funeral home in Washington Crossing, PA

The Truth About “I’m Sorry For Your Loss”

Telling someone, “I am sorry for your loss,” after a loss and service at a funeral home in Washington Crossing, PA can feel empty. This is because it’s said so often. But what else is there to say?

Here are condolence phrases you can use to offer meaningful comfort and support to someone after they lose a loved one, like “What a wonderful life your XX lived!” The deceased did live a wonderful life. This phrase opens the door for the bereaved to bring up favorite memories of their lost loved one, which helps them process the loss and heal. There’s also “I am so sorry to learn about XX’s passing.” The person you’re comforting loved the deceased dearly. They were important. By mentioning their lost loved one’s name, you’re making your comment much more personal and meaningful.

You can say “Someone as special as XX won’t ever fade from our hearts and memories.” It’s easy for the bereaved to feel that everyone will forget their lost loved one now that they’re gone. This phrase will help them know that you will not forget the deceased and that their legacy will live on. Another good phrase is “My heart breaks with you at the loss of your XX.” The bereaved was someone’s mother, father, son, daughter, sister, brother, aunt, or any other important part of someone’s life. Acknowledging the relationship the bereaved had with the deceased makes your comment more personal.

What about “No words I can offer will make this hurt go away, but I am here for you at this devastating time”? While you’ve gone through losses of your own, you don’t “know” how the deceased feels as you’ve never lost that specific person with that specific relationship in that specific way. Its ok to acknowledge that, and balance that acknowledgement with a promise of ongoing support. “Even though we can’t be together during this difficult time, I am holding you close in my heart” is another good saying. It’s not always possible to make it to a funeral or a memorial service. When sending attendance regrets, you can use this phrase to express that you are still thinking of the bereaved. You can also make it more personal by sending a bereavement gift, a card, or giving them a call.

It’s important to note that there is nothing technically wrong with saying “I’m sorry for your loss.” There are just more personal, meaningful ways to convey the same sentiment. Don’t worry about it if that’s what you choose to say, if you’ve said it in the past, or if it slips out in the moment. It’s not a hurtful or offensive phrase, and the sentiment is still there despite its overuse. You want to say something to the grieving person that means a little more than this much-repeated phrase.

funeral home in Washington Crossing, PA

At some point, you will have to offer condolences to someone, so it’s better to come up with a plan now for what to say than to get stuck with the same old, dry phrase that doesn’t mean as much as it should. Do you want more information on conveying sympathy or Washington Crossing, PA funeral homes? Call or visit us today.

cremation service in Newtown, PA

You Put Cremains WHERE?

What should you do with your loved one’s ashes after their cremation service in Newtown, PA? People don’t always know what to do with cremated remains, and that’s OK. The good news is that there are almost countless things you can do with cremation ashes, or cremains.

Deciding what to do with what’s left of your loved one can often feel overwhelming, especially if your loved one didn’t leave specific instructions for what they want done with their remains. What one person decides to do with their own or their loved one’s ashes may seem strange to another, but in the end, it is a personal thing. You may find some of the options odd, and that’s ok. You might also find the perfect “final resting place” idea for yourself or your loved one.

From scattering at sea to works of art, here are beautiful things you can do with ashes to help honor the memory of your lost loved one:

  • Balloon Release – You can have your loved one’s cremains placed in a helium balloon, so they float up into the sky. Most balloons will get about 5 miles into the atmosphere, upon which the low temperature will cause the balloon to pop and the ashes to scatter on the wind.
  • Wall-Mounted Urns – Wall-mounted urns, or plaque urns, allow you to hang your lost loved one’s cremains on your wall like a work of art. The wall-mounted urn holds cremated remains discreetly and securely.
  • Biodegradable Urn – A biodegradable urn is a great way to lay your loved one to rest and to do right by the planet. These urns are made from plant fibers and recycled paper so they degrade over time, returning the ashes to the earth.
  • Flower Urn Vase – Don’t want your loved one’s urn to look like and urn? Try a flower urn vase, which is an urn that holds ashes as well as flowers so you can keep your loved one close and beautiful with fresh plants.
  • Candle Urns – Candle urns are like standard cremation urns except that they have a place to put a candle on top, making them double as a candle holder and an urn. This allows you to light a candle in your loved one’s memory whenever you want.
  • Scattering at Sea – Scattering ashes at sea is exactly what it sounds like: scattering the cremated remains of your lost loved one in the ocean or another large body of water. According to US law, all scattering must occur at least three nautical miles – about 3.5 miles – from shore.
  • Cemetery Burial – You can bury your loved one’s cremains at a cemetery. Ash burials can be at the foot of a casket, in an urn plot, in an urn garden, or in a columbarium niche.
  • Handwriting Pendant – You can purchase a pendant engraved with your lost loved one’s handwriting and keep their cremains inside. This will keep them close to you and help you remember their writing.

cremation service in Newtown, PA

We are here to help with any and all of your Newtown, PA cremation service questions, no matter what you decide to do with your lost loved one’s ashes. Call or visit us today to learn more.

funeral home in Newtown, PA

Read This Before You Travel With Ashes

Traveling with the cremated remains of a loved one to bring them to a funeral home that’s far away can be stressful, whether you are honoring a final wish to scatter the ashes somewhere sentimental or take the ashes back home with you to your funeral home in Newtown, PA.

You want to ensure that nothing happens to the ashes, and you want to be sure you’re following any laws or regulations around transporting cremated remains. If you’re traveling long distances with cremated remains, you might be a bit worried. Whether your lost loved one cremated somewhere far away, you’re bringing your lost loved one’s cremates remains somewhere far away after their cremation, or your lost loved one wanted to their cremains to be scattered in an exotic location, you should consider driving. Why? Flying with an urn is more complicated than driving with an urn. First, you should always bring the cremains on the plane with you. Do not check them in a bag as some airlines will not accept checked cremated remains and you can never be sure the bag will not get lost or damaged alone the way. Carrying the ashes on the plane with you is the best way to make sure they’re safe and secure. Second, you need to be sure the urn is TSA complaint so it will pass a security screening. The only acceptable urns you can carry on a plane, by TSA standards, are made from wood, non-lead ceramic, glass, or plastic.

Driving gives you the most control over how your lost loved one’s ashes are handled during transit. While there are some factors you cannot control, such as the quality of the roads or other drivers, traveling by car is a good way to calm your nerves while transporting cremains. When traveling with cremains by car, you need to make sure they are in a sturdy, unbreakable container. If you’ve purchased a glass urn or an urn made from another delicate material, do not put the cremains in it until you’ve made it to your final destination. Instead, keep them in a cardboard, wood, cloth, or plastic container so they won’t spill if knocked over on a bump road or if you get in a fender bender. You can also get an heirloom urn that houses an internal container with the ashes inside. This double layering will ensure there is no damage to the urn during travel. Put the urn or other container inside another holder of some kind to keep the urn steady on the road. You can use a carry-on case, like you would use if going on a short plane trip. Put the case inside, place it in your trunk or backseat, and hit the road.

funeral home in Newtown, PA

It is a terrible thing to lose a loved one, but hopefully these tips will help soothe your mind during your time of loss. Use these tips to safely travel with cremated remains by car or by plane to help calm your nerves during your time of grief. Want more information on Newtown, PA funeral homes? Call or visit us today.

cremation services in Langhorne, PA

Not Just for Vikings

You might have seen a movie or a TV show in which people burn the body of a loved one after they die – this is a funeral pyre. But funeral pyres are not the same as cremation services in Langhorne, PA. Why? Though funeral pyres have a long history and are integral parts of some cultures, they are not common or even legal in most of the modern Western world.

Throughout history, funeral pyres have been used all over the world to cremate bodies – and not just for Vikings! Thanks to the work of anthropologists and sociologists, we know the history of funeral pyres in some parts of the world, such as India, Nepal, and other Hindu countries. Funeral pyres are an essential part of a Hindu funeral, which is why they are still used today in India, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Indonesia. In the Hindu religion, cremation on a funeral pyre is part of the sacred ceremony called, “antyesti,” which translates to “last sacrifice.” They believe the body is build form the five elements (water, fire, air, water, and earth), so burning the body releases the elements back into the earth. Once the ashes are cooled, they are placed in the nearest body of water.

During the Bronze Age, about 600 years ago, people living in what is now Ireland would use funeral pyres to cremate their dead. We know this because a cremation site with a funeral pyre and remnants of burned ash, oak, and fruitwood trees was found near Templenoe. In ancient Rome, the deceased were burned in funeral pyres outside of the city. Once burned, the remains were buried in a special tomb called a bustum. Other bereaved would keep some of the remains in ornamental containers, not unlike modern cremation urns. In ancient Rome, funeral pyres were considered a sign of wealth, so poor people would often be burned on someone else’s pyre.

What about Western Europe? Polish people used funeral pyres to cremate their dead in the Bronze and Iron Ages. Modern scientists have discovered these ancient Polish people built their pyres from local wood, meaning the specific type of wood was most likely not significant but rather convenient. There’s also Norway, Sweden, and other Nordic countries. The Vikings are well known for using funeral pyres to burn their dead. In fact, most people think of Viking funerals when thinking of pyres. However, contrary to popular belief, dead Vikings were not burnt in their longboats out at sea. Scholars do believe that a respected Viking warrior could have his cremated remains buried inside his longboat, but the pyres are thought to have been completed on land.

cremation services in Langhorne, PA

Funeral pyres are simply a pile of wood on the ground or on a stone base on which a body is burned. To learn more about your options, give us a call or pay us a visit today. While open air cremation or burning a body on a funeral pyre is not legal in the United States, you can find first-rate Langhorne, PA cremation services with us.

funeral home in Langhorne, PA

The Best Bereavement Gifts

Sympathy cards, phone calls, texts, and visits are all well and good, but sometimes you want to do a little more. Picking out a gift for someone going through a loss can be another wonderful way to show someone just how deeply you care after a loss and service at a funeral home in Langhorne, PA.

Traditionally, bereavement gifts are often home cooked meals, flowers, or other practical items. But these days, bereavement can be so much more, from journals and jewelry to plants, home décor, and more. Here are some bereavement gift ideas to help inspire you.

Start with a photo book. Like a scrapbook but made digitally, photo books are bound, printed photos of the deceased. Choose your favorite pictures of the deceased and have them printed through a photo book company to give to the bereaved. There’s also engraved glassware. Many people like to do toasts in honor of those they’ve lost. An engraved glass, whether beer mug, wine glass, highball, or water glass, makes a great bereavement gift as it gives the bereaved a special way to make those memorial toasts.

Grief journals make great bereavement gifts as they provide the bereaved a place to write down their thoughts, feelings, memories, or anything else they want. Grief journaling has been around for a very long time, and was around long before it had an official name or designation as it can be very helpful in processing loss and the feelings that come with it. What about a picture frame? Photos are a great way to help remember and honor the deceased, making picture frames to hold photos of the deceased great bereavement gifts. Look for a special frame that might signify something unique about the deceased. For example, if they loved to golf, get a golf-themed frame.

You can buy a tree to plant in honor of the deceased. Memorial trees not only provide the bereaved with a place to visit when they want to remember their lost loved one, but they also help make the world a greener, better place. Many people like to light candles in remembrance of lost loved ones. Buying a candle holder as a bereavement gift gives your friend a special candle holder that they can use to honor their lost loved one, especially if you get in engraved with a special message or picture of the deceased.

funeral home in Langhorne, PA

There are also positive thoughts jar. Appositive thoughts jar is a jar filled with slips of paper on which positive thoughts are written. You can order one online or make your own with a mason jar and printer paper. These little notes can help remind the bereaved that even when days seem dark and bleak, there is still so much beauty and joy in life to experience.

A tasteful memorial gift can go a long way in expressing your support and love for a grieving friend in their time of need.  We are here to help if you want more information on bereavement gifts or Langhorne, PA funeral homes. Call or visit us today to learn more.

cremation service in Washington Crossing, PA

Grief After Specific Relationships

Grief varies greatly depending on the type of loss you suffer. Think about it, the grief you may feel after losing a spouse can be very different from the grief you feel after losing a coworker. Or, for example, grief after a miscarriage is different than grief after the loss of a parent. How long does grief last after the loss of specific relationships, such as the death of a spouse, child, or parent and their cremation service in Washington Crossing, PA?

For example, many people suffer from feelings of grief after a miscarriage, even though many people don’t talk about it. If you’ve suffered a miscarriage, you’re not alone. Your body and heart will heal over time, so be patient with yourself and don’t be ashamed of your feelings of loss. What about the loss of a spouse? While grief varies from person to person, some experts say that mourning the loss of a spouse can last three years or longer. No matter where in you are in your grief journey after losing your spouse, be compassionate and patient with yourself. Anyone who’s lost a child will most likely say that the pain will never fully go away. Losing a child is considered the single worst stressor a person can experience, which is why experts agree that grief after the death of a child is often the longest and most severe grief.

Losing a parent will have an impact on you and your life, no matter how old you are. Parents always have a formative effect on their children, and the loss will be acutely felt. Some people say their grief after the loss of a parent lasted between six months and a year, but there is no right or wrong timeline. We can’t forget about pets. A pet can be a very important part of your family. The feelings of loss and grief you may experience after the death of a pet are valid and nothing to be ashamed of. Grieving a pet takes time, often several months, but it is your right to feel your grief and to work through it.

The best way to work through grief after any kind of loss is to accept your new normal. One way to help ease the transition is by starting new routines that put you and your health first. Life is always changing, but growth can be healthy. You can try starting a new exercise routine, whether that means joining a gym or going on regular walks. This extra exercise will not only keep you physically heathy, but will also help you reduce stress and ward off depression. You can also try regular self-care such as massages, manicures, or doing activities that make you happy. Don’t be afraid to try new things, too. Test out different hobbies or take a class to learn a new skill. You might even make new friends or form new relationships that can help fill the hole in your heart.

cremation service in Washington Crossing, PA

Everyone’s grief timeline is different, but hopefully this information can help you feel normal and accepted as you process your loss. Do need more information on grief or Washington Crossing, PA cremation services? We are here to help however we can.

funeral home in Washington Crossing, PA

How Grief Manifests in the Body

What happens in your body when you’re grieving? How does grief manifest physically? Here is information about the most common physical manifestations of grief because, though grief is to be expected, oftentimes people do not expect the physical effects of grief after the death of a loved one and their service at a funeral home in Washington Crossing, PA.

Grief can lead to a wide range of physical health problems, such as indigestion and gastrointestinal issues, cardiovascular problems and chest pain, sleeplessness, headaches, inflammation and joint pain, and more. Your body is under a lot of stress when you’re grieving, which is why people often suffer from these symptoms.

Grief can impact decision making. Because of the extended stress your body is exposed to after a loss, grief can impact your decision-making skills, making you less efficient or even more likely to make choices you wouldn’t otherwise. That is why experts advise the bereaved avoid big choices or life-altering decisions during grief, like changing jobs, moving far away, or something similar. Wait at least six months after a loss to make big decisions. Grief can also make you tired. From sleepless nights, nightmares, and fatigue to a hard time falling asleep or staying asleep, grief has a big impact on sleep. To curb some of these symptoms, avoid napping during the day, limit your screen time before bed, cut back on caffeine, and create a bedtime ritual to help your body wind down. You can also talk to your doctor about sleep aids. Grief-stricken people are exhausted people. You may have never felt this tired before and might even consider that you are coming down with the flu. This is normal. Be sure to take care of yourself and put your needs first. You can’t recover without self-care.

Grief can be held in the body, or impact the brain. Some people believe grief is held in certain places in the body, such as the lungs and large intestines. Others feel grief is held in the heart, hence the phrase “heartache.” Grief can affect the brain, often causing a condition colloquially referred to as “grief brain.” This condition impacts memory, comprehension, and concentration. Grief has such a big impact on the brain because your brain becomes overloaded with stress and sadness after a loss, which then triggers stress responses that manifest as mental symptoms after a prolonged period of time. “Grief brain” will affect you physically, emotionally, and mentally. It may last a few days, weeks, or even months. But eventually, it will fade.

funeral home in Washington Crossing, PA

Healing after your loss might happen in its own time, but it will happen. You will get through the grief no matter how it manifests in your body and mind. Do you want more information about getting through grief and a Washington Crossing, PA funeral home service? We are honored to help you however we can in your time of loss or preplanning. Call or visit us today to learn more.

cremation services in Newtown, PA

Natural Burials and Cremation Services

Natural burials after cremation services in Newtown, PA are becoming common as people want to do their part for the planet. But what is a natural burial? What do they have to do with cremation services? Can you choose a natural burial after cremation services?

Natural burials are burials that do not use chemicals to preserve the body, reduce the use of unnecessary products, and lay the body to rest in a way that does not damage or negatively impact the environment. The term “natural burial” also refers to the actual process of burying a body, including opening and closing the plot and how the plot is memorialized. Generally speaking, a natural burial means the body is not embalmed and is buried in a simple, biodegradable casket or shroud in a hold dug by hand and finished with a natural marker or no marker at all. The point of natural burial is to avoid putting unnatural materials or substances into the earth. In that context, scattering or trenching cremated remains can be considered a natural burial.

Natural burials have a few key differences from traditional burials. Unlike natural burial, traditional burial allows for embalming, caskets made from metal or wood, headstones, burial vaults, and grave liners. They also have differences from green burials. Though natural burial and green burial are similar, they are not the same thing. A green burial refers to both the burial process and where the body is laid to rest, meaning it must take place at a green cemetery that does not use pesticides or bury embalmed bodies. A natural burial, on the other hand, can happen at a traditional cemetery. People can choose a natural burial for themselves or their loved ones because its environmentally friendly, often less expensive than traditional internment, and they find comfort in returning the body to nature.

What about costs and laws? Since natural burials do not include accessories like embalming, heavy caskets, and headstones, they tend to be more affordable than traditional burial. The natural burial feel generally includes the burial plot, interment fees, and a shroud or environmentally safe casket. Natural burials are legal in all 50 states. Some states, however, have restrictions. For example, in Indiana, you must perform a natural burial in an established ceremony or apply for a home burial permit. Contact your local burial providers to learn more about options in your area. If you’re considering a natural burial at home, be sure to check that local zoning laws allow for home burials.

cremation services in Newtown, PA

It’s also important to note that stone is not used in natural burials. Though stone is a natural material, the processes used to mine, create, and transport vaults, liners, headstones, and other stone burial accessories are not natural. Therefore, stone, marble, concrete, and other similar materials are not used in natural burials.

We are here to help if you have more questions about natural burials or Newtown, PA cremation services. We are happy to do whatever we can during your time of loss or preplanning.

funeral home in Newtown, PA

Grief Before, During, and After the Funeral Home Service

How long will you be grieving after a service at a funeral home in Newtown, PA? Unfortunately, there is no set time frame for when you will feel better, move through a stage, or come to accept the loss of your loved one as each person, each relationship, and even each death is different.

However, knowing what others have gone through and understanding that their experiences are similar to your own can help you feel normal, which is soothing. To provide comfort, here is a general grief timeline. For some, grief begins before the death. Anticipatory grief is a feeling of loss you may experience before your loved one dies. For example, you might begin to think about their loss and feel the pain of that loss when you find out a loved one has a terminal illness.

After the death, many people experience shock immediately that lasts for hours or even days. Everyone experiences shock differently. Some people may cry or laugh while others might feel completely numb. Every reaction is normal. A funeral or memorial service is often when you say goodbye in a formal, final manner. This can be a very important part of the healing process, and reactions can vary from one extreme to the other. You might cry throughout the service or sit stoically. Some people say that grief is often harder after the service. This makes sense. Once the service is over, friends go home and return to their lives, leaving you alone with your feelings and your new reality.

This is the time to self-reflect and allow yourself to feel your emotions. You can work on your to-do list, but be gentle with yourself. What about months or years down the line? Your grief will lessen over time. The exact amount of time depends on the person, as no two people will grieve the same. But you will start to feel better. Months after the loss, many people begin to question the death as they’ve processed it more. This is common. You will never be “finished” grieving the loss of a loved one.

funeral home in Newtown, PA

Even years down the line, there will still be moments when the pang of loss hits you like it did in the early days. However, these moments will become few and far between as the years pass. Your grief might be like a shadow, always there but not fully visible or tangible. Despite the popular saying, time doesn’t “heal” the wound. But it does soften the blow. As the years go by, the sharpness of your grief will ease, and you’ll be able to think back to happy memories with a bittersweet smile.

Being aware of grief models can help you understand the emotions you may be feeling. We are also happy to do whatever we can for you in your time of loss or you want to learn more about grief after Newtown, PA funeral homes. Call or visit us today for more information.

cremation service in Langhorne, PA

The Benefits of Brunch Memorials

There are no rules for when or what kind of memorial you can have after a cremation service in Langhorne, PA. You can do a brunch memorial! No matter what kind of service you choose, be it brunch or dinner, just remember all that matters is honoring your lost loved one and comforting yourself, your family, and your friends.

There are lots of positive benefits that come with a brunch service, like:

  • Drinks – Everyone loves mimosas and bloody Mary’s. You can also serve specialty brunch cocktails like Irish coffee, Bellini’s, or whatever else strikes your fancy.
  • Availability – Some funeral homes, restaurants, and other venues book up quickly, but usually only for Friday and Saturday nights. A brunch service is a great way to squeeze yourself in at a busy venue if it’s the one your lost loved one would have wanted or if it makes you feel comforted.
  • Food – Tired of the standard meat, fish, or pasta funeral or memorial meals? Brunch food is the answer. The combinations are endless and endlessly comforting, from omelet stations and pancakes to sandwiches, pizza, pastries and more. Brunch services are also more flexible when it comes to buffets versus passed food, family style, or plated meals. While you can have a cake for a brunch funeral or memorial, you can also get creative with other dessert options like donuts, coffee cake, pastries, and more.
  • Discounts – Since brunch time services aren’t as busy, many venues and vendors also offer big discounts that mean lots of saving for you or more money to spend on other aspects of memorialization.
  • Time Off – While a nighttime Sunday service means your guests have to take the next day off, a brunch service gives them plenty of time to get home and get to bed before a workday. Plus, there’s a lot less traffic on Sundays.
  • Sunlight – Take advantage of the daylight with a brunch service. If you have a dinner event, you start to lose the light nearly halfway through the event. But daytime brunch events mean you get a whole day of gorgeous sunlight for scattering ashes, spending time with loved ones, and honoring the deceased.
  • Attire – Brunch services can be as fancy or as causal as you want, since brunch itself can be both dressy and laid back. There’s no pressure to have big centerpieces or tons of flowers at a brunch memorial or funeral, but there’s also nothing that says you can’t have those things.
  • Religious Services – Many funerals and memorials are religious events, and oftentimes, religious services take place in the morning. By having a brunch service for your lost loved one, you won’t have to reschedule your religious service for a different time of day.

cremation service in Langhorne, PA

Brunch is warm, comforting, and definitely on par with what a memorial or other service can and should be after Langhorne, PA cremation services. We are honored to do what we can to help you in your time of loss or preplanning. Call or visit us today.