It is not uncommon for a mom-to-be to dread attending her own baby shower. That’s because traditional baby showers can be long and uncomfortable. But it doesn’t have to be. With a few tweaks and changes to the planning, you can be someone who actually enjoys their baby shower!
The tips below apply only to the mom-to-be. They are simple and easy to implement.
How to enjoy your baby shower – Before the shower
Plan for a 3-hour baby shower
Socializing can get tiring and you have an extra load to carry. Knowing this, ask the baby shower host to plan a 3-hour shower. The three-hour time limit should leave guests wanting more, instead of them covertly checking the time.
Have a separate baby shower for friends and relatives
It’s exhausting to keep everyone happy all the time, especially if guests differ vastly from one another. Avoid the hassle and have two small but separate baby showers—one for friends, one for relatives.
Make it flexible
Having a drop-in style baby shower instead of a strict start-and-stop time allows your guests to drop by for a quick hello or to stay for the duration, depending on what they’re comfortable with and what their schedule allows. This removes the inevitable guilt that comes with being late or having to leave early.
Also, it takes the pressure off you to keep everyone entertained the whole time.
Share your wishes with the host(s)
It is the host(s) job to plan your baby shower, but it is your job to share your wishes with the host ahead of time. For example:
- If you have always dreamed of a Woodland themed baby shower, be sure to let the host know this so that she/he can plan accordingly;
- If you are a little shy and you have no desire to be in the spotlight for a half-hour while people are watching you open gifts, let the host know you would prefer a display shower or something similar;
- If you were hoping to build a library for your baby and you’re hoping the guests would bring books, the host will need to know that she needs to plan a “bring a book instead of a card” baby shower.
- Set up a baby registry ahead of time and share it with your host. It is no fun having to graciously smile and say thank you for gifts received at your baby shower, that you neither want nor need. Avoid that by clearly telling people what you need in your baby registry.
- Some pregnant women develop sensitivities to foods and smells. If you have developed an aversion to the smell of seafood, for example, you’ll want to let the host know that seafood should not be included on the baby shower menu.
- Some pregnant women develop food cravings. If that’s you, ask the host to accommodate your pregnancy cravings. This may feel awkward or unnecessary, but you’ve got to eat at your baby shower. Also, if the host is a mother, she’ll understand.
- Some pregnant women have no problem watching other people drink alcohol. Some do. If you prefer that no alcohol be served at your baby shower, let the host know. If alcohol is not a problem, ask the host to also serve mocktails so that you’re not left out.
Buy a new outfit for your baby shower
Choose a pretty outfit that makes you feel cute rather than like a beached walrus.
Plan to wear comfortable shoes
If you are wearing a pretty dress, you probably want to match it with pretty shoes. There are lots of pretty flats to choose from, but there are also comfortable heels out there! (I have heels I can run in! I wore them while walking up four flights of stairs, the day before I gave birth to my twins. Comfy heels are possible!)
How to enjoy your baby shower – The day of
Get yourself dolled up
Get your hair done, get a manicure, and do all you need to do to make yourself feel like a million bucks! Take your time doing so too! Light a nice candle, listen to your favorite music, and simply bask in your own beauty as you prepare for your baby shower!
Set a celebratory tone before the shower starts
Before the guests arrive, perhaps have a little sparkling cider with the baby shower host. Thank him/her privately and personally for setting everything up (because it takes work and effort to put together a baby shower.) This will set the tone for a fantastic baby shower!
Accept that you will get “unsolicited advice”
If this is your first pregnancy, you are probably hating all the preachy know-it-alls and their unwanted advice. However, parenting is hard, and so even people who don’t normally give advice may feel obliged to do so.
Most of the time, when people are offering “unwanted parenting advice,” it is because they genuinely believe that their advice will help you as a new parent. So even though you are not asking for it, try to remember the reason they are offering the advice. Also, keep in mind, it is just advice—you can take it or ignore it! Chances are excellent that once your baby is born and you discover for yourself how hard parenting is, you may wish you paid attention.
But since you are going to get unsolicited advice, you could just plan for it! Set up a box where people can leave advice on baby shower advice cards.
Unwind and have fun
Once your baby arrives, your life will change dramatically—it’s a given. So take this moment to unwind, smile, and take it all in. This is your big day! Remember that all the guests are there to celebrate you and the birth of your baby. Have lots of cake, mocktails, and just have fun!