Sometimes, loved ones wish to have a funeral that focuses on joy and honoring life. While it may not be possible to hide your sorrow during this difficult time, there are a few things you can do to make your friend or family member's funeral one that honors his or her wishes while helping your family to begin the grieving process. Here are just a few unique ideas you can use to celebrate your loved one's life.
Open Mic Memorials
Instead of having one person write a eulogy, set aside time during the funeral service for everyone to share their favorite memories of your loved one. You can have your funeral home director hand out small notebooks and pens as guests arrive so they can jot down notes, and they can then use the notes to help them as they share sweet, fun or interesting stories about your loved one. Ask the funeral home director about recording this portion of the service so you have a way to share these stories with future generations.
Serve Beloved Recipes
If your loved one was well-known for making certain dishes or desserts, consider preparing the recipes ahead of time and serving them at the funeral service. Use his or her recipe, and create sample-sized portions to be shared with all the attendees. Your funeral home can arrange to have a buffet table set up with plates, napkins and cutlery outside of the viewing room. You may also want to consider having the recipes printed on thick card stock along with a quote or photo of your loved one. These recipe cards can be given away in lieu of traditional memorial cards.
Create A Memory Board
Ask friends and family members to bring in photos or other items to remember your loved one by, and place poster boards or bulletin boards throughout the room. Guests can pin the pictures and mementos to the boards to share these special memories. Consider placing the boards near the casket so people attending the viewing can take a photo tour of your loved one's life as they pay their final respects.
Hand Out Favors
You can create a true celebration of life by treating the funeral service a bit more like a memorial party. An easy way to do this is to hand out party favors to attendees. These favors should represent something the dearly departed loved, such as a favorite candy bar or CD. Have the items placed in a solid-colored gift bag, and add a small thank-you note to each bag to show your appreciation to all the people who attend the service.
You can honor your loved one's final wishes and create a funeral service that is a celebration of his or her life with these different funeral ideas. Be sure to talk to your funeral home director about other options you can choose to make your friend or relative's funeral one that will be remembered for years to come. Contact a company like Conboy-Westchester Funeral Home Inc for more information.