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Wedding Advice: 7 Tips For Including The Little Ones
categories: Tips and Advice

Let’s face it, kids are adorable at weddings. They dress up, are enchanted by a stunning bride, love attention, can provide comic relief, and sometimes school the adults on the dance floor. Since they aren’t professional wedding guests though, they might not be on A+ behavior. Here are some things you can do to prevent chaos from taking over when you include the little ones at your wedding:

1. Include them in the pre-wedding fun. Kids like to be included and it’s easy to capture their loyalty, which will come in handy during the ceremony and toasts, if you think ahead. Manis and pedis for the girls, golf or a baseball game for the boys. Little ones can do these things as long as there is adult supervision.

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Jessica Savidge Photography_1

(Photo courtesy of: Savidge Photography)

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Jennfer Bowen

(Photo courtesy of: Jennifer Bowen Photography)

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Marriott PHotography_JW MArriott Desert Ridge

(Photo courtesy of: Marriott Photography, Location: JW Marriott Desert Ridge)

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Gina Meola_3

(Photo courtesy of: Gina Meola Photography)

2. Practice. Some kids act crazy when they have anxiety. Heck, so do some adults! To alleviate stress and set everyone up for success, if you have kids participating in your wedding, talk with them about what to expect and then let them practice at the rehearsal. This will help them get used to the space and the aisle. Just like with you, this won’t alleviate all the wedding day jitters but it will help.

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Hagerty Photography

(Photo courtesy of: Hagerty Photography)

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Jill Lauren Photography

(Photo courtesy of: Jill Lauren Photography)

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Katrina Wallace

(Photo courtesy of: Sedona Bride Photography)

3. Give their hands something to do. Whether it’s at the rehearsal dinner, the walk down the aisle, the ceremony, cocktail hour, or the reception, kids need something to do and if they are not provided with an option, they WILL find something to play with (like the silverware, the flowers, the napkins, etc). Give them I Spy (for those who can read), quiet handheld games, coloring books, pinwheels, etc. If you have fun and age appropriate activities at the ready, your chances of having an impromptu game of tackle football will be greatly reduced.

4. Bribe them. You need these kids to WANT to please you so make the first move. It doesn’t matter if it’s with extravagant sparkly shoes, candy filled goodie bags, or cold hard cash (this works particularly well for the older kids), make those kids adore you by bribing them. Of course get permission from the parents first!

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Hagerty Photography_2

(Photo courtesy of: Hagerty Photography)

5. Employ the buddy system. Aim for a 1:1 ratio when it comes to kids at weddings. You need 1 adult who can rescue and whisk for every child involved in your wedding. This can be dad, mom, grandma, anyone.  And have a back up in case that adult gets tired (and they will get tired!).

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Elyse Hall Photography_Omni Scottsdale Resort and Spa

(Photo courtesy of: Elyse Hall Photography, Location: Omni Scottsdale Resort and Spa at Montelucia)

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_katrina-wallace-photographers

(Photo courtesy of: Katrina Wallace Photography)

6. Get pics quick. Kids have a low tolerance for standing in groups, squinting in the sun, and smiling for the many cameras pointed at them. Get those formal pictures taken care of as early in the day as possible and have lollipops close by. After about 5 minutes, they’ll be done. They want to play. They want to dance. Let them!

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Kimberly Jarman Photography_2

(Photo courtesy of: Kimberly Jarman Photography, Location: Omni Scottsdale Resort and Spa at Montelucia)

7. Arrange for childcare at the reception. As the evening wears on, some kids will conk out, some will get hyper. If there’s a “safe zone”, i.e., kids activity game truck, hired babysitter room, etc. you can enjoy the night and so can everyone else!

Remember, just like any wedding, not everything will be perfect but if you embrace the (potentially cute) chaos of kids, all will be well and you may just have some fun photos to boot!

Phoenix Bride & Groom, your Arizona wedding magazine

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Shhhhh…the Bride and Groom are here!
categories: entertainment, reception ideas, Wedding Inspiration

What in the world could we be discussing today? Is it guest etiquette during a first dance? No! Is it wedding guest cell phone taboos? Nope! Today we are talking about our teeniest, sweetest and often noisiest guests…the kids!

(Photo By: Eyes2See Photography)

(Photo By: Chris Richards Photography)

Many couples plan for children to be at their weddings and I am all for it. Families are blending, flower girls and ring bearers have wedding duties and children love a party just as much as adults do but how can you keep kids happy and entertained so they don’t become unruly? You must be very clever and plan ahead.

(Photo By: Marriott Photo)

(Photo By: Chris Richards Photography)

During my years in the wedding world, I have seen couples plan fabulous fun for the kids and I have seen couples shun this idea (only to pay the expensive broken vase price later). Check out these ways to keep kids (or even adults) busy:

1. The kids table! I loathed being banished to the kids table at Thanksgiving but if you make it a fun and kid-friendly table, I’m sure you won’t hear any complaints

(Photo By: Phyllis Lane Photography)

(Photo By: Jennifer Bowen Photography)

2. Activities are key; even the littlest ones can play I Spy (with the help of someone who can read of course), Word Finds and Wedding Word Scrambles

(Photo By: Jennifer Bowen Photography , Concept By: Victoria Canada Weddings and Events)

(Photo By: Marriott Photo)

Crossword puzzles keep all ages occupied

(Photo By: Sergio Photographer)

3. Go super-creative and set up a kids’ game station. This Tic Tac Toe game from our Seven Canyons photoshoot in Sedona can easily be modified to fit any wedding decor.

(Concept By: Sedona Luxury Weddings and Events and Dalish Events, Photo By: Sedona Bride Photographers)

If you plan to entertain several children over the age of 6 and you want to go down is history as the VERY best wedding hosts, bring in a portable Game Truck. The kids will go in to play all kinds of games but I must warn you: you probably won’t see them the rest of the night!

(Photo Courtesy of Games2U)

4. Instill a little competition: by posting trivia games at the table, you are appealing to kids’ competitive natures. This is appropriate for older kids and adults depending on the trivia. Include a prize for the most correct answers and you will really get them going!

(Concept By: Butterfly Petals, Photo By: Ten West Photography)

5. Set up a separate kids dance floor. You can use your own ipod pepared with kids dance music or even bring someone in to be the kids’ DJ- they can do the chicken dance, hokey pokey, etc. Don’t be surprised if some of the adults wander over to “check on the kids”!

(Photo By: Something Blue Photography)

6. And finally, keep them fed! You know how cranky you get when you are hungry? Kids are the same way! You can offer easy to eat kids’ food like mac and cheese or chicken fingers but if you want to really keep the kids happy, set up kid friendly food stations like a taco bar, hamburgers and hot dogs or a pasta bar. And of course, don’t forget a sundae bar.

(Photo By: Jennifer Bowen Photography)

Surely these happy kids had some fun at the wedding…and behaved too!

(Photo  By: Chris Richards Photography

Chatting Soon~Kelly





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