Jess Pollard has been planning parties for the past six years. When it comes to providing a fun atmosphere with original touches that everyone will appreciate, she is a pro. A working mother of three herself, she appreciates that not everyone has the time to take on the sometimes daunting task of attending to every detail. Consulting with a planner can help ignite your imagination and relieve some of your burden. Jess welcomes your inquiries.
Theme and decorations
Pick a theme that is meaningful but won’t frustrate you and overwhelm guests. Have fun without taking away from your efforts. While some store-bought items are a necessity, Jess enjoys making decorations and favors herself which allows for a more personalized atmosphere and is generally less expensive. Invitations, food and even beverages can be tied into a well-planned theme and leave your guests with a lasting impression.
Many baby showers have a game or two planned. If you choose to play games, keep each one brief and simple. Not every guest will feel comfortable participating in a group setting, so Jess suggests having at least one opportunity that the less outgoing can take a chance on. For example, you can fill a jar with pacifiers and let everyone take a guess as to how many the jar actually holds.
Bring a book
There is no better bonding time than when reading to a child and it is never too soon to start the tradition of story time. Instead of a card, Jess suggests asking guests to bring a children’s book in which they have inscribed their well wishes. Not only is this a chance to build your little one’s library, it will keep loved ones close every time each book is read. Encourage books appropriate for infants and toddlers and you will have several years’ worth of quality entertainment ready and waiting.
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Leave a message
A blank notebook or journal can be passed around as a means for guests to share their loving thoughts and well wishes. Whether it’s a message to welcome the expected bundle of joy, parental advice, encouragement or a relative’s favorite memory of the new parent as a child, this is a priceless keepsake that will be treasured forever. Presented to the mom-to-be at the end of the shower, Jess says this idea is a hit every time.
Don’t wrap those gifts!
Opening gifts at a baby shower can be a time-consuming process. Guests lose interest and some moms don’t care for being in the spotlight. Many items aren’t a total surprise if they are purchased from a registry, anyway. Eliminate the dread for everyone by not wrapping gifts at all. Jess sends a couple of gift labels that can be made to match the shower’s theme along with the invitations. When guests arrive, gifts can be grouped and arranged accordingly (diapers and accessories, bath items, toys, clothes, etc) and left on display for all to see while leaving more time for everyone to mingle and have fun.
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Theodora DeBarbieri is an animal advocate, columnist and local TV show host residing in Connecticut. She is owned by a number of dogs, cats and birds. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.