August 28, 2006

A Quick Peek into Japanese Wedding Rings, Tradition and Styles

With changing times, the Japanese culture and tradition has also accepted a lot of changes. Exchange of wedding rings in the marriage ceremony is one of them. For, the wedding rings were never a hardcore part of the traditional Japanese weddings. But the modern Japanese couples enjoy slipping the wedding rings in each other’s fingers.

In fact, it is believed that the history of the exchange of wedding rings in Japan is only 150 years old. The custom of wearing a wedding ring in Japan is related to the Edo Era, belonging to the late 1800s. before that, Japanese women used to color their teeth to prove their marital status.

The times have changed and Japanese married couples have started wearing wedding rings. While other things are still traditional in Japanese weddings, the exchange of wedding rings is a contemporary and popular concept. Still it is enjoyed greatly and practiced with respect. Japanese call the ring finger as kusuri-yubi.

The bride and the groom appear quite composed during the staid marriage ceremony. But as the time of rings exchange approaches and the groom slips the wedding band on the bride‘s finger, they smile together.

It is interesting to note that people in Japan wear the wedding bands not because of any religious or supernatural reason. They wear it because they want to make the public announcement of their marriage. They wish to tell the world that they welcome a special person in their life and they plan to spend the rest of their lives with together.

Japanese people consider various aspects before buying the wedding rings. They consider the look, attractiveness, and the material value of the ring as important factors to choose a wedding ring. The religious connotations attached with wedding rings in other countries hold absolutely low or no relevance for the Japanese.

Let’s take a quick peek into the styles and designs of Japanese wedding rings.

Mokume gane is a traditional Japanese term used to explain the art of making wedding rings. It came into being a couple of centuries ago. The mokume gane artists layer the non-ferrous and precious metal and make patterns over it. It is originated from the ancient Japanese technique by which damascus steel was created.

In the mokume gane art, two or more metals are piled together in sporadic sheets and merged together. Then, a billet is forged, formed and filed to divulge an attractive pattern of the sheet layers. Mokume is an apt art for making the wedding rings, as it poses the perfect marriage of metals too.

Well generally Japanese people do not like wedding gaudy rings with heavy crafting on them. This is perhaps because big diamonds get stuck with clothes or other things and are not practical to wear daily. Most of them love simple and casual designing, which they can show off regularly.

If you also cherish simplicity in life, get a Japanese wedding band and adorn your wedding ceremony. [493 Words]

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February 14, 2006

Gift Ideas for Your Groomsmen

Choosing a gift for the groomsmen could be a difficult task for many grooms. Most grooms don’t want to go with a gift that is too traditional or unoriginal but they also struggle with feelings that a gift that is too creative may not be appropriate. Perhaps the most important aspect of a groomsmen gift is not whether it is traditional or unique but whether or not it fits the personality of the recipient. As long as you know your groomsmen very well and put an honest effort into finding their groomsmen gifts you are sure to find a gift that will be enjoyed by your groomsmen.

One of the most traditional groomsmen gift ideas is a flask. If this is something that you think your groomsmen will fully enjoy then by all means go out and buy them the most attractive silver or leather flask that you can find. It’s important to choose a gift not because of its traditional connotations but because you know the groomsmen will cherish the gift. If you believe that your groomsmen have a use for a flask or will be touched by receiving such a traditional gift as a souvenir and not be concerned by its lack of practicality then a flask may be a wonderful gift idea.

A CD case with a few CDs chosen specifically for the groomsmen can be a great gift idea if you know that your groomsmen enjoy music. This is a wonderful gift idea because it is sure to be used often by the recipient and your groomsmen will remember your wedding day each time they listen to one of their CDs. This is also a thoughtful gift because including CDs that you know your groomsmen will enjoy but do not already own shows that you really put an effort into choosing the gift. Personalizing the gift for each of the groomsmen also shows that you see them as individuals and took the time and effort involved in making the gift unique for each of them.

A men’s perfume or fragrance can be another unique gift idea for the groomsmen. Choosing a different fragrance for each member of the wedding party sends the message that you did not buy your gifts in a rush. Taking the time to choose a unique fragrance for each of your groomsmen lets them know that you truly appreciate their assistance and participation in your wedding.

Another idea for giving gifts for your groomsmen is to give each man a different gift. While the groomsmen are all close friends of the groom and may have certain common interests, they all still have something about them that makes them unique. You could recognize their individuality by personalizing a unique gift for each of your groomsmen. For example you could give a journal and fancy pen to the groomsman who likes to write and an assortment of dance CDs to the groomsman who enjoys going to nightclubs and dancing. While traditionally grooms have given each of their groomsmen either the same gift or very similar gifts, it is also acceptable to give each groomsman a unique gift that suits their personality.

Bracelets or watches are another traditional groomsmen gift idea. Depending on your budget, you might want to purchase a watch or bracelet that is appropriate to wear on your wedding day. This is a wonderful gift that not only expresses your appreciation for participating in your wedding but also gives the groomsmen a nice accessory to wear at your wedding and other formal functions.

Cuff links or tie clips are still another traditional gift idea for a groom to give to his groomsmen. These items are not very common and many groomsmen do not own either so giving them as a gift ensures that the groomsmen will have these items to wear with their tuxedo on your wedding day. Although these are traditional gift ideas, you could make them more modern by giving each groomsman an accessory that suites their personality. For example you could give your sports loving groomsman a tie clip that is in the shape of a basketball while you could give your musically inclined groomsman a tie clip that is in the shape of a few musical notes. Giving each of your groomsmen a variation of the same idea makes even the most traditional gift idea appear modern.

Groomsmen can be difficult to buy gifts for because many of the traditional groomsmen gifts seem boring or impractical. Traditional gifts can be made more modern with the introduction of a twist such as a variation in each groomsman’s gift instead of giving them each the exact same thing. The most important thing to consider in choosing a gift for your groomsmen is to make sure the gift will reflect the personality of the recipient.

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May 9, 2006

10 Unique Gift Ideas for Your Bridesmaids

It is customary to honor your bridesmaids for their participation in your wedding with a gift of appreciation. Traditional gifts include a piece of jewelry such as earrings or a necklace that complements their bridesmaids dress and can be worn on the wedding day but many bridesmaids will truly appreciate a more unique gift idea. With careful consideration you may be able to give your bridesmaids gifts that show your appreciation for their assistance and also demonstrate that you understand their personality as well.

One unique gift ideas for your bridesmaids is an evening bag to be used as an accessory on the wedding day. This gift can be a lovely gesture and will serve the purpose of keeping the accessories of the bridesmaids uniform and will free your bridesmaid from the burden of searching for an evening bag that matches the dress. In this case you may choose to give the bridesmaids their gifts early in the wedding planning so that they don’t purchase a bag specifically for the occasion of your wedding.

A photo album complete with a picture of you and the bridesmaid or the entire wedding party can be another unique gift idea for the bridesmaids. You could purchase photo albums with the date of your wedding engraved on the front cover and start the photo album with a picture of you and the bridesmaid. This is a wonderful gift idea because the bridesmaid can place her photos from the wedding day in the album and will always have a precious souvenir from your wedding day.

Gift certificates to a spa or a salon also make unique gift ideas for your bridesmaids. Your bridesmaids most likely spent a great deal of time and energy in helping you to plan your wedding. The week prior to your wedding was also probably especially hectic with a great deal of last minute details to attend to and errands to run. While you will have your honeymoon to relax and renew your energy your bridesmaids do not have this luxury so by honoring them by presenting them with a gift certificate to a spa or salon you are giving them the gift or being pampered and the gift of relaxation.

A few more unique gift ideas for your bridesmaids’ gifts include handcrafted or homemade gifts. For example you could put together a CD of some of your bridesmaids’ favorite songs. You could make the CDs different for each bridesmaid and include a photo of the two of you on the cover and include a heartfelt poem on the inside of the CD cover. You could also create a scrapbook for each of your bridesmaids. You could either make the scrapbook a memory of your entire friendship together and include photos and other items from your various adventures throughout the years or if you plan ahead and take many photos documenting your wedding preparations, you could create scrapbooks as a remembrance of the wedding planning that you shared.

Personalized cosmetics bags can also be used as unique bridesmaids gifts. You could purchase attractive cosmetic bags and have them embroidered with your bridesmaids’ initials and the date of your wedding. Another nice touch with this gift is to include a few items such as lipstick or nail polish that complement each of your bridesmaids’ style and complexion.

Another unique gift idea for a bride to give to her bridesmaids is a gift certificate to a local restaurant. Assisting in your wedding preparations was probably extremely stressful and time consuming for the bridesmaids and they certainly deserve a night on the town and the opportunity to not have to cook for a night. This simple gift lets your bridesmaids know that you appreciate their efforts and that you want to thank them for all that they have done to support you.

Unique gift ideas for the bridesmaids can also stem from the wedding theme. For example if you are having a beach themed wedding you might want to give your bridesmaids a gift of a tote bag, a beach towel and a novel to enjoy on the beach. This unique gift idea ensures that your bridesmaids will remember your wedding fondly the next time they are at the beach.

Traditional bridesmaid’s gifts such as jewelry and jewelry boxes are always welcomed but if you have a large group of friends and most of them will be bridesmaids several more times as more of your friends get married it might be nice to give your bridesmaids a gift that is unique. Unique gift ideas convey your message of appreciation but also let the bridesmaids know that you put a great deal of effort into choosing their gift.

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September 9, 2006

Baby names and their meanings

Naming a baby may seem simple enough but when you are the one doing the naming, it can be really frustrating. One of the ways that can help you with this really frustrating task is by giving names that have special meanings. The job of today’s moms and dads is a whole lot easier actually compared to parents in previous years. There are probably hundreds of baby naming books in bookstores as well as websites where you can enter the names that you are considering and find their meanings.

Some websites even have categories that group names into their origins. For instance, names that have Indian origins have their own grouping, names that have Italian origins have separate grouping and so on. Names are also classified according to gender or to popularity. Of course, alphabetical classifications of names will always be there. You can even browse through several different names and just take your pick from the pack.

Finding out the meaning of the name that you are going to give your child will not only make the name special but will also put a small meaning into the name. By giving your baby a name with a meaning that you like, you are, in a way, putting a representation of what you hope your child would grow up to be. Remember that a name is a stamp of identity, something that your child will be using for the rest of his or her life.

Here are some of the names and their meanings that you can find in websites. If you want a complete list, just go to a search engine and type keywords baby names meaning and voila, a list of websites where you can browse different names.

Aaron- High Mountain
Bailey- Server
Caesar – Purposeful
Abel- Breath of vapour
Caleb – Dog lover
Calvin- Bold
Abner – Cheerful
Cameron – Bewitched
Abraham – Father of Multitude
Barron – Fighter
Carlos – Expressive
Bartholomew – Friend
Carol – Champion
Cary – Charmer
Casey – Brave
Alan – Harmony
Benedict- Blessed
Cecil – Obstinate or Blind
Albert – Nobly
Alexander- Leader
Alexis- Helper
Alfred- Wise
Bing – Intuitive
Alison – Holy
Blair – Dignified
Clair – Famous
Clarence – Bright
Clark – Charmer
Claude – Lame
Alroy- Regal
Bradford – Mighty
Clay – Mortal
Clayton- Town-Dweller
Alvin – Beloved
Brandon – A Fighter
Clifford – Brave
Dale – Dweller
Dalton – Farmer
Dan – A Judge
Ebenezer – Integrity
Eden – Diplomatic
Farrell – Brave
Darius – Strong
Edgar – Fortunate
Felix – Happy
Gary -Old man
Ian – Lord’s Grace
Geoffrey – Peace
Ingram – Hero
Giles – Young goat
Irvin – Friend of the Sea
Godfrey – God peace
Isaac – Glad
Harlan – Warrior
Isadore – A good gift
Grant – Great
Harley – Athletic
Harry – Princely
Guy – Sensible
Hector – Defender
Kane – Exacting
Lachlan – Fighter
Kay – Rejoicing
Lambert – Wealthy
Jason- Healer
Kean – Tall
Keith – Gardener
Jed – Beloved
Lewis Well-Known
Lincoln – Settled
Lindo – Tree
Lionel – Lionlike
Llewellyn – Swift
Lloyd – Joy
Ludovic – Fighter
Loredo – Learned
Loren – Victor
Loring – Fighter
Lothario – Cheerful
Macy – Steadfast
Napoleon – Comforter
Nathan – A Gift
Malcolm – A Servant
Nat – Versatile
Nathaniel – Godly
Orlando – Famous
Paine- Rustic
Radcliffe – Fiery
Quincy – Restful
Ralph – Hero
Quinn – Wise
Parker – Princely
Patrick – Noble
Randall – Relentless
Shawn – Gracious
Trevor – Prudent
Sherlock – Eminent
Silvester – Earthy
Spencer – Provider
Stephen – Loyal
Samson – Resplendent
Xavier – Bright
Valentine – Healthy
Wade – Wonderer

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July 29, 2006

Pick a Celtic Wedding Ring and Steal The Heart Of Your Beloved Again!

Wedding rings have always been exchanged as an emblem of a ‘potent bond’ of marriage. The ritual of wedding ring ceremony has been practiced in various cultures and traditions, literally from the ages. The perfect circle of a wedding ring has always been a representative of undying love and continuous happiness for the nuptial couple. Moreover the circle represents the wholeness and timelessness of their wed-locked new relationship.

Today, there are several types of wedding rings available in the market. Some of the famous ones are the diamond rings, platinum rings, gold rings and titanium rings. But, there is one category of wedding rings which had its essence in the past and holds it even today. Any guesses? Well, this particular genre of wedding rings is known as Celtic wedding rings.

So, Let us take a closer look at some aspects related to the Celtic wedding rings and their popularity.

Thousands of years back, a group of liberal tribes called Celts spread throughout the various parts of Europe. A majority of these people were classy artisans who used to carve knot work patterns. These work patterns have also motivated the modern day jewelers to develop some exquisite wedding rings. The Celtic patterns created on the wedding rings today have some particular meanings. But understanding these patterns and their relevance to the wedding rings is somewhat illusive.

Some people tend to prefer Celtic wedding rings as a way to connect profoundly into their own heritage. Indeed they tend to feel compassion with a tribal tradition of Europe that regards the earth as the Mother Earth. Moreover some people tend to feel that a Celtic wedding ring brings them closer to the poetry and music. And for other people, it’s just another type of jewelry which holds some significance and value.

Well, coming a step ahead of the cultural aspects of the Celtic motif rings, you will find that people wear these rings irrespective of the fact, whether they belong to Celtic ancestry or not. A majority of people consider wearing Celtic motif rings because they believe that these motifs have a symbolic and universal meaning. In fact the knots in the Celtic motifs depict the interweaving of two different paths together. Moreover the knots represent the interconnection of various aspects of life. Indeed a Celtic wedding ring is a mascot which titillates the mystical connection of life and people.

There are several knot styles and designs of the Celtic motif wedding rings. Moreover people prefer certain knot work motifs over the other due to their specific meanings. For example, a couple might choose a simple and flowing knot work motif style as it depicts ease, harmony and partnership. The wedding rings with other knot work designs can be more intricate and dynamic, suggesting passion and other creative elements.

Apart from the round knot motifs wedding rings, the square knot motif works also hold their symbolism. A square knot motif wedding ring is a clear representation of stability of a relationship. Even most of the buildings are square-shaped because of the symbolism of the stability attached with the square designs. Other than these shapes, the Celtic rings also deal with the directions of the vectors. Another very common design of Celtic wedding ring is the depiction of trinity work pattern.

Considering the aspects of Celtic rings and knot work motifs, it would be appropriate to say that if you insist on buying a Celtic wedding ring, you should spend some time to understand the meaning of a particular motif as well. And you will surely choose a better motif style ring for your wedding. [602 Words]

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