August 27, 2015
You’ve just heard the wonderful news! Your best friend, sister or cousin is pregnant and ecstatic with happiness! Since you’re so close, it’s only natural that you throw her a baby shower... but where to start? Here’s what you need to know to throw the baby shower of the year!
The Guest List: Who and How
You don’t want to leave anyone out, whether friends, family or colleagues. The best way to make sure you don’t forget anyone is to ask the future mommy who she wants at her special day. Of course, if the event is a surprise, you’ll have to get your info elsewhere (her mother, boyfriend or siblings could be valuable allies). Once your guest list is complete, gather up everyone’s contact information, and you’re ready to go!
Something to consider! Although baby showers are traditionally exclusive to women, a number of men are become more and more involved during the pregnancy, so you might want to check with the expecting father if he’d like to attend and which male relatives or family friends should be on the guest list.
Finally, keep in mind that even if all the guests know the parents, it’s likely they don’t all each other. Be sure to include an ice breaker game in your baby shower game list to help everyone mingle and become comfortable!
The Invites: Make Sure You Reach Everyone
One of the best ways to reach many people at once is by email or through Facebook; nowadays, most people are familiar with these technologies and creating an event or a page on your social networks makes for a great reminder when you reach the day of the event! There are, however, a few things to watch out for. First, remember that some people might not have access to this kind of technology, be sure to reach them some other way. Secondly, remember to make your page private! If it’s a surprise, you don’t want the mother-to-be to knowing about your plans.
When it comes to the invitation itself, you should include the following information: when and where the event will take place, the expectant parents’ names and the baby’s gender (if it’s known) are all very important. Also, you can avoid a number of pet peeves by adding your personal contact information to the invitation: questions answered and problems solved are what we like best!
The Keys to Success: Theme, Food and Time!
Baby showers come in many forms: you can go for a brunch or afternoon tea party (with colourful cupcakes by the dozen), or maybe make an evening get together where everyone brings their favourite snacks and non-alcoholic beverages. Really, it all comes down to what you prefer and what you think the mother-to-be will enjoy the most.
Having a hard time coming up with original ideas? Pinterest is a great resource to discover what others have tried and will definitely give you inspiration you need to throw the amazing party you want for your friend!
Finding the Perfect Location
Traditionally, the baby shower is thrown at the organizer’s house. However, planner doesn’t necessarily have to mean hostess. The event can also take place in a restaurant, a rented room, at the mother-to-be’s parents’ house… you could even have an outdoor party or try something more unconventional if the shoe fits! Pretty much anything is possible, but keep in mind that a location closer to where most of the guests live means more people who will show up.
Games: Baby Shower Crowd Pleasers
When it comes to games, you’ve got a large range to choose from. But let’s face it, some are always more entertaining than others; here a few of the more popular ones:
- Guess the Baby
When you send out the invitations, make sure to ask all your guests to bring a picture of them as babies. As everyone arrives, number all the pictures and pin them to a wall: throughout the event, make everyone guess who the baby in the pictures is. The one with the most correct matches wins. This game creates a good opportunity to share some hilarious childhood stories and good memories!
- Dirty Diapers
Surely, the pictures you will get from this game will be the best. First, melt different brands of candy (and of different consistency too) in a few diapers. The guests (including the future mom) must try to identify the brand of chocolate by smelling the “poo”; the most daring might even lick it! The guest who can name the most brands wins!
- Guess the Baby Food
A classic game for a baby shower is the “Guess the Baby Food” game and it’s a simple one! Gather a few baby food jars with different flavours and hand all of the players a sample of each jar. Again, the one who is able to identify the most flavours wins a prize.
- Diaper Derby
Divide your guests in teams and give hand each of them a roll of toilet paper. Using nothing else but this roll, all teams must fashion a diaper on one of their teammates. Again, this game makes for some great pictures, with the giant “babies” and their artistic diapers!
Here are some links for more baby shower game ideas:
While these games can be a lot of fun, you should once again check with the future mother if she wants games during her baby shower. The last thing you want is to make her uncomfortable by playing games she doesn’t want to play! Follow your instincts: you know her well; you’ll think of other activities to make sure she enjoys her special day!
Gifts, a Nice Thought for Baby and Mommy
Buying a gift you’re sure the parents will like isn’t always an easy task. If you can, ask the parents what they want or need instead of guessing! But the best bet is to have future mommy create a baby registry with Babies"R"Us or another store offering this service. This is a great tool and makes gift shopping easy for guests, in addition to ensuring the same gift isn’t bought twice!
It’s also quite common to see the guests go for a group gift. It’s pretty straightforward, appoint someone to buy the gift and another to collect everyone’s money, and that’s it! Now the question is, what could you give? A good group gift is usually an essential item: a stroller, a playpen, a crib, a more expensive toy, a diaper bag filled with baby products. You could even pack a hospital suitcase with new clothes and products for the big day. As an original alternative, you could also decorate a large jar and ask for donations to set up a registered education savings plan (RESP) for baby.
Although you can’t go wrong with baby gifts, mommy shouldn’t get left out. After all, she’s doing all the heavy lifting; so it’s important to take care of her too! Flowers are always nice or a gift card from her favourite store so she can treat herself. It doesn’t have to be extravagant, but a small gesture to show that you care is always appreciated.
In the end though, what’s most important when planning a baby shower is to have fun and share in the joy of the future parents. Sometimes, the simplest events are the most memorable ones, so you don’t have to overdo things!
Enjoy your baby shower!
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