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Funeral Planning Article WSJ
Old 10-31-2011, 10:10 AM   #1
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Funeral Planning Article WSJ

So I had an interesting time deciding where to post this, but decided health would be a good spot.

Saw this in the WSJ today and was most intrigued. What a wonderful idea to plan for just what kind of party you want to have when you pass away.

Funerals Are Changing - WSJ.com

From the article:
And on how they plan. A website launched three years ago, MyWonderfulLife.com, helps people design their own funerals. Those who sign up can enter their wishes in an online book and send loved ones a link by email.

The home page of the site—which has almost 10,000 members, according to its owners—says, "You only get one chance to make a last impression." There are sections on trends in funerals, including "going green in the grave" with a biodegradable coffin, and fall-themed tips on flowers and on pumpkin cocktails for toasts to the deceased.

Some people become interested in planning a funeral after attending someone else's. Even the most uninspired funeral can be inspirational. When Kathy Cartwright, a real-estate agent in Palos Verdes Estates, Calif., went to a funeral with her parents, both in their early 80s, the service seemed impersonal. There were doughnuts left over from an earlier church service, and no coffee. "It was really awful," she says.

On the way home, Ms. Cartwright told her parents, "We need to talk about what you want. What kind of food? What kind of dessert? I need a budget, and I need it now." They quickly agreed.



This also gives me a chance to post my all time favorite Johnny Carson skit, Eulogy for a Thesaurus Editor.

Dailymotion - Johnny Carson Performs a Eulogy - a Funny video
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:18 AM   #2
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Great link. Just what is needed for the compulsive planner in our household (me). The forum choice is perfect as well...
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:28 AM   #3
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I can see how this would backfire:
"So, my dear survivors and "former beneficiaries", I could have given the money to you or donated it to charity-- but instead I decided to blow it all on a party. I hope the executor follows my plan. As near as I'll be able to tell, you're invited! Yay!!"

My father's letter accompanying his will says "Cremate my corpse but don't spend any more of my money on a funeral. Have a memorial service with your own money if it makes you feel better..."
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:31 AM   #4
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Nords, maybe he was afraid no one would show up!
I love parties and planning them, so this was right up my alley.
But there are some folks who are less social than that, and it seems this site offers something for everyone, whether you want what your dad wanted or what I want, which is a big party with a Journey tribute band there (and yes, HFWR, you are invited).
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:44 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
So I had an interesting time deciding where to post this, but decided health would be a good spot. (snip)
Obviously we need a new forum called "After retirement... way, way, way after retirement."

Not the same as planning for yourself but DH and his sibs planned his mother's service when one of her best friends passed away and they realized it would help if some special things could be in the waiting--he found the music and readings she would want, lined up a trio, etc. and two years later it was perfect.
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Old 10-31-2011, 12:45 PM   #6
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I think it is such a great idea for people to plan their funeral whilst their death is not just around the corner when emotions are running high. To me, it seems grossly unfair to leave this up to your survivors, when they are going through a difficult time.
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Old 10-31-2011, 02:30 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
Nords, maybe he was afraid no one would show up!
I love parties and planning them, so this was right up my alley.
But there are some folks who are less social than that, and it seems this site offers something for everyone, whether you want what your dad wanted or what I want, which is a big party with a Journey tribute band there (and yes, HFWR, you are invited).
No fair! You'll be dead, but I'll have to listen...
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Old 10-31-2011, 03:20 PM   #8
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The nicest "funeral" that I have attended, was a memorial sometime after the deceased was cremated. Friends and relatives spoke briefly about how he had positively influenced their lives. It was by invitation at a nice golf club with a catered luncheon.

I think I'd like the same.
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Old 10-31-2011, 04:08 PM   #9
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I think it is such a great idea for people to plan their funeral whilst their death is not just around the corner when emotions are running high. To me, it seems grossly unfair to leave this up to your survivors, when they are going through a difficult time.
In support of the planning services, I've drafted the obituaries for my spouse and myself. They're in our "In Case of Death" folder and on our hard drive.

Military obituaries are a pain because when the time inevitably comes, everyone's forgotten all the little career details like command names, dates, and hull numbers. I wrote the obits to conform to the guidelines of our alumni magazine and whatever other place they'd be published so that they didn't need much editing (if any). I included all of the information that would normally be expected, plus of course a few extracurricular comments that hopefully will evoke some smiles...
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Old 10-31-2011, 04:28 PM   #10
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In support of the planning services, I've drafted the obituaries for my spouse and myself. They're in our "In Case of Death" folder and on our hard drive.

Military obituaries are a pain because when the time inevitably comes, everyone's forgotten all the little career details like command names, dates, and hull numbers. I wrote the obits to conform to the guidelines of our alumni magazine and whatever other place they'd be published so that they didn't need much editing (if any). I included all of the information that would normally be expected, plus of course a few extracurricular comments that hopefully will evoke some smiles...
We amateur genealogists also appreciate the full names and birthplaces and dates (per birth certicate) of the deceased and his or her parents, spouse(s),chidren and grand children. The same information for the grandparents would be a bonus as are the names of surviving and pre-deceased immediate family members.

Many newspapers now charge by the word for obituaries, so a lengthy newspaper obit can be rather expensive. Most funeral homes provide free online obituaries. Some of which remain online indefinitely.
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