Know: Have Fun!

So, maybe it’s the heat of summer (or the rain in Oregon–it was pouring during a recent CLD trip up there!)… but it seems like everyone I am meeting right now in the wedding business is stressed. Hitting their limits. And I am so sad that I have even seen a few brides about to hit their insanity stage.

We get it, we seriously do. Wedding planning is HARD (which is why you have hopefully hired an amazing wedding planner to make it easier). But we also know that even if you have a wedding planner, there are times you are going to stress and totally freak-out: you have a lot of decisions to make, you might not always get every little thing that you want, that bridesmaid might be getting on your last nerve, and oh-my-goodness can you just be married already!!! Yup, we have had that conversations with our brides and in our own minds (because we were once brides too!).

This might sound totally lame, but it bears repeating: this process is pretty fun. We can’t promise it will be fun 100% of the time (floorplans are just the worst) but the really great parts will always outweigh those moments of panic (you had the perfect excuse to stuff your face with cake at the 3 tastings your scheduled).

When in doubt or in a moment of panic, we suggest you try remembering these moments:

– When you first received your engagement ring (or you had just received an acceptance of your amazing proposal), how excited you were?

– How diving into the wedding planning process was thrilling?

– How you felt when you found THE dress??  Or THE venue? Or picked THE date??

Let those happy moments flow through you, giving you awesome energy. Just keep breathing, keep smiling and power your way through. You are bound to hit something fun soon 🙂

Know: Kids at Your Wedding

Kids. CLD loves kids. Kids attending and being a part of a wedding can be so truly special (and oh-so-adorable). But, kids and weddings don’t always mix, especially very, very young ones. That’s just the truth.

So, what do you do?

Sit down with your fiancée while working on your guest list and launch right into the question: “Should we allow kids at our wedding?” We have a feeling that you’ll both have a gut reaction, but take a really good look at the guest list to prepare for any potential issues.  Are there any people traveling to your wedding with small children? Is there anyone in the bridal party or immediate family with children? Do we have children and how do we want to incorporate them into our day?

Once you have that initial feeling expressed, collaborate to make a uniform policy. You have so many decisions to already make for this big day, so do yourself a favor here and stick with consistency. Here are some options:

1) Adopt a “adults-only” policy. This is a popular policy for destination weddings, super formal weddings, or the very alcohol-friendly receptions where having people under the age of 21 is going to be hard. You might feel guilty going this route, but if it’s feasible, it really is OK! Seriously, it’s OK.

2) The more kids, the merrier! If you know that kids are a must-have, go for it in full-force. If you know they are going to be a significant amount of kids (such as 10-15% of the guest list), make sure you have some kid-friendly extras included. These might include good non-alcoholic beverages, a table just for the kids, an activity room or corner, etc.

3) Immediate family and bridal party can bring their kids–they are your family! This is a good policy if there are a few special little ones that need to be there for your day as a flower girl, junior bridesmaid or ring bearer, but you don’t want to have a ton of kids for the reception. Or, let’s say you have a long engagement (over a year): during that time, the child situation in your family or with your bridal party can change pretty fast, so you might need to be accommodating to those closest to you.  But again, be consistent in your application of this–once you make an exception, be prepared to make more.

4) Our new favorite solution (that can be applied to any of these policies): hire child care. Yes, this is an extra expense and you’ll need to provide a good space for children, but this really makes a wedding run smoothly.  Ask your wedding planner for referrals or start researching babysitting agencies in your area–having those few extra hands during the day can make all the difference!

Whatever policy you do decide to go with, kids can make a lovely (and adorable!) addition to any wedding, as seen here:

Christina pins a boutonnière on quite the dapper gentleman!

Christina pins a boutonnière on quite the dapper gentleman!