Children can be a beautiful addition in and at a wedding. I have previously written blogs about Children in your wedding ceremony, check out my blog about it here. But what about guests that have children? Are you including children on the invitations to your wedding? These are decisions that are sometimes hard to make, especially if you are having children in your wedding as page boys or flower girls whom will attend the reception and then you have a no children rule for all of your other guests. What about children of your own that you have already or children from a previous relationship?
There are plenty of arguments for and against having children at your wedding. We personally had no children under 10 at our wedding and the only child there was my sister who at the time was 11 years old. There were 2 reasons for doing this, and it was by no means a strict “they cannot come to the wedding.” It was a suggestion for my in-laws that they have a nice day, to have fun and not think about the kids. The reception was also at a winery by the river and we would not have felt too relaxed with the kids being there and the river being so close. (Check out my blog about my wedding day here if you are interested.)
Having said this though, there are plenty of ways that you can work around having children included and as guests at your wedding without the worry, even somewhere that seems quite dangerous for children. My best friend had her wedding on a paddle steamer and her son was about 2 years old at the time. She wanted him to be at the wedding and didn’t want him to miss out on the day or miss out on having him there. The way that she worked around this was to hire a baby sitter to come on the boat, so that neither she, her husband, nor any of her relatives had to take sole responsibility for watching him on the day, and everyone knew who was watching him. They also had him in a life jacket over the top of his little suit, just for added peace of mind.
There isn’t exactly one guaranteed way to keep little ones busy if they are in the wedding or during the ceremony, but if they are in the wedding, and not old enough to really understand the ceremony, I generally recommend that they don’t stand up the front with all of the other bridal party, unless they have a parent in the bridal party. Even then it can be boring for them and they tend to get distracted.
One thing that I think is a great idea is to make up ‘show bags’ for the children, and have them named so that you can make them up especially for each child, depending on their age and things that they are interested in. Some people may not be too keen to have these given out before the ceremony and would prefer to wait until the reception and have them already on the tables for each child. I don’t think that a lot of children are especially interested in the ceremony (sometimes sadly that goes for some of the adults too) and depending on what you put into the show bags, it could be a little bit of a distraction for the child and for keeping them quiet during all of the quiet times in the ceremony. Although if you are having an outdoor wedding, it might not be too practical to have the show bags in that case. Depending on your budget and how many children are attending your wedding, you can fill the show bags with all sorts of things. You can have colouring books with pencils and textas, toys, books, puzzles, anything that may keep little people quiet and happy. You can work these in with the colour theme and style of the wedding or make them something that is totally different. If you don’t know a lot about the children or the age group, making these bags could be a great job for one of the bridal party or someone that is asking how they can help with your big day.
Do you have any great ideas that you can share with others on helping entertain and keep children busy at a wedding or other special event?
Thank you to Zoe from The Wedding Photo, for the stunning photos for this weeks blog. Check out the website here.