Wedding Disaster #1: Wild Child
The Problem: Your flower girl, ring bearer, and young cousins: so angelic during the ceremony, so C-R-A-Z-Y after overindulging in your sugary wedding cake. Kids will be kids -- but that doesn't mean they must be screaming, crying, and racing around a formal reception.
The Solution: You can put them in tiny gowns and tuxedos, but you definitely can't force them to uphold a formal atmosphere. If you're inviting kids to your celebration, you have to understand they might not make it through without getting rambunctious. That said, there are some great ways to keep them from knocking things over and making a mess.
Tykes that are part of the party should get their own table -- sans centerpiece. Instead, cover the table with butcher paper and leave a box of crayons at each place setting. Rather than a five-star meal, serve a kid-friendly favorite, like mac 'n' cheese or chicken fingers, which they'll like better. If you're worried they'll go wild, set up the young ones with sitters, either on- or off-site. Get the crew an extra hotel room and show a double feature of The Lion King and Shrek, or hire a clown or magician to come in and entertain them. With the kids out of your hair, you (and the many appreciative parents among your guests) can keep things adult.
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Photo: Angie Burke & Ashley DeLatour, One Thousandwords Photography, Seattle, WA