Though wedding toasts typically honor the newlyweds, some brides and grooms choose to make their own toasts, either at the reception or rehearsal dinner, honoring and thanking important people in their lives. Making a toast to thank and honor in-laws is a wonderful gesture, as many times they have provided love and support to the couple. A wedding is a perfect opportunity to publicly thank future in-laws and acknowledge all they have done.
You can’t go wrong with a speech that comes from the heart. For a bride or groom that wants to thank their in-laws in a heartfelt manner, begin by thanking your in-laws for all the love and support they have shown to you and your partner during your relationship. Consider mentioning all the good qualities, such as honesty, faith or kindness that they have instilled in your future spouse. If your in-laws have a long marriage, mention that you hope to have a marriage as happy and lasting as theirs.
Using humor can be a great way to lighten the mood, while still honoring your future in-laws. For example, if you are a bride who is marrying a very gregarious man, try saying something like "I can’t believe you actually survived raising him." If you are a groom who may have been nervous about asking permission to marry your future wife, a line such as "Thanks for not getting out the shotgun when you saw we on your porch," said to your future father-in-law can get some laughs.
If your in-laws contributed financially or otherwise to your wedding ceremony or reception, acknowledging their contributions in a generic way is appropriate. Don’t divulge amounts, but mention that the day would not be possible without their generosity and support.
Remembering the Departed
For in-laws who have passed away, it is appropriate to take a moment to acknowledge their importance in your spouse’s life and express regret that they could not be there to witness the marriage. A sentiment such as "She raised a wonderful son and I wish I could thank her for helping make my spouse the wonderful person he is today. I only wish she could be here today to see the happiness on both of our faces, but we know that she is looking down on us with her blessings."
Stephanie Rutherford-Scott has more than 10 years of experience in print and multimedia journalism for Booth and Gannett Corp. Her work has been published by the Associated Press and Gannett News Service in news publications throughout Michigan and the United States. She received her Bachelor of Arts in creative writing and journalism from Western Michigan University.
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