What to Do with Cremated Ashes

Cremation and burial are considered the two predominate options for the final arrangement for the body. However, cremation is not really a “final” arrangement. Once the cremation has taken place, you are still faced with what to do with the cremated ashes.

The question of what to do with cremated ashes applies to both human and pet cremations. They both have similar options.

When we lost our little dachshund, Silke, we weren’t sure how we wanted to memorialize her.  We knew we wanted cremation, but not what we wanted to do with the ashes. It took several months of searching for just the right urn, before we even had a permanent home for the ashes. It was important to us that whatever we purchased didn’t have the traditional look of an urn. The “urn” ended up being a piece of glassware that we really liked, and no one even realizes that her ashes are in there.

With Cremation, You Have Time to Decide

With burial, you have to make decisions quickly. There is a period from the time of death to the burial that decisions must be made, including what type of service you want, where it will be held and where the body will be buried.

The beauty of cremation is that you have time to determine what to do with cremated ashes. Cremation allows you as much time as you need to make decisions. It is not uncommon that a memorial service be held a year later and cremated remains may sit in a closet or on a shelf for years.

Options for Cremated Ashes

There are so many options for you to choose from when deciding what to do with cremated ashes. The options range from the more traditional to more imaginative:

  • placing in an urn
  • burying
  • creating a living memorial
  • placing in a mausoleum or niche
  • scattering
  • shot into space
  • shot out of a cannon
  • placed in a coral reef
  • being made into jewelry
  • oil paintings
  • glassware
  • and more

Cremated Ashes Can Harm the Environment

While many people want to return cremated ashes to nature, it’s important to know burying ashes is harmful to the environment. However, there are ways to turn ashes into plantable soil that can help sustain life and memorialize your loved one.

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