Planning and organization are crucial to hosting a successful baby shower. Below are some important topics to consider when planning:
1) Who will host the shower?
The person that plans and hosts the shower can be anyone, but is usually someone who is close to the new or expecting mother. Normally, a close friend or family member will do all the preparations, but sometimes the new mother will help as well, particularly with the guest list. Sometimes a small group of friends can plan the event together.
In the event of a surprise baby shower, planning must occur more carefully and invitations should be sent out in secret. In this circumstance, people who are not as close to the new mother will be involved in acquiring supplies and getting the word out.
2) Who should be invited?
Be sure to invite all the mother's friends and family to the event. If planning a surprise party, make sure that everyone you tell helps spread the word. A close friend or family member may know most of the mother's friends, but it can also be helpful to ask co-workers and other friends to make sure that no one is left out.
Also, men are increasingly being included in these parties. An all women's shower can be different than a shower with both men and women, so the planner should consider these things as well.
If other young children will be in attendance, then make sure to plan events for them too. Not planning for children is a common oversight that adults make when planning parties of this nature. Baby shower games are a fun way for both children and adults to celebrate.
3) Where and when should the shower occur?
The party should be held at a location that is comfortable to the new mother. Oftentimes, the most common place to host a party is at a friend's or family member's home. In this case, the mother will not have to worry about cleaning up afterwards.
Sometimes, the party is hosted at the mother's place. This can be convenient as well because the mother doesn't have to go anywhere. Friends of the mother can help with the clean up afterwards.
For larger baby showers, banquet halls or other locations can be rented. Other places include parks, restaurants, catered dining rooms, or anywhere else that might be appropriate. It is okay to plan things differently as long as the mother and everyone else has a good time.
Most baby showers occur several weeks before the baby is due. Sometimes showers occur after the baby is born, which allows the guest to see the new baby. When to have the baby shower is entirely based on the preferences of the host and the mother.
Most showers occur on the weekends. Saturday is a popular day for these parties. They can occur in the afternoon or evening, depending on various factors, like people's schedules and how much you want to spend. Generally, dinner parties are more expensive than hosting lunch.
4) What activites should be planned?
There are many games and activities that can be planned in advance to make a baby shower memorable. Baby themed games are a fun way for everyone to celebrate a new baby. Do a search for "baby shower games" on the internet and you will find many games, some of which you can purchase and some that are free.
A short speech of congratulations is also a nice surprise for the new mother. If such a speech occurs, it is usually from a close friend or family member. A good time for congratulations is before eating lunch or dinner.
Finally, make some time before, between, and after events for everyone to mingle with the new or expecting mom.
5) What kind of food is appropriate?
The food at the party does not necessarily have to be baby-themed, although that can be a nice touch. The most common baby-themed food is baby shower diaper cake. Your local bakery can also make other items like cookies and pastries in the shape of baby blocks, pacifiers, rubber ducks, and other baby items. Or you can make them yourself. Most importantly, make sure to pick food that everyone will enjoy.
If you are hiring a caterer, then be sure to ask them about their ideas and experiences with baby showers. They may have some creative ideas that you may not have thought about.
6) Decorations and party favors.
Your local party supply store will probably have plenty of decorations for your baby shower. Specifically themed decorations can also be purchased online.
Buying party favors for your guests is always a nice way to say thank you for coming. These gifts for your guests can range from themed candies to more expensive keepsakes, including personalized items. Special prizes can also be given out for game winners or other people who have been important in the mother's life and during the pregnancy.
7) During the party.
Greet the guests when they arrive and have others help out if necessary to make sure everything runs smoothly. And finally, don't forget to have fun after all the planning and preparation.
About the author:
Criss White is a professional web writer on baby and new mother topics for baby and pregnancy websites. For more articles on baby showers, check out our Baby Shower Ideas (http://www.mybabyshowerfavors.com/articles) and more baby articles at Baby Lullaby (http://babylullaby.bravehost.com). Note: If you find this article useful, you may reprint it on your website, e-zine, or in your newsletter as long as the credits and resource box remain in tact and the hyperlinks stay active.