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young children at a wedding

quotation markIf you are considering having children at your wedding a little bit of planning can make for some very happy little guests.

You may want to provide some activities for them that won’t stretch your budget.
  • Provide little activity packs including colouring in books and coloured pencils. You can add little toys (silent ones of course!) and games to their gifts.
  • Hire the services of a children’s babysitter or entertainer for a few hours which could offer children craft activities, face painting, games and other activities to keep them happy! You could ask the parents to help contribute to the cost of this if you feel comfortable asking.
  • You could ask some of your guests to organize a few children’s games to ‘burn off some energy’ for a while. It is surprising how many adults enjoy these as well!
  • Hire a storyteller or magician… always a treat sure to keep your younger (and older guests who join in) entertained.
  • At one wedding I went to they had a small merry go round and a jumping castle set up with supervision. The kids of all ages had a great time.
  • If there are going to be a few younger children provide a little sleeping room, with a babysitter, where makeshift beds can be set up for the younger ones wanting to go to bed. Once again you could ask the parents to contribute to the cost of this.
  • For the actual ceremony you may want to provide special seats at the front for children as one of the difficulties they experience is they cannot see what is going on and naturally get bored. However you also need to have someone who can settle them and is happy to ask them to be quiet if necessary. Ask the priest or celebrant to meet briefly with the children just before the ceremony explaining the importance of what is about to happen and ask them respectfully to be quiet during the ceremony. Often this works a treat. Which brings me to treats…
  • If it is ok with all the parents a sweet can quiet the most distracted group. (Not with crackly wrappers though!) A little ‘party bag’ can be handed out either before the ceremony or afterwards as a treat for being quiet.
  • Have bubble blowers handy as these can offer lots of fun to people of all ages and young children are transfixed by the bubbles. A promise of being able to blow bubbles after the ceremony is finished in another little treat to entice them to be quiet for a bit longer.
  • If it is going to be a long ceremony with lots of talking it may be fair to consider not having children present as they will get disinterested pretty quickly and just have them attend the reception.
  • For children that are a part of the bridal party it is far better to have the younger ones seated once they have walked into the ceremonial area. They can then relax and enjoy watching the ceremony from a much clearer perspective rather than on the fringes of the standing bridal party. It also means that their parent/carer can look after them easily.
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Heidi, Cairns
Hi Wendy, I have been reading through your site and from feeling overwhelmed at the whole wedding planning now feel more relaxed!

Candy & Lincoln, Sydney, NSW
Your book gave us an insight as to what the important aspects of a perfect ceremony are. Had I not read your book I don’t know whether I would have put so much thought into the most memorable part of our wedding.
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