About 20% of the ceremonies officiated by Celeste are simple, 'unscripted' ceremonies within days or occasionally even hours of booking. Having officiated more than 250 ceremonies since being ordained, she is well-versed in many suitable passages and will ask you just enough questions to make sure the wording she includes is respectful of your beliefs, whether religious, spiritual but not 'religious' or non-religious entirely.
BUT...if you are a couple looking for something more than the ordinary in a ceremony, Reverend Celeste might be just the right officiant for you, as well. The majority of couples who book her services wish to include a unique optional ritual personalized just for them. Examples include a Past/Present/Future Sand-blending with six colors of sand picked by you from the more than two dozen colors of sand she keeps on hand; or a Family Sand-blending, where the two of you choose two colors each, and each of your children choose their own color of sand. This is a great way to include your children as part of the ceremony, so they better understand that this ceremony makes official the blended family that your love has created.
Other optional rituals you may choose to include as part of your main ceremony are the Ribbons of Hopes & Wishes, a unique ritual created by Celeste which generally includes some of the guests as part of the ritual. You may wish to include a Hand-fasting, which harkens back to olden times, with one scarf or several ribbons. If you are having an indoor ceremony, the Unity Candle is always an option, and Celeste keeps a variety of Unity Candles on hand for you to choose from (or supply your own). A few couples have asked Celeste to include invoking the elements of air, fire, water & earth in a circle.
In other words, Reverend Celeste feels that their is room for all beliefs, and stands by her word that 'every couple deserves a ceremony that reflects their beliefs and lifestyle.
Celeste is also willing to travel to a location of your choice. In addition to the local areas around Caballo Lake, Elephant Butte Lake, Truth or Consequences and other areas around Sierra County, New Mexico, has actually officiated at weddings in quite a variety of locations around the state. These include White Sands National Monument (twice); City of Rocks; Gila National Forest; an outdoor wedding at the Spencer Theater in Alto, NM, Sandia Crest, the Lodge at Sierra Blanca in Ruiodoso; an outdoor ceremony in Carlsbad; and a couple of locations in Las Cruces. The most exciting trip was a mountaintop south of Alamogordo, which was accessible only after traveling in a 4-wheel drive vehicle over huge boulders straight up the mountainside!
She has officiated at ceremonies at several of the local hot springs/lodging establishments, including the Elephant Butte Inn, the Pelican Spa, the Fire Water Lodge, Sierra Grande Lodge, and Riverbend Hot Springs. However, since opening the Celestial Wedding Chapel in Truth or Consequences, more and more couples (especially locals) are choosing this intimate romantic room for their ceremony. With subdued, tasteful decor that includes fine art, live plants and a wedding arch decorated with several hundred dollars of silk flowers and garlands, this might be the perfect location for your small wedding or elopement. Celeste can even provide the two required witnesses and a photography, should you desire or need those services.
To find out more about Celeste's services and to get a feel for whether you feel good about her performing the potentially most important ceremony of your lives, email or call. If you ARE taking the time and spending the money for a more elaborate reception, especially where this is a 'destination wedding' involving the travel of yourselves and your guests, then you should consider that the ceremony itself sets the tone for the rest of the day. Make sure you book a Wedding Officiant that you feel copacetic with, someone whom you feel will come up with a ceremony script that resonates with YOU. And someone who will be well-prepared and do a good job of delivering the ceremony--not just someone who shows up and delivers the words by rote--or, 'phones it in', as they say.
Please check out www.new-mexico-ceremonies.com to see information about Celeste's philosophy, fees, and to have access to more photos from some of Celeste's ceremonies, mostly taken by her partner Chuck (who takes the photo-journalistic in-the-moment photos of the ceremony) or herself (she enjoys the 'after ceremony' photos of the hands over the rings or getting the couple to relax enough to get some genuine smiles).
Finally, Celeste (once you have booked her services) can also point you in the right direction for cakemakers, florists, reception locations, venues and even other photographers.