Picture it! Your special day is almost here, you have the perfect dress, your florist is booked, your cake will be flawless (..and delicious!) Your photographer knows exactly what pictures to take that will make you, your mom, AND your mother in law happy, the music is on point and of course all of your friends and family will be there to watch you marry the love of your life…
You didn’t miss a single detail…. then it hits you!
“What on earth are the children at our wedding going to do!?”
You start to panic.. “What if they’re bored during the ceremony and start to cry or fuss? What if during dinner, restlessness leads to broken dishes or an unpleasant night for guests around them? Oh no, and what about the dance floor!? Will we have to play only parent approved songs? Are they going to get tired and cause a scene…”
Fear not! Engaged CT has compiled an awesome AND budget friendly list that is sure to keep any child… (okay well, ALMOST any child) entertained so that all you have to worry about is enjoying the night before and after you say “I do!”
1. During the ceremony!
Let’s face it, wedding ceremonies are absolutely beautiful but for most children, they can be going against the very nature of being a child, you know.. talking, playing and exploring the world around them! So it’s no surprise that we’re asking a lot of a little one to not only sit for that long (especially church ceremonies) but to sit still and quiet too!
So make it stress free for you, AND the parent of the child, provide a fun coloring book that the child will LOVE all while keeping them entertained! Sure, it’s not fool proof, the likelihood is they will want to show their picture to everyone around them, but use this amazing FREE printable booklet from Lovely Indeed or let it inspire you to create your own booklet filled with coloring images that the children at your wedding will be sure to love! (Google coloring book pages for kids and have a ball!)
If it’s an outdoor wedding, give the kids bubbles
to blow when you walk down the aisle!
Not only will they love it, it can make
for a really awesome photo opportunity!
Once the vows are done, on your way back down, have them throw confetti!
2. Enjoy Cocktail Hour Stress Free!
The ceremony is done and the children were great! The wedding however, is FAR from over! So we have you covered! During the cocktail hour, it’s a perfect time for the kids at the wedding to work in teams to play an “I Spy” Scavenger Hunt! This will keep them moving, engaged and also help them practice their social skills!
Depending on the age of the little ones invited, it may be a good idea to for the children to work in fair teams of older and younger kiddos! Use this awesome template from Martha Stewart Weddings to have ready for the children in attendance! Feeling creative? Type one up that will be unique to your atmosphere, guests and wedding!
Extra Fun: Give the teams disposable cameras to document their lists! You never know…one of them may end up snapping your favorite photo of the night!
Other fun if cocktail hour is outdoors: Hula hoops, Bean Bag Toss, Chalk and Bubbles!
Pair up awesome games with some
child-friendly appetizers and your
cocktail hour is sure to be child-approved!
Get 20 Awesome Idea here from Pop Sugar Moms
3. Dinner is Served.. Seriously so much FUN!
Children love to feel included and they more than likely would love to have their very own table, and why not!? Their table is sure to be a blast if you fill it with fun games they can play, paper table cloths they can color and draw on, and child-friendly favors that they’re sure to love!
My best advice to keep them happy during dinner? Provide games they can play together, AND games they can play alone!
AS seen on Offbeat Bride, Game Centerpieces are a great way to keep them occupied and entertained! This can be budget friendly too! Ask friends and family if you can borrow old board games for the wedding! Worst case scenario, check out Oriental Trading for games that can fit any budget!
Word Searches, Legos, Mini Puzzles, Activity books and mazes and coloring books are great solo-options for children that may want to unwind!
4. Getting Down on the Dance Floor!
Most children love to dance and have fun, but after a long day, they may be tired! According to Bridal Musings, it is suggested that you get to the dancing as soon as possible in your night! I agree, it’s never to early to start the dancing, and you’ll always wish you had time for just one more dance!
A few tips on how to keep the dance floor fun for all,
- Play music the children would love to dance to! They don’t necessarily have to know the songs that are being played, but keep the music at your wedding easy to groove to! That is sure to keep all of your guests happy!
- Be sure to play a slow song every once in a while to give the kids a break, and some adult partiers too!
- If you want to have some child-free dancing room set up kids time on the dance floor to allow them to get the party started! Best tip: do this 15 minutes before adults will be ready to dance!
- Another alternative for a child free dance floor, have some fun props available for the kids to use and have your DJ designate a specific area for them to come and use the Dance Floor props! They will be busy dancing where the DJ has the props and won’t be in the middle of the dance floor!
5. Rest Assured
Whew! What a day? I’m sure you’re tired after all that fun so imagine what the children at your wedding must feel like!
If your venue allows it, a great solution to tired little ones is providing them with an area to rest! For the little ones a nap may be in order, for children who are slightly older, it may just be nice to have a place to retreat to and recharge.
Provide books, more games and some comfortable seating to keep everyone happy!
If you’re feeling extra generous, provide some cute and comfy pajamas that the kids can change into! This will probably be super appreciated by the child and parents alike!
Much love! Engaged New England!
Images: Pinterest, Wedding Bee, Tobiah Tayo, Buzzfeed, One Wed, Bridal Guide