Start with a fun theme and your creative mind will take off like a rocket. Soon you'll find yourself heading for a party store or surfing the Internet for invitations, party favors, decorations and clever games that support the theme.
One idea is to use a 'diaper cake' and let the theme evolve from that. Obviously, these aren't real cakes, since the bottom layer is made from disposable diapers and they contain fun baby gifts. But to help with the party budget, a diaper cake will do double duty as the centerpiece and your shower gift.
There are so many choices from pink frilly cakes for baby girls, a blue 'macho' theme for baby boys and others in neutral colors if the parents want the sex of their baby to be a surprise. Character cakes cover the gamut from children's movie and TV characters to teddy bears and frogs. There are even cakes for twins and triplets. What fun!
But before getting too carried away with a theme, unless this is a surprise shower, have lunch with the mommy-to-be to get her input for the guest list and gifts she could really use. It's okay to keep the theme a secret unless she offers specific ideas. If it is a surprise shower, contact the family for suggestions. The important thing to keep in mind is that this will be baby's first party so make it special!
Is this going to be a 'girls only' party or would the mom prefer a couples shower? This is where the budget begins to evolve. The location may be dictated by the guest list as well as the menu, type of games and party favors. For a couples shower, it may be a more traditional type of party without the games and prizes. However, a clever theme will still make the event more festive.
Once the guest list is set, be sure to get addresses, phone numbers and email addresses. There are online invitation services that can make it easy to send invitations and receive an RSVP. Plus, the design of the invitation offers a creative outlet to 'let the theme out of the bag.'
If traditional invitations are sent by mail, be sure to include all contact information including your email and the complete address of the shower location. Many people use the Internet to map locations, so including the zip code is important.
Baby showers are typically held at the home of the host. If another location is preferred, try to choose one that's easy to find and convenient to as many guests as possible. The goal is to have everyone come and share this special occasion.
Baby showers are typically held about six weeks before the baby's due date. However, some moms are choosing to have the party after the baby is born. When selecting the time, rely on the guest list. If most people work, an evening or weekend shower is best. For guests who have to travel, consider an early afternoon weekend date.
When planning the menu, find ways to have it reflect the theme. The food doesn't have to be elaborate but have enough variety to accommodate those who may have special dietary needs. Keep it simple enough so that everything can be prepared ahead so you can enjoy your guests, too. Remember - the purpose for the party is to celebrate the mom and dad to be.'
Even if the shower is for couples, include at least one fun game. Here's an idea, but it will require the help of a couple of friends. Go to a dollar store and buy items such as soaps, candles, tools, etc. Wrap each one in tissue and place them in a basket. If it's a couples shower, have separate baskets for girl gifts and guy gifts.
At the shower when it's time for the mom-to-be to open gifts, announce to your guests that a timer will go off every 7 minutes and the person's gift being opened at that time will get to select a gift from the basket. You'll need one friend to set the timer and another to walk around with the basket(s). Since everyone loves to win, they will all pay attention to the gifts being opened. There's nothing worse than to have everyone lose interest, and the mom finds herself opening gifts with no 'oohs and ahhs.'
Showering the expectant Mom (and Dad) with friendship and love is the real purpose of a baby shower. Your shower will be a big success if they are the center of attention and the room is filled with laughter and fun.
www.tnchine.comchaussures pumaAir Max France Janet Winter delights in providing great resources for parents and unique gifts for baby showers, newborns and toddlers, and first birthdays at WelcomeBabyGifts.com. She is a web designer, travel agent, and writer on many topics including babies, wild birds and dogs.