Etiquette Hell

Hostesses With The Mostest => Entertaining and Hospitality => Topic started by: orange on January 17, 2007, 10:12:48 AM

Title: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: orange on January 17, 2007, 10:12:48 AM
Me and a couple of girlfriends are planning to throw a baby shower for a very close friend in April.
None of us ever threw one before (most of us are still at a stage when babies kinda scare us ;D), so any feed backs from you guys would be awesome.

We're planning to either have brunch at some restaurant or throw the shower at a friends house.
From anyones experience, which is the better way to go? Restaurant or house?

It's the mommy-to-be's second baby, and I know that she has some of the bigger things (i.e. baby carriage, car seat, crib) left over from the first baby.  We're planning to get her a bunch of baby clothes, cute blankets, baby bottles, and a large supply of diapers (not the most glamorous gift, but that's one thing less for her to worry about), so we got the presents covered more or less.  Is there anything important that we're missing?  Like some item that everyone would like to receive at their baby shower?

I know that there is a lot of time left before April, but with everyone busy with work I would like to have an  early jump on it.  We're already starting to pick up little gifts if something cute catches our eye.

My friends and I would really like to make this shower memorable, so if anyone has any suggestions please post them :)

Thanks in advance :)




Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: Sharnita on January 17, 2007, 10:35:32 AM
I'm assuming you already know that the conventional wisdomsays one shower per mommy in a lifetime and you and friends all agree to do a little shower event anyway. This does not bother me if all the guests indicate an interest/desire to buck tradition. Just know some people would not appreciate this.

A neat idea for a shower is to encourage everyone to bring their favorite kids' book with a message for new baby written on the inside cover.

We had favors for everyone - a votive holder and votive with an attached poem asking the person to light a candle and say a prayer for the new baby upon hearing of its arrival.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: CynthiaBelle on January 17, 2007, 12:25:02 PM
We're planning to either have brunch at some restaurant or throw the shower at a friends house.
From anyones experience, which is the better way to go? Restaurant or house?

From personal experience, I have a two different opinion's on them, but I'll give you both.

Restaurant: This is easier as far as clean up, preparing, etc. The only problem is that this is more expensive, and you're "locked into" certain things.

House: This is a good way for everyone to have a fun and relaxed time. Admittedly, the problem with this (or not a problem depending on how you view things.) is the fact that you are stuck with clean up, food, etc.

A few great ideas\games:

I agree with Sharmita and the kid's book idea, that's also a good way to have a guest book. Have one book and have everyone sign a different page--it'd be a nice memento.

Guess The Baby Food: 10-12 differnet jars, each with a number on the lid, and no label. Have everyone guess what's what.

"Baby" game: Everyone wears necklaces with pacifiers, has a painted clothes pin, or something of the sort. Anyone who catches you saying "baby" has to give up their item. The one at the end of the shower with the most wins a game. (Fun story, at a baby shower for a friend, (she was having a boy), we used blue old fashioned clothes pins. The woman who won the most, all but 3, made a frame out of them and gave it back to her for the Christening present!)


Babyshowers are a lot of fun!! The best advice I could give is be organized and prepared!!!

Good Luck!!!
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: orange on January 17, 2007, 01:51:39 PM

I'm assuming you already know that the conventional wisdomsays one shower per mommy in a lifetime and you and friends all agree to do a little shower event anyway.

She never had a shower for the first baby.  At that time she just moved to a new country and didn't really know anyone.
Absolutely looove the idea with the book. thank you!

CynthiaBelle thank you for all the ideas for the games, everyone will love those.

Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: moongirl105 on January 19, 2007, 02:42:12 PM
Another great game is Baby Gift Bingo.  This was played at my shower last month.

I've seen this done two ways:
1.  Make up a blank bingo card with a free space, and during the lunch/appetizer/socializing portion of the event, have participants fill in the spaces with the names of gifts they think the new mom is going to receive.  When gifts are being opened, participants mark on their cards which gifts were revealed, and the first one to Bingo gets a prize.
2.  Print out pictures of the mother's registry items (I've also seen this done for a bridal shower) and paste them in various positions on bingo cards.  The above procedure during the gift opening applies here.

This was a great game because it really gets participants involved in the gift opening.  It was neat when I opened up a package of diapers, for instance, that shouts of excitement would go up around the room.  The cool thing was, the hostess of the shower had several prizes to give out, so more than one person was eligible to win.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: lolane on January 19, 2007, 05:19:14 PM
I prefer a private home over a restaurant, both as a guest and a hostess. As a hostess, you do have to prepare and cleanup in a home, but you have more control over cost. If you go to a restaurant, most people will not order some crazy expensive item, and two glasses of wine, but their is a chance someone will. As a guest, private homes seem more relaxed, people can be as loud as they want to and not have to worry about disturbing other patrons.

As far as games:

I like the game where everyone starts with a clothespin clipped onto them (there shirt or purse or something). The game goes that you cannot cross any part of your body - hands, feet, legs, fingers... - if someone catches you then they get to take your clothes pin and the person with most pins by the end of the shower wins. Alternately I've seen it played where you can't say a certain common baby-related word. Like "baby" and if you do, the person that catches you gets your pin.

Another game I like is the one where there are a list of items that are commonly found in women's purses (some baby related or not) and the woman with the most items wins. The list would include things like:

kleenex, nail file, safety pin, hand sanitizer, lotion etc.

Fianlly, what ever you do, please don't play the "game" where everyone addresses their own TY note envelope and then have a raffle where you pick one of the envelopes and give the "winner" and prize.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: dietcokeofevil on January 21, 2007, 10:37:49 PM
I prefer to have it in my own home.  You can do things on your own schedule.  I typically schedule showers for mid-afternoon.  That way I only need to serve appetizers and cake rather than a full meal.

For games: I always try to have a mix of games....some that people could win by playing and some that could be won just by chance.  Also try to take into account the people attending.  I tend to have games that require being outgoing and moving around a lot only when I know the people will participate and have a good time.  The chance type of games that I've done before include marking one plate or cup, or having a timer go off during the present opening and whomever's present is being opened wins.  Participation type games included baby food tasting, memory games where you place a bunch of baby items on a tray and let everyone look at it for a minute before trying to list all the items, also played a game where one baby item was selected for each letter of the mothers name,  the items were placed in paper bags and the guests had to guess what each item was just by feel.

I've played bingo with a lot of success, but one trick that I did was to pass around a bag of Hershey's kisses and ask everyone to grab some to use as markers.  Then as we went around the room everyone had to introduce themselves and tell us something about themselves for each kiss that they had taken.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: nutraxfornerves on January 22, 2007, 12:27:57 PM
Since you are new to this, let me make one comment about going to a restaurant that you may not be familiar with. You are hosting the shower. This means that the guests are indeed guests and are not expected to pay. If you have the shower at a restaurant, you and your girlfriends need to be ready to pay the restaurant bill. You cannot ask the guests to pay for their own meals.

If you have the shower at a home, then you will still provide the food, favors, and anything else, but you may find it much less expensive than the restaurant. Again, you cannot ask guests to bring food or decorations, but you can respond appropriately to the guest who offers to bring something. "Thank you, but it's all taken care of. Really, we want you to be a guest. You are very kind, but we got it down...Well, (said reluctantly) If you really insist, but, honest, it's not necessary. Thank you so much."  You will have to judge if the person is really sincere about bringing something and will be offended not to contribute, or if they are offering because they feel it's the right thing to do.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: CinHough on January 23, 2007, 12:54:01 PM
I agree with having the shower at someone's home makes it feel a little more personal as well as not having to worry about the volume level.

One thing that was done when I had my first child (9 years ago), each guest was asked if they wanted to participate in a "birthday wish shower" for my daughter.  No one was expected to participate if they didn't want to, however, everyone that came (and a few who were unable) thought it was a wonderful idea and did their part.  They were each assigned a "birthday" and could pick out a special card or write a letter or special memory for my daughter.  They were all given to me to keep and each year on my daughters' birthday, she gets to open a "special" birthday wish from someone who attended her baby shower.  It's been wonderful ~ especially because some of the guests really made it special by writing about special memories they had of myself at that age (by some of my childhood friends) or what that year was like for them or because some of those people have passed away and it's such a great gift to have from them.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: DottyG on January 25, 2007, 05:16:55 PM
Love the birthday wish shower idea.  And, I really love the giving books shower idea!

OP, the other poster was right in that you're paying for this - not the guests.  So, judge what you do accordingly.

And, please don't play cruel or icky games.  This includes anything about the mother-to-be's size (such as "pull out how much toilet paper you think it'd take to go around her") or dirty diaper games (anything involving things going into diapers is just gross - don't go there).

Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: Phoebe on January 27, 2007, 11:01:25 AM
I just have a teeny thing to add but it's something I've done for some time now.  For every baby shower I've helped plan/host, I made and decorated the cake.  Nothing out of the ordinary, the usual icing flowers and such, but for the cake itself I divide the batter into 2 bowls, tint one blue and the other pink, and then swirl them together in the baking pan for a marble effect.  It comes out really pretty.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: DottyG on January 27, 2007, 02:31:34 PM
I just have a teeny thing to add but it's something I've done for some time now.  For every baby shower I've helped plan/host, I made and decorated the cake.  Nothing out of the ordinary, the usual icing flowers and such, but for the cake itself I divide the batter into 2 bowls, tint one blue and the other pink, and then swirl them together in the baking pan for a marble effect.  It comes out really pretty.

What a cool idea!  Thanks for sharing it.  Is there a way to post a picture of one here?

Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: Phoebe on January 27, 2007, 02:44:22 PM

What a cool idea!  Thanks for sharing it.  Is there a way to post a picture of one here?



Thanks! 
I wish I had a photo, but unfortunately I don't.  I've only recently started taking pics of the cakes I do.  I'll be sure to get one the next time I make one of these.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: think4yourself on January 30, 2007, 02:15:01 PM
I have a suggestion for a baby shower game that was really popular at the shower we put together. Each guest was given to the opportunity to paint a onesie. We supplied fabric paint and a bunch of white onesies (and a few bibs) and guests could paint whatever they wanted on it. Then the mom-and-dad-to-be took home the personalized onesies. Thus, fun and practical.  :)

We ended up with quite a variety of pictures - a cute rat, a seahorse, the University of Michigan logo, blocks, balloons, one that said Super Max (the baby's name), and a few others. It was very enjoyable, and each picture was unique and personal.
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: DottyG on January 30, 2007, 02:35:36 PM
I have a suggestion for a baby shower game that was really popular at the shower we put together. Each guest was given to the opportunity to paint a onesie. We supplied fabric paint and a bunch of white onesies (and a few bibs) and guests could paint whatever they wanted on it. Then the mom-and-dad-to-be took home the personalized onesies. Thus, fun and practical.  :)

We ended up with quite a variety of pictures - a cute rat, a seahorse, the University of Michigan logo, blocks, balloons, one that said Super Max (the baby's name), and a few others. It was very enjoyable, and each picture was unique and personal.

Ok, that's it.  I'm finding a pregnant lady and throwing her a shower.  I have to try out some of these great ideas! :D

Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: IndianInlaw on January 30, 2007, 06:08:09 PM
Never mind baby blankets, get sheets for the crib!  You can never have enough sheets, especially when the baby is in puking mode.

If she puts on a mattress cover and a sheet, and another mattress cover and sheet, she can whip off the top layer in the middle of the night and be done with it.

Also, one of those mesh zipper bags to launder small items in...Heaven knows, she'll have enough small items.

You can even toss in some socks, to "baby" up the gift.

Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: Peaches737 on January 30, 2007, 07:49:50 PM
"One thing that was done when I had my first child (9 years ago), each guest was asked if they wanted to participate in a "birthday wish shower" for my daughter. "

That is awesome.  My cousin is having her third child, so an auntie of mine is throwing a "baby sprinkle".  (Not a shower, per se, because it is her third child.)  It is an excuse for all of the aunties and cousins to get together for dinner.  We will all do a token gift, but know it isn't a gift grab.

She was so thrilled about the birthday wishes.  I asked her (just now) how many people were coming, and she said, 14, but the 5 and 8 year old are two of them.  We're going to give them years five and eight to give advice.  (The 8 year old can help the five year old, and I think it will make them feel terribly grown up, to be giving advice)

What a great idea!  Much classier than the poopy diaper games, and something that can be saved.

Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: orange on April 04, 2007, 10:29:03 PM
Thanks for all the suggestions!
There are so many now, that the shower is going to have to last for a long time so that we can try everything ;D
We decided to throw the baby shower at a friends house (she suggested it herself).
There are 5 of us involved in the shower and everyone who is attending volunteered to pitch in with whatever they can (Aaaw love my friends).
Also, the shower is going to happen a bit later, because the mommy-to-be wants to be "really pregnant" for it, so that gives us even more time to prepare.

I just found out that another one of my friends is also expecting, so now there is another baby shower coming up.  Between the 2 baby showers and 2 weddings that I'm invited to (+2 bachlorette parties), I think I'm going to be pretty broke soon :)

Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: GlindaBunny on April 07, 2007, 07:29:14 PM
You know what food I really like for parties that doesn't break the bank?  Sandwiches.

I like to buy a loaf of french or italian bread (or several, depending on how many will be there) and add typical sandwich stuff:  sliced turkey, avocado, baby spinach, sliced cheese, etc.  You can always add some extra flavor by including fresh herbs (like fresh basil in an italian sandwich).  After that, just slice into several sandwiches.  The bread itself costs about a dollar per loaf at the stores around here and serves several.  You can adjust the cost depending on what ingredients you use.

Maybe I'm just a turkey provolone avocado junkie.

I also love a spring salad.  Spring greens with a couple handfuls of toasted nuts (walnuts, pecans, pine nuts, whatever) and some sliced strawberries or apples with a nice vinaigrette seems to work well.  Cheese like shredded (not grated) parmesan or crumbled feta is optional.

Cheap drink?  Frozen raspberry or strawberry lemonade with sprite (or store brand lemon lime soda).

Homemade white cupcakes taste more refreshing with a bit of lime curd (store bought or homemade) or a slice of strawberry on top of vanilla frosting.

I just love spring (and the menus that coincide).
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: sandy on April 08, 2007, 07:02:58 PM
I prefer baby showers at a home, it has more of a personal touch to it, is more comfortable, can relax on teh couch, or move around, not worry about cost, etc. if you can do it in a home. I would avoid having it at an apartment if possible, if that applies. Poeple have to find parking, and it can be a real hassle, climbing stairs, which I wouldnt recommend for people coming and going with gifts, esp a pregnant lady. A nice comfortable home where everyone can relax and take their time, and not worry about having to split up the bill i think is best. Restaurants can be fun, however, no clean up worry, but theres' the bill to worry about, it can be awkward. I have to say i did go to one nice shower at a restaurant, but the parents were wealthy (they threw their own shower..) so it was a very nice restaurant, was fun being waited on hand and foot by the wait staff, and t hey prepaid the bill for everyone, so that wasn't an issue
Title: Re: Throwing a baby shower
Post by: Suze on April 08, 2007, 08:28:06 PM

but the parents were wealthy (they threw their own shower..)

HUH?

if you are "wealthy" WHY do you need to throw your OWN baby shower?

can't you just buy what you want?