Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Roast Tenderloin of Beef - New Year's Eve Special Roast

Learn how to make a Roast Tenderloin of Beef Recipe! - Visit for the ingredients, more recipe information, and over 650 additional original video recipes! I hope you enjoy this Roast Tenderloin of Beef Recipe!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Funeral Planning : How to Pay for Funeral Expenses

The price of funerals can vary dramatically depending on a family's personal choice and the funeral service. Pay for funeral expenses, and pay attention to visitation duration, with help from a licensed funeral director and embalmer in this free video on funeral planning.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The Amazing Grace Christmas House

The Amazing Grace Christmas House was located in Pleasant Grove, Utah and designed and programmed by Richard Holdman. A small little charity box placed in front of the display has raised more than $40,000 for the Utah Make-a-Wish Foundation. Thank you everybody for your support.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Cemeteries - A Walk Back Into The Past

I have a confession to make; I like hanging out in old cemeteries. It's not that I have a morbid fascination with death mind you, I just enjoy spending time there. When I was younger, cemeteries were an oasis for me, a place of escape from the insanity of summer in the city. As I have grown older, I now enjoy just walking through, looking at the stones and wondering about the people that now lie in the ground, but at one time lived and loved and cried and did all the things that people do. Growing up, I was surrounded by cemeteries. In my childhood home of Southwest Baltimore, the cemeteries are old, and existed long before the homes and neighborhoods came to be. One of the largest cemeteries in the area is Loudin Park Cemetery.
Loudin Park Cemetery was founded in 1853 and encompasses 350 acres of real estate in the Southwestern part of Baltimore City. It's the final resting place for such notables as H.L. Mencken; the famous sage, journalist, critic, writer, etc., from Baltimore. Mary Pickersgill; the flag maker for the banner that flew over Ft. McHenry, and the inspiration behind Francis Scott Key's 'Star Spangled Banner' is also buried there. Another notable is Charles Joseph Bonaparte; Presidential Cabinet Secretary and the youngest grandson of Jerome Bonaparte, who was the youngest brother of Napoleon Bonaparte. Loudin Park is also rich in Civil War history. It's the final resting place of 2,300 Union soldiers and about 600 Confederates consisting of officers as well as foot soldiers.
While it's interesting to take note of prominent people buried in my backyard, I'm equally fascinated by the stories that the headstones reveal about the common folk. For instance, I noticed on one of my walks that there seemed to be an inordinate amount of deaths among children in the time frame between 1918 and 1920. In numerous cases, I observed that several children from the same family had died within this time frame, and usually in the same year. Curious as to the reason for this, I checked and found that one of the great flu epidemics had occurred during the year 1918 that had killed about 675,000 people in the United States alone. This epidemic had been especially hard on the very young, and in many cases the entire family had been wiped out! Understanding the story behind the dates, one can only imagine what the families of those dying must have felt to watch those around them succumb to this disease.
Another interesting aspect of Loudin Park Cemetery is that back at the turn of the century remains were often transported to the cemetery by the nearby Pennsylvania railroad or by the Baltimore hearse trolley known as the 'Delores'. The trolley would deliver the remains to the gate where they would then be transported by horse and carriage to the grave site or by the cemetery's own trolley which ran from one end of the cemetery to the other. Even today, you can still see the remnants of tracks covered by brush and woods running through the middle of the cemetery. Loudin Park cemetery is also the only cemetery known to have operated its own trolley system. The trolley ran one mile, and transported visitors though its spacious grounds. It operated from 1905-1931, when it was replaced by the bus.
Loudin Park was also used by local residents as a park and picnic area during this time frame. City residents would hop on the trolley and spend the day at the cemetery, sitting under the big old trees or down by the lake. During the height of its popularity, 2,000 people a week would make the trip to the cemetery, with the majority visiting on the weekends.
For most of us, a trip to the cemetery is a somber occasion. It's a time to recall loved one's who have passed on, and we usually do this by placing a flower on the grave on holidays such as Easter and Christmas. For me however, it's a 'walk back into the past'. With my brother having recently completed an extensive family history, I have become aware of several ancestors that I never knew existed. One's like little William, a great, great, great, great uncle, who died of the flu when he was just two. Now when I visit their graves, they are not just a grave marker but a connection to my past. One day in the future, someone will take a walk back into the past, and get to know you and me. What will that story tell?

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Friday, December 11, 2015

Arlington National Cemetery Full Military Honors Burial

Here is an example of a burial that we videotaped at Arlington National Cemetery. We have shortened it considerably for brievety and privacy reasons. The long-form video is closer to 45 minutes in length.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

A Family's Guide To A Cemetery Burial

Ground burial provides loved ones a place to remember those they have loved and lost. This is the most common form of final disposition and is usually performed in a cemetery or a memorial park. There are several products and choices available when choosing this option and a basic understanding of the terms and products can be very helpful in making proper choices.
GRAVE SPACE OR "PLOT": This is the land space for burial. Typically it is about three-and-half feet wide by eight feet in length. This can vary greatly by rules and regulations of the cemetery. The depth of a grave also can vary for many reasons. It is not always true that a grave must be six feet deep. This was probably the desired depth when a simple burial was done in a field or prairie, simply to protect from animals or vandals. Today there are better ways to protect and bury, so the depth can vary. The grave space will be the site of a permanent grave memorial or monument.
DOUBLE DEPTH: A grave can be designed to accommodate double depth or more. This is very common and widely accepted. It allows for more burials while using less land space and can be a good option when space is limited. It may also be a less expensive option because of the space savings and the additional ease of care.
BURIAL VAULT: The vault or liner is what surrounds the casket to add protection. In most cemeteries and memorial parks there is a requirement for this protection. The earth which is placed on the burial is extremely heavy. The vault can be made of several time defying elements which provide necessary strength to support the site. There are many choices available to provide additional protections and can easily be explained by a funeral director or cemetery representative.
GRAVE MEMORIALS AND MONUMENTS: Memorials and monuments serve a much greater purpose than to simply "mark" the site. Memorials can be as unique and varied as the number of individuals they represent. Memorials are usually made of time defying elements such as bronze, granite or marble. They can be as simple as consisting of names and dates or as complete as representations of lives that have been lived. A memorial serves one of the most basic needs of mankind. The desire to be remembered lives deep within all of us and is truly what separates the human spirit from all other life. Many families find great comfort in creating a personal memorial that reflects the individual being remembered.
MAUSOLEUM: A mausoleum is any building which is designed to place human remains. Mausoleums can be constructed for a single individual or can hold many thousands. A mausoleum which has been designed for a single person or family is called a private mausoleum and represents one of the most grand and elaborate means of entombment. A mausoleum that has been designed for many entombments is referred to as a community mausoleum, and while it provides tremendous protection and stature, it can be quite economical due to space savings and many other factors.
LAWN CRYPT: This is where the vaults or crypts have been preinstalled underground. At the time of burial they simply dig down to the top of the crypt and remove the lid and place the casket. When it is built this way, it often allows for the installation of drainage and an added level of protection and uniformity.
CRYPT OR TOMB: A crypt or tomb is nothing more than the space in a mausoleum where a casket is placed.
ENTOMBMENT: Is the act of placing the casket in the crypt for final rest.
MAUSOLEUM MEMORIAL: The mausoleum space or "crypt" is usually memorialized in the same manner as a grave. The selections can be quite uniform to create a very beautiful and unique appearance or can be very individualized to reflect the lives of loved ones place there.
ENDOWMENT OR PERPETUAL CARE: These are the funds which have been set aside to care for the space or crypt into the future and even after the building or cemetery is completely full. These funds are invested according to strict guidelines and laws. It is the interest derived from these funds which is there to pay for upkeep and care for perpetuity.
CEMETERY REGULATIONS: Many families aren’t aware that most cemeteries have regulations about the type of grave memorial or monument you can place, and also about where you can place them. For example, some cemeteries only allow flat grave memorials, other allow a mix of flat and stand-up monuments, and still others allow a mix, but have specific sections for different kind of monuments. It is important to clarify any rules before purchasing a monument, and your local cemetery will be happy to help you with on these, and help you understand all your choices.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Good Manners - Funeral Attire - An Etiquette Minute

Jay Remer, The Etiquette Guy, addresses the subject of what the proper attire is to wear to a funeral.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

The Advantages Of Pre-Paid Funerals

Many people have a hard time accepting the fact that one day their life is going to come to an end. Death is just a part of life and sadly something that no one can ever avoid.
Nowadays a lot people plan ahead and make a Will, but in reality that is not all that needs to be addressed. After you have passed away you will need to have a funeral, and having funeral plans in place will make it easier for your remaining loved ones at the time.
You have a couple options when it comes to planning your funeral, and having a pre-paid funeral plan will help your family avoid thousands of pounds in funeral expenses upon your death.
There are other benefits that your family will get if you have a pre-paid funeral. It can be incredibly hard on your family to make funeral plans when they are still in mourning because of your death. Having pre-paid funeral plans in place assists them in a time of need so they do not have to worry about arranging the funeral when emotions are running high.
The good thing about considering a pre-paid funeral plan is you can do all this in advance and make your choices from a range of options. It will allow you to make the type of choices you want, and provide the kind of service you want your family and friends to remember you by.
It is hard to know when the right time to start your funeral planning is. This is especially true for younger adults that have a very long time before they have to worry about death. However, there is no time like the present!
The first thing you need to decide is what location you want to have your funeral held at. Most pre-paid funeral plan providers will offer you a choice of local Funeral Directors to assist you with your plans and provide a choice of payment options.
It is hard for many people to accept that they will eventually die. Planning ahead with a pre-paid funeral plan will make your death much easier on your family. At some point you are going to have a funeral, it is important that you make that as easy for your family as possible, by reducing not only the financial burden but also the emotional stress.
So there is also a clear financial benefit to pre-paid funeral planning. You can fix the cost of your funeral at today's prices.
Most pre-paid funeral plan companies will also offer you a choice of how to pay for funeral plan. These are usually in 12, 60 or sometimes 120 monthly payments. These make it a lot more manageable for you over time.
Some pre-paid funeral plan providers present plans that are inclusive of the main components of a funeral. Other cheaper plans may come with costly, and sometimes hidden, add-ons. You need to carefully check each plan before signing your application forms.
Clearly there are two ways for you to arrange a funeral. You may either go direct to a local Funeral Directors, or use one of the pre-paid funeral plan companies. The advantage of this is they tend to have a packaged list of funeral options for you which ultimately make it a lot easier for you to arrange with the minimal of fuss.
Particular facets of your funeral service, limousine or disbursement allowance may not be clear with a Funeral Director, but should be shown clearly in front of you with any pre-paid funeral option. You should also note that some Funeral Directors may have a restriction about the distance they may be ready to travel to acquire the deceased.
You should also use any pre-paid funeral company you choose the same as you would a local Funeral Director. Seek in-depth information from them about what services they offer. What is included in each of their options. What additional costs, if any you may incur if you decide to take up one of their repayment plans. This will avoid costly surprises down the line.
Planning a funeral in advance is a good idea as you never know what is around the corner and you will have your wishes guaranteed in good time. Usually, funerals are planned in a hasty fashion after a death and leaves loved ones with instant and sometimes painful choices to make. Pre-planning your funeral will takes all these stresses away, and you get the services you wish.
Knowing that all your wishes will be carried out at a cost which fits into your budget gives huge comfort so that you can focus on everything else. With pre-paid funeral plans you can plan everything in advance so that your family won't have to worry about the cost or other arrangements and you will be buried or cremated the way you want. Paying for the funeral in advance gives you the peace of mind as you fix your funeral costs at current prices and will not be subject to any future price rises.

Article Source:

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The Grieving Process: Coping with Death

There is no right or wrong way to deal with the loss of a loved one. The grieving process is rough—and it's different for everyone. It's not just a matter of coping with a loss, but coping with change—and that takes time.

Today on WellCast, we're dealing with a very difficult subject. How do you deal with the death of a loved one? How do you live your life in the face of a life-changing event? We don't have all the answers. Honestly, you'll need to work through your through the stages of grieving in a way that works for you. But we do have some advice to help you heal.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Products We Offer: Memory Glass

What is a Memory Glass?

Memory Glass provides a unique method of memorializing your family, friends and pets by suspending cremated remains within solid glass sculptures and keepsake jewelry.

At Memory Glass, the process of dealing with loved one's cremated remains is a delicate procedure. To ensure that the greatest of care is taken with the cremated remains entrusted to us, Memory Glass has employed safety and security measures that go above and beyond the lawful requirements.

As your trust is of our utmost concern, please don't hesitate to call/email us to learn more about our procedures.

Because Memories are Forever

Please Visit This Website For More Details!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Sympathy Words- A Few Ideas For Comforting Others

Nearly everybody has, at some time or another, experienced the loss of a loved one. Many have also been in the position to comfort a friend at the loss of someone dear to them. In either case, sympathy words are exchanged. The perennial problem is, of course, that in times of grief, it may be difficult to find the right words. It may in fact be difficult to physically say them at all. However, it's important to express your sympathy to your friend or loved one.
What Words of Sympathy to Say
Here is something to think about: If you had just lost one of your parents or a sibling, what would you find comforting? How well you know someone is a good litmus test of what you should say and how you should say it. When finding sympathy words, always remember to whom you are speaking. If that person is a very private individual, he or she may prefer to be left alone for the most part. In that case, knowing when the appropriate time to approach is essential to successfully providing comforting sympathy words to the grieving person.
Choosing your words when you are called on to comfort someone in grief is more complicated than just trying to make them feel better. You want them to know that you can empathize with their pain. The difficult part in all of that is knowing that they will have heard sympathy words from perhaps a hundred other people as well, so what can you say that will truly give them peace and closure? Look to samples of sympathy words online for inspiration. Obituaries, has words of sympathy samples in cards, letters, sayings and quotes. Read some examples before you sit down to write your own words of sympathy.
A Short List of Sympathy Words
The following is a short list of sympathy words you can say to someone to bring him or her comfort. 
  • You are always in my prayers
  • He/She would be very happy to know that you loved him/her so much
  • Always remember that you have friends and we are here for you, so if there is anything you need, please don't hesitate to ask.
  • You can find peace in the good memories that you have
  • I know this is hard, but you can make it through
These are just a few things that people have found to be helpful over the years. They are effective mainly because the speaker empathizes with the bereaved. That is the main thing, and it cannot be overstated. Your sympathy words should show that you empathize with the kind of pain they are experiencing, and that you can help them through it.
Sympathy Phrases to Avoid
Saying "I know how you feel" to someone who has lost a loved one is not the best way to show your sympathy. Words like that can sometimes hurt more than they help because no one can truly know what another person is feeling about anything, especially the death of someone dear. also has lists of Phrases to Avoid for sympathy sayings or words of sympathy.
Also, avoid being at all insincere. Again, remember that this person will most likely have heard sympathy words from many other people over a few days, so the last thing they want to hear is condolences that are not heartfelt. Don't offer your help if you can't or won't actually help.
Actions Speak Louder than Words
Sometimes, offering sympathy words can involve no words at all. Making a meal for someone when you know they don't feel like cooking for themselves can be a great help. Simply offering a hug is often a very comforting gesture. Day to day tasks may be hard for the bereaved to complete. Doing their dishes, mowing the lawn, taking the kids to school or other activities are all ways to show you care and are simple sympathy gestures that mean so much.
The grieving process is different for everybody, but the one immutable truth behind everybody's experience is that the right words or gestures can go a long way towards easing the pain of this difficult transition in their lives.

Article Source:

Monday, November 16, 2015

Keepsakes To Help Memorialize The Passing Of Loved Ones

When someone we love passes away, whether it is a friend, a relative or even a beloved pet it is often difficult to get through the grief process. The hardest part is coming to terms with the fact that they are gone from your life. This is why many people choose to memorialize the departed in a keepsake that they can keep close allowing them to feel like they have the loved one near. When it comes to choosing a memorial keepsake, the decision is very personal, but here are just a few suggestions of things which might interest you.
Sewing A Memorial Quilt
Textile art is something that is becoming very popular and quilts are becoming very fashionable, so what better way to keep loved one's memory alive than by sewing a quilt for them. A lovely idea is to use the person's clothing or favorite fabrics to create a patchwork which tells a story of their life. Each and every time you stroke the square that came from their favorite shirt or the one that came from their nightgown it will evoke happy memories of your time together. Alternatively, you could put together a quilt that features fabric you feel depicts the person. As an example, if the quilt is a memorial to your grandfather who loved to fish and play golf then you could look for fabric with a motif to match. There are also companies who will print photographs onto fabric and even create quilts or afghans for you.
Create Some Memorial Jewelry
If you are looking for a memorial keepsake that you can take with you everywhere you go, then jewelry might just be the answer. There are services which allow you to use ashes from a cremation to create glass pendants which are a beautiful reminder of someone special. It is also possible to have photographs turned into pendants or charms to place on a bracelet. You may even just wish to have a piece of jewelry engraved with their name and dates of birth/death. You can even go simpler and take a piece of the deceased person's jewelry like a ring, and string it on a cord to wear around your neck.
Make A Dedication In Their Name
A larger memorial that many people go for is to dedicate a bench or a tree in the person's honor. This usually involves paying the local community authorities to plant a tree or place a new bench in a park which will bear a plaque that is engraved with your loved one's name. Some funeral homes and crematoriums even have special gardens or areas where you can do this rather than having to go through the authorities.

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Friday, November 13, 2015

LifeGem Diamonds

A LifeGem is a certified high quality diamond created from the carbon of a loved one as a memorial to their unique life.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Grief Support Resources

The emotional upheaval these trying times can cause is sometimes so overwhelming that even the support of friends and family may not help relieve the amount of sadness and grief you feel.
At Bryan-Braker Funeral Home we offer the following aftercare grief sessions:
»  Center for Loss & Transition 
A leading provider of information and inspiration in the areas of illness and dying, loss and grief, healthy caregiving, life transition, and spirituality.
»  Growth House 
An international gateway to resources for life-threatening illness and end of life issues. Hypertext topic pages link to sites around the world. Links to hospice and home care, bereavement, death with dignity, AIDS, and related topics in life-threatening illness.
»  GriefNet 
GriefNet is an Internet community of persons dealing with grief, death, and major loss. They have many email support groups. Their integrated approach to online grief support provides help to people working through loss and grief issues.
»  National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization 
Committed to improving end of life care and expanding access to hospice care with the goal of profoundly enhancing quality of life for people dying in America and their loved ones.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

How To Plan A Memorial Service As A Celebration Of Life

This is a slideshow overview of diversions from standard, ho-hum approaches with which we've become familiar. Maybe the pictures you see will plant some seeds of inspiration in your minds. Maybe when you plan a memorial service you’ll consider including elements that will render the affair distinctive in some way… different from predictable practices that become readily forgettable.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Funeral Etiquette Tips

Your guide to dressing, behaving & comforting respectfully at a funeral.

Your presence at a funeral & support will be much appreciated by the family. This is service is the time to express & receive support, provides a process for mourning & gives a sense of closure. This service also requires respect.

The way you act, dress & speak should reflect the conservativeness & solemnity of the service. Your attire should be formal & simple, wearing black or dark, neutral colors. Arriving to the funeral properly well dressed is a form of politeness & conveys respect for the deceased & bereaved.

During the service, common sense & polite discretion are what you will use as guides for your behavior. The service is a time to remember, pray & reflect. Sit quietly, observe & don't get up during the service, unless it is urgent. Make sure your phone is off & put away at this time of remembrance & respect. If participation is requested, follow along in respect & to observe tradition.

After the service, express your sympathy by sharing warm remembrances & what the person meant to you with the family & they will appreciate this. At a loss for words, the best thing is to hold their hand or give them a hug. This is always enough. Be there for the family, if they would like to talk about their loved one, listen & give them your full attention.

Flowers can be comforting to the family as well & may be sent to the home of the family as a gesture of respect for the deceased. Also, bringing a prepared meal to the home of the family is a symbol of the continuation of life & a moment of separation from the emotional details of death. A gift certificate to a favorite restaurant is a practical gift as well.

Remember your presence & support is appreciated. Be sincere & be yourself. There is a reason you were asked to attend. Be honored that you were chosen as capable of offering comfort in a time of need. ♥

"Those we love don't go away, they walk beside us everyday…unseen, unheard, but always near, still loved, still missed & very dear."

Friday, October 30, 2015

4 Last Minute Halloween Costumes!

Hey everyone! So today we have 4 more last minute Halloween Costumes! We put together these costumes with only items we already had in our closets. We hope you draw some inspiration and have a FUN & SAFE Halloween!

Monday, October 26, 2015

Interactive Aftercare

These interactive videos explore the dimensions of grief, as well as the dynamic cycle of experience. There's never been anything like this online before. These videos teach with both style and substance.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

How To Get A Copy Of A Death Certificate

Whether you need a death certificate to trace your family history or to make a legal claim, follow these steps to get the record you need.

Step 1: Identify the state where the person died
Identify the state in which the person died, and contact the vital records or vital statistics department for that state.

Find contact information for the state's vital records department through an internet search or at your local library.

Step 2: Gather identifying information
Find out the person's full name, sex, and date and place of death.

Step 3: Determine whether you need a certified copy
Determine whether you need a certified copy of the certificate. Most states allow access to uncertified records, but restrict who can get certified copies.

Get a certified copy if you need the death certificate for legal purposes or insurance claims.

Step 4: Learn about fees and state requirements
Contact the state vital records department to learn about any fees or additional requirements for getting a copy of the death certificate.

Step 5: Send the necessary information
Send the necessary information along with any fees to the state vital records department. Include your full name, address, phone number, and any other information they require.

Step 6: Receive a copy of the death certificate by mail
Receive a copy of the death certificate by mail. Delivery time will vary by state.

Did You Know?
In 2007, a Chicago man created a fake death certificate and faxed it to his cell phone provider to try to avoid paying a fee for ending his contract.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Let's Talk About Dying - Peter Saul

We can't control if we'll die, but we can "occupy death," in the words of Dr. Peter Saul. He calls on us to make clear our preferences for end of life care -- and suggests two questions for starting the conversation. (Filmed at TEDxNewy.)

Monday, October 12, 2015

Anger & Grief | Anger Management

Learn how anger and grief are linked from anger management expert Dr. J. Ryan Fuller in this Howcast video.

Usually if anger is being spoken about around the construct of grief, it likely has to do with Elisabeth Kubler-Ross' model of grief. In the model, she describes five stages. The first is denial, second is anger, third is bargaining, fourth depression, and then the fifth and final is acceptance. In her model, she proposes that if people are struggling with grief, they're going to move through these various stages. First, sort of, denying and not really believing or fully accepting that it's happening, then becoming incredibly angry, possibly at the world, God, themselves, if some of their behavior was part of the reason for the disease or something like that. Then some kind of bargaining, where there's almost a negotiation as if they change their lifestyle, if God will make it not be the case. And then some depression where they might, in fact be very down, until moving towards acceptance.

Now there have been a number of scientific studies that haven't necessarily supported this model fully, although there's been some recent research that might contradict that it's unclear. What I can say is that having worked with clients that are going through loss or coping after the death of a loved one, I still find paying attention to these five stages, not necessarily that everyone will move through all of them, and not necessarily that they'll move through in any particular order, but paying attention and helping clients being able to sort of accept and acknowledge where they are regardless. If they're struggling with anger or the depression or any of those things, it can be a helpful for clinicians guide clients through this difficult process of grief.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

How To Prepare For Your Funeral

Being one step ahead can help you make the right decisions regarding your own funeral arrangements. You make a price comparison of the packages offered by different funeral providers, and decide on certain details you like them to follow. By making pre-arrangements with a funeral company, you can free your loved ones from the stress involved in making these tough decisions during a time of grief.
When it comes to planning a pre-need such as this, it is important to consider where your remains will be buried or scattered. The sudden death of a loved one leaves most of its family members in confusion. They often buy a cemetery plot without giving it much thought or visiting the site. So, it is important to purchase cemetery plots in advance before they are actually needed.
It is best to put everything you prefer in black and white, then give copies to your lawyer and family, while keeping your own copy in a convenient place. Don't include these preferences in your will, since these will only be read after the funeral. Also, do not keep your copy in a safety deposit box because it may take time to open, if it is needed on a holiday or weekend.
Millions of Americans have signed contracts with regards to their funeral arrangements, as well as partial or total prepayment of the expenses involved. The prepayment of funeral products and services are governed by the laws of the particular states. Several states have laws to guarantee that prepayments will be able to cover the expenses for funeral products and services whenever needed. However, protections can vary from one state to another, and the laws of some states provide little or no protection whatsoever. Other states require funeral homes or cemeteries to place part of the prepayment in a state-regulated trust, or to buy a life insurance policy where the death benefits are allotted to the funeral home/cemetery.
If you are considering the prepayment of funeral products and services, it is crucial to think about the following issues before releasing any money:
  • What does your payment cover? Are you buying products, such as a casket and vault, or do they also include funeral services?
  • Where does your prepaid money go? States have various requirements when it comes to handling the money paid for prearranged funeral services.
  • What will happen to the incurred income coming from the prepayment placed in a trust account?
  • Do you have any protection in case the firm you chose closes its business?
  • If ever you change your mind, can the contract be cancelled? Will you receive a full refund?
  • What happens when you die away from home or move to another location? There are prepaid funeral plans that can be transferred at an additional cost.
It is important for your family to know about your plans, especially where the legal documents have been filed. Otherwise, your preferences may not be followed. If your family does not know that you prepaid your own funeral costs, chances are they could pay again for similar arrangements. To make sure that your wishes are granted, it would be best to consult a lawyer who specializes in such arrangements.

Article Source:

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Designing Your Funeral

There are two facets of the design process. First, we ask you to consider how you wish to honor and celebrate the life. When those important decisions are made, we’ll turn to the issue of how you wish to care for the physical remains.

How to Honor a Life

It’s about bringing those you love together, at a time of loss. It’s a natural thing to do, and over time, has become a socially-expected practice. More importantly, a funeral or memorial service, whether traditional, or contemporary, is the first step in healing.
You can have your service anywhere, and any way, you want. Your choices include the place of celebration, day of the week, and time of day; the musical selection, what prayers will be said or songs you’d like sung. We can arrange to have doves, butterflies, or balloons released at the close of the service. Keepsake gifts of wildflower seeds or a tree seedling can be given. We’re here to help you create the most memorable and meaningful service to honor your loved one.

Burial or Cremation?

Your next consideration focuses on choosing between burial and cremation. Usually, people are clear on this point. In fact, your loved one may have told you, or someone else, exactly how they wish to be cared for. But it can be a hard decision for some families, especially when the wishes of the deceased were never clearly stated. If that's the case, please know we're able to help you come to the perfect decision for your loved one, and for you.
Once you decide, the finer details come into focus. If you've chosen burial, then selection of the casket, vault, and desired cemetery follows. Naturally, we’re here to help you.
If cremation is your choice, then you'll need to make the next decision: whether the cremated remains will be placed in a mausoleum niche, or buried on the cemetery grounds.
In some communities, there's the option for a 'green burial.' If that's what your loved one would prefer, we'll help you select an environmentally-friendly choice.

What's Next?

Now that we've given you the basics, it's time to reflect more on exactly what is appropriate for you and your family. If possible, gather everyone together to speak of their feelings and desires.
Still looking for inspiration? Speaking with a professional funeral planner will help to clarify your thinking. Reach us at (707) 425-4697.

Monday, September 28, 2015

A Consistent Place of Healing- Wall of Memories

This memorial wall is open to anyone who wishes to place a permanent, bronze plaque.  The plaque is custom made for your loved one and can include name, dates, personal history, poem, emblems, artwork, even cast bronze portraits. The Wall of Memories is located on the center pathway on the south side of the Elm Dormitory.
Also, many families are choosing to scatter the cremated remains of their loved one in a favorite place; the ocean, or even in the skies above. While that may seem fitting at the time, it means that you do not have a consistent place to connect with the memories of the person you loved so dearly.
Having such permanent place - in a cemetery, mausoleum, or cremation garden - that can be visited regularly by family and friends is an essential part of the time following a death. It becomes a focal point of memorialization, and gives everyone a special place to go to remember your loved one, or to commemorate important occasions. It can help to make a birthday or anniversary less painful.
A permanent place to reflect on your loved one becomes a way of connecting to a family's past. Visiting the resting place of grandparents or great-grandparents may provide children with an anchor to their personal history. It is a connection to the past, to love shared. It truly honors the relationship you still have – and will always have – with that person.

Friday, September 25, 2015

What We Do: Funeral Services

Gathering with friends and family gives everyone the opportunity to share memories, express emotions, and find comforting support. Whether you choose burial or cremation; whether you select a formal funeral or a more relaxed memorial service, the need for acknowledgment of the loss with family and friends is ever present. We can help you create a unique meaningful ceremony to express the genuine individuality of your loved one.
We offer families a beautiful setting in which to come together to honor your loved one. But, you may certainly choose to celebrate their life in a more unique setting. No matter where you decide to gather together, such a service will make a difference in the lives of all who attend.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

365 Days Of Messages...

Seven days a week we'll send you a short message of support. That's 365 days of wise words, helpful tips, and healing activities.
    Letting the Sun Shine In Daily Emails
  • When someone you love dies, grieving that loss can take a long time. As in any emotional journey, there are rough spots to be weathered, and moments when you catch a glimpse of a sunnier horizon. We want to be your daily companion, helping you to let the sun shine back into your life. These daily emails provide encouragement and gentle reminders of the recovery process. Interested?
  • Your daily affirmation emails have given me hope for a better tomorrow. - Emily
    • Your messages have helped me reflect the life my grandfather lived and have helped me heal. - Dan

  • Click HERE To Sign Up
  • Privacy Statement

    Bryan Braker Funeral Home values your privacy. We will never give, sell, rent or otherwise share your email or personal information with any other organization. Subscribing to our daily emails will not result in unwanted emails from us or third party vendors. Should you ever wish to unsubscribe, you can easily do so by clicking on a link at the bottom of any one of the affirmation messages.

Friday, September 18, 2015

How to Write a Letter Of Condolence

Too personal to follow a formula, intimate letters of condolence must come from the heart. Here are some tips to consider when writing them.

Step 1: Send a handwritten letter
Follow up any earlier e-mail or telephone expressions of sympathy with handwritten correspondence.

Step 2: Address the letter appropriately
Address the letter to the closest relative if you knew the deceased or to the relative to whom you are closest if you did not.

Step 3: Express your feelings
Put your feelings on paper. Be sincere. Flowery language in itself is of little value.

Step 4: Share a memory
Share a fond memory of the deceased when you begin the letter. Rather than saying you know how the surviving relative feels, simply say that you are thinking of that person.

Be honest. Don’t try to make the deceased sound like a better person than they actually were.

Step 5: Express your sorrow
Express your sorrow at the person’s loss rather than saying that the deceased is now in a better place. Avoid cliche phrases such as "time will heal all wounds."

Step 6: Avoid the cause of death
Avoid dwelling on the details of the illness or cause of death.

Offer assistance only if you were close to the deceased and you know the deceased’s close family needs help.

Step 7: Send the letter promptly
Send the letter within one week of the death. And remember, the worst condolence letter is the one that is never written.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Cremation and Permanent Remembrance

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Years ago, cremation was seen as "just cremation." Families would hear a family member say, "just cremate me." What many families didn't realize then was that such an approach could limit the ability of the family and friends to fully say goodbye to a loved one, and to successfully move through the grieving process. At the loss of a loved one, there is no such thing as "just." The emotional needs of the family and friends at the loss is exactly the same for families whether they choose cremation or burial. Learning about your choices with cremation ensures that you and your family can benefit from the time-tested approaches that help families move from grieving to remembrance.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

How To Plan A Memorial Service

A well-planned memorial service honors the deceased and comforts those who are grieving.

Step 1: Think about what's appropriate
Give careful thought to what kind of memorial service would be most appropriate for the deceased's personality and what they would have wanted.

Step 2: Make guest list
Make a guest list. Ask friends and family for suggestions. You don't want to leave anyone out.

The number of guests will determine the size of the location and the quantity of food.

Step 3: Choose location and time
Choose an appropriate venue for the memorial service using online or local directories. Determine the date and time for the event.

The date should be far enough in advance to allow plans to be made for the event, including guests' travel.

Step 4: Select speakers, readings, and music
Select people to perform readings and choose the music for the event.

Step 5: Choose the food and flowers
Choose the type of refreshments that will be available and the type and quantity of flowers and decorations for the memorial area.

Step 6: Plan memorial display
Plan a memorial of photos and other items of personal significance that will be displayed at the event for attendees to view.

Step 7: Create and print programs
Create and print programs that provide a timeline for events in the memorial service. Print enough for each attendee and for possible additional guests.

Step 8: Place obituary and notify guests
Place an obituary in the local newspaper and notify the guests of the upcoming event.

Did You Know?
Did you know? The Alfred Lord Tennyson poem, "In Memoriam" which contains the famous line, "Tis better to have loved and lost / Than never to have loved at all." was written for his friend Arthur Henry Hallam.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

How to Comfort Someone Who Has Lost A Loved One

The loss of a loved one can leave partners, friends, and family devastated. To ease the burden, offer whatever solace you can.

Step 1: Allow them to grieve
Allow the person to grieve in their own way. Don't judge their behavior, which may be erratic at first. Unpredictable moods are normal.

If you tend to be a caretaker, now is the time to dial it back. You can't fix this.

Step 2: Show empathy
Comfort the grieving person with genuine sympathy for their loss without assuming to know how they feel. Avoid giving advice.

Step 3: Change the environment
Suggest a walk or a drive to remove them from their environment for a short time. They will need their strength in the coming days, so a little relief might be appreciated.

Step 4: Listen and absorb
Listen and absorb any need they may have to dwell on the past or obsess about regrets regarding the loved one. Right now they need to vent and your unconditional regard is crucial.

Step 5: Take on tasks
Offer to take over everyday tasks, like grocery shopping, child care, phone calls, and final arrangements if the grieving person was a family member or very close to the deceased. Running interference and handling phone calls will save their energy and will allow them time to think or rest.

Step 6: Support them with silence
Support them with silence and hold their hand or hug them. Don't push them to express emotion, even if their brave smile seems to suggest that something is being repressed.

It will take time to get through the loss. Don't stop checking on them and offering your shoulder -- even months later.

Step 7: Get clinical help
Suggest clinical help if the person seems unable to come out of it, especially if they demonstrate difficulty functioning, thinking, acting, or speaking, or they exhibit excessive bitterness, substance abuse, or social withdrawal.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

5 Stages of Grief

When you experience the death of a loved one or family member, there are stages you all go through in order to process the loss that person has left in your life. These 5 stages of grief are completely natural and are a way for hearts and minds to mend themselves before coming to terms with death. The five stages of grief, also known as the K├╝bler-Ross model, are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.
Denial: In this first step, the person experiencing grief refuses to accept the death they've experienced. It's an important coping mechanism in the initial first days after the death of a loved one. The denial of death allows you to cope with the immediate tasks at hand, such as informing other family members and friends and making funeral preparations. Denial can make you feel numb and, while these emotions are not healthy in the long-term, they help you move forward in the days following death.
Anger: Once your denial fades, it is typically replaced with anger. In this phase of the 5 stages of grief, it is typical to blame everyone else. You feel rage and anger for others that are still alive and ask yourself "Why me?" While the outward emotion experienced by those around you is anger, there is pain buried underneath the surface. It's important not to suppress the anger felt when grieving the loss of someone close. If you openly express anger, it slowly dissipates and gives access to the deeper pain you feel.
Bargaining: This stage of grief can take on many forms. You may try to strike a deal with God to bring back your loved one or promise anything just to have everything back to the way it was before the loss. This stage is riddled with thoughts of "What if..." and "If only..." as you attempt to come up with a solution that will bring things back to the way they once were.
Depression: Of the 5 stages of grief, this stage may take months or years to move through. There is no predetermined length of time to heal from depression. In this stage, you begin to feel the emptiness of your life now that your loved one is gone. During this time, you may withdraw from friends and family and feel overwhelmed with the prospect of managing grief.
Acceptance: In this stage, you come to the realization that your loss is real and it is a part of life. This is not to say you are "OK" with the loss experienced, but you accept it as the new norm and try to rediscover happiness . During acceptance, you can begin to rebuild your life around the fact that, although someone important is no longer physically alive, they will be in your heart and mind forever.

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Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Online Pre-Planning Form

Make these important decisions in the privacy of your own home with our simple online pre-planning form. You can take your time, too; you'll be creating a log-in name and password, so you can save your work and come back to it anytime.

Click HERE To Start Your Form.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

How To Buy Flowers For A Funeral

This tutorial will give you useful instructions to ensure you get the right flowers from the funeral.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Golden Anniversary one of the most celebrated wedding anniversaries.

And rightly so!
Spending half a century in love with one person
is a wonderful statement about the gift of married life.
Bryan-Braker wishes to commend those 
Golden Couples with a FREE gift...
Bring us your photographs and we will produce
an Anniversary DVD Video Tribute in honor
of your love for each other!
Call today and setup an appointment, (707) 425-4697 or
Email for more information:

Monday, August 24, 2015

How Families Are Remembering Their Loved Ones

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This video shows how families are using traditional and new methods to create personal and meaningful, permanent remembrances for their loved ones. You will see touching and inspirational approaches to creating monuments and memorials that tell the story of a life, in words, pictures, and images. New technologies allow us to be creative in ways that most of us have never imagined. These examples of monuments and memorials show how we all can leave a mark in a very special and personalized way.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

You're Not Alone

With our online grief support you’re assured of our commitment to helping you through this difficult time. It doesn’t matter what time of day, or what day of the week you need support, we're here for you. You can find local counseling services, or watch our interactive videos, anytime: 24/7. No matter how you feel at this moment, you have our commitment - you're never alone.

Monday, August 17, 2015

How To Write Eulogy Speeches For Eulogies And Funeral Speech Offers information on how to write a eulogy speech for delivering perfect eulogies during your eulogy speeches. Do not be at a loss for words during the eulogy of a loved one.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Fairmont Memorial Park

Mausoleum crypts and niches are available for families choosing a burial or cremation with inurnment. Mausoleum entombment is considered to be the finest type of burial known to man. A mausoleum’s solid construction signifies durability, devotion and honor.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Peaceful White Lilies Basket

Whether you send this beautiful arrangement to the family home or to the service, all will appreciate its elegance and grace. The contrast of brilliant white blossoms and dazzling greenery create a wonderfully calm and dignified setting.

• Gorgeous flowers such as white lilies, carnations and miniature carnations mix with vibrant greens in a large basket. Simply stunning.
• This arrangement will be hand designed and delivered by a local florist.
• An appropriate gift sent from a family member, friend, or business associate.
• Appropriate to send directly to the funeral home or to the family's residence.
• Arrangement measures approximately 26" W X 25" H.
Flowers will be received by a Bryan-Braker Funeral Home staff.
SAME-DAY HAND DELIVERY on all Arrangements by a Local Florist!
Order HERE

Friday, August 7, 2015

How To Follow Proper Funeral Etiquette

Funerals allow family and friends to mourn their loved ones, provide closure, and enable the living to move forward. Observing the etiquette of this important ritual will help you feel more comfortable while providing comfort to those in mourning.

Step 1: Attend the wake
Attend the wake, also known as a visitation or calling, at the funeral home prior to the funeral. Approach the casket, which may be open or closed, and offer a prayer or quiet reflection. A short stay of 15 minutes is considered appropriate to express condolences to the family.

Make sure to dress appropriately for a viewing, funeral, or burial. A black suit or black dress will suffice.

Step 2: Send flowers
Send flowers, if you wish, to the funeral home or the family residence. Charitable donations in the name of the deceased may be indicated in lieu of flowers, in which case you may send an edible arrangement to the family in addition to the donation.

Step 3: Attend the service
Attend the funeral or memorial service. The family will appreciate the show of support.

Offer condolences to the family prior to mingling with other friends or family.

Step 4: Say a few words
Say a few words of condolence either before the service or when everyone is gathered after. A simple 'I'm sorry for your loss' is enough to offer comfort to relatives.

Avoid cliches such as: "Everything happens for a reason," and "I know how you feel." If you can't think of anything more to say, offer a hug.

Step 5: Share remembrances
Share fond remembrances, anecdotes, and stories about the deceased with loved ones. Recounting what the deceased meant to you is always appreciated.

Step 6: Attend the burial
Attend the burial, which usually follows the funeral. If you were close to the deceased, you may follow the lead of the family if they choose to deposit a ceremonial shovel of earth or drop a rose or rose petals into the grave.

Step 7: Share a meal
Share a meal with the family and friends of the deceased after the burial, if one is planned. This tradition allows close friends and family to share fond memories, enjoy each other's company, and symbolizes the continuation of life.

Did You Know?
In the Buddhist religion, death is prepared for through meditation and is viewed as a rebirth.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Funeral Music - Finding The Right Song

Funeral music can be an excellent way to truly capture the essence and spirit of your loved one. Though usually played softly, the music at a funeral can also shape the ceremony by reminding mourners of the type of person they have lost. Music can evoke powerful memories, emotions, and thoughts of good times.
Choosing Funeral Music
Because of this, it is important that funeral music is not chosen haphazardly. Organizers should try to pick songs that are appropriate. Many families ask a minister or music director for advice in this area. Although it is not uncommon to step away from more common or traditional songs, it is critical that you know why you are choosing a nontraditional song. You may even need to explain the song selection to the mourners, especially if it appears to the average person to be a complete deviation from the norm.
Traditional songs chosen for funerals are usually classical, religious, or soft and somber. Often these are songs with few or no words. The traditional religious songs are typically hymns or songs that haven been passed down through various generations. These songs typically have a message of hope or life-eternal, which speaks to both the deceased and the mourners at the service.
If you are seeking a more personalized song selection over a more traditional set then you need to talk to those closest to the deceased. Although you may want to ask a parent or a spouse, it may even be a good idea to start with a brother, sister, or good friend who can provide a wider selection of songs, ones that the deceased may have appreciated at a much younger age.
The Funeral March
Another important aspect of funeral music is the songs played during the funeral march. A funeral march can refer to the precession of family members as they enter the church, when they walk past the casket, as they walk out of the church, or as the casket is being removed from the church. There are commonly chosen songs for the march. These musical pieces usually convey the somberness and sorrow of the moment.
Gravesite Music
Some families also choose to play music at the gravesite. The music at the gravesite is usually played as people arrive and leave the ceremony. Some families also have a family member or friend sing or play a song here as a final farewell tribute. Here it would be a good idea to get song selection ideas from the minister providing over the gravesite ceremony, the funeral director, or the music director for your church. Most often, non-traditional songs are played at the gravesite service if they are going to be played. However, again, the reasoning behind it should be explained.
Although there are numerous songs for funerals that you can choose, the two broad categories for funeral music are traditional and personal. Many times those organizing the funeral choose funeral music by taking the mourners into consideration only. However funeral music is meant to really shine a light on the life that was lost, their essence, their personality, and all the reasons why so many people loved them.

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