Archive for August, 2013

Here is a picture of the competed monument for James H. Spence, Jr and his wife Mildred M. Spence.

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Here is a picture of the completed monument for Patricia Ann Hanifee Hamann.

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Here is a picture of the front and back of the completed monument for William A. Crain, Jr. 

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Back

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Here is the completed monument for Anton Tracy Buckheit! Feel free to share the link with your friends and family. Keep in mind that this picture was taken before the stone was installed in the cemetery.

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There is a large variety of designs which can be laser etched or sandblasted onto your monument. The type of design you can use depends on the type of monument you have chosen. To find out which method must be used on your monument, please read the following blog:

https://mikeslaseretchingsartinmemorials.wordpress.com/2013/08/13/question-of-the-week-what-color-granite-should-i-choose-for-my-monument/

To review our Sandblasting Designs, please click the following link, which will take you to the Sandblasting Designs page of our website.

http://www.mikeslaseretching.com/traditional_designs.html

To review our Laser Etched Designs, please click the following link, which will take you to the Laser Etched Designs page of our website.

http://www.mikeslaseretching.com/laser_designs.html

Please keep in mind that all monuments which can be laser etched, can also be sandblasted. You are only limited when your monument requires only sandblasting.

If you have any questions regarding designing your monument, or to get started placing your order today, please call us at 877-836-0332 or send us an email at info@mlestones.com.

When someone discovers that they have the freedom to include almost anything they choose to on the monument they are purchasing for a loved one, they can frequently develop “designers block”. When you are trying to design the monument which will be placed on a loved one’s final resting place, it can be difficult to decide exactly what should be included. Although there are often some limitations set by the cemetery, a monument is basically a blank slate and nearly anything you can think up, can be placed on it.

Traditionally, monuments have included the deceased person’s full name. Some families choose to include a woman’s maiden name in addition to her married name. The date of birth  and the date of passing is also typically included on a monument. Some families choose to include only the year of birth and the year of passing. However, it has become more common for the month, day and year of both dates to be included. Apart from the small flowers or religious symbols which are often included, the traditional monument design includes only this information: the name, date of birth and date of passing.

Thanks to the technology we now have available to us, we are able to offer a much broader range of designs to our clients. With this, you can now design a much more personalized monument. A monument can truly reflect who a person was by showing some of their personality. Future generations will be able to learn a little more about their ancestors, rather than the traditional name, date of birth and date of passing.

When it comes to names, we have clients who have chosen to write out the full name. For example: John William Smith, Jr. Of course, you can always abbreviate the middle name. So, John W. Smith, Jr. There is also the option of including a nickname. Rather than only including the legal name, a nickname can follow it in quotations. For example: John William Smith, Jr. “Smitty”. This is just one of the ways that you can make a monument a little more personalized.

There are also several options for how to include the dates. They can be included using any of date formation you choose. For example: 12/6/1987 December  6, 1987 Dec. 6, 1987 6th of June 1987. Some clients choose to label what each of the dates are. One very popular example is to label the date of birth “Sunrise” and the date of passing “Sunset”. Labeling the dates adds a little more personalization. This would appear on the monument as:

John William Smith, Jr.

Sunrise 6/6/1987 Sunset 12/8/1995

If you have walked through a cemetery recently in which there are newer burials, you will notice that it is becoming very popular to include a picture on a monument.  There are several different ways to do so, though the options available to you are dependant upon the type of monument and the color of granite you’ve chosen. To learb more about your options for pictures, please refer to our blog: What Are My Options For Including Pictures On My Monument? *Include Link*  Though there may be limitations as to what type of images can be included and how they are included, unless there are limitations and restrictions in place by the cemetery, a picture can be added to any monument. There is no better way to personalize a monument than with a picture of the deceased.

There is also the option of adding an epitaph or an entire poem. Is there a saying that the deceased would say all the time? Something that reminds everyone of them? Did they really like a particular poem or writer? If so, is there a particular piece of writing that really reflects who they were in life? Adding any of these things can make the monument their own. A great example of this is Kim Zolciak, who is always saying “Ask, Believe, Receive”. Adding this to her monument would make it her own.

We have a large variety of designs which can be added to monuments. Although the designs for sandblasting are limited, if you are purchasing a monument which can be laser etched, we can do anything you can dream up.

For more information on the difference between laser etching and sandblasting, see our blog: https://mikeslaseretchingsartinmemorials.wordpress.com/2013/07/30/question-of-the-week-what-is-the-difference-between-laser-etching-sandblasting/

For more information on choosing the color of granite that your monument should be, see our blog: https://mikeslaseretchingsartinmemorials.wordpress.com/2013/08/13/question-of-the-week-what-color-granite-should-i-choose-for-my-monument/

Give us a call at 877-836-0332 or send us an email at info@mlestones.com to get started on your order today!

How To Order A Monument Online

Posted: August 28, 2013 in Uncategorized

Here at Mike’s Laser Etching, we not only work with local clients, we also work with clients who live all over the United States! We even ship monuments all the way to Alaska! 

To find out about the benefits of ordering a monument online compared to working with a local monument dealer, be sure to read our “Why Should I Order My Monument Online?” blog at the following link: https://mikeslaseretchingsartinmemorials.wordpress.com/2013/08/28/why-should-i-order-my-monument-online/

Step One: Browse our website http://www.mikeslaseretching.com, to decide which monument you would like to purchase and design. Review the different designs and fonts available and decide which you would like to use.

Step Two: Contact us with this information via email at info@mlestones.com, via telephone at 877-836-0332 or via the contact form on our website at https://mikeslaseretchingsartinmemorials.wordpress.com/2013/08/28/why-should-i-order-my-monument-online/

Step Three: Receive the price for the monument and make a payment. We accept credit cards, checks and money orders. Please do not mail cash!

Step Four: Review the preview provided by our graphic artists. Once you are satisfied with the design of the stone, sign the preview approval form and return it to us via fax or email. 

Step Five: Once you have been notified that the stone is complete and installed, go take a look and let us know what you think!

Over the past decade, the amount of products available for online purchasing has increased from 20% to 98%. Even things that you would not think possible can now be purchased online. Everything from DVD’s to clothes to groceries can be purchased online and delivered to your door!

Monuments are no exception to this. Mike’s Laser Etching/Sartin Memorials offers monuments which are available for purchase online. Although there are some people who prefer to physically go to the monument dealer, many people prefer to contact us through email. 

When you choose to work with the monument dealer in person, you must take time out of your day to drive to the monument dealer’s office. Once there, you then sit in the office while the graphic artist designs the monument. When you work with us online, you simply provide us with the product number of the monument you wish to purchase, along with the information to be included on the monument and any design numbers you would like added. We will take the information and create a preview, which is then emailed to you for review. If there is something you are not satisfied with, you simply have to respond to the email with the changes you would made. The updates will be made to the preview and we will forward it to you for approval.

If there are several family members who have come together to purchase the monument, and who all want a say in what the monument looks like, designing the monument online is much more convenient then trying to find a time when everyone can make it to the office together. Each person can advise the graphic artist as to what they would like the monument to look like and the graphic artist can take all of the suggestions and create a preview which will best satisfy everyone involved. By working through email, each person can take their time to review the previews and talk with each other about what they like or don’t like.

In addition to the convenience of ordering a monument online, there is also a money aspect. All of our customers will notice that the prices we offer are lower than most other local or online monument dealers. We order our monument directly from Europe and Asia, rather than working with a wholesale dealer in the United States. By cutting out the “middle man”, we pay a lower price. This allows us to pass the savings on to our clients. We also frequently offer online specials and clearances, so it is always good to take a look at our website, http://www.mikeslaseretching.com, to see what specials we are currently offering.

No matter where in the United States you live, Mike’s Laser Etching/Sartin Memorials can work with you to create a unique and beautiful memorial for you loved one! Contact us today to get started on designing your monument!

We have some great news for all of our current and future clients! 

From now on, an image of all completed monuments will be posted on our blog! A link to the blog post will also be posted on our Mike’s Laser Etching Facebook. If you have liked us on Facebook, we will tag you in the post. This will allow you to share the Facebook post featuring the link to the blog with your friends and family, making it easier to share the completed monument with your loved ones! 

In addition to the links to your completed monument, upon “Liking” our Facebook, you will also see any discounts or online promotions we are offering!

To “Like” our Facebook, go to: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mikes-Laser-Etching-Sartin-Memorials/114407641941947?ref=hl

Why do some cemeteries allow any type of monument but others have strict restrictions?

Anyone who has worked in the monument business and has had to deal with cemeteries on a regular basis knows how much one cemetery’s restrictions differ from another’s. When I am contacted by a client to design a monument, one of the very first questions that I ask them is “Have you checked with the cemetery to ensure that the monument you would like to purchase is allowed?”. Sadly, many times people are not even aware that there can be restrictions on which monuments are allowed until it comes time to design and purchase one. If you have not yet purchased a burial plot for your loved one, or you are researching in order to purchase a plot and monument pre-need, please refer to my blog about what to know when purchasing a burial plot: https://mikeslaseretchingsartinmemorials.wordpress.com/2013/07/02/what-you-should-know-before-purchasing-a-burial-plot/

Typically, when a cemetery has restrictions on what type of monuments may be installed on their plots, it is for one of two reasons.

Religious Affiliation

The first of these reasons has to do with the cemetery’s religious affiliation. Although there are a few Baptist and Methodist cemeteries which require specific religious designs on the monuments placed within them, from our experience, Catholic cemeteries tend to be the most strict. When I am told that it is a Catholic cemetery, I can normally guarantee that the monument design is going to have to have the “praying hands” design or specific crosses. Although many cemeteries which have restrictions will bend the rules if the plot owner or their loved ones request it, Catholic cemeteries typically will not allow any exceptions to their restrictions, not matter how much a loved one begs them to reconsider.

I am not in any way “putting down” the Catholic cemeteries. From what I gather from speaking with several devout Catholics, the specific designs are required because according to their faith, even the monument on your final resting place should show your Catholic faith. The praying hands with the rosary and the specific crosses are meant to represent that you were a devout Catholic, who deserves to be in God’s good graces. Therefore, anyone who is purchasing a plot in a Catholic cemetery should know beforehand that there will most likely be severe restrictions placed upon what is and is not allowed. If, for whatever reason, you do not wish to include these Catholic symbols on your monument, it may be best for you to consider purchasing a plot in a non denominational cemetery.

Non-denominational and non religious cemeteries are typically the most laid back when it comes to the restrictions on what monuments can be placed on their plots. No matter where you live, you should be able to locate a cemetery which will allow you to have the type of monument you desire. From my research as well as what I’ve learned from working with people all over the country, you should be able to locate a non-denominational or a non religious cemetery in your area.

The only nation wide exception that I have found when it comes to the cemeteries which are the strictest is military cemeteries. Normally, there are no exceptions, ever, for any reason to what a military cemetery allows. The monuments in these cemeteries are normally a plain cross shaped upright monument or a gray flush marker with lettering for the names and dates only. But, its common knowledge that when you decide to be buried in a government run cemetery that its going to be fairly generic. That is a decision that must be made by the family. However, be sure to keep in mind that it is always possible to relocate your loved one if you do not feel comfortable with their resting place or you feel as if they are not being honored in the way they should. While this is not an easy process, it is always an option when your peace of mind is being disrupted.

Easy Maintenance

The other main reason for cemetery restrictions is to ensure easy maintenance of the cemetery. If you were to walk through an older cemetery and then take a walk through a newer one, you will most likely notice that there is much more variety in an older cemetery than in a newer one. It is only very recently that cemeteries began allowing only flush markers in their cemeteries. When a cemetery does not allow any upright or slant monuments, it is typically to ensure that the caretaker is able to quickly and easily cut the grass, without having to cut around each monument individually. When every monument in an entire cemetery is a flush marker, the caretaker needs only drive right over top of them to cut the grass. 

If your loved one’s final resting place is in a cemetery which only allows flush markers, do not get discouraged. I have had many clients contact me in tears because they felt as if they could not honor their loved one’s they way they felt they should with something as generic as a flush marker. Thanks to modern technology, we can do just about anything. Even if a cemetery requires that the flush marker be gray, or another color which does not allow laser etching, we have many options for designing a beautiful, unique memorial to your loved one.

Also, keep in mind that you can always create a memorial garden outside of the cemetery if you feel as if the monument placed on their burial plot has not done them justice. When I lost a loved one and was not able to help create the monument because their spouse did not want any suggestions, we designed a bench to honor our loved one and placed it in his mother’s garden. So, we have a place where we can go to remember him and we were able to create a beautiful memorial which truly reflected the person he was, as our final gift to him.

It is important to remember that each cemetery has a different set of rules and regulations. Prior to staring your search for the perfect monument, it is best to request a written description of these rules and regulations. In doing this, you will ensure that the monument you choose will be approved and accepted by the cemetery.

If you have any questions regarding cemetery restrictions in general, please feel free to leave a comment. To begin designing a monument for your loved one, visit our website at http://www.mikeslaseretching.com.