The Maithil Brahmin bride of bihar makes her wedding affair
stand apart by receiving the blessing from the Dhobi’s (washerman’s) wife – a compulsory tradition in the Bihari Brahmin wedding. the maithil belief states that the dhobi’s wife dies before her husband and so she never becomes a widow. With
this faith. the ritual is performed by touching a bit of yoghurt to the hair of the dhobin (washerman’s wife) and then the bride is asked to eat the same. After the engagement ceremony Kashi yatra (pilgrimage to Kashi – a place near Varanasi) is observed in most of the South indian Brahmin weddings. In Kannada and tamil Nadu, the Kashi yatra explains the groom’s “mock anger” – as his intention to renounce all the materialistic benifits and go on a yatra, while his father – in – law pacifies and offer him his daughter. Umbrella, Bhagwad Gita,
hand fan and sandals are the props used by the bride’s father to win his would – be – son – in – law back.
Upanayana is the ritual where Yajnopavitam, a thin sanctified cord composed of distinct cotton strands, is wrapped around the groom’s body, falling underneath the left arm. Upanayana or Vratham is the main pre – wedding event for lyer Brahmins. For the bride. it means the tying the kappu, the holy thread on her wrists, which protects her from evil. For the groom vratham begin with invocations involving the Gods Indra, Soma, Chandra and Agni as he prepares himself for a new chapter
in his life as a grihasta (householder). In North India, a thread is tied to the groom during the janeu ceremony which is a pre – curser to the wedding ceremony. Upanayana is followed by the Haldi ceremony.
In Haldi ceremony turmeric powder is mixed with milk, almond oil and sandalwood and applied to the bride and the groom. In Kashmiri Pandit this ceremony has a twist becuase cold, white yoghurt is poured on the bride as an alternative to haldi. ritual is followed by a special custom called Shankha (shell) Paula (coral) in bengali Brahmins, where seven married women embellish the bride’s hand with red and white bangles, the shell is supposed to calm the bride and the coral is believed to be beneficial for health. Mehendi is also applied on every bride’s hands during the mehendi ceremony. However, a Bengali brahmin bride applies alta (red dye).
The Wedding ceremony
With exuberant festivities, a traditional Brahmin wedding is a feast to the eyes. Amidst the melodious sound of Shehnai and the beating of the drums, the ‘baraat’ and the groom arrive at the venue where the bride’s family eagerly waits for them. The wedding ceremony in South Indian Brahmin usually take place during the daytime. Although in Himachal pradesh, the unique tradition, Kanya Ghatri is practiced at some places. in which the bride has to take her baraat to the groom’s place. Once the groom arrives or in some cases the bride, the aarti (small prayer) is done by the mother and other ladies of the bride’s family. Along with aarti, the bihari Brahmin follows the compulsory celebration of singing of vidyapati songs by the ladies of the family. These songs reveal the marriage events of ram and sita; Shiv and Parvati. Vidyapati song are sung before the arrival of the groom but continue even during the marriage ceremony and in fact these poignant song are carried for the whole year in the house of the marriage.On the wedding day, a Kashmiri Groom’s forehead is covered with a long piece of starched and ironed snow – white zoojh (white scarf) which is about three centimeters in width two to two – and – a – half meter long, in three to four layers. It is made of fine cotton or silk on two sides and consist of a silk or cotton net in the middle. The Groom’s uncle performs the ceremony of wrapping th forehead.
After the ceremonious arrival of the groom, the garlands are exchanged between the groom and the bride, while the priests chant mantras. Jaimala is the symbol of unifying two souls into one. But in tamin nadu, “Oonjal”, a unique jaimala ceremony is performed and could be best decribed as a tug of war. In this ceremony, the women sing songs to encourage the bride and groom to exchange the garlands while the uncles persuade the soon to be couple not to exchange the garlands.
Before the ceremony of jaimala, the bride makes a majestic entry in bengali weddings. Covering her eyes with betel leaves, she is seated on a low wooden stool called, ‘pidi’, is lifted by her brothers and takes the seven complete circles, round the groom. Unveiling the Ghoonghat before jaimala is a common feature of any Brahmin wedding but Maithil Brahmin, infused with their strong faith add a special touch to the usual fashion. The unveiling is not just done by her brother, depicting the dual lives of a women. the unvieling symbolizes the journey of the
girl from a carefree daughter of her village to the figurative lady of her husband’s house. After jaimala and sindoor daan, the pheras start but in the talgu Brahmin there is an extra ritual, Jeelakaraa – Belaamu in their weddings, the priest recites
shlokas from the vedas and after that the priest asks the couple to smear a paste made from cumin seeds and jiggery on each other’s hands.
Fire is considered the most pious element in the brahmin weddings and seven circles around that fire holds the seven prominses that the nuptial couple make to each other amidst the vedic mantras. the Brahmin wedding is deemed incomplete without the seven rounds around the sacred fire. Unlike other Brahmin weddings, in Gujarati weddings only four pheras are taken which are called the mangalpheras where the pheras represent four basic human goals of Dharma, Artha, Kama, and Miksha (religious, moral, prosperity and salvation). Likewise in Malayalee Brahmin weddings, pheras are taken only thrice. But in Rabha tribe of Assam, as per Gandharva tradition, no pheras are taken, marriage in complete with the exchange of garlands. In Maharashtra, an important ritual in the ceremony in when the white cloth is held between the bride and the groom and the priest recites the mangal ashtaka mantras. These mantras formally complete the wedding. Rice mixed with vermilion is showered by the attendees on tulsi and vishnu (referred to bride and the groom here) at the end of the recitation of the mantras with the word “Savadhan” (be careful). the white curtain is also removed. the attendees clap signifying approval to the wedding. Vishnu is offered sandalwood – paste, man’s clothing and the sacred thread. The bride is offered saris, turmeric, Mangal – sutra, worn by married women. sweet and food cooked for and actual wedding are cooked for tulsi vivah too. After kanya daan, the groom puts mangalsutra on his bride’s neck and then water is poured on it signifying the equality of man and his wife. tamil and talgu Brahmin have two mangalsutras, from the groom’s and breide’s family.
Post wedding ceremony vidaai
After pheras, the bride’s family and friend bid her teary vidaai (farewell). the kashmiri pundits make their vidaai even more special. their cahrming ritual, “roth khabar” is performed on a saturday or tuesday after the wedding. In Roth khabar, the bride’s parents send a roth (bread decorated with nuts) to their son – in – law’s family. But the bride accompanies She stay with her parents and returns only when someone from in laws comes to fetch her back.
The new bride is greeted by her mother – in – law with Arti and tilak. The bride, who is regarded as the Goddess laxmi, enters the groom’s house after the groom’s house after kicking a rice – filled pot.
In Kannada Brahmin marriages, the groom changes the name of his wife in the name change ceremony where he decides a name for his wife and inscribes it on a plate containing rice with a ring. In Bihar, a very strange ritual is performes at the groom’s place. The bride suddenly finds herself grappling with a huge earthen pot set on her head by her mother – in – law. Without losing time, few more pots are added to the pile while she is expected to bow down and touch the elders feet. Brahmins share the same belief that’s practised differently.