How to Spend Quality Time With Your Family on Your Wedding Day

Image via Bridal Guide | Photography by Bend the Light

As your wedding gets closer – and you may be feeling a little bit stressed – it’s a good idea to slow down a little, take a break, and simply enjoy the fact that, in just a few days, you’ll be celebrating something extraordinary. This is a great chance to spend a little time with your parents and siblings – it’s a special time for them as well, and they’ll really appreciate those extra hours in your company. Here are a few ideas on how you can spend some quality time together.

Before the Wedding

Rehearsal Dinner – If you’re having a rehearsal dinner, try to leave the entire afternoon and evening free. Don’t do the rehearsal and then rush off to do something else, unless of course it’s absolutely necessary. Your rehearsal dinner is probably going to be small – including your family and the important participants, like your maid of honour and best man. It’s a lovely occasion to have an actual dinner together, with pleasant chat and laughs all around. Your family will love this chance to spend time with you in an intimate setting. It’s rarely said, but this is a lovely little occasion on its own, and should be enjoyed to the fullest.

 Trying on Your Dress – On the day of the wedding you’ll probably have a few people helping you get dressed – but make time one afternoon a few days before and put the dress on just with your mum present. We guarantee she’ll love it, having her daughter there in her gorgeous dress, with nobody else around. If your gown requires intricate buttoning or lacing up, it’s an ideal chance for your mum to practice making it fit just right – she may turn out to be an absolute saviour come wedding day. Your mum could even take a few pictures, just for herself. It’ll be a lovely memory to treasure.

 Pampering – Even if you’re the most relaxed bride in the world, a little trip to the spa won’t do you any harm before the wedding. Take your mum and sister – or sisters – for some real girl time. Even if it’s just a little treat – manicure and pedicure, or a massage – your mum will appreciate those relaxing moments in your company. And afterwards, you can be ‘ladies who lunch’ and go out for a lovely meal.

Time with Dad – Let’s be frank – it’s unlikely your dad would like to come along to a pamper session, or lunch with the girls. But, he may like to see you in your dress before the big day? Talk to him. Your mum is probably more involved in the wedding than your dad, but don’t forget it’s an important time for him too. Have you seen all the photos of dads looking all emotional when their little girl appears in her lovely dress, ready to go to the ceremony? That’s how your dad is going to feel too. So be sure to give him some time before the wedding day as well – perhaps at the movies, a shopping trip, or a dinner out for just the two of you.

On your Wedding Day

Most brides say this day flies by so fast, it’s all over before you know it – so it’s important to pause at some point and grab a few minutes with your other half… but also with your parents and siblings. These may just be among the most memorable moments of that day. For a parent, your wedding day is a day of mixed emotions. They’ve probably been thinking about it for many years with great anticipation, and when this day finally comes, they’ll be thrilled for you – but also a little sad their beloved daughter or son is moving away from their first home. They would be delighted to have a few moments alone with you – just to ask you how you are, give you a hug, and have a chat away from all the other guests who’ll want your attention. That’s all it’ll take.

A Family Breakfast – It’s a marvelous idea to have a family breakfast the morning of the wedding – you may say you’ll probably be so nervous you won’t even be thinking of food… but just imagine what a wonderful morning it’ll be, together with your family, before the madness begins. You’ll be able to relax, talk, have a laugh… this is a truly unusual occasion for the family to sit down together, and well worth the little extra time – a beautiful start to a beautiful day.

A First Look – You’ve probably seen the popularity of those ‘first look’ photos that really took off last year. Most of the time, it’s the groom seeing the bride for the first time – but if you’re keeping true to the tradition of seeing the groom at the altar, then you can commemorate that first look when your family sees you for the first time in all your glorious wedding finery. To preserve this lovely moment, ask the photographer to start taking pictures just before you come out of the room where you got ready – we promise it’ll be one of the sweetest moments of the day.

Travel to Ceremony with Dad – If you’re following the tradition of getting to the ceremony with your dad, he will really appreciate those moments alone with you. In fact, the longer the drive, the better. If you’re feeling very nervous, your dad will help you feel calmer, and of course he’ll be with you all the way down the aisle. He will probably remember that journey to the ceremony for the rest of his life.

Gifts for the Parents – If you’ve prepared gifts for your parents, you can give them at the speeches – the bride or the groom would say a few words of gratitude and hand out the gifts. Or, if you prefer to make it more personal, give the gifts when you’re having those few moments alone.

Your Parents’ First Dance Song – Find out what was your parents’ first dance song, or their favourite song when they were dating. Ask the DJ to play it at some point during the celebration – maybe even for your father-daughter dance? Your parents will be delighted.

Saying Goodbye – Make sure to say your goodbyes before leaving, especially if you’re going straight on your honeymoon. Tell them when you come back, they’ll be the ones you’ll visit first, to tell them all the stories and show pictures.

It will only take a small effort to make your parents feel special in the run-up to your wedding day – and on the day itself. If you’re doing something special to honour your parents, tell us in the comments – we’d love to hear about it.

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Pamela Mahon

Pamela Mahon Editor Pam enjoys writing about all things décor (she loves buying it too!) and has a not so secret addiction to stationery. Her favourite section on the site is the galleries and she can often be found lurking in the fashion and beauty forums as well.
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