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Weddings, babies and babysitters

(18 Posts)
SpicyTomatos Mon 30-Jan-17 16:23:18

We are due to attend a wedding in June. We will have an 8 month old baby at the time. Wedding will probably be typical affair (early afternoon ceremony, late afternoon breakfast etc.). It's in the middle of nowhere so will require two nights in a hotel.

Assuming the baby is invited, would you take the baby to the wedding or would you try to arrange a baby sitter?

Any tips on how to arrange a babysitter in a random town? I had a quick google and there seem to be lots of local subscription services and not a lot of one-off hirings. Plus, it would be pretty dull for all if they have to sit in a hotel room for the whole day, so I feel like I must be missing something.

Leaving the baby at home isn't really an option.

Any advice?

sonyaya Tue 31-Jan-17 09:09:19

Assuming the baby is invited (which he or she might not be), I still would advise you to try to get a sitter. Babies and weddings can be very stressful for the parent - worrying about baby crying out during ceremony, trying to keep them calm during dinner so as not to disturb rest of table, disruption to their routine...

I'm not a parent but this is what I've been told by those who have done a wedding with a baby in tow!

It is possible the bride and groom might know of someone, especially if they're not inviting children many couples will have babysitter details in mind.

Good luck!

LittleBoat Tue 31-Jan-17 09:20:13

in a very similar situation, we made a holiday out of it. Found some self catering accommodation nearby and took my mum and dad. They brought dd to the wedding venue for the middle bit between service and meal and then took her back to the apartment. Dh and I stayed in the hotel that night and then spent another 2 nights with dd, mum and dad having a bit of a minibreak.

Could you do something like that?

wizzywig Tue 31-Jan-17 09:23:54

Take a sitter that you know to the wedding and either ask for an extra place setting at the wedding for yr sitter or let her stay in the hotel with yr baby

hatethegame Tue 31-Jan-17 09:26:35

Can one of your parents go with you and help? Or could u leave the baby with them? I've attempted taking mine to wedddings and it's stressful!

Orangepear Tue 31-Jan-17 10:21:28

We went to a lovely wedding when ours was 8mo, we drove up in the morning to arrive for 1pm and then left at 7pm before the evening part started. It was fine and I'd do it that way again rather than getting a sitter so we could stay later.

SpicyTomatos Tue 31-Jan-17 10:25:24

Thanks for the advice. I was already a bit sceptical, but I think I'm very much persuaded that taking the baby to the wedding is not a great idea, so either a baby sitter or only one of us going it will have to be.

Our parents are not an option and we don't know any baby sitters near us, so the best option would be to find one near the wedding. I'm wondering about phoning the wedding venue to see if they have any suggestions for baby sitters.

SpicyTomatos Tue 31-Jan-17 10:27:02

Orangepear - just as I had convinced myself it was a bad idea, I cross post with you!

LittleSausageFingers Tue 31-Jan-17 10:27:17

We've taken DD to three weddings, at 4 months, 10 months and 11 months. It's not as fun with a baby! I was bridesmaid at two, which made it even more difficult. She is BF though and won't be without me overnight, so needed to take her as all the weddings were far from home.

Will you be able to stay at the wedding venue? That makes things a lot easier. Will baby sleep in a buggy? How are they in a high chair for long periods (over the wedding breakfast)?

Wondermoomin Tue 31-Jan-17 10:36:12

We went to 4 weddings in our baby's first 6 months so have a few tried-and-tested ways...

1. 8 weeks approx. Had the baby with us right up until the wedding breakfast, at which point they went to a sitter provided by the couple in one of the hotel rooms. I popped back regularly then relieved the sitter at 10pm and went to bed (staying over in the hotel with the baby). This worked very well, although I did have to come out of the service to feed her and quieten her down. She didn't disrupt the service.

2. 3mths approx. Babies not allowed. Had to leave the baby with family member for approx 12 hours to allow for return driving trip, ceremony, and first part of reception. Had to sit in toilets to express milk. Felt horribly engorged. Meanwhile my EBF baby wouldn't take any milk from a bottle until night time when she was so hungry anything would do. A bit of a nightmare to be honest and in hindsight I wouldn't do it again.

3. 5mths approx. A very relaxed wedding involving away from home, made a holiday of it. Baby with us the whole time. I took her away for a quiet cuddle and feed as required. Left the wedding reception shortly after speeches etc to go back to our accommodation. Worked very well.

4. 6mths. Took the baby with us to ceremony then dropped her off at family's home where we would be staying that night. Went to reception venue, stayed for the duration then went back to family member's home. Worked very well.

It'll depend on your baby really, and how you're feeding him/her. Personally I would bring them and employ a sitter for the wedding breakfast and early evening to keep an eye on them in your hotel room. You can't ask for an extra place setting for your sitter, you should provide food for them in the room.

Hope you have an enjoyable time!

MiddleClassProblem Tue 31-Jan-17 10:38:45

I took DD to a wedding at 7 months. DH was an usher so I was on baby duty. The ceremony hit at her normal naptime so I skipped it (I was anxious about her going anyway and keeping her entertained and quiet) and then I joined for the reception. We had the meal, she was warning so we took some Ella pouches and she had bits off our plates. I then left at around 9 with the Bestman's wife who had her 4 month old with her. TBH I was quite happy to be back in my hotel bed before 10 after having a lovely meal! DH stumbled in at around 1.

SpicyTomatos Tue 31-Jan-17 10:45:51

Unfortunately, the venue doesn't have any accommodation and we will need to take a taxi from the hotel to the venue (so car seat headache as well). I really hoped it would do as that would make things so much easier.

Otherwise, our baby is only three months old at the moment, so we don't really know how good he will be at sitting, keeping quiet etc in the future. In truth, I have no idea what an 8 month old baby is like!

Wondermoomin - that's a lot of baby wedding experience! Thanks for all the tips.

2014newme Tue 31-Jan-17 10:48:49

I think the advice to ask for an extra space at the wedding for your babysitter is bad advice from wizzywig.
I would take baby.

Wondermoomin Tue 31-Jan-17 10:57:33

Ok with no accommodation at the venue I would elect for one of you to be designated driver, make a weekend away of it. Go to the wedding, take the baby to a quiet corner as required, bring your buggy if they'll nap in that, take some quiet high chair toys for distraction during the wedding breakfast plus whatever weaning food etc. Then leave the reception at the appropriate point before the baby gets too tired and grizzly and needs a proper bed. Drive back to your hotel and plan a nice day out on your way back home the next day.

MiddleClassProblem Tue 31-Jan-17 10:59:30

Oh, I forgot that DD didn't nap again in at the reception (we had her buggy) and at that age she normally would have but she was so interested in what was going in it kept her going but in good spirits despite being so tired. I meant that back at the hotel I got her changed her barely awake after the car journey and she was asleep as soon as she was in her cot.

If you can't get a sitter just figure out your different options for the day nearer the time for timings. You can't really plan it. A month later we couldn't go to a wedding as she was teething which for her came hand in hand with ponamis that would always be so evil they would explode up the back and in her clothes so she was having 5 outfits a day. You really can't predict these things!

LittleSausageFingers Tue 31-Jan-17 15:05:54

Agree with PP that if you're not able to get accommodation at the venue then one of you should act as designated driver, rather than rely on taxis. Much easier (although less fun for one of you!)

SpicyTomatos Tue 31-Jan-17 15:37:50

Only one of us drinks, but also only one of us can drive. Unfortunately, they're the same person! Either way, we don't have a car. We could rent one, but that's yet more faff.

Danglybits Tue 31-Jan-17 15:43:53

Take baby. Cox and box re keeping baby happy for the duration. Hotel nearby with rented car. Leave after speeches.

(I couldn't possibly leave my baby with a complete stranger. 8 months is classic time for separation anxiety as well.)

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