Post # 1
I am having an extremely small destination wedding of 20 people, 4 of which are children. We orginially did not want children invited, however my soon to be sister-in-law threw a hissy-fit about leaving her kids and now her 4 children are coming. My siblings with children are still not bringing their kids because they know it was what we originally wanted.
Now I am stuck trying to figure out the seating. The two families have never met, so this meal will be awkward enough without worrying about kids. We are thinking about one long table and I told my fiance to put a small round table off to the side at one end for the kids and we’ll put their parents at that end. I would decorate the table with all these fun activities for the kids to do so they won’t be bored and they can eat and make as big or as little of a mess as they want.
My fiance thinks they should be sitting at the main table with all the adults. 4 kids takes up a lot of table space, not to mention trying to put enough adults around them to watch them and take care of them. I also fear it will change the dynamic of the conversation with lots of kids around. One of them is a toddler who is at the age of loving to pull table cloths off the table and I only fear the worst. It is not fair to my other guests to sit next to children that they are not responisble for, nor is it fair to anyone to have food spilt all over the table.
Any suggestions from others who had kids attend? Did you have them sit at their own table?
Any suggestions on seating arrangements for small weddings?
Post # 2
JJMeantToBe: You really can’t seat 4 children, one of who is a toddler, at a table by themselves and expect a peaceful meal. Even if the parents are nearby at the end of the long table, they will be up and down the whole meal. It also wouldn’t bode well for future relations with the SIL if you seat the parents at a separate table with their children.
I suggest you seat the 4 children between their two parents.
Post # 3
We also had a small wedding and didn’t want kids but made an exception for our neice and nephew. We sat them with their parents, at a table that was kind of at the end of the room. We knew the kids wouldn’t be able to sit still or stay quiet for speeches so it was our only option.
I agree with the PP that you should sit the kids with their parents.
Post # 4
I would seat the kids with their parents. A toddler isn’t going to be able to sit by herself at a table and eat, so the parents would end up moving over to the kids’ table anyway.
Post # 5
Definitely no kids table. Their mom wanted them there, likely she wants to sit with them too. Four people isn’t enough for a table on their own, and a toddler really can’t be sat without adults anyway. Family tables make the most sense.
Post # 6
- Wedding: August 2013 - Wynn Las Vegas
Sit them with their parents.
Post # 7
I thought the kids table idea was fine until you said there was a toddler. I would just pair the kids at the end of the long table with the parents across the table from eachother each sitting next to an adult. So each kid is sitting across from their sibling and the toddler can be directly next to one of the parents.
If the other kids are much older, like 6, 7, and 8, and you have no space at the big table it may be okay to set them up at a kids table nearby and have the toddler with the parents.
It seems like this is not a discussion anymore but I also would have extended the invite to the children in your family since SIL’s kids are coming. I don’t know your wedding details or the ages of the kids but I would imagine it’s difficult to go to a destination wedding with your husband without your kids. They are attending because they love you, but since the kid “seal” is broken they might be a little sad to still go through the trouble.
Post # 8
Agree with the others. With the parents.
Post # 9
Kids tables are just a recipe for disaster. With younger children, you are much more likely to get bad behaviour as supervision is more lax. With older children, they often feel offended that they are being sidelined.
Your seating plan should be as follows: parent – younger child – older child – older child – younger child – parent. That way you contain the children more effectively.
Post # 10
I’d put his sister’s family at a separate table (6), or one with her parents (8), to make two tables seem more even.
She’s the one that had the hissy fit. I think sitting the kids at a big table, with all your guests, is a recipe for disaster. A formal, once-in-a-lifetime meal, with a toddler? No way …
Post # 11
Kid’s tables are almost always a nightmare. For starters, you can’t ever assume that parents are prepared to be sat apart from their children and for sure, you can’t attempt to seat a toddler on its own unless you want sheer chaos to follow.
I’d sit the parents with their children at the end of your table so that they can easily entertain their own children and, if necessary, take them out for a break easily without disturbing everyone else.
Post # 12
Following. I have at least 5 kids coming (youngest will be almost 3) possibly up to 10 kids (oldest is 15) if the older ones come I think we will do a kids table, that way the parents might not have to do as much With the older ones to entertain the little ones.