Mother, aunty, cousin, sister, in-law, best friend…are you planning a baby shower for someone special?? Here are some useful ideas for a great baby shower.
A baby shower is meant to be a fun-filled gathering where the mummy-to-be is ‘showered’ with gifts and good memories with close family and friends. Casual tea with the girls or a full blown over-the-top catered party is perfectly in order as long as the expectant mum is happy.
Sometimes less is more, as it can all be very overwhelming, especially if you’re a first time mum and you haven’t a clue what to do with the baby monitor or that fancy-looking thermometer, never mind all the blankets, clothes and other baby paraphernalia you’ve received.
First things first, you need to decide on the guest list and your budget. This will give you a good indication of how many people you are expecting to attend and what kind of baby shower you’re planning.
A simple pink or blue party is great if you know the sex of the baby or you can really get carried away with some very exciting themes using various cartoon characters, teddy bears or farm animals to name a few. I’ve even heard of a “Go Green” party where everything was eco-friendly for babies, organic blankets and clothing, BPA-free bottles and teethers, toweling nappies, organic shampoo, other baby products and even planting a tree for your new arrival. Stay away from balloons, streamers and paper plates – not very eco-friendly and rather decorate your venue with lots of flowers, pot plants and anything ‘green’, use cutlery and crockery, gift wrap presents in baby blankets and e-mail invitations to save paper. You’ll be surprised at how creative your guests can be, so do let them know what the theme is.
The best time to have the baby shower is approximately 4 – 8 weeks before the estimated due date. If you leave it till the very end, the expectant mummy may not feel like doing much and you never know when baby will make an appearance.
Your budget and time of day will help determine your menu. You can keep it simple with light snacks or lasagna and salad for lunch is also bound to be a success. Or how about a braai! Invite the men over and get them to help with the food.
Welcoming all the guests is a good ice-breaker and perhaps the expectant mum or host would like to say a few words. Once everyone has had a drink and some food it is a good idea to perhaps play a few games or present a slide show of the expectant mummy and daddy-to-be, include pictures from when they were a baby, their childhood, wedding photos, pregnancy photos etc.
Here are a few suggestions for various games, you don’t have to play them all, pick two or three games which will best suit your crowd.
Games to Play
Pin the Sperm on the Egg – same idea as Pin the Tail on the Donkey. Get a large photo copy of a woman’s uterus and draw an “egg”. Then draw “sperm” (looks like a tadpole), make photocopies and cut out. Write person’s name on the sperm so you’ll know who got it as close to the egg as possible.
Guess how many jelly babies in a jar – get an old jam jar or peanut butter jar and fill it up with jelly babies, make sure you know how many are in there and then everyone can take a turn to guess how many are in the jar.
Never say “Baby” – everyone gets a packet with 20 jelly babies in and every time you say “Baby” you have to eat a jelly baby, the person with the most jelly babies at the end of the party is the winner.
How many products can you name – give everyone a pen and paper and they have to list as many baby products as they can within 5 minutes. The person with the most items is the winner. This may sound easy but as you get closer to 5 minutes it starts to get quite difficult.
Baby Trivia – the host puts together a list of 20 questions relating to babies and perhaps a bit about the expectant parents, for example: ‘at what age do babies start smiling’, ‘what is meconium?, ‘name a brand of formula’ etc. and each guest must write down their answers – the person with the most correct is the winner.
Memory Game – place 20 small items on a tray and let the guests take a look at it for one minute. Take the tray away and guests must write down all the items on the tray. The person who remembers the most is the winner. Items can include, bum cream, nappy, dummy, bib etc.
Guess the Baby – tell each guest to bring a photo of themselves as a baby. Lightly write on the back of the photo a number, be sure not to damage the photo. Then hold up the baby photo for all your guests to see, it might be necessary to pass the photo around. Tell the guests the number and they must guess who the baby is. The person who gets the most correct is the winner.
Chocolate makes an excellent prize for all the winners.
If the mummy-to-be is happy to open her gifts in front of her guests then why not make a game of it. Each guest must bring a photo of themselves as a baby and attach it to the gift. The expectant mummy must guess who the baby is before she can open the present.
The host can write a list of who brought what so that it makes it easier for mummy to write her thank you notes.
Remember that the expectant mummy is probably feeling tired, uncomfortable and can’t remember the last time she saw her feet. Don’t let the party go on too long even if mummy-to-be says she ok, she’s probably being polite.
Take lots of photos to remember this special day before the new little miracle enters the world.
– Lucy Ann Monastursky