Honor your loved one
with warmth and grace.

You have natural and profound memorial options beyond our present-day customs. They call upon ancient ways of caring for and remembering our dead, while giving the living outlets for expression. Sweetgrass can help you realize and enact these options.

A memorial that uplifts, connects and offers opportunities for healing to begin.

Sweetgrass works with you to co-design a ceremony that features meaningful music, prose, poetry, rituals and even humor, based on your loved one's life story. The event may involve an intimate and quiet gathering of close family to scatter cremains. It may involve an all night vigil with the deceased. It may involve a large assembly of guests to memorialize a life in a celebratory way. In any case, Sweetgrass guides the process with graceful clarity and respect.

The ways we handle and honor death are very individual. Spiritual practices may be present or absent. Among varied circumstances and belief systems, Sweetgrass places your values and traditions at the center of the experience.

When you plan for any kind of memorial service, your living room or kitchen table is where we meet to discuss the ceremony. You and your family or friends take the discussion at your own pace. Sharing photos and memorabilia in a home environment helps me prepare a vivid 'soul sketch' about your loved one.

And ever has it been that love knows not its own depth until the hour of separation.

- Kahlil Gibran

Aspen trees reaching toward the sky
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Scattering or Interring Ashes

Committing a loved one's ashes to the earth is a sincere act of love and devotion. It yields an opportunity to honor his or her wishes. Plus, it cultivates a way to express your emotions of loss. Sweetgrass helps you find comforting words, prose, music - or simply a way to hold quiet healing space - during a personalized committal ceremony. You will also feel confidence from assistance with little details, too.

Sweetgrass specializes in natural outdoor ceremonies, where we return cremains to the earth in a meaningful place. Hiking or riding into wilderness locations for the event may become part of the ritual of release.

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Celebrations of Life

Forget the traditional funeral. Do you or your loved one desire a big party to celebrate life? Live music? Hearing funny stories from guests? Catered food and a bar? That is a celebration of a life well lived. And Sweetgrass assists with designing these celebrations, plus acting as an MC when needed.

Often these celebrations occur at the family and community level, when some time has passed after the death. Sometimes, it is fitting to have the party on a birthday or otherwise important date. The healing laughter and tears that spill from the gatherings are always full of love!

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Home Funerals

We may hold family-led funerals at home, tenderly caring for our own deceased. Personal control, financial reality, or ecological principles name a few reasons people choose home funerals. Sweetgrass provides pre-need consultation as a Home Funeral Guide, plus supports family-led funeral processes after a loved one dies. Kristine trains with Jerrigrace Lyons at Final Passages.

"It's organic and informal, and it's on your terms," says Nancy Manahan in a July 2009 NY Times article. An article in Smithsonian Magazine highlights the "surprising satisfaction" of a home funeral. Read more about the home funeral trend in the Austin-American Statesman.

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Pet Memorials

Many of us have 'fur kids' whom we cherish. When our animal companions transition out of this life, we often grieve alone. Sweetgrass helps you begin healing, by co-creating a sensitive memorial for your animal friend.

You may want a family service during a burial for a beloved dog - or desire creating a sacred space for your treasured horse as he is laid to rest. Maybe you've held your pet's ashes for a year, hoping to scatter them with a small ritual, yet don't know where to begin. Sweetgrass provides you with heartfelt assistance in the process.

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Green Burial

Really, you do have a choice. No embalming required. No unduly expensive coffin necessary. No concrete vault, either. Naturally returning a body to the earth is possible today.

Sweetgrass can help you arrange and carry out a natural burial, given a legal place is available. A green burial is an immensely real and genuinely healing way to commit a loved one to the earth. The upward trend in green burial cemeteries, products and services demonstrates this significance.

Learn more at the Green Burial Council's website, or at author Mark Harris's website Grave Matters.