I am avoiding doing the hard work of the ceremony such as, ummm, writing it. Instead I have completely skipped over the necessary elements and moved straight into the fun stuff: The ceremony accessories!
We decided to include some cultural traditions in our ceremony to represent our heritage. First up, Mr. Cucumber Sammie. Mr. CS is African American, so of course our immediate thought was “jumping the broom.”
Legend has it that jumping the broom started as an African American slave tradition. Slaves were unable to get married, so they “jumped the broom” as a way to publicly commit themselves to one another. During my research I found out in Africa they may have used the broom in a ritual to symbolize past problems being swept away and starting anew. I love the notion that at the end of our ceremony we jump over a broom and our lives together start fresh. Feels very Mary Poppins-ish.
I am completely indecisive about almost everything (except Mr. CS, of course), so I searched around for other African American traditions we could include. There is the “crossing of the sticks,” which is exactly how it sounds. You cross tall sticks…weird. Moving on. There is also the tying the knot where the officiant ties your hands together. It seems a lot of cultures have claimed the “tying the knot” or handfasting as their own. I also found something called the knocking ceremony. Mr. Cucumber Sammie would have to come to my family’s door with presents. If the “knock” is accepted then my family is giving their permission and blessing. While I love the idea of presents, it seems a little late for permission on wedding morning. And then there is the libation ceremony. I find this one to be the oddest. You take water or alcohol and pour it on the ground in each of the directions (N.S.E.W.), calling out to the spirits. Hmmmm, no!
And now we have come full circle back to the broom. Mr. Cuke Sammie and I both agreed that we would much prefer to jump the broom. Now to find a broom!
I immediately went straight to Etsy. They had some really nice brooms, but they all seemed super expensive, especially when I remembered that it was a broom! The cheapest one I found was $25 not including shipping.
Pretty flowers! / Image via My Beatiful Wedding on Etsy
Image via BellaSkyEvents (no longer available)
Then I tried Amazon and Overstock thinking I could pick up a nice old-fashioned broom. It is amazing how complicated finding a broom turned out to be. I found a couple, but they were kitchen brooms and that seemed a little “wrong” for our wedding no matter how much ribbon I tied around them. Corn brooms looked nice, but they were expensive, too.
Corn broom / Image via Lehman’s
After striking out at all my usual shopping sites and search engines, I decided to give Etsy one more go. Buried way in the back is where I found her (yes, it is a her). Handmade with wood from Pennsylvania (me too!), this one will be perfect.
Lovely / Brooms for Sale on Etsy
Of course I am going to dress her up with some accessories of her own, maybe a ribbon or faux flower. The best part was she was only $12. The Goldilocks of brooms…not too expensive, but not cheap either. Now that I have my broom I should probably actually write the ceremony so there is a cause to use the broom.
Are you including any traditions in your ceremony? Any big details you put off in favor of buying fun things?