Post # 1
My Maid/Matron of Honor is pregnant, which is pretty super awesome. Her little boy is due in August, and she and her husband are over the moon with excitement.
A few months ago, after she told me she was expecting, I told her that I would love to throw her a baby shower. She gratefully accepted, and it sounds now like it’s going to happen in mid-July.
There’s only one problem… I’ve only ever been to one baby shower before, and I don’t know what I’m doing! She wants to know how many people she should have on her guest list, and I don’t know what to tell her. What’s average?
I know the very basics: I’ll send out invitations (electronic or traditional? What’s normal these days?), have food and drinks for all the guests (snacks, right? Not a meal? And what about the drinks… Since the guest of honor obviously can’t have any alcohol, is it improper for me to provide it for everyone else?), and basically be a good host so we can shower my friend with gifts, but I really have NO IDEA about the details. That’s where you ladies come in. HELP!
I would really love some basic information. Please just tell me about the usual sorts of baby showers you’ve been to. How big were they? What sorts of refreshments were there? What did you do? Were they co-ed or just ladies? What were some particularly cute or memorable things you’ve seen done before? What are some particularly terrible things you’ve seen done before that you would recommend I DON’T do?
Please note that the general age at this shower will probably be a bit younger. My friend comes from a HUGE family, so her five sisters are throwing her another shower for their whole family. The shower I throw will be more for her friends and people our age.
Alright, ladies. Inspire me! Go!
Post # 4
I’ve been to a variety of baby showers and I’ve usually had a meal, not just apps, unless they’re heavy apps. It’s usually a lunch-type affair. I’ve been to a BBQ (coed), light Mexican lunch (somewhat coed) and light lunch/tea party at a restaurant (ladies only). We’re not talking 3 courses, but there should be lunch-type food. The coed BBQ one I attended had at least 40+ people there as they both came from HUGE families, but I’ve been to small parties with about 10 people or so. It’s up to you and your budget. Plus, if her mother or her husband’s mother (or anyone else) are throwing parties, then your guest list can shrink down so people aren’t stuck attending all four showers.
As far as alcohol is concerned, it’s up to you. The coed ones I’ve attended have had alcohol because they were more like a party/BBQ, but it’s not necessary and you certainly don’t need to have a ton of alcohol since they’re usually daytime affairs. At the ladies only ones, they were mostly alcohol-free – juice, sodas, punch, sparkling cider, etc.
There usually are games (you can Google baby shower games) but they’re not totally necessary IMO. Some ladies love games, some hate them. I personally wouldn’t miss them but I know some people expect them.
The schedule usually looks like this:
Guests arrive. Everyone mingles. Food is served (if it’s not a cocktail party-type atmosphere). Everyone eats. Sometimes there’s cake. Gifts are opened. Guests can now go home. You can insert games either before the food or after (and pre-dessert/cake, if available).
Otherwise, you can make it more of a casual BBQ-type thing without a set schedule and the couple can still open gifts later on or you can have a gift table.
Post # 5
I’ve been to small ones and larger ones! It all depends on how many family/friends she wants to invite. My FI’s family is HUGE so when they have a baby shower, they actually rent a hall to accommodate everyone! lol
I think you’re on the right track! Sometimes games are incorporated – one I went to, everyone was given 1 bead necklace and you couldn’t use the word “baby”. If you did, whoever heard you got the necklace. Whoever had the most at the end won a little gift 🙂
I’ve never been to one with alcoholic beverages. It’s always been punch, water, coffee. Also, they usually have a cake 🙂
Good luck!! 🙂
Post # 6
I just talked to my friend, and she says she’d like to keep it to the ladies only, so that answers that question. Thank you, @lilbluebird: and @Emma20130601: for weighing in. The basic schedule, especially, should be useful.
I did know that I need to have a cake. I’m a little bit nervous because this friend is an AMAZING baker, and she made the most beautiful cake in the entire world for my bridal shower. I already know the cake I have for her won’t measure up, though I’ll certainly try!
I think maybe I’ll find a recipe for an appropriate “cocktail” but keep it alcohol-free. That way, everyone can still have special yummy drinks, but they’ll be safe for the baby.
Can anyone else tell me more about food? I’m feeling a bit more nervous about having to provide a full meal for everyone, though I’m sure I can do it if I have to.
Post # 7
@GreenEyedMoon: Food doesn’t have to be lavish or 5-star Michelin. Most like to serve what the mom-to-be likes since it’s technically a celebration for her. Otherwise, it can fit a specific theme. For example, petit fours, scones and tea sandwiches for a tea party-themed shower. Another option is to do baby-themed food since it’s a baby shower. This would include tiny vegetables (e.g. cherry tomatoes, baby carrots, baby bell peppers), pigs-in-a-blanket, and mini cupcakes.
I think a full meal for everyone can be pretty easy and basic. For example, at one shower I attended with a full meal, it was Mexican food and the hostess served Mexican rice, beans, salsa, gaucamole, chips, and chicken enchiladas. If you are concerned, you can ask attendees for dietary restrictions. I’m guessing it’ll end up being meatfree as the only major dietary restriction and maybe gluten-free.
Generally speaking, most people are not obssessing about the food at a shower. It really is about the mom-to-be.
Post # 8
@lilbluebird: I was actually thinking a tea party thing could be really cute, but since the mommy-to-be can’t drink caffeine, I thought that might be a bust, too. :-
Post # 9
@GreenEyedMoon: Not all tea has caffeine in it. The herbal teas and rooibos teas are caffeine-free. Just check on the variety of herbal tea because depending on what it is, it’s not recommended for PG women because of the herb’s other properties. You can also serve lemonade and sparkling juices, but then have tea party-related food. Coming from a PG woman, I wouldn’t mind that at all. I also don’t mind being around people consuming beverages I can’t consume (for example, Darling Husband has green tea every day around me and I’ve gone out with friends and they all had wine) as long as they are tasty options I can consume.
Post # 10
Bump! Can anyone else share their experience or inspire me with any cute ideas?