When you are in charge of planning a baby shower, whether it is your own or for a loved one, there is one thing that you can be sure of: preparation is key. Without it, the task can be overwhelming, especially if you have never planned one before.
There are many aspects of a baby shower that need to be taken into consideration, such as who to invite, how many people to invite, and that is before you even begin to think about choosing a theme, buying decorations, and sending out invitations. You also have to think about a budget as well.
For many moms to be, the baby shower is a significant event in pregnancy, and so that should not be overlooked. It is a day to celebrate the mom – perhaps the dad – and the baby, and will be a celebration that they will remember for the rest of their lives. It is a great opportunity for family and friends to get together and spend time with the expectant mom before the baby comes along, give them some lovely presents and pieces of valuable advice, as well as have plenty of fun. It goes without saying that it needs to be special and well thought out.
If this makes planning a baby shower sound overwhelming, fear not, because here we have a guide that covers everything that you need to know about planning a baby shower that mom will never forget – for all of the right reasons.
What is a baby shower?
The whole idea behind a baby shower is to celebrate the impending arrival of a new baby with gifts and decorations. It is a day to celebrate the birth of a new life, but it is also a day to provide the new parents with all they will need to ease their transition into parenthood. The traditional baby shower is for women only, with the father-to-be popping in at the end to see what all the fuss is about. For the mom-to-be, the baby shower is all about pampering her while her loved ones make sure she is prepared for motherhood with all the essentials.
The ancient Egyptians and Greeks were the first to hold baby showers, thus the custom is far from new. The situation was somewhat different back then. For a long time after the baby was born, pregnant women were kept concealed from the rest of society because they believed the birthing process was impure. To mark the arrival of a new life, celebrations would take place later, once the infant had been legally named.
Who should host the baby shower?
When it comes to choosing a baby shower host, there is no right or wrong answer. As a general rule, someone close to the baby’s family or a close friend will either volunteer or be asked to take on the position. Additionally, it is not unusual for a group of friends or family members to organize and throw a baby shower for the same person. It is important that a baby shower be hosted by someone who is responsible because there is a lot of planning involved.
Who is invited to a baby shower?
The answer to this question varies depending on the individual, but the correct answer is anybody the parents want to attend the baby shower. Friends, family, and co-workers may all be included in this group. Remember that the baby shower is meant to be a stress-free and pleasurable experience for mom, so do not invite somebody you know they won’t want there.
Some cultures have a practice of keeping baby showers small and just for women, while others invite all members of the family, including men, to the event. You get to make the call!
How to choose a theme for a baby shower
When it comes to deciding on a baby shower theme, there are so many to pick from! First and foremost, establish a list of the ideas and non-negotiables that come to mind when you close your eyes and imagine your baby shower. After that, see what is popular in terms of baby shower themes and see if anything catches your eye. If you are planning a baby shower, you may want to match the theme to the baby’s room as well.
Look at factors like what is available online and how many people you plan on inviting to your baby shower (and also take into mind who will actually RSVP with a ‘yes’). For a baby shower, it is not ideal to fall in love with a certain theme, only to discover that most of the supplies have been sold out or that there are not enough place settings for the number of guests who will attend.
Think about whether simplicity or extravagance is more important to the mom to be, as well as current trends. What a wide range of possibilities there are!
What food and drink to serve at a baby shower
Almost anything goes when it comes to food and drink at a baby shower. You can have foods to match your theme, barbecues, outdoor picnics, afternoon teas – whatever the mom to be or the host wants.
The most important factor to consider is how the food is served. Consider how your guests would prefer to be served, such as a buffet or finger food appetizers to prevent the hassle of organizing a sit-down meal experience. Alcohol, however, is something to keep in mind. Remember, the mom to be can’t drink it. Some are happy for their guests to drink, while others would rather not be around it. There are plenty of fun mocktails you can make for the event.
Baby shower do’s and don’ts
DO: Include all of the necessary details on the invitation: where, when, directions. You might also want to include a list of gift ideas for new parents.
DON’T: Bring children, unless explicitly invited. Adult female visitors and the expectant mother are the only people invited to the majority of baby showers. Attending a baby shower with children is out of the ordinary because the event should be centered around the mother-to-be. There is nothing wrong with inviting children if the mother-to-be so desires. But it is never a good idea to show up with uninvited children!
DO: Make a guest book. The family will cherish a thoughtful record of the event for years to come. Gather quotes and images from your guests before the shower, so you may use them in the guest book. As an alternative, have everyone write birthday wishes for the baby and put them in a special box that the child can draw out at each birthday.
DON’T: Force people to join in games. While games can be a huge part of a baby shower, some guests may not feel confident joining in or feel embarrassed. If this is the case, do not force anyone to join in and make them feel uncomfortable.
DO: Be sensitive. A new baby’s arrival can evoke intense emotions in some attendees, which may seem obvious. The invitation process and the party itself should be sensitive to friends who have had miscarriages or are having difficulty conceiving. There is no need to be a paragon of caution, but you should make sure she is comfortable engaging and do not be judgmental if she declines.