A Year in the Life of a NYC Marriage Celebrant

Many of my couples assume I write a post per every wedding or ceremony.  If I did, this blog would feature twenty-four posts for December.  Yes, I did neglect the blog a little in the past few months.  I think it’s the fault of twitter.  It seems redundant to tweet something and then blog about it.  Indeed, I am feeling as though my twitter account may need to go….  Other than an internal debate about twitter, however, my life as a marriage officiant/celebrant/minister is both secure and enjoyable.

I performed 281 ceremonies in 2011.  About eighty percent or so were weddings (with licenses) and about twenty percent were vow renewals of some sort  for a remarkably diverse contingent of couples.  Perhaps half were tiny weddings with fewer than two dozen guests; a quarter had under fifty guests; and a quarter were full, formal weddings with long guest lists.  I married lots of locals and lots of couples planning destination weddings.  Naturally, being able to officiate same-sex weddings with authentic NY issued licenses, which comprise roughly twelve to twenty percent of my weddings, became the most joyous news of the year.

Liam photographed about eighty-five of those weddings / vow renewals; these were mostly elopements with a sprinkling of fuller weddings.  He actually had to decline many couples due to schedule conflicts.  Having decided to fulfill a life-long dream of becoming a nurse, Liam had to return to school to take all those pesky science and math classes he avoided as a Studio Art major.  Fortunately, he plans to continue photographing weddings for …well… until his fingers or eyesight decline in agility.  As much as I really do love meeting other photographers–especially Jen Huang, Photo Pink, Aga Images, and Kim Coccagnia, among many others–it’s fun to work with my spouse.

For the upcoming year, I plan to hold my services constant overall.  I will still respond to e-mails quickly and offer a competitive honorarium to officiate ceremonies.  The myriad types of ceremonies will likely only expand.  I will still try to keep everything concise and earthy or “sweet and simple.”  And I will still accept reservations for both short-notice and advanced-notice weddings, although couples need to know that “an agreement exchanged is the path to a ceremony arranged.”  In other words, if you wait too long to book, I may not be available.

As a team, Liam and I are not making too many alterations.  Over the past year, we have slowly, but surely, retired the original OBB package in favor of a package with more time for photography.  We both love the OBB package; however, it’s not very sustainable in the long-term: time is so precious and scarce plus lenses are pricey!  Liam plans to continue to focus on elopements and tiny weddings.

To all those browsing this entry, I look forward to marrying you in 2012!

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