This past Saturday, my mom and Husby’s mom came up with some great wedding ideas that include children.
I’ve been calling Husby my husband until now because we’ve been in a common law marriage for a while. But this weekend, we blessed our family by having a church ceremony we needed to learn planning a wedding on a budget, and we had to keep the kids busy! Below are some great wedding ideas to keep children busy, whether you are trying to entertain your own children or someone else’s!
- A kids’ play room – Ask your venue manager if they’d be willing to throw in an extra room at no cost. Ours was more than willing. They just gave us a large room for bags and coats, which also served as a kids’ play room. All the moms were able to take their kids in there to kill time before and after dinner. My mom and Husby’s mom brought crates of toys from their houses, and we planned on bringing big toddler stuff like bikes and cars from our house, but ended up not needing to bring them in. The kids were more than entertained with just crates of toys for the age of 10 for example, and the moms were happy. If you feel comfortable with this idea, you can hire a baby sitter to be in there with the kids while the moms enjoy themselves.
- Snack attack – Ask your church if children are allowed to eat snacks in the pews. My toddler behaved perfectly well in the front pews for a whole 45 minutes – all thanks to well-packed snacks.
- Nap time – If you have a baby, try to hold off on letting them nap until the ceremony. That way, no fuss, no muss. I know they’ll miss it that way, but it’s not like they’d remember it anyway. My baby girl slept through it, and we just woke her at the end in order to include her during the conclusion of the ceremony.
- Cry room – If you’re really worried about it, try to pick a church that provides a separate room for kids, and audio for the parents to still be with them and pay attention to the ceremony.
- Seating arrangements at the reception – Do away with them. It’s hard enough to do small talk, let alone to have small talk while your kids are going wild. Just get rid of the seating chart all together, and just ask your venue to provide a few extra tables than necessary so people with kids can spread out with diaper bags, clothing changes, ecc. If there’s extra seats, there’s no issues with anyone not having enough room to sit with whom they want to sit. And it’ll save you a big headache.
- High chairs and booster seats – I actually forgot this detail, which is why it was helpful to have friends who were willing to lend their laps to my hungry children while they ate. Bring them for your guests! It’ll make things just a bit more comfortable.
- Dancing – Allow it. Might seem like a no brainer, but Husby and I contemplated not having a dancing portion at our wedding so people didn’t feel obligated to stick around since him and I were leaving early for a night to ourselves. But, Husby’s dad, our DJ, insisted on it, which really worked out because my friends and their kids had a ball dancing around!
- Allergy-awareness – Talk to your caterer about what exactly is in the food like the traditional sugar almonds for weddings they will be serving. For example, my son and Husby and a few kids that were at the wedding had lactose and gluten allergies. My caterer was able to tell me what was prepared without any gluten or dairy in it, which actually gave those people a sufficient amount of choices for their dinner just by letting the caterers know ahead of time.
- Kid-friendly ceremony – If you have kids by the time you get married, it does help to include them in the wedding ceremony. We had our kids walk down with our parents before Husby and I processed into the church, and they looked absolutely adorable while staying busy during that segment of the ceremony! Also, we had the priest bless them at the end of the ceremony, and we carried them with us as we processed out, as a metaphor of the seal we just completed on our little family.
- Closing time – I know it’s your wedding, but if you’d like to accommodate families with kids, opt for an early starting time like 1:30 or 2, so that people can head home by 8 p.m. and not have to miss anything. Otherwise, people with kids will have to leave early and won’t get to enjoy things like dancing or dessert.
What about you? Do you have wedding ideas that include children? Feel free to add to the list by chiming in!