Throwback Tuesday – Bethany & Allyus’ Local Love Story

Bethany and Allyus are one of the amazing couples that were featured in our April 2019 issue. Most of the submissions we receive are from the bride’s perspective, so it was refreshing to feature a story from the groom’s point of view. We loved it so much that we just couldn’t resist sharing it on the blog, too!

Bethany & Allyus, married 9.2.18. Photographer: Amanda Genenbacher

From Allyus:

Bethany and I met in high school, but it took a few years for us to begin dating. Her best friend lived across the street from me growing up, so we were friends, but I had no way of knowing what would eventually become of us. We got married in September of 2018, but we’ve been together now for eight years.

Our relationship took off in college at the University of Missouri. What has always struck me about Bethany is her kindness, her ability to always make me laugh and her selflessness when it comes to her friends and family. She makes time for everyone, no matter what they need. We share a connection and are able to speak to one another in a way that I didn’t know was possible prior to our relationship.

Our dedication to each other became critical when Bethany decided to move to St. Augustine, Florida, in order to attend graduate school there for occupational therapy. We both worried about spending time away from one another. Dating long distance, as many know, is an incredible challenge, even for the strongest couples. Luckily, I was able to find a job in St. Augustine, and we agreed to move together and begin a new chapter in our lives.

I proposed on Vilano Beach in Florida. After suggesting we go to the beach near sunset and arranging an entire day’s worth of activities for us, Bethany had a fairly good idea of what I was planning. Proposing is nerve racking even when you know the answer is going to be yes. You hope everything goes perfectly and there are so many things I wanted to say. When I got the ring out of my pocket, I was only halfway my “speech” when she nervously said “Aren’t you supposed to get down on one knee?” I busted out laughing, and so did she. My anxiety melted away, and something that I had rehearsed so many times in my head became a moment consisting of us laughing and smiling. I knew a local photographer at the time, and got him to walk around the beach incognito for me that day. When the moment came, he snapped pictures of the proposal with the ocean waves in the background. I got down on one knee to say the most important words of the proposal, despite Bethany’s hope I would do it sooner. It was indeed perfect.

We now live in Longmont, Colorado, which is 45 minutes north of Denver. Since moving there after Bethany completed grad school, we have continued to flourish. Bethany is my hiking buddy and my closest confidant. Each adventure we take and life choice we make only strengthens my belief that we found each other for a reason. I can’t imagine life without her.

When it came time for us to tie the knot we faced obstacles. Our families still live in the Midwest, so we felt that would be the best place for us to get married. However, planning an event of that magnitude from Colorado was extremely difficult. We had to make the most of each of our trips back home in the months leading up to the wedding. We met with everyone that we could, scouted venues and had the bridal shower, but our friends and family helped ease the burden of the planning process. Our advice to anyone planning a wedding would be not to try and do it all yourself. Relinquish the reins, and allow your friends and family to help. The help you may receive could be immeasurable.

Our wedding day was everything we hoped it would be. We really wanted our wedding to be a relaxed and fun event to celebrate our love and friendship. People warned us that it would be a hectic day, and to stop and take mental notes of our favorite parts. We are so grateful for the memories of that lovely day we will cherish throughout our lifetime.

Venue: Lake Hill Winery – Carthage, IL. 217-357-267,

Photography: Amanda Genenbacher Photography – 217-257-3184,,

Florist: Right Touch Florals – 217-936-2452

Dessert: Underbrinks Bakery – 217-222-1831

DJ: Rustin Lippincott, Purple Star Entertainment –

Hair: Megan Waller at Morgan Creek Villa & Day Spa – 217-224-8268,

Makeup: Kellie Gilbert at Simply Lovely Salon – (217) 641-2555 ,

Dress: Luv Bridal Denver – (303) 339-0093,
Donna Beth Creations (Denver)- (303) 861-1688,,

Suits: The Groomsman Suit, +1 (773) 303-6006,

Throwback Tuesday – Tayler & Blake’s Local Love Story

Tayler and Blake’s wedding was featured in January 2019. Enjoy this “blast from the past” blog post about their big day! 

Tayler + Blake, married 12.18.18. Photographer: Courtney Dueppengiesser

From Tayler: 

Tayler and Blake met at HyVee grocery store in Quincy when Blake would bag Tayler’s family’s groceries every Sunday. They both attended Quincy High School but finally connected after one Sunday grocery trip. Their first date was in February 2011 at Casino Lanes Bowling Alley in Quincy. Blake challenged Tayler that the loser had to kiss the winner. Either way, one of them was getting kissed that night. Blake walked Tayler to her front door where they shared their first kiss. Blake proposed to Tayler on October 7th, 2016 while hiking St. Mary’s Glacier in Colorado.

Almost 8 years together now and on December 8th, 2018, the two finally tied the knot! Tayler had always dreamt of a Winter Hallmark- inspired Christmas wedding. The couple was graced with a light blanket of snow on the day of their wedding. The ceremony was held at Blessed Sacrament Church in Quincy. The aisles lined with close friends and family members.

The bride wore a satin Justin Alexander mermaid gown and was escorted down the aisle by her father to the music of the harpist. The bridesmaids wore Sorella Vita black assorted style gowns. The groomsmen wore grey tuxedos with black ties to match their maids. The bouquets were full of white peonies, anemones, and winter greens. For the reception, the event was held at Town and Country Inn in Quincy. The bride chose silver and gold decorations to accompany various winter greens. The atmosphere was warm and inviting with the glow of lights everywhere you looked. Tayler’s father’s toast had his entire audience in tears. It showcased
the strong bond the two share. When it was time for dancing, Tayler switched in to a tea-length Allure Bridals dress with
statement red Christmas bow heels. The night was full of love, laughter, and all of the warm and cozy Christmas feels!

VIDEOGRAPHER: The Film Jar; Quincy, IL.

CEREMONY: Blessed Sacrament Church; Quincy, IL.

RECEPTION VENUE: Town and Country Inn and Suites; Quincy, IL. BRIDAL WEAR: White Traditions Bridal House; St. Charles, MO. HAIR & MAKEUP: Changes Salon and Spa; Quincy, IL. TUXEDOS: Schuecking’s Mens Wear; Quincy, IL. FLORIST: Lavish Floral Design; Quincy, IL. DJ: Mike Howerton Entertainment; Quincy, IL. HARPIST: Sarah Javaux Music. STATIONERY: Ali Taylor Studio. TRANSPORTATION: Valentine’s Xpress; Quincy, IL CAKE: Underbrink’s Bakery; Quincy, IL. COOKIES: Sara Kapp. FROZEN YOGURT: TCBY; Quincy, IL. RINGS: Sturhahn Jewelers; Quincy, IL. WEDDING PLANNER: Sara Elizabeth Weddings; Quincy, IL.

Where are they now? Baby Nothold arrived in October 2019! 

Photo: Justine Wright Photography

8 Ways Instagram Can Help You Plan Your Wedding

Pinterest has been the go-to app for wedding planning for almost a decade, but recently, Instagram has become an excellent tool to utilize when planning your big day, too. Here are 8 creative ways to utilize the app that you may not have thought of! 

  1. You can follow wedding magazines and blogs for inspiration.

If you’re someone who doesn’t quite know what you want your wedding to look like, figuring out where to start can be overwhelming. Following wedding planners, magazines, and bloggers on Instagram is a great way to get inspired! Even if you’ve had your color scheme and tablescape planned since the moment you got engaged, seeing firsthand what other people did for their weddings may give you ideas you never would’ve thought of otherwise. 

2.  The “bookmark” feature is your bff. 

Scrolling through your feed and found an idea you love from one of those wedding bloggers we mentioned above? Instead of flooding your camera roll with screenshots that’ll take forever to find, bookmark them and you’ll be able to pull them up at a moment’s notice. 

Photo: Courtney Dueppengiesser

3. Connect with vendors. 

Most vendors you’ll need are using Instagram to promote their businesses. If you see a wedding you love on your feed, chances are the vendors will be tagged. Follow them and look through their pictures to see if their work is something you’d truly be interested in, then you can shoot them a DM and let them know you’re looking to hire them for your special day!

4. Influencer discounts.

If you found the shoes you want to wear down the aisle or some makeup you want to include in your bridesmaids favors via Instagram, chances are the influencer that posted them has a discount or affiliate code to go with it. These codes usually get you anywhere from 10-20% off. Use this and save some cash! 

5. Pick up some pointers from the professionals. 

Not only will wedding bloggers and planners offer tips and tricks, but so will people in other areas of expertise. Skincare professionals, fitness influencers, hairstylists and makeup artists also offer information that may be valuable in preparation for your big day! 

6. Check out different hashtags. 

Looking for the perfect hairstyle, picture poses or makeup look? There’s a hashtag for everything on Instagram! Just use the ‘”tags” filter when typing into the search bar and thousands of photos under that tag will be at your fingertips. Not to mention, you may find the perfect hashtag for your wedding photos! 

7. Tag your friends and fiancé in posts to share your ideas. 

Found a photo on your feed you want to recreate or the cutest wedding favors? Tag your maid of honor or fiancé to share your thoughts with the tap of a button. 

8. Figure out what you don’t want.

While Instagram is an excellent way to get inspiration for things you want to incorporate in your own wedding, it’s also a great way to discover things you may not want. You can use the bookmarks feature to keep examples of these things to share with your vendors so they can bring your perfect vision to life! 


Bible Verses To Include In Your Wedding

More than anything, you want your wedding day to be a celebration of your love and a reflection of who you are. Many couples share a relationship that is centered around their faith. If your love of Christ plays an important role in your relationship, you might consider incorporating scripture into your big day. Here are 15 Bible verses about love to include in your wedding day. 

  1. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8)
  2.  “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because he first loved us.” (1 John 4: 18-19)
  3. “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” (Ephesians 4:2)
  4.  “With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” (Ephesians 4:2-3)
  5.  “I thank my God every time I think of you. Philippians 1:3” 
  6. “Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.” (Proverbs 3:3-4)
  7. “I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine.” (Song of Soloman 8:3)
  8. “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”(Corinthians 13:13)
  9. “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.”(Romans 12:10)
  10. “Do everything in love.” (Corinthians 16:14) 
  11.  “We love because he first loved us.” (John 4:19)
  12. “Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm, for love is strong as death, jealousy is fierce as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the LORD. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man offered for love all the wealth of his house, he would be utterly despised.” (Song of Solomon 8:6-7)
  13. “Love yesterday, today and forever.” (Jeremiah 31:3)
  14. “Above all things have intense and unfailing love for one another.” (Romans 12:10)
  15. “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” (Peter 4:8)

Top Songs to Play at Your Wedding Reception

The pictures have been taken, the ceremony is over…now it’s time to party! We’re confident you’ve chosen an incredible DJ, but are you having trouble deciding what songs should be played at the celebration of a lifetime? Don’t fret! We’re here with our list of 100 songs that are guaranteed to have your guests dancing the night away until the DJ shuts things down.

1. 24K Magic – Bruno Mars
2. Ain’t No Mountain High Enough – Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell
3. All About That Bass – Megan Trainor
4. Always Be My Baby – Mariah Carey
5. Baby – Justin Bieber ft. Ludacris
6. Baby Got Back – Sir Mix-A-Lot
7. Believe – Cher
8. Best Day of My Life – American Authors
9. Blurred Lines – Robin Thicke
10. Body Like A Backroad – Sam Hunt
11. Bust A Move – Young MC
12. Can’t Hold Us – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis ft. Rav Dalton
13. Can’t Stop The Feeling – Justin Timberlake
14. The Cha Cha Slide – DJ Casper
15. Classic – MTKO
16. Country Girl (Shake It For Me) – Luke Bryan
17. Crazy In Love – Beyoncé
18. Crazy Little Thing Called Love – Queen
19. Cruise – Florida Georgia Line
20. Cupid Shuffle – Cupid
21. Dancing Queen – ABBA
22. Die A Happy Man – Thomas Rhett
23. DJ Got Us Fallin’ In Love – Usher
24. Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey
25. Don’t Stop The Music – Rihanna
26. Dynamite – Taio Cruz
27. Everybody (Backstreet’s Back) – Backstreet Boys
28. Faithfully – Journey
29. Fine By Me – Andy Grammer
30. Finesse – Bruno Mars
31. Firework – Katy Perry
32. Forever – Chris Brown
33. From The Ground Up – Dan + Shay
34. Girls Just Wanna Have Fun – Cyndi Lauper
35. Give Me Everything – Pitbull ft. Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Naver
36. God’s Plan – Drake
37. Happy – Pharell
38. Havana – Camila Cabello
39. Hey Ya! – Outkast
40. Hotel Room Service – Pitbull
41. Ice Ice Baby – Vanilla Ice
42. I Gotta Feeling – The Black Eyed Peas
43. I Like It – Cardi B, Bad Bunny & J Belvin
44. In The Name of Love – Bebe Rexha & Martin Garrix
45. Isn’t She Lovely – Stevie Wonder
46. I Wanna Dance With Somebody – Whitney Houston
47. I Want It That Way – Backstreet Boys
48. I Will Always Love You – Whitney Houston
49. John Legend – All Of Me
50. Just Dance – Lady Gaga
51. Just The Way You Are – Bruno Mars
52. Love On The Brain – Rihanna
53. Love on Top – Beyoncé
54. Love Shack – B-52’s
55. Mambo No. 5 – Lou Bega
56. Marry You – Bruno Mars
57. Meant To Be – Bebe Rexha ft. Florida Georgia Line
58. Me Too – Megan Trainor
59. The Middle – Zedd, Marren Morris & Grey
60. Mr. Brightside – The Killers
61. My Girl – The Temptations
62. Nicki Minaj – Super Bass
63. OMG – Usher
64. One Dance – Drake
65. Party In The USA – Miley Cyrus
66. Party Rock Anthem – L.M.F.A.O.
67. Perfect – Ed Sheeran
68. Raise Your Glass – P!nk
69. Rascal Flatts – Bless The Broken Road
70. Rascal Flatts – Life Is A Highway
71. Rascal Flatts – My Wish
72. Replay – Iyaz
73. Respect – Aretha Franklin
74. Say Hey (I Love You) – Michael Franti
75. Say You Won’t Let Go – James Arthur
76. Sexy And I Know It – L.M.F.A.O.
77. Sexyback – Justin Timberlake
78. Shake It Off – Taylor Swift
79. Shut Up And Dance – Walk The Moon
80. Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m Yours) – Stevie Wonder
81. Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) – Beyoncé
82. Speechless – Dan + Shay
83. Sugar – Maroon 5
84. Sweet Caroline – Neil Diamond
85. Tennessee Whiskey – Chris Stapleton
86. Thinking Out Loud – Ed Sheeran
87. Thriller – Michael Jackson
88. Trumpets – Jason Derulo
89. Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars
90. Walking on Sunshine – Katrina & The Waves
91. Wannabe – The Spice Girls
92. Want To Want Me – Jason Derulo
93. The Way You Look Tonight – Frank Sinatra
94. The Way You Make Me Feel – Michael Jackson
95. We Are Family – Sister Sledge
96. We R Who We R – Ke$ha
97. Wobble – V.I.C
98. Y.M.C.A. – Village People
99. Yeah! – Usher ft. Lil Jon & Ludacris
100. Yeah 3x – Chris Brown

We hope you enjoyed our list of Top 100 Wedding Reception songs! Whether your guests love oldies, R&B, Country or Pop, we guarantee there’s something on this list that everyone will love. Click here for a printable version you can give to your DJ before the ceremony!

Local Love – Elizabeth + Corban

Our August issue is full of love stories and engagements that will warm your heart. Elizabeth and Corban’s is one of our favorites…so much so that we wanted to share it with you on the blog! 

Elizabeth + Corban, married 6.1.19. Photographer: Blondale York, Unseen Grace Photography.

From Elizabeth: 

“I first met my husband, Corban at a bonfire in October of 2016. Sparks started to fly after that night. Our engagement is not one to forget. We were catfishing at “our spot” on Pittsfield Lake. Little did I know that that the bait on my line wasn’t for the fish, but for me instead. When I reeled in the line, on the other end was a diamond ring and Corban was already on one knee behind me to pop the question! Two and a half years later, on June 1st, we were married. Picking our venue for the ceremony was a challenge. We both have simple taste and wanted our day to be simple but elegant. We found the Bethel Church of Griggsville, IL and booked it immediately! My father and brother cut all 44 stump center pieces for the tables and my father handmade our arbor. Our flowers were stunning! My florist friend, April Myers did a fabulous job using a variety of garden roses, spray roses, eucalyptus and other greenery. Our wedding was everything we wanted it to be. Beautiful, simple, elegant and fun! And our whole day was captured by my wonderful photographer friend, Blondale with Unseen Grace Photography. We were blown away by the photos.”

Vendors: WEDDING VENUE: Bethel Church, Griggsville, IL. RECEPTION VENUE: Crossroads Center, Pittsfield, IL. PHOTOGRAPHER: Unseen Grace Photography. FLORIST: April Myers. MAKEUP ARTIST: Blondale York. HAIR STYLIST: Rachel Devri.

If you enjoyed Elizabeth and Corban’s love story, you’ll love the others we featured in our latest issue. Check it out here!

Local Love: Ryan + Amy

In every issue, we feature content submitted by local couples and wedding experts. This wedding was submitted by local event planner, Amy Deters. She planned Amy and Ryan’s beautiful wedding and their day went off without a hitch. Read their love story from the bride’s perspective.

From Amy: 

“The Beginning: I first met Ryan in high school in 2005. We shared consumer ed class together. The first day of class, he was of course late, so there weren’t very many open seats available. The one next to me happened to be open, so guess where he chose to sit? I was pretty shy in high school and he rarely talked. He had a bad boy look to him, so instantly I wasn’t interested. Our conversations were short and either consisted of asking for answers to homework or making fun of our teacher and his super slick hair. Time went on and I stared seeing him more and more at social events. I played hard to get at first, but after many attempts and him telling he would never give up, we made it official!  

The Proposal…August 30th, 2017.

We planned a family vacation this year to Mexico. It was going to be Ryan and my son Braydens‘ first time there and my second. By this time, Ryan and I have already been together for 7 years, so I was definitely for the next step in our lives. Of course I was throwing out hints here and there that year. Mexico was so beautiful. I should also mention that my dad went to paradise with us! We had a great time! The second to last day we were there, I noticed Ryan and Brayden whispering a lot while we were hanging out by the pool. They came over to me and said they were going to get some ice cream. A little later, my son came up to me and said “Mom, Ryan wants to see you down on the beach”. I got instant butterflies in my stomach. I walked down to the beach to Ryan standing out there by himself. As I got closer, I noticed that the words “MARRY ME” were written in the sand. Ryan got down on one knee and said his proposal, and after the water-works, I said YES! As we kissed, we heard clapping from all the people on the beach. It was truly the most romantic day ever. I was so excited to marry my best friend! 

The Wedding….9/22/18:

We chose a day in September because this is our favorite time of year. Our bridal party consisted of 5 of my closest friends/family and 5 of Ryan’s. Our colors were cobalt blue and shark skin grey. These 2 colors made for a very bold but beautiful wedding and were shown in the wedding party’s attire. Our ceremony was held at Dick Brothers Brewery. We fell in love with the venue’s rustic feel. Ryan’s grandpa, Hershel, officiated the ceremony which was very special to us. We chose to write our own vows, which was the best idea ever. We were so surprised with how similar and in sync they were because we didn’t share our thoughts before this magical moment. After the ceremony, we rode away with our wedding party in a stretch hummer, which was so cool! The Quincy Senior Center held our reception and handled all the catering. Tammy and her team outdid themselves with the delicious food. All of our decorations, linens and up-lighting came from Celebrations Party Rental. Sherry was amazing to work with. All of our beautiful white flowers came from County Market on 24th and they listened to the simplicity I wanted. Trent Vogel was an awesome DJ and Firestorm Entertainment provided us and our guests with a great photo booth and album. Ashley at Kustom Cuts and Karla Green made me and my girls look so beautiful with our hair and makeup. A huge thank you to our wedding planner, Amy Deters Events! Our day was perfect because we had her. When Ryan and I reflect on that day and the many memories we made, our hearts are filled with so much joy. I wouldn’t have changed a single thing about our wedding. It was absolutely perfect! Thanks to all our friends and family for making this a special day for Ryan and I. Can’t wait for a ten year anniversary/vow renewal party!”

LOCAL VENDORS: PHOTOGRAPHER: Parkview Photography by Ashlyn. CEREMONY: Dick Brothers Brewery. RECEPTION: Quincy Senior Center. WEDDING PLANNER: Amy Deters Events. CATERING: Quincy Senior Center. FLOWERS: County Market on 24th. RENTALS: Celebrations Party Rental. PHOTO BOOTH: Firestorm Entertainment. DJ: Trent Vogel. SUITS: Seno Formal Wear. MAKE-UP: Ageless by Karla. HAIR: Kustom Cuts. LIMO: Dave’s Limo. 


6 Reasons To Plan a Summer Wedding

Congratulations, you’re engaged! Now it’s time to choose the wedding date. Weddings are beautiful in every season, but we’re here to tell you some of the best things about having a summer wedding. 

You can take advantage of the gorgeous weather.

Photo: McDonald Video & Photography

Are you dreaming of sunset photos? Longing for an outdoor ceremony? Then summer is the perfect time for you to tie the knot. Of course weather varies based on geographical location, but across the board, summer has the most consistent weather of the four seasons. 

The venue options are endless.

Photo: Justine Wright

Because the weather is so nice, your venue options are abundant. You can opt for an outdoor ceremony and an indoor reception or vice versa, or have the entire celebration outdoors! The summer heat and sunshine almost guarantee a beautiful day. 

More friends and family will be able to attend.

Photo: Justine Wright Photo

With less conflicting school and work schedules, summer weddings tend to have the biggest turnout. Memorial Day, Labor Day and 4th of July can be turned into long weekends for out of town guests. Couples who want as many of their loved ones to be there as possible may opt for a summer wedding for this reason.

You’ll have a bigger flower selection.

Photo: Justine Wright, Florist: Lavish Floral

Summer offers a wide variety of flowers that wouldn’t be available otherwise. More flowers are in bloom between the months of June and August, so chances are, you’ll be able to get the flowers you want at a more reasonable price since they won’t have to be shipped in from somewhere else. Not to mention, the greenery will be gorgeous in your photos!

Bring on the bright colors! 

Photo: Justine Wright

 While muted tones like blush and powder blue are gorgeous year round, summer gives you the freedom to play with any color pallet your heart desires! What better season to bust out beautiful bright blues, corals and yellows? You’ll even have the freedom to play around with these colors in your bouquet. 

Never-ending honeymoon options 

Most resorts across the world plan for summer to be their busiest season, so you can guarantee excellent hotel and shuttle service. Plus, you can bank on the weather being fabulous no matter where you go. 

Longer daylight

Photo: Justine Wright

Since it stays light out longer, you’ll have ample opportunities to take photos outside. You’ll also be able to make the rounds at your reception and enjoy your dinner without having to worry about missing those gorgeous sunset shots. 

Summer weddings are always a hit, and we know that your special day will be no exception!







Pros and Cons of Having Kids At Your Wedding

Creating a guest list is one of the most stressful elements of planning your wedding. You’ll be making a lot of difficult decisions, but deciding whether or not you want to invite children is one of the first you’ll need to make. Little ones can add an element of fun to the celebration, but they also have early bedtimes, unpredictable temperaments, and have the potential to prevent friends and family from enjoying every moment. How do you decide whether to include guests of all ages versus an adults-only celebration? Here are some things to consider.

Con: Added stress on the bride and wedding planner
Having kids at your wedding can be really fun, but also add on stress both mentally and financially. You’ll more than likely have to include things like entertainment for them, a kids menu, extra seating, etc. Not to mention the fact that kids can be unpredictable, so you might be stressed about outbursts or temper tantrums during your romantic ceremony. Limiting the festivities to adults only would alleviate some of these worries.

Pro: You’ll be able to include all family members.

Inviting kids allows all members of the family to be present. It’s also the norm, so you may avoid ruffling some feathers by allowing guests to bring their littles. Years down the road, it’ll feel good to know that your favorite little cousin or nieces and nephews were present for such a special day in your life. 

Con: Parents may not be able to fully let loose.
If parents are worried about making sure their kiddos get enough to eat, aren’t stirring up trouble, or have to step out due to an unexpected tantrum, they may not be able to fully enjoy the celebration. Some may also feel the need to forego alcoholic beverages in front of their kids or end the night early to get them to bed.

Pro: Guests won’t have to stress about finding childcare. 

Being a parent is hard work, and sometimes leaving your child even for the night comes with mommy guilt or non-stop worrying about whether they’ll be okay with the babysitter. Finding reliable childcare can be hard, and allowing guests to bring their kids will prevent the stress that comes with it. They’ll be able to take a deep breath and enjoy the night knowing that their kiddo is safe with them!

Cons: You may have to sensor your celebration.

While kids can be a load of fun, they’re also easily impressionable. You may have a little extra work cut out for you…like encouraging guests to watch their mouths, asking the DJ to sensor music and only play songs with kid-appropriate messages, and making sure your guests don’t get too crazy in front of the munchkins. Plus, their parents will have to be on high-alert to ensure that they don’t accidentally sip on any adult beverages. 

Pro: Kids are FUN! 

There may be a few stressful aspects of allowing kids at your wedding, but above all, they’re a blast to be around. They add something special that other guests can’t. They’ll never fail to lighten things up. Plus, they have some killer dance moves and some of your favorite photos and most cherished memories might stem from their presence.

Whatever you decide, keep in mind that it should be whatever is most sensible for you and your partner. As stated in the introduction, this is your day! Whether you decide to include the kiddos or not, your guests will respect whatever decision is made and we are certain your night will be magical and enjoyable.







15 Things To Do The Week Before Your Wedding

So, it’s the week before your wedding. Your dress is ready, logistics are finalized, all that’s left to do is say “I do!”…right? Wrong! All the last minute tasks you need to complete can add up and seem like a daunting list. However, we’re here to help you get organized and ensure you don’t miss a beat!

1. Clear your work to-do list.

Nothing kills the excitement more than stressing about everything you have to do that isn’t for your special day. Wouldn’t you rather this week be no work and all play?! Get these tasks out of the way so you can focus on enjoying the last minute wedding planning, instead.

2. Meet with your planner or day-of coordinator.

Photo: Courtney Dueppengiesser. Wedding Planner: Sara Elizabeth Weddings

Going over any last-minute details and ironing out all the kinks will make your weekend much more enjoyable.

3. Break in your shoes!

Photo: Amber Rhea

Let’s face it…nobody wants to have achy feet or blistering heels while exchanging vows with their sweetheart. Do yourself a favor and take a few laps around the house in your wedding shoes.

4. Have a trial run of the full look.

Photo: Laken McDonald

Put on your dress, veil, shoes, and jewelry and practice your walk down the aisle to ensure you’re comfortable and confident in your ensemble. You may even want to practice using the restroom in your dress so you know what to expect.

5. Double-check on your marriage license.

Photo: Courtney Dueppengiesser

Make sure everything looks correct and hand it off to your officiant.


6. Confirm with vendors.

Florist: Lavish Floral Design Photo: Jennifer Birkenmeyer Photography

Shoot them all an e-mail at the beginning of the week to confirm their arrival times to ensure everything runs smoothly.


7. Get payments ready.

Finalize logistics and write checks in advance. Double check your contracts to be sure you meet all payment deadlines!


8. Pack your bags for the honeymoon.

Especially if you’re leaving right after the wedding or the following morning! It’ll be one less thing you have to do when all you’ll want is to spend time with your new spouse.


9. Check in with your bridal party.

Photo: Amanda Genenbacher

Shoot the group a text and make sure they all know when they have to be at the venue and what their roles are for the day.


10. Call guests who missed the RSVP deadline.

You’ll need a final number for your venue and caterer. Plus, it would be pretty awkward if someone showed up and had no seat!


11. Finalize anything speech related.

Put the finishing touches on your vows, prepare a “thank you” speech and decide who will be making the toast and make sure they know.


12. Write thank-you cards.

When you get back from your honeymoon, chances are you’ll want to spend every moment you can with your new spouse. Write these ahead of time so you can get them delivered as soon as possible!


13. Get your ring cleaned.

Photo: Courtney Dueppengiesser

Since a million photos will be taken of this beauty, make sure the sparkler is squeaky clean! You’ll be glad you did.


14. Submit a shot list to your photographer.

Photo: Courtney Dueppengiesser

You don’t want to miss any precious moments, so be sure that this is at the top of your list.


15. Schedule some “me time.”

Let’s face it, getting ready for a wedding is stressful. Schedule a mani-pedi, massage, facial, or whatever makes you feel like a million bucks. You deserve to relax before the weekend of a lifetime!