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The mother of the bride is usually a VIP wedding guest, responsible only for enjoying herself and entertaining the guests. However, it's a good idea for her to be prepared with a few basic supplies on the wedding day, just in case something unexpected goes wrong.
The goal is to be so well organized on the big day that none of these back-up items that Mom brings in her magic bag will be needed. But the way Murphy's Law works, chances are her daughter will only have those emergencies if she isn't prepared to cope with them.
All the mother of the bride needs to do is fill a small tote bag with a few key items:
1. A mini bridal emergency kit with safety pins, aspirin, Benadryl, Imodium, and tampons. Most wedding professionals will not hand out any medication — we're not even supposed to give you Advil — because our liability insurance prohibits it. Unfortunately, strange things happen to our bodies when we're under a lot of stress. I've seen brides break out in hives on the morning of their wedding, and others spend the entire day locked in the bathroom because their tummy is acting funny. Mom should be prepared to treat any eventuality, just like she was when her daughter was little.
2. Fabric scissors are a must. Regular scissors will destroy most fabrics, and if you have errant threads on the wedding party's outfits, or God forbid, the wedding dress, you don't want to risk doing more damage than good in your efforts to remove it. Most wedding venues don't have good scissors handy when you need them.
3. Freeze a bottle of water and wrap it in a soft hand towel. It's going to be a long day, and sometimes you need something wet and cold handy on short notice. The towel will keep it from sweating on everything else in the bag, and you can use the towel to gently blot the bride's face when she gets sweaty. Paper towels are more likely to destroy carefully applied bridal makeup. A wet towel, or frozen bottle of water, held to the back of the neck can help revive a bride who is feeling light-headed.
4. Shout wipes always come in handy at the wedding, although hopefully the mother of the bride will not need them for the bride's gown. Guests spill on themselves, and members of the wedding party have accidents, too. Once a mom, always a mom — some will look to the mother of the bride for help fixing the problem.
5. Bring a disposable razor in case a member of the bridal party has forgotten to shave her armpits on the day of the wedding. Crude as it may sound to whip a razor out and hand it to someone, it's better than letting a bridesmaid go less-than-groomed down the aisle in a strapless dress.
Sandy Malone is the owner of Sandy Malone Weddings & Events and author of How to Plan Your Own Destination Wedding: Do-It-Yourself Tips from an Experienced Professional. Sandy is the star of TLC's reality show Wedding Island, about her destination wedding planning company, Weddings in Vieques.