Showered with Mom-to-Be Merriment
Your friend's having a baby. What an exciting time for her! You, the best buddy, have a little work ahead, however. You need to gather together her friends and family for a baby shower. You need to determine who to invite, pick out some great invitations, choose the location, the date and time, the decorations, refreshments and, of course, determine what you're going to do for fun while celebrating the birth of your buds first wee one.
Generally, you don't need to go out and rent a hall for a baby shower. You probably have invited 10-20 of the mother-to-be's closest friends and surely you, or someone else, can accommodate the group in your home.
The step-by-step process for baby shower planning:
- At least two months prior to baby shower day make your list of whom you're going to invite.
- Determine your party theme.
- Buy or create and then mail out the invitations.
- Plan the decorations, refreshments and games.
- Enjoy your party.
There are no rights or wrongs in creating a baby shower theme. The idea is to bestow baby-to-be bounty on mom and to have fun. You might choose a theme around something that the mom-to-be is especially interested in, such as tennis or classical music. Perhaps the baby's room is already decorated in a Raggedy Ann and Andy motif. There is your theme!
Let's take the aforementioned Raggedy Ann and Andy as an example. You could decorate with new or used Raggedy dolls. You could give miniature dolls as game prizes, provide Raggedy Ann and Andy cookies or cake as refreshments, and let balloons that look like these two beloved characters run rampant.
Wouldn't it be fun, too, if you costumed yourself to look like Raggedy Ann, and found a cohort to dress up as Raggedy Andy!
While you can, of course, get on the phone and simply call everyone, or even e-mail the invitations, it's probably best to mail out formal invitations. An attractive invitation may become a keepsake for those close to the expectant mother.
While there are certainly a myriad number of local places to purchase pre-packaged greeting cards, such as Hallmark stores, Kmart, Wal-Mart and the like, it may be difficult to find cards consistent with any theme you've chosen for the baby shower.
If you or your helper is creative, however, you could write and design the invitations yourself. Plenty of low cost greeting card software is available. Greeting Card Factory, at $29.95, for example, provides 5000 ready-made cards, 25,000 graphics to create your own customized card, 3400 already-prepared sentimental messages and more than 300 fonts. You can search online for greeting card software or make a quick trip to Office Max, Staples or similar suppliers and browse their many options.
Your invitations should include the following:
- Who the party is for (and don't forget to name dad too).
- Your name as host, and your phone number for directions.
- Your address.
- The day, date and time of the baby shower.
- The theme of the party.
- RSVP card with self-addressed stamped envelope.
- Do give guidance on dress - just a simple, "formal attire," "casual attire," "pool party," or "costumes welcome."
- You might even make gift suggestions. If, however, you have a theme, you could just suggest that theme-related gifts would be fun and let your guests use their imagination.
Don't forget to mail those invitations out early - at least six weeks ahead of time is the rule of thumb.