River & Root Ceremonies

handcrafted ceremonies joyfully congruent with your complex life


You can read more reviews on my WeddingWire page - not just for weddings! - and my Facebook page

My wife and I decided early on that our wedding ceremony would not rely too heavily on tradition. It would be iconoclastic, original--us. And, you know, that sounds great and everything, but when the time came to actually plan the thing, we were at a loss. We had general, sort of vague ideas about what was important to us, the types of weddings we liked and didn't like, but that was about it. 

Enter Hannah.

Essentially, she gave us a jumping off point - a framework. She asked questions; she made subtle suggestions; she listened, and listened, and listened.  And she wrote, and wrote, and wrote. In the end, we had something that was beautiful yet manageable, personal yet relatable. 

Of course, at that point the ceremony was only on paper. Thankfully, Hannah was also there to run the actual show, to get us through the rehearsal and, ultimately, the event itself. She was empathetic, professional, friendly, capable, loving, invested. As a result, and not surprisingly, the day was a complete and utter success. It wasn't perfect: my dad somehow turned the wrong way down the aisle, the guitarist missed a cue. But here's the thing: Hannah helped us create a ceremony--or, more accurately, an environment--where things didn't have to be perfect. Everyone was relaxed; everyone was happy; no one could have imagined the day any differently, nor would they have wanted to.

I highly recommend reaching out to Hannah to discuss your upcoming event. You won't regret it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  - Ben M. (wedding)

Hannah's magic, as near as I can articulate it, resides in her capacity to listen deeply, to make meaningful connections among a sea of thoughts, and to produce an event that feel tonally right and deeply in-tune with the meaning of the ceremony.  She's an extraordinary crafter of moments and intuitively skilled in the detail and pacing of the event. The ceremony we made had three parts, beginning with just the two of us and concluding with a feast among my closest friends. Throughout the day Hannah made sure to check in with me—it was an intense experience for me—allowing for pauses and reflection so the discrete events had a rich sweetness that lingered and dispelled, giving way to something new.  

I earned my degree; Hannah helped remind me to see beyond the constriction of disciplinary requirements and rigid academic writing. The process of making and completing the ceremony felt like relearning to take deeper breaths after inhaling shallow amounts of air for so long. There's more capacity in all of us, and Hannah knows how to gently coax it forth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                   - L. L. (Ph.D. completion ceremony)

The ceremony gave us a structure for us to really connect in a meaningful way.  My brother and I talked for hours about my dad and processed a lot of big memories, stuck feelings, both cried (this is not normal behavior for us).  I was impressed by how seriously he took everything and how much he wanted to follow the structure you provided.  After he left, I slept better than I have in weeks and woke up feeling a deep inner "settledness" that I know corresponds to the ceremony/emotional processing. 

This whole process -- from our opening conversation to the ending of the ceremony -- has been extremely therapeutic.  I can't even put words to how much this has helped me, even two years after my father's passing, to understanding my grief. 

So thank you!  What you do is so valuable.

                                                                                                                                                                                            - Gracy O. (mourning ceremony consult and sequence)

please do get in touch: hannah@riverandrootceremonies.com or (202) 930-1138