In writing, do you refer to your "spouse-to-be" as your Fiancé? or Fiancée? Do you know there is a difference? If you weren't a French language major you might not. Fiancé describes an engaged man while Fiancée describes an engaged woman!
I kicked off October at Boundary Oaks Golf Course in Walnut Creek officiating for Esther & Michael, pictured here with their bridal party--who says a spectacular October wedding has to be orange?
Today I had the pleasure of officiating a destination wedding for an upstate New York couple who decided to "get hitched" here in San Francisco--the City by the Bay. A small entourage joined them for the happy occasion, a chance to take a mini-vacation and enjoy a SF Giants vs SD Padres game too.
But this isn't just any couple who enjoys baseball; the bridal bouquets were adorned with buttons some of which were souvenirs from various baseball stadiums they had visited--in fact, on the questionnaire I asked them to complete, they intend to visit every baseball stadium in the U.S.--it's a mutual passion. The wrist corsages worn by the Mother of the Bride and Mother of the Groom used black & orange ribbon.
So, on this blustery day, the group assembled outside--with the Bay as it's backdrop--to celebrate and witness the exchange of vows and rings! A San Francisco Trolley car pulled into the parking lot not as another photo backdrop but their transportation for some additional sight seeing and ultimately their ride to AT&T Park--she in her wedding gown and he in his tux with their bridal party, family and friends. An intimate wedding, a great day - congrats to Kelsey & Matt!
A bride contacted me a few months back wanting to surprise her long-time boyfriend with a surprise wedding! For some, this would be more risk than they would be willing to take, for others a challenge all in the name of love! I explained, that in California, both parties to the marriage are required to sign a marriage license IN ADVANCE, and there was NO way of getting around that fact. He would have to consent. Sure enough, a week later, she called again and said a plan was in place. I ran into them at the Alameda County Clerk's office on Valentine's Day and at that time he thought they were getting the license to satisfy the venue and would need to get a new one later; a California marriage license is only good for 90 days. He thought their wedding date was in the Fall. As you can surmise, there were a million more details in terms of how she pulled it off, but it worked and it was a wonderful, wonderful wedding. Only the bride, her Mom and his Mom knew what was really a foot--all their other guests just thought they were coming to a surprise birthday party for the Groom!
On my last day of 2014, I was sworn in as an Alameda County Deputy Marriage Commissioner where I will volunteer some time each month presiding over civil marriage ceremonies on the County's behalf. Loving my role as a wedding officiant, coordinator and now commissioner. This year may you find yourself the recipient of good health, abundant wealth and more love and happiness than you've ever known, Happy New Year!
Mark your calendars, grab your spouse-to-be, your Mom or a couple of bridesmaids and join in the fun!
As 2014 comes quickly to a close, I am thankful for all the loving couples I've met this year and the opportunity to be a part of one of the most special days of their lives together. Despite being bombarded with negative news on a daily basis by media channels, I am reminded that love, faith, hope and commitment continue to thrive.
Thank you for having selected me to officiate your ceremonies, meet your families and become a part of your long-lasting memories. Some of you have stayed in touch and provided updates--moved to a new home, expecting a child, etc.
I look forward to meeting and working with more couples in the New Year and working alongside other wedding professionals in our business. Truly, I have one of the best gigs on the planet!
Happy Holidays everyone,
Recently, one of my newlyweds asked for a list of all the places she needed to follow-up with regarding her name change. Here's what I shared with her...first stop, your local Social Security Administration office. Even the IRS suggests this should be at the top of your list, click here for what the IRS has to say. The Social Security Administration office will ask you to complete Form SS-5 and you'll need a certified copy of your marriage license as proof.
Listed below, in no particular order, are other places where your new name will need to be updated:
The Name Equality Act of 2007 allows couples applying for a California marriage license to change their middle or last names as a result of their marriage ceremony being completed/celebrated.
It will be cheaper and time efficient to make this decision at the time you obtain your California marriage license because it can be noted at the bottom of the license in Section 30A-31C.
Changing your name after your marriage license is issued (and before you are married) will require the purchase of a new license. Changing a name AFTER your marriage ceremony has already been performed requires a court order and can be a lengthy, expensive process.
Bottomline: give some serious thought to what your married legal names will be BEFORE applying for a license and save yourself both time and money!
If I use a Wedding Officiant, can the officiant go and pick up our Marriage License?
This question comes up often, and legally the answer is "NO". Both parties who intend to marry must be present at the County Clerk's office to file the application for and be issued a marriage license.
Additionally, both of you will need to present a valid authentic legal photo identification card containing photograph, full legal name, date of birth, date of issue, and date of expiration (Examples: passport, driver's license, military I.D. naturalization certificate, resident alien card). If your legal picture I.D. card does not contain your full legal name you must also present a certified copy of birth certificate or social security card, showing your full legal name.
Note: Original identity documents in a foreign language must be translated into English by a Court certified translator or American Translators Association (ATA) certified translator and must be presented along with the translation.
If you have been married previously or in a State Registered Domestic Partnership, please check with your local County Clerk website for additional information/documents that are/may be required.