Ideas for including your favorite little ones
By Leona Baker & Antonia Christianson
Whether you have a gaggle of nieces and nephews, lots of friends with kids, or children of your own when you get married, sometimes thinking of creative ways to include them can get complicated. And, by the way, it’s perfectly acceptable to have a wedding at which children are not invited. But, if you do plan to go kid-friendly, here are a few tips from wedding planner Antonia Christianson of Antonia Christianson Events.
Couples with children from past relationships often want to make sure that their families are a combined unit and that everyone feels included. Think about sharing vows with your spouse and with your bonus children. Sharing your words of affirmation and your pledge to your new family surely will start your joint lives off on the right foot.
Think about wording your wedding invitations to come from your children. Having your children welcome your friends and family to witness the formal joining of your lives could be a fun way to have them involved from the very beginning and to make them feel like they are a meaningful part of what comes next.
Joy Is in the Job
Do you have a niece, nephew or child of a beloved family friend that you’d like to include in your wedding ceremony but aren’t sure how? Why not ask them to perform a reading at your marriage ceremony or act as an usher. You’re not only building their confidence but also giving them an honored role in your big day.
Make a Play Place
If you want to have kids at your wedding but are worried that they’ll be bored, creating a kids’ area within your reception is always a hit! Think beyond coloring books and crayons to miniature furniture and pint-sized tables. Perhaps even create a separate reception room that allows the kids to feel special and the adults to enjoy themselves a little bit more.
Maybe have a children’s signature mocktail along with the adult’s signature drink (or an entire kids’ drink station). Create a mini food display at cocktail hour that has some kid-friendly foods and desserts. That way, if any guests with young ones have to leave early, everyone feels as though they’ve had the full experience.