The loss of a loved one is never easy, and finding the perfect way to commemorate someone who has played such a big role in our lives can be overwhelming. Whether you’ve decided to go the route of burial or cremation, there are many unique ways to celebrate the memory of your loved one’s life. We’ve put together five of our favorite ways to commemorate a loved one to help get you started on your journey of remembrance and healing.

#1 Getting Crafty

A creative way to remember a loved one is to create something meaningful out of their clothing, such as a memory teddy bear or memory quilt. These creative objects honor your loved one’s life and offer a way to reconnect through a physical medium. Certain fabrics in your memory quilt or teddy bear may trigger memories of happiness or shared experiences with your loved one and may help you feel closer to those you’ve lost.

Creating these crafty memorial objects can be a great way to keep yourself busy while celebrating your loved one. These projects also give you the opportunity to gift or share these objects with family members and keep the memories of your loved one close.

#2 Cremation Creations

If your loved one arranged to be cremated after they passed, their ashes can be used to create thoughtful pieces of art such as memorial jewelry or a meaningful tattoo when mixed into the ink. You can also scatter your loved one’s ashes in a few of their favorite places or in a dream location to which they weren’t able to travel. If you decide to go this route, be aware that there are laws and regulations for scattering ashes, so it would be wise to check with your city, town, or county bylaws and ordinances before scattering ashes. For more creative ideas and inspiration, take a look at these 27 things to do with your loved one’s cremated remains.

#3 “Back to Nature, Back to Life”

If you appreciate sustainability, you might like this option. Bios Urn is a company that offers the opportunity for your loved ones to “come back to life” through nature as a tree. The magic happens inside a special capsule, created with 100% biodegradable materials, that holds the remains of your loved one and a seed. The capsule is then planted, and the remains help the development and growth of the tree.

These urns can be planted outdoors in your garden or backyard, a place your loved one enjoyed, or indoors with the Bios Incube. The Bios Incube, a capsule built to hold a Bios Urn, does all of the hard work for you as it combines the insights of tree growth with data from its environment. This means that the Incube will sense temperature, humidity, and amount of fertilizer in the soil to ensure optimum growing conditions. The Incube also has a built-in watering system that automatically waters your tree, depending on the tree type.

Our green burials are a sustainable option for those who have opted for a burial service instead of cremation. You can choose either a burial shroud or a simple pine box, which are both great eco-friendly options.

#4 Gifting

The holiday season can be a very difficult time for those who are grieving, as the memories of togetherness and celebration simply remind us of the loss. To help keep those memories alive, you may find it comforting to buy Christmas gifts for your loved ones who’ve recently passed, especially as you come across things that remind you of them. Buying these gifts not only help to keep your loved one’s memory alive but also to help bring a little joy back into the holiday season for you. When you’re ready, you can keep the holiday spirit going by donating the gifts to your local homeless shelter or to a children’s hospital in memory of your loved one. If you live in Madison, the homeless shelter directory may be helpful in choosing which shelter to donate to, and the American Family Children’s Hospital is a great option if you’d like to donate gifts, meals, or money.

#5 Do What They Loved

Did you and your loved one really enjoy doing a certain activity or hobby together, perhaps fishing or crafting? Participating in these activities, especially with other family members, is a great way to bring back memories and reminisce about times when your loved one was their happiest. Making a donation to their favorite charities or volunteering at their favorite organization is another great way to honor their memory.

Start your commemorative journey with our suggestions, or find what’s unique to you and your family to celebrate and honor your loved one. Our website provides several resources for anyone seeking grief support, and our team is always ready and willing to help.