Life after a loved one transitions can be difficult. The difficulty comes in accepting that the person you used to spend time with and share memories with has gone on to the afterlife, and you have to figure out life without their physical presence. Funeral procedures for some bring closure, but for others, the process may be traumatic.  

Celebrating the life of a loved one may help you heal and allow you to form a sense of togetherness with family and friends through the difficult period, as you may see at

To start, here are five celebrations of life ideas to honor your loved one.  

1. Memorial Tree Planting 

You can plant a tree in honor of your loved one. The beauty of a tree is that it grows and displays life. The symbolic representation of the tree is that your loved one remains in your heart and mind, growing and blooming each day in the form of memory and remembrance. 

On their anniversary, friends and family can all come together and take turns watering the plant to remember your loved one. You can share memories of your loved one and laughter while walking down memory lane.  

2. Lantern Ceremony 

You can organize an event where you invite your transitioned loved one’s friends and family for a lantern ceremony. Sky lanterns are portable sources of lighting that float when let up in the air. The belief is that the words of affirmation you speak when lighting the lanterns manifest into fruition.  

During a lantern ceremony, you can say your wishes and dreams for your transitioned loved one. For example, ‘May you continue to rest and watch over us’ is an affirmation you can say as you light the lantern and let it up in the sky. You can also share a fond memory of the person or ask the higher powers to help you cope with the grief and heal after the pain as you achieve peace after their passing.

3. Create A Quote Board 

A quote board is a chart or a slab where you can come together as a family with friends and write some of the sayings or jokes your loved one was known for. Each person can also write a fond memory or event that they shared with the person. The board then becomes a written remembrance of your loved one. And during the death anniversary of your loved one, you can all get together to commemorate their life and continue adding to the quotes.

You can then decide on a place to keep the quote board. For example, you can agree on a single place where the board will remain, or you can rotate a time when the board will be placed in one family member’s home. You can also take photos of the board and keep it for your safekeeping to enjoy the quotes and memories written on it, whether you have the board in your home or not.  

4. Participate In A Charity 

If your loved one participated in a particular charity, you could keep honoring their memory by continuing their involvement with the charity and supporting the cause. For example, if they donated a certain amount, you and your family can come together and decide that you will continue to do so in their memory. If it was time that they dedicated to volunteering in the charity, you could do the same and organize a schedule where each of you spends some time in the charity.  

Alternatively, you can form a charity organization that tackles issues that your loved one was passionate about. For example, if they were passionate about world hunger and donated foodstuff and finances to charities dedicated to the cause, you can start a charity in their name.  

5. Start A Book Club 

If you know the different books that your loved one enjoyed, you can create a book club with family and friends. Creating a book club is one way of socializing with people you have in common, which can help you grieve and heal. 

Not only will you enjoy the books, but the company that comes with the book club can also be an additional support system for each person grieving. The book club may grow beyond family and friends and can become a community club that is still in remembrance of your loved one.  


The reality is that when a loved one transition, the process of grieving can be difficult and painful to bear. How people grieve differs, but celebrating their life may help with the healing process. A tree can be a beautiful symbol of loving memories, and a lantern ceremony may help you heal through words of affirmation. You can create a quote board, participate in a charity, and start a book club in their memory.