Taking a new born baby to a wedding my fill you with fear, dread, anxiety and optimism. You may be worried that they will cry during the service, that they will never stop feeding, and that you won’t be able to enjoy the day or speak to anyone as you’ll be too busy sorting out your baby.
I’ve taken a one year old to a wedding which was a completely different ball game as she was eating and crawling, and it went relatively without hitch, however that didn’t stop me from worrying about taking my new born baby to a wedding this weekend. I had all these visions in my head about the baby crying, screaming, remaining unsettled throughout, and I had big concerns about breastfeeding and what to wear for this. But I also had in the back of mind, what can go wrong? He’s a baby and it will be what it will be, no one can predict how a 6 week old will behave. So here are my top tips on how to take a new born baby to a wedding, and what I learnt this weekend to help you.
Organisation is key
This is the fundamental number one thing you need to do. Make lists and think about what you need before the wedding, during the wedding and after. You’ll often be travelling between the church, reception venue and where you’re staying, so think clearly and carefully about how you’ll get to and fro, and what you need for each. This is obviously much easier if the wedding tasks place in one venue and you are staying at that venue, taking out the need for driving and taxis. Make sure you have a changing bag packed with all the essentials for the baby, and that you and your partner know where everything is so that you can easily find what you need after a few champagnes.
Having had a baby 6 weeks ago I still have a smal baby bump and I’m breastfeeding. This made choosing an outfit really difficult, and I had many failed online deliveries. In the end I opted for a loose dress but would be impossible to easily feed in without flashing my pants, and I didn’t want to keep running off to a private room every 10 minutes. To get round this I wore a long black vest top underneath that ended midway down my thigh. This allowed me to pull my dress up and bring the top of the best down top to feed, and it worked.
Pack enough bottles and use the ready mix formula
If you bottle feed or combi feed (like me) pack in your changing bag enough bottles of the ready-made formula for the day and evening. These can be kept at room temperature before being opened and you can avoid having to wait the 30 minutes for the water to cool with the powdered formula. It’s convenient and won’t require you having to get the staff to fill up a bottle with hot water. Just remember that the ready mix formula only last for two hours after opening unless it is refrigerated.
Don’t forget your breast pump
Whether you’re breastfeeding or combi-feeding don’t forget this. You may find that you’re not feeding as much as you would be normally as you enjoy the day, and your boobs may become quite full. It’s best to express off any excess milk to avoid them getting painful, and then you also have a bottle of milk to feed the baby with. Find out from some one in the wedding party if there is somewhere private you can go to do this, or there is always the toilet – but remember you might need a manual pump for this.
Rely on family and friends
You will most likely be surrounded by friends and family, so use them to your advantage and make sure that you’re not just left to look after the baby the entire time, after all you want to enjoy yourself as well. Let them hold the baby so you can get 10 minutes to chat. And if the baby is unsettled during the meal make sure that you and your partner take shifts to look after the baby so that you can both enjoy it. Also be prepared to suddenly have to leave the table, and with this in mind eat as much as you can whilst you can.
So those are my top tips on how best to take a newborn baby to a wedding. Most of them revolve around feeding which is pretty much all that newborn babies do, as well as sleeping. My best advice is to have a bit of a plan and find out when you arrive at the venue where you can feed the baby, particularly if you are breastfeeding (I should have named this post “How to breastfeed at a wedding”. In the early days it may be easier for you to go somewhere a little more private rather than in a room full of people.
However don’t worry too much. It’s a newborn baby and it will be what it will be. Just make sure that you relax and enjoy the day.
I’ve got to do it all over again in 12 weeks time and I am definitely not wearing a dress I can easily feed in as I’m bridesmaid, so I’ll be off to find a private room.
Have you taken a newborn baby to a wedding? I would love to hear how you got on.