Baby Shower Rally

8 comments

Recently, there has been discussion about celebrating ‘Birth Days’ or the day that you gave birth to your child. Michelle has stirred up and circulated some wonderful ideas for helping Moms receive credit on these special days. I agree, Moms are an important part of birthdays, and do deserve recognition.

Similarly, why is it customary to throw a baby shower only for your first child? You endure the same forty or so weeks of pregnancy for all of your children, and one could argue, that second, third, and fourth pregnancies are actually harder than your first, because you are chasing around one, two or three other little ones. We should be celebrating every birth, showering mothers and pampering them for the birth of each child. Unless you are Michelle Duggar, how many times are you going to be pregnant? Not that many.

If you are a younger or middle child, you know what it is like to get hand-me-downs until you are a teenager. Over the past year I have attended baby showers for both second and fourth babies. Never once did I think, “oh, this lady is GREEDY” or “do I really have to do something for her AGAIN?” I was honored to pamper the expectant mom and to do something special for her ‘not first born’ child.

At this point I would like to disclose to all readers, that I am in fact five and a half months pregnant with my third child, and in no way does this bias the contents of this post. 

My sister-in-law, Em, is thirty-nine weeks pregnant with her first child. A few weeks ago I was fortunate enough to host a baby shower in her honor. I discovered a few helpful bits of advice that I would like to share with any other working mom(s) who are in the process of planning or attending a baby shower or thinking about throwing a baby shower:

Do NOT host it at your home: If you have children and you are a working mom, the burden of opening up your home to a gaggle of other moms is significant. Save yourself the hassle, stress and worry and have it catered at an off-site location. I have also found that in the long run this will save you money. I have thrown several large events at my home and have ended up paying more than if I would have treated everyone to brunch at a restaurant. Do yourself a favor, find another venue!

The special Mama arriving at the restaurant!

Delegate! If someone offers to help you, take them up on it. Establish a plan for the event and delegate accordingly. For Em’s shower one friend offered to do favors, one friend did decorations, and another helped me organize the guestbook. If you are a guest attending a shower, contact the host when you RSVP and offer to help, it makes a big difference.

Lovely decorations!

Choose a Theme: Themes help to make any event seem more polished. Be careful, taking a theme too far can become tacky. You have to find the right balance. Without a theme, scheme, or sense of organization, showers can seem hodge – podge or too thrown together. For this particular shower the theme was a ‘gender neutral, organic, ladies who brunch’ type of event. The color scheme was yellow and green, the favors were organic potted flowers, the decorations were organic yellow and green flowers (with a splash of purple tossed in), and the guestbook included recycled materials and a Polaroid of every guest, with a space for each guest to write a note to the expecting Mama and new baby.

Personalized guestbook with recycled materials.

Treat your guests well: It is a lot for working Moms to arrange their schedules to attend events like baby showers. There is something that is not getting done at home while they are attending the event; keep this in mind. Pamper your guests. I have found that it is the small details that make guests feel welcome. Make sure everyone is introduced to everyone else. Serve delicious and comforting food, and have a couple of options available in case someone does not like beef, seafood, French toast…etc. Prepare favors for guests to take home. All of these accommodations can be done on a budget. There are so many wonderful and cheap ideas on Etsy that guests will appreciate. At Em’s shower guests were given a potted plan and a decorated cupcake to take home in a to-go container. Guests were treated to a starter cocktail, brunch, and choice of dessert. Keep the event short and sweet. We were in and out in about two hours.

Favors!

It’s all about the Mama and Baby: Your guest of honor is the reason that everyone is coming. Make sure that you have chosen things that your guest of honor likes and will appreciate. It is her special day, and every decision should be made with her in mind. Also, keep this in mind when you are a guest attending a shower. Select a gift that you think will be helpful to the guest of honor. Sometimes I get caught up in selecting something that I want, but really, it needs to be something the new Mama will appreciate, enjoy and use. It is the expectant mom’s special day, and the most important thing is to make certain that she is happy! (But don’t forget to enjoy the day yourself; you did put in a lot of work to make it happen.)

Doesn’t this look like it was a fun day? Don’t you think every Mom deserves something special for every baby that she has? I’m not suggesting that it has to be a bank-busting, present wielding, over-the-top affair…but in my opinion EVERY Mama and EVERY baby deserves a little something special.  Spread the baby shower love!

As a side note, I have convinced our very own blogger, Patty, to let me throw her a baby shower for her new addition, Baby Boy Girard, coming September 2012. I will make sure to do a follow-up post to share the experience. 

8 comments on “Baby Shower Rally”

  1. For my second and third I opted not to have baby showers but instead my friend gave me “Blessingways.” It’s all Goddessy and wonderful. The mama to be gets pampered by her friends (massages or bellypainting or henna), each friend takes turns telling the Mama what they admire about her and what makes her strong. We sing songs, give blessings, do the bead thing for necklaces, and whatever other magical thing you can conjure. After each Blessingway I have HIGHER than a kite and infused with the LOVE of all my friends. This lasts for days and I’ve loved each one, so so much! Just an option if you don’t want a shower but still want the FUN!

  2. It looks like you did a gorgeous job, and I love the theme (especially since I was team green too)

  3. As the lucky recipient of this amazing shower (THANK YOU again Sarah and delegates!!!) I highly recommend following this advice. I can tell you that I felt so special, to not only have such great friends (and sister-in-law), but to have a shower where it seemed everyone actually enjoyed themselves. I would also like to point out that vtnative is a party planning natural and always does an amazing job on all events from bridal showers to kid’s birthdays, and girls’ nights to 40th bday parties. she rocks…so again, take the advice :)ox

  4. I was a lucky Mom because I actually did get two baby showers.

    My first baby shower I had to share with my sister because we were both expecting two months apart. I HIGHLY suggest that you discourage the “sharing” of baby showers. This day is so special for the Mom, she should be in the spotlight!

    Although we had a lovely time, I couldn’t help wishing that we each had our own baby shower. (This is the first time I’ve actually said it to anyone.) We were thrilled to be having our children so close together (and they are still close to this day…both boys) but it would have been nice to celebrate them separately.

    My second child (my daughter) was a complete surprise and came 8 years after my son. Apparently because they were so far apart in age and I of course no longer had any baby “stuff”, they decided to throw me a surprise baby shower (to go with my surprise child). It was wonderful and made a swollen, nauseous, tired, very pregnant woman feel very special.

    My point is that I agree. I think every woman should have their own special baby shower day for each child. Even if it’s one year after their first. The gifts obviously do not need to be strollers, cribs, and such expensive items as with the first (unless new ones are needed like a double stroller, etc…) But the day should be special. She’s earned it!

  5. Awesome post. When I had my second baby, my sister-in-law through me a small second baby shower which was really nice and I appreciated it.

    A friend of mine is going to be a first time mom, and I am so going to forward this article to her sister who is planning the shower. I love planning parties so I always volunteer to help. 🙂

  6. One thing that we did at a friend’s baby shower(s) was the host had a bowl of beautiful beads. While the mom was getting a friendly pedicure/massage, each person took a bead they liked and either out loud or to themselves made a wish for the mama about delivery, birth, peace, parenting, etc. It was then made into a necklace and taken to the hospital (place of birth) for the mama to use as a focal point during labor. She could look at it and recall all the beautiful wishes that people made for her. It was really wonderful and can be used for any pregnancy no matter what number baby it is.

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