To Invite or to exclude
What are we talking about? Having children at your wedding is a hot topic. I have heard parents say they will decline a wedding invitation if their children are not invited. Others have said they are glad to have an adult only celebration. So at the end of the day it’s down to the personal preferences of the couple. And whether they have their own children or not.
If you have decided to invite children to your wedding, you may have started wondering how you can keep the younger guests occupied during the various parts of your ceremony.
Children can make the best guests at weddings; if they are courageous enough, make the cutest speeches and memorable photo moments.
Children look super cute in their little suits and dresses, and can quickly help break the ice between guests. They can ask the most indiscreet questions at the top of their voices and all without ever batting an eyelid.
If your own children will be coming along, or you have decided to invite youngsters to your nuptials, here are six ways to keep them entertained and out of trouble during your big day.
1. Toy Baskets
If you are getting married in a church then half the work may have been done for you. Often churches have a crèche or toddler group and will have a good range of toys that your young guests can use during the ceremony. You can be certain there won’t be any noisy toys among the choices.
2. Including Children in your ceremony
There are the usual bridesmaid or page-boy roles but you can also ask children to help hand out the hymnbooks, order of service, or confetti. They will love to feel responsible and welcoming the guests is an important job.
If you have several children you want to take part in the ceremony why not let them form a tag team and deliver their reading together. Being up front is a lot less daunting when you have company.
An example of a perfect reading that can be shared is this one from Winnie The Pooh
WINNIE THE POOH
“If you live to be a hundred, I want to live to be a hundred minus one day so I never have to live without you.”
“Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind. “Pooh?” he whispered.
“Nothing,” said Piglet, taking Pooh’s hand. “I just wanted to be sure of you.”
“We’ll be Friends Forever, won’t we, Pooh?’ asked Piglet.
Even longer,’ Pooh answered.”
“If ever there is tomorrow when we’re not together… there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we’re apart… I’ll always be with you.”
3. Wedding Timings
As parents you know your children best and their hunger needs. Consider what time you have the service and the wedding breakfast.
It can be a long time between the wedding ceremony and the meal, so have your emergency rations on hand to pre-empt and satisfy the hunger pangs. Hungry children get restless quickly and restless children get grumpy and fidgety.
If you are having the service around lunchtime, you may prefer to have food before the speeches.
Depending on the age of your little guests you may want to consider a children’s table where they can sit and play together, it could be a lot more fun for them than being stuck on a table full of boring adults.
4. Activity Bags
Surprise your little princes and princesses with their very own age appropriate activity packs
Fill the bags with activities that will keep them occupied during the speeches. The children will love these gifts and they can double up as place name and wedding favours.
5. Wedding Creche/Entertainer
You can hire an entertainer to come along to your wedding and look after children for the reception.
It may be worth speaking to your friends and family to see how popular an entertainer would be. Chances are, they would relish the idea of a little bit of extra help!
Please remember to check the credentials of anyone working with children as they have to hold a DBS certificate
Not forgetting the ever popular photo-booth /photo-station- these usually come with lots of colourful, fun props and children will love taking all sorts of photos with then.
6. Giant Party Games
Giant party games are a really fun way to keep the little one entertained. I am sure your not so little guests would love a go too. If your venue has the outside space and the weather permits, this is a fun way to occupy a few hours on your wedding afternoon.
You can visit the bargain shops to see what they have in store. There’s sure to be some good buys to be had. Alternatively you can hire giant games, which everyone will love and the bonus is you can return them afterwards. No storage or sorting out for you to bother with.
Everyone will join in and you will have some fab photo opportunities
“Oh no” you think, “I am too busy to take on any extra task!” No Worries! Appoint a coordinator amongst your friends and close family. Someone to organise the children’s activities, you may be surprised at the options they come up with. And the bonus is you will be creating another memorable wedding day moment.
We offer a free consultation to discuss your ideas and vision for your wedding day. You can call us on 07511 842 451 to book your consultation, we’d love to hear from you.