Start with your funeral director. When you first meet, let him or her know that you want to do something individually suited to your loved one. Ask her how she can help. Understand that many excellent funeral professionals are not necessarily creative. Even if your director is not particularly creative himself, he will usually be knowledgeable about local resources that can help you.
You may find creativity in yourself or other family members. Begin by thinking about the one who died. What did they love? What did they do for fun? Was your person an avid reader? An avid fan? A sports player or watcher? Did she cook, bake, or quilt? What do you want the service to reflect about your loved one?
Next, consider the talents you have within your family. Do you have a musician, a reader, a storyteller, or a singer? Who can you tap to help you put together this special remembrance?
Look for ways to use your family pictures. Consider enlarging a few or creating a photo montage perhaps set to favorite music. Pictures are powerful. They stimulate memories and encourage sharing stories.
Include attendees. It’s not unheard of to ask people to wear team colors, or their favorite ski hat, or just bright colors to the funeral service. The idea is to bring everyone into celebrating the interest of the person who died. Look for opportunities to involve friends and co-workers into the service program.
Share with attendees. Share the famous cookie recipe, share the books the person who died is leaving behind, share the songs they loved, share the trips they took, share the paintings, the wood working, the golf balls, flower seeds, share the love.
Finally, keep your funeral director in the loop as you come up with ideas. Ask for support. You will be pleasantly surprised at what your funeral director is willing to do to help you put together a service that reflects your loved one and brings comfort to your family.