Marriage + Kids, Is there a “Right” Order?- Jessica + Stephen

Traditionally speaking, our society says you should be married before you have kids. However, that’s bullsh*t. We have a lot of tired traditions that just don’t make sense anymore, and they create unnecessary pressure on couples. Honestly, I could go on for hours about all of the expectations that we push on to newlyweds, but for now, I’ll start with marriage and kids. Your marriage is wholly your own, you shouldn’t let anyone else make the rules.

Make your own Marriage rules

I  know I shouldn’t have to tell you this, but if you need a reminder, you can make rules about what works best for your life! We’re throwing out the expectation that you have kids only after you’re married. Life isn’t a simple thing that’s easy to plan, and there isn’t a “right” way to do things. This is YOUR life; make it whatever the hell you want it to be!

Involving your kids in your wedding

A major pro to having kids before you get married is including them on your big day! Your wedding photos are something you’ll keep forever, and now you can also have your kiddos photographed and in those memories. 

Here are a few of the cutest ways that I’ve seen couples incorporate their kids into their big day:

  • Give them a role in the ceremony – this can be the classic ring bearer/flower girl roles, but I’ve also seen kids be ushers, junior bridesmaids/junior groomsmen. 
  • Mention them in your vows – it’s a simple addition that highlights your commitment to the family you’ve built together.
  • Give them a “day of” gift – gifts are common at many weddings, and giving your little ones a gift is a token of affection. It’s also a great keepsake that they can cherish forever.

Jessica + Stephen plan the perfect day

I will keep this relatively short because I’m obsessed with how Jessica + Stephen organized their big day, and I’m at risk of rambling. 

This duo chose to have kids first and wait until they could comfortably afford the wedding of their dreams. Their wedding was held at The Grand in Carleton Place; it’s a beautiful hotel and a popular choice as a wedding venue. They chose to do their portraits at a park down the street from the venue and could not have picked a better date. They had the perfect fall weather, and it just made them shine. They were SO FREAKING happy to get married finally, and so were their friends and family. You could feel the love in the room!

They went all out on decor and planning. They hired Sinclair and Co Design, and they crushed it – florals, signs, set up, it was all just SO perfectly done. This day didn’t have any hiccups. They planned so well that we even had a bit of extra time to sneak away to the roof for a golden hour for the dreamiest portraits; a church spire looks like a castle. Guests were even watching the portrait session from their hotel windows. 

Neither Jessica nor Stephen could stop smiling all day long. I had difficulty getting them into serious poses for the “sweeter” images; Stephen couldn’t stop looking at her and grinning. 

Traditionally, they did things “out of order” by having kids first. However, as you can see, they did everything just right. They made a beautiful family and celebrated their love, surrounded by people who adore them. Let this be your sign; screw the rules. Make your own rules for not just your wedding but also your life!

Shot for: Hilary Elizabeth| Venue: The Grand | Planner + Florals: Sinclair and Co Design | Ring: Stor by Margot | Suit: Your Suit | Dress: With Love Bridal Boutique | Makeup Artist: Makeup with L | Hair: Portrait Salon

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About me

I am a margarita-loving photographer based out of Canada’s capital. I have an obsession for adventure and an appreciation for the small things in life. I’m known for my love of strong margaritas, big curly hair, and notorious sailor’s mouth.⁠