flower girls dancing at wedding

It’s the question most brides and grooms have to decide at one point or another in the wedding planning process:

Do we want to have kids at our wedding or make it an adults-only affair?

Personally, I had never given this particular subject any thought before planning my own wedding – with a grand total of 10 cousins, I always assumed even the littlest ones would be there in all their little kid splendor.

Royal wedding flower girl kiss

via Babble

Reality hit when I got engaged and we started hashing out the guest list. My now-husband comes from an awesome, loving, HUGE family and we came close to capping out our target of 150 guests after jotting down strictly family members. Uh oh… this was going to be harder than we thought.

Some of my husband’s already-married cousins had kept their guest lists manageable by cutting out cousins altogether and only inviting aunts, uncles, and grandparents – an arrangement that was totally understood and even encouraged by their family, who welcomed an “adults night out.” My family, however, is on the smaller side, and not inviting my cousins wasn’t really an option… especially when I heard that some of the little girls had already picked out their “wedding shoes” for the big day. How could we not include them in our celebration when they were already so excited?

In the end, we made the decision to include all of our cousins and kept our guest list in check by inviting only family and our very closest friends. We decided we couldn’t imagine celebrating the day without our youngest family members, the kids we’d watched grow up from diapers.

We invited 170 guests and ended up with 166 attending. You know that whole “15% of your invited guests won’t come” guideline? It didn’t really apply to our wedding. And that was okay! I’m super happy with our decision and love that we can re-live that amazing day with all of our family members for the rest of our lives. Not to mention that kids are pretty darn cute and make for some adorable wedding entertainment!

If you’re going through the same “to invite or not to invite kids” debate, I feel for you – I really do! The guest list was by far the hardest part of planning our wedding, but in the end you need to do what feels right for you and your spouse. Every couple is unique, every family is different, and every wedding situation needs to be treated individually. If you do opt for a “kids inclusive” wedding, think about having a kids’ table or providing some activities to keep the little guys and girls entertained (here’s a great list of kid-friendly entertainment ideas from The Knot).

In the meantime, here’s some “cute kid” inspiration to {maybe} convince you that a kid-friendly wedding might be the way to go. How can you resist these faces?!

baby ring bearer

via Bridal Musings

flower girl getting ready

via Bridalhood

ring bearer standing with groomsmen

via Bridalhood

cute kid wedding guests

via Carrie Richards Photography

cute ring bearers and flower girl walk down aisle

via Wedding Chicks

cute funny children at wedding

via French Kiss the Bride

flower girls dancing at wedding

via French Kiss the Bride

cute 007 special agent ringbearer

via Indulgy

cute little girls dancing at wedding

via D Park Photography

cute flower girl baby with bride

via The Wedding Community

Aren’t we all just big kids anyway? ;)

bounce castle at wedding

via London Bride

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