The Advantages Of A Granite Headstone Over A Bronze Headstone

When choosing between a headstone, you’ll usually be choosing between bronze headstones and granite headstones — or bronze monuments and granite cemetery monuments. Both of these materials are often used because they last a long time and look very attractive, but granite has a few benefits over traditional bronze.

There Are More Color and Pattern Selections

Granite can be found in a variety of colors and patterns, so you can personalize it based on the preferences of your loved one. Bronze, of course, only really comes in a single color, though textures can be added to the surface. In general, because it’s more difficult to work with, bronze is usually only produced in a few major styles. Granite, being carved, can be used to create more customized tributes.

Granite Will Not Develop a Patina

Over time, all bronze will begin to develop a green patina. Even with cleaning, there will always be somewhat of a green cast. Some people like this appearance while others find it unattractive. Granite does not develop a patina, making it preferable for those who want to avoid the green. Beyond the patina, both granite and bronze tend to be similarly easy to take care of.

Granite Headstones Are Cheaper

Bronze is up to four times more expensive than a traditional granite headstone, making granite the more economical option. Of course, that doesn’t mean that one would have to find the cheapest option; instead, the money could go towards building a larger granite cemetery monument, compared to a smaller bronze headstone. By saving money on the actual material, more complex additions can be made to the headstone, such as lengthier engravings, inserted photographs and other thoughtful options.

Bronze Headstones Are Occasionally Stolen

Thieves tend to target bronze headstones because they can be melted down and then sold for money. Granite cannot be reused the way that bronze can. If you’re concerned about the possibility of theft or that the grave of your loved one could be disrupted, a granite headstone may be best.

Price and other considerations aside, the decision between a granite headstone or a bronze headstone will often come down to personal preference regarding the aesthetics. Some people prefer the classic, clean appearance of granite while others prefer the stately and luxurious appearance of a bronze headstone. Granite is, however, the more versatile and less expensive option. The important thing, as always, is to find the headstone your loved one would have liked best.

If you have more questions about gravestone options for your loved one, contact a local supplier or manufacturer like Genesis Granite.

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Finding The Best Funeral Home For A Departed

When there is a death in your family, you need a funeral home to complete the last rites for the departed. It’s a sad occasion but there are certain rituals associated with the well-being of the departed soul and hence, a proper funeral is required. With proper research, you can find a funeral home close to you that cares.

Go local

There is no point finding a funeral home that is not close to you. When a loved one in the family departs, their funeral is carried out and they are then cremated. The moment is immensely sad when someone departs and the least you want is to have their body carried for a long distance for getting the funeral done. Moreover, the cremation should also be close to you so that you can pay your respects whenever you want to.

Facilities offered by funeral homes

Different funeral homes offer different types of facilities. The more empathetic the funeral home, more you can expect from it. There are funeral homes that offer help in completing all the documentation and paperwork related to death. They should be well aware of legal documentation and requirements. There are funeral homes that arrange for transporting the body of the departed. Some also arrange for the service in a nice chapel that can not only accommodate all the mourners, but also arrange for their refreshments. When you talk to a funeral director, make sure you find out about the available services.

Additional facilities

For some of the funeral homes, arranging a funeral is all about offering end-to-end service. This means that they would go beyond their normal call of duty. Many people these days prefer a green funeral that saves our precious natural resources. Interment is to be done in a bio-degradable shroud or a casket. No chemical-based embalming fluid is to be used and concrete vaults are to be avoided. Ask the funeral home if they have options for that. The best funeral homes can arrange for flowers and music too, just to make sure they let you grieve in peace.

The cost

The cost of a funeral can be high and there are funeral homes that have hidden costs included in their services. Make sure you have complete knowledge about the final cost of the funeral so that you can plan accordingly.

A funeral is a sad event and you want a funeral home that helps you overcome your grief. There are funeral homes like Foster-Warne Funeral Home that make the difference during this difficult time and help you get the last rites arranged in the perfect manner.

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Key Terms Every Individual Should Know During Funeral Pre-Planning

Even though planning your funeral in advance sounds like a good thing, there is a good chance that you will feel a little overwhelmed about the process of facing your own mortality. The best way to make this easier is to approach the meeting with a funeral director as one that is related to business and finances. Just as if it would be if you were preparing for a major business meeting, it is imperative that you understand the meaning behind common terms and phrases that will be used while you are planning and making arrangements.

Bereaved – When speaking of a funeral, the bereaved refers to your immediate family and friends who will likely be in attendance at the visitation and funeral services.

Display Room – The display room in the funeral home is the place that you will be taken to look at funeral-related merchandise, such as casket choices, clothing, or floral arrangements examples.

Eulogy – The eulogy is a brief speech usually given by friends and family members of the deceased that commemorates the life they had. You may be asked who you would like to deliver eulogies at your funeral service.

Funeral Spray – The funeral spray is the flower arrangement that is splayed across the top of the casket during the services. You will be given the opportunity to choose certain characteristics of the funeral spray, such as the type of flowers used and what the ribbon should say.

Inurnment – This is commonly a term that is used to refer to the procedure where the cremated remains, or ashes, are placed into an urn for keeping. This is usually done at the crematorium, but may also be performed during the funeral ceremony.

Cremation Niche – Once the ashes have been placed in an urn after cremation, you may choose to place the urn in a viewing area at a mausoleum that is referred to as a cremation niche. This is simply a recessed place in a wall where the urn can be viewed and is sometimes encased in glass.

Flower Car – During a funeral, there are typically many flower arrangements that have been given by the bereaved. If you prefer, these flower arrangements can be brought to the cemetery for graveside service display. If you choose this service, you will be asked about a flower car, which is simply a vehicle used to carry the floral arrangements after the funeral.

By understanding some of the key terms that may be used when you are planning your funeral  you will be better equipped to take on the task. If there is a concept brought up that you do not understand, be sure that you ask questions to gain clarity in order to make the best decisions about your funeral. To learn more, visit Brinsfield-Echols Funeral Home

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What You Can Expect From The Funeral Home Staff

If you’re pre-planning a funeral, you may meet several of the staff in a funeral home. The director and their staff assume many roles when handling a person’s funeral. Because you will be leaving your wishes with the funeral director as to how to organize your funeral, it’s important to know who your family will encounter and how they will support your family after your passing.

Here are some of the various functions that the funeral home staff will take of for your family:

Managing the Deceased

There are a number of tasks that must get done in preparation for the funeral and burial such as:

  • Transferring the body to the funeral home.
  • Procuring the specified casket or cremation urn.
  • Preparing the body for cremation or for a viewing which may include:
  • Cleansing of the body.
  • Embalming for the viewing.
  • Restoring the body to a natural look for the viewing.
  • Hair dressing and makeup.
  • Assembly the clothing desired for the viewing.
  • Positioning the body in the casket for the viewing and subsequent burial.

Preparing for the Funeral Service

These are largely coordination tasks with various people and businesses outside of the funeral home:

  • Completing any city and state documentation as needed.
  • Obtaining copies of the death certificate for the family.
  • Putting together the obituary and posting it with local newspapers and online services.
  • Contacting the desired priest, rabbi or other clergy members for the service.
  • Coordinating with the church, synagogue or other facility in which the funeral will be held.
  • Contacting the cemetery or columbarium to arrange preparation of the burial spot.
  • Arranging to have flowers delivered to the service location.
  • Arranging any music, singers or speakers to be at the service.

Post-Funeral Tasks

There are a number of other tasks that the funeral home staff may do to support your family after the funeral. Some of these you may request in your pre-planning instructions. Others may be at the request of your family.

  • Directing your family to any grief counseling specialists.
  • Assisting your family with veteran, insurance and social security claims filings.
  • Returning items from the funeral service to your family such as cards, register book and donations.

Your Family’s Responsibilities

Make it clear in your pre-planning what the funeral home will do for you and your family, and what are the responsibilities of the family. Some tasks, such as contacting family members and other people in the community, may be important for your family to do to get closure. The coordination tasks, such as arranging the service, can easily be done by the funeral home staff. The more you have the funeral home do for your family, the less burden they will have during this stressful time.

To learn more, contact a company like Thomas Funeral Chapels Inc. with any questions you have.

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Dust To Dust | 4 Things You Should Know About Cremation

When you are in the process of making plans for your own funeral and end-of-life arrangements, it is likely that you will be proposed a question that you may have not given much consideration in the past: Do you wish to be cremated?

As simple as the question may be, you might want to give the idea some consideration before just opting for a traditional burial. The easiest way to enlighten your mind is to learn a little about cremation services and why this is a logical choice for as many as about half of the US population who say yes to cremation.

1. Transitory Remains Can Be Important - In a society where moving around is easier than it ever has been before, being laid to rest in a cemetery may not be the most logical choice. When you have your remains cremated, you become more transitory and left behind family members can just take you with them wherever their life may take them. Therefore, you will never be left behind or have to be concerned that you are making it difficult on any of your family members by choosing a specific burial location.

2. Cremation Is Typically Less Costly – When you eliminate a casket, vault, burial plot, and headstone from the total list of costs associated with your death plan, you can save a lot of money. On average, cremation will cost about $1,100, whereas you could spend much more than that on just a casket.

3. Cremation Is Considered More Natural Than Traditional Burial – Cremation eliminates the need for embalming services if handled soon after your death. Plus, you will not be placing foreign materials in the ground during your burial. Therefore, this is considered to be a more natural option.

4. Cremated Remains Can Be Transformed – You may not know it, but your ashes can be used to create an array of different things after you are gone. You could become an actual simulated diamond or piece of fine jewelry. Remains can be incorporated into a painting, a firework, or biologically added to the roots of a tree.

When you take a look at some of the facts and reasoning, it is easy to see why so many people go ahead and opt for cremation instead of traditional burial. When you are asked this question during your pre-planning process, make sure you take some time to think about the benefits and whether this could be the most logical choice for you.

To learn more, contact a company like Suess Bernard Funeral Home Inc. with any questions or concerns you have.

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2 Ways To Pay Funeral Expenses

When it comes to funeral expenses, it is no secret that it can be hard for a grieving family. Not only is the family devastated at the loss of a loved one, but they have to worry about how to pay for it as well. Luckily, many funeral homes understand that this can be a hard time, so they try to make the process as simple as possible for the family. There are a couple things that you can do now to ensure that when you pass away that your family has the finances that they need to take care of the funeral. Here are a couple options for you.

1. Prepay For The Funeral

One great option is to prepay for the funeral. This means that before you pass away you meet with a funeral director and start planning the funeral. You can pick out the casket, the headstone, and you can even plan the program if you want.

There are two reasons that preplanning the funeral is a good idea. The first is that it takes away the stress of planning the funeral from your family. During their time of grief they don’t have to go through and plan everything.

Second, you can get the total bill before you pass away and prepay for it. This means that when the time comes, your family’s last concern is worrying about money. Many families appreciate it when their loved one thinks ahead and prepays for a funeral. This can really help them during their time of grief.

2. Use A Life Insurance Policy

Some people are unable to afford a funeral before they pass away, or the death happens so unexpectedly that they never even thought to preplan a funeral. That is why having a life insurance policy is such a good idea. Life insurance policies are designed to be “paid on death” to the family. This means that the moment you pass away, the claim will be made and the money will be given to your family.

When you calculate how much money you need for life insurance, you should include the amount for the funeral. That way even if finances are tight for your family, they can use money from the life insurance policy to pay for the funeral. You should get a life insurance policy right away, even if you are young and healthy.

These are just a couple ways that you can pay for a funeral. 

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Ashes To Ashes: 4 Ways To Honor Your Loved One’s Remains

Knowing exactly what to do with your loved one’s ashes can be difficult, especially if they didn’t leave any instructions. When it comes to cremation, you may think that scattering the ashes is the only option you have available. If you don’t want to part with your loved one’s remains, you should know that there are many ways you can honor their memory.

Have a Private Burial

If you like the idea of burying your loved one’s ashes but don’t like the idea of a cemetery, it’s okay. By choosing a wooden or biodegradable urn, you can choose a burial location in your own yard. This will allow you to create a living memory to your loved one, especially if you design a small garden around the burial site.

Divide the Remains among Loved Ones

It can be difficult to choose a proper burial location, especially when family members are spread out in different cities and states. Cremation allows families to respectfully divide the remains so that each person is able to hold on to a memory of their loved one. There are many unique urns that can be separated so that several people can retain a portion of the remains.

Keep Them with You In A Synthetic Diamond

Human remains contain carbon DNA. That DNA can be extracted and used to create synthetic diamonds. The process doesn’t require the use of all the ashes, which means you can have use a portion of your loved one’s remains to create the diamond and keep the remaining ashes for yourself. Because all humans are different, each diamond comes out a slightly different color. Some of the colors include blue, yellow and white.

Immortalize Them in Paint

If you’ve decided to create a memorial inside your home, you may want to consider having your loved one immortalized in a painting. Artists can mix ashes with oil paint and create beautiful works of art for you to hang on your wall. Whether you choose to have a portrait of your loved one painted or you would prefer an abstract piece, a part of your loved one will live on forever in a beautiful painting.

Losing a loved one is painful. If you’re looking for a loving tribute for your lost loved one, you should consider the options that are listed above. These ideas will allow you to say goodbye to your loved one while holding on to a lasting memory. If you’re looking for cremation services in your area, visit Final Care Cremation Services.

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Writing The Perfect Obituary

If you are called on to help with the funeral planning and write an obituary for a recently deceased friend or family member, consider it an honor. This is a way to create a tribute to the person that will be read by people at the funeral service and in the community. It’s a timeless memorial that may even be read by future generations. The funeral home can give you some examples of good obituaries and other resources to help. Here are a few tips to help you create that perfect written memorial.

Do the Research and Make It Accurate

Little mistakes on names and dates on an obituary are embarrassing. Put the time in to make sure all of the information is accurate before giving it to the funeral home.

  • Double-check all dates, events and facts.
  • Make sure that the names of people, places and businesses are spelled correctly.
  • Proofread several times.
  • Have someone else do a final proofreading.
  • Use the computer’s spell checker, or if it is written out, have someone else check the spell, too.

Celebrate the Person’s Life, Not Their Death

Traditionally in funeral planning, the obituary is considered the deceased person’s “death notice,” but it should be focused on the life they lived. This written memorial should bring up the memories you want people to have when they read the obituary.

  • Include the person’s struggles and accomplishments.
  • Emphasize the things for which the person was passionate.
  • Note any key events and milestones in the person’s life.
  • Try to give people a glimpse into what was important to the person.

This will be read by people who didn’t know the person at all. With that perspective, write the obituary so they will learn a little about the person and wish that they had met them.

Make It a Way to Say “Thank You” to Friends and Family

The obituary is also a way for the deceased to express gratitude to those people who meant so much to them.

  • Mention the people who most influenced the person and how the person was impacted.
  • Include a range of influence, both large and small. Mention the friend that financed the person’s successful business venture, but also include the great granddaughter who made the person smile with her little poems.
  • Let the deceased tell these people “Thanks for all you did for me” through the obituary.

Write for the Future Readers of the Obituary, Too

Everyone attending the service will take home a copy of the obituary. People may also cut them out of the newspaper. The obituary may be read during special occasions in the future as a way to include the person’s memory. Your obituary allows people to recall the person and celebrate their life years from now. Contact those at Lawry Brothers Funeral Home for more information and tips.

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Four Ways Pre-Arranged Funerals Or Cremations Benefit You Financially

When most people talk about the benefits of pre-arranging a funeral or cremation, they talk about conveying your last wishes, having control over the service and relieving your family of the burden of planning a funeral while in grief. But those are not the only advantages. There are also several financial benefits including the following:

1. Prepaid funerals are an exempt asset for Medicaid purposes

In order for Medicaid to cover an elder’s nursing home care or medical bills, that individual needs to have basically no assets or cash. However, there are a few assets that are exempt – that means the elder can still qualify for Medicaid benefits in spite of having those particular assets.

In addition to a home and a single car, irrevocable burial or cremation contracts are also exempt. You have to spend all of your money before Medicaid can kick in, so you may as well spend some of it on a pre-arranged funeral.

2. You lock in today’s prices

Even if you are not worried about receiving Medicaid payments, you can still benefit from the way a prearranged funeral locks in today’s prices. When you pre-arrange a funeral, you pay upfront, and when you die, that money covers your whole funeral.

If you were to simply set aside the cost of a funeral, you have no way to ensure those funds will cover the cost of a funeral several years or decades down the road. Even if you have plenty of money to cover future expenses, you will pay more for a funeral in the future simply because of basic inflation.

3. You help your family weather delayed insurance payments

By paying for your funeral in advance, you save your family from having to pay for it. Even if you have an insurance policy that is ample enough to cover the cost of a funeral, keep in mind that claims take a while to process.

As your family waits for the insurance payment, they may struggle to come up with the cash to pay for a service, or they may have to use high-interest credit cards. By paying in advance, you save them this financial hassle as well as possible interest, penalties and fees.

4. Most funeral homes offer built-in cancellation policies

If you are on the fence about prearranging your funeral, you will love that many funeral homes offer 30-day cancellation periods. That gives you time to get through any buyer’s remorse and make sure you have made the right decision. It also ensures that if you find a better price at another home like Marine Park Funeral Home Inc two weeks later you can get your money back and rebook.

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Advantages Of Pre-Planning Your Funeral

Funerals are a way to remember those who have passed on. Some people have specific wants or needs that must be present for their own funeral. There are some advantages of pre-planning your funeral months, even years in advance.

Prepaying Is an Option

If you choose to pre-plan your funeral, you may be delighted to know it is possible to prepay for your funeral. In prepaying, you can pay the funeral home directly via one lump sum, or you can make monthly installments. The funeral home will place your money into a trust fund, which is accessed upon your death. The other option is the funeral home will buy a life insurance policy and make themselves the beneficiary. Before signing any paperwork, be sure to check with a lawyer to verify that all the legal steps have been followed.

Plan Your Own Unusual Funeral

Pre-planning your funeral gives you the control to be as creative as you want. Consider these few celebrities that have had unusual, yet creative funerals.

  • Michael Jackson was buried in a gold-plated casket.
  • The ashes of Hunter S. Thompson, a well-known journalist, were shot into the sky as part of a fireworks display.
  • The music industry icon James Brown’s clothes were changed three times during his funeral.
  • Joan Rivers demanded that her funeral be one of laughter and fun.

If you want to, be as extravagant as you want. Talk it over with the funeral home and give them an idea of what you want. They will draw up a pricing guide for you based on today’s prices. You can arrange to have doves or butterflies released after the funeral.

Easier For Your Loved Ones

Perhaps one of the biggest advantages to pre-planning your funeral is that things will be made easier for your loved ones. When a person passes away, it is an intensely emotional time for the family. If you have already made all the major decisions, they will be able to focus more on their mourning and less time on what music to play. A few ideas to preplan include

  • The type of flower you want based on its special meaning to you
  • Who will be the pallbearers
  • Which cemetery you are buried in
  • The type of coffin you have
  • The exact wording for your obituary
  • How long the funeral should be
  • The selection of songs and who should sing each

A loved one passing away is a difficult time for families. It is possible to pre-plan your funeral, so everything you want is put into action after your death. Your loved ones may find comfort in the fact that they have less to do and more time to mourn your passing. Talk to a professional like Ryan-Parke Funeral Home for more information.

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For my mother's funeral, my sister and I spent a lot of time thinking about flowers for her funeral. We wanted beautiful, colorful flowers that reflected upon her energetic spirit and her love of bright, bold color. However, when we began to plan out her funeral with the funeral director, we were surprised to learn that different types of flowers had different meanings. Based on their meanings, some were appropriate for a funeral, and others were not. We had no idea about this, but I instantly became fascinated with the topic. I created this website to help educate others about the meanings of flowers and which are appropriate for funerals.


May 2015
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