Thursday, August 26, 2010

Ten Tips for Planning a Unique Baby Shower

Baby? Did someone say BABY?

No mom, I am not pregnant . . . as much as you might wish otherwise.  We are done with babies in this house.  That doesn't mean I don't oooh and aaaah over every pregnant woman and new baby I see though.  In fact, every time a friend tells me that she's pregnant or posts a picture of her chubby faced cherub on her facebook wall, I get a small tinge of jealousy.  Baby's are sweet, innocent, and pure joy - even if you don't realize it when they are crying at all hours of the night.  These precious bundles of joy deserve a party to celebrate them that is as special and unique as each one of them is.  That is why the baby shower is very important.  How does one plan a baby shower that is fun and unique?  Here is where I'd start.
  1. Theme - Every party deserves a theme.  A baby shower is no exception.  Do you know if it is a girl or boy?  Do you know what the nursery theme is going to be?  Do you know that the baby was conceived in Hawaii or that the mom has had a name picked out since she was 8 years old?  There has to be something special about this baby (even before it is born).  Find something unique in this birth and center your party around it. 
  2. Invitations - Select invitations that reflect the theme.  Perhaps include a lovely ultrasound picture.  If your couple is up for humor, use one of those sites that merge two faces to create a baby and include that on the invite.  The sky is the limit when it comes to an invite.  Just be creative.  If you need some ideas, you can check out TinyPrints Shower Invitations here.
  3. Location - Not all showers need to be in a hall or in a private room in a restaurant.  Have a shower in the park, at a bowling alley, or someplace special.  You can have it at the place where mom and dad met, got married, or celebrated another special occasion.
  4. Games - Some people love games and other people hate them.  If you want to have a unique shower, search for uncommon games and activities. 
  5. Advice - Every past and future mother wants to give advice.  Allow them to give it at the baby shower.  Give each person an index card where they can write their best serious, humorous, and beneficial advice.  The mom-to-be might want to ignore it, but when she hasn't slept in 2 weeks, she might just pull it out and she if there are any pieces of useful information anywhere.  No matter how many times you've heard it, when you're sleep deprived you won't remember the most basic advice.
  6. Food - Perhaps you can have all child-friendly finger food.  Or maybe you want to go with foods that the mom-to-be is sure to miss after junior arrives.  If you have a good theme, you can do foods to reflect it. 
  7. Decorations - Have kids of various ages help with the decorations.  You have to get used to child-proofing and kid-friendly decor sooner or later.  Why not start now?
  8. Gifts - Instead of the traditional registry, set up a website where everyone can go to post a gift that they're bringing that they could not live without when they had kids (to prevent duplicates).   If it is something small, have everyone supplement with a gift card to a specific store.  That way, the mom can get what she wants and each person can bring something unique.
  9. Kiddos - Why is it that baby showers are almost always child-free?  Are we trying to avoid scaring the new mother with what she can expect shortly.  I say that if you want to have a truly unique shower allow the kids to come.  
  10. Thank yous - While not directly related to the planning, I think that a unique thank you is one that is personal and specific to the gift.  I like to include a picture of the mom-to-be with the gift and/or gift giver.  Also, if the gift is one that can be used shortly after the baby is born, wait and include a picture of the baby wearing the outfit or using the item.  People really like to know that their gift was appreciated and used.
*Disclaimer - I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Tiny Prints blogging program, making me eligible to get a Tiny Prints gift code worth $50, plus 25 FREE Tiny Prints greeting cards—a total gift value of $149.75! For more information on how you can participate, click here.


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