We attended a wedding over the weekend. It was the best kind of wedding, in my opinion. Informal, relaxed, not overly ostentatious. It was obvious that the couple and the family had thought about what would make them happy, and their guests happy. The photos were taken after the ceremony. Typically, this is a recipe for disaster - but the caterers began serving food almost immediately.
I had a long discussion with my husband and mother
in law before the wedding about whether or not we should take goose (my daughter) and noggin (my son). Growing up, there is no question that the twin three year olds would have been taken. And I do have fun memories of various aunts and uncles' weddings growing up. One of my aunts and uncles had a cake with a fountain in it (this was the early 80s).
Instead, one of my sisters came down and watched them. They had a great time, went to multiple parks and were sad when she left to go home.
My husband and I were left to enjoy the wedding and relax. I couldn't help but assist a little with other people's children running around (most of whom were very well behaved), but I could talk and enjoy myself without having to chase after my two.
Two events that say a lot about a person and a family are weddings and
funerals. I have found over the years that I prefer events where a personal touch is clear. When leaving either event, you have a good impression of the person or couples' involved, not simply their beliefs. I prefer events where it's clear that the guests or family are made as comfortable as possible - without putting anyone in a compromised personal or financial position.