Kids are such an important part of so many people’s lives and it can be a really special moment and memory in their lives to be a part of your wedding day! That can be easier said then done however, there are a lot of things to keep in mind when including kids into your wedding day without too many meltdowns from everyone involved. And so I give you five things to keep in mind when including kids in your wedding party or even if you just plan on having them attend the wedding. I’m not an expert, but most of these things are either things that I’ve seen be successful at weddings over the years, things that I’ve seen people wish they had done, or things I’ve picked up from being a mom myself.
1. Let them take their naps!
If the important littles in your life depend on a regular nap each day, make sure you make time in your timeline for them to do that or at least take some quiet time from the busy day. This can be done in a number of ways:
Maybe the kids don’t come until later in the day. If both of their parents are included in the wedding, one of their trusted friends or relatives could take care of the kids in the morning and bring them to the wedding when it’s time for pictures.
If their home isn’t close to where the wedding day events are taking place, offer to provide a hotel room for the kids and their parents or a trusted friend to take a break.
It might be hard to find this time for them, but it can be vital to them cooperating throughout the rest of the day!
2. Take their pictures first
Once the kids arrive/are ready, it’s best to do any photos that you want with them right away. If they’re in a good mood and ready for a picture, seize the moment, it might not come again and you don’t want to be trying to get these precious photos as they’re about to leave!
3. Feed them!
This may seem like common sense but it’s surprising how fast time can slip away on a wedding day and suddenly it’s 3pm, time to walk down the aisle and no one has eaten lunch. If the kids in your life are anything like my kid, all hope is lost if he’s hungry. In our house we like to call it “hangry”. Have parent approved snacks on hand, crackers, fruit snacks, applesauce, and cheese sticks are all popular choices in our house!
4. Give them something to keep them busy!
Every kid is different, but find out what the kids involved in your wedding day are into and get them something new that will keep them occupied during downtime. For the really little kids, books with flaps can keep them busy for a very long time. Coloring/sticker books for the slightly older kids are usually a hit, and for those old enough, put together a lego kit that they can pack up and take with them when it’s time to move and they’ll love you forever!
5. Let them go home early!
Most parents can attest, it’s not a good idea to push young kids very long after their bedtime. Staying with the same idea as the morning, if the parents can arrange for someone they trust to pick their kids up from the reception and take them home allowing the parents to stay a little longer and enjoy some kid free time!