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Tips for Hosting a Baby Shower

lc07lc07 Sunny Southern California member
Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
Hi Guys!

I am hosting a baby shower for a friend of mine next month. It's going to be super small. I anticipate 6-10 attendees including myself and the guest of honor. I'm hosting at my house. I've never hosted a shower of any kind before, though I've been to a bunch.

I will be serving a ton of food and beverages no matter what time of day because that's how I roll. 

Questions:

-What's a good start time? I was thinking 11 am? Not too early, but early enough so that people can do other things with their day? (It will be on a Saturday)
-Do I put an end time on the invite or let it organically end?
-To do games or not to do games.. argh. I know a lot of people generally dislike games. But some people love games? I've always enjoyed bingo because it gives me something to do when the guest of honor is opening gifts but it's such a small group that I don't think bingo makes sense.
-I'm considering doing a sit down brunch in my home instead of a mingling and finger food thing since it's a smaller group. Especially if we go the no games route. Is that a good idea? How do I word that on the invite? Do I need to?
-How do you guys feel about favors for each guest instead of game winner prizes especially if we don't do games?
-Every shower I go to, I'm asked to bring diapers or wipes for a raffle. Presumably in addition to a gift. Thoughts? 

Any general advice is welcome of course. Thanks!

Re: Tips for Hosting a Baby Shower

  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I think 11am is a great time to start.  Showers will generally just end on their own once all the presents are opened so an end time isn't necessary.

    I am not always a fan of games but I do like the bingo games, because like you said it gives you something to do while gifts are being open.  But with only 6-10 people I am not sure if it will really work (not enough gifts?).  Another game I played was that the host made flash cards of baby products and they were passed around to the attendees.  The attendees then had to fill out a card and guess how much each product was.  At the end the person with the closest numbers won a gift card to Starbucks.

    I think a sit down brunch sounds awesome.  With such a small group it really makes sense and it will allow easy conversation and the mom-to-be won't have to be getting up and walking around to everyone to talk to them.  I don't think you need to word it on the invite.  Just have the table set and then when it is time to eat direct everyone to the table.

    Favors are always optional so it is up to you if you want to do them or not.

    I don't like when I am told to bring something specific.  If I want to get the mom-to-be diapers and wipes I will.  I just think it is a bit much to ask for something additional to the gift the guest is already purchasing.



  • lc07lc07 Sunny Southern California member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    edited October 2014
    Thanks, Maggie! I have played that flash card game as well and I did enjoy that one. I just don't like chocolates in diapers and guessing Mama's girth games. The guest of honor would be fine with any games or no games but I want it to be a fun time for the guests. I'm kind of an overachiever. I want to throw THE BEST SHOWER. And am happy to do things outside the norm (that are E approved of course). And I hear you on the diapers/wipes thing. My gut instinct was in agreement with you so I'm glad to hear your thoughts on that. I won't put anything about that on the invitation. I can always buy some for her myself if I want. Edited: Trying to create paragraphs
  • Sounds like a great plan! I also hate the chocolate-in-the-diaper game and anything involving the mom's belly. Yuck. I just did simple games on paper for my sister's shower (matching the name of the baby animal to what's called as an adult, like kit>fox) that people could fill in as they ate if they wanted to. 

    If you need any brunch recipes, these are my faves!


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  • lc07lc07 Sunny Southern California member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    That's a cute game, Lolo! And YAY brunch recipes! LOVE IT. Thank you. Another question - Shower is going to be November 15. When do I send out invites and what date do I request RSVPs back by? I will shop the day before the shower for food.
  • KatWAGKatWAG Chicago member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    My only advice is no end time and no games. It would be hard to play bingo or any game really with 6-10 people. I think its so much better to just sit and catch up with people.

    I also dont like being asked to bring wipes/ diapers since I am already bringing a gift. Plus as a mom, I only like one brand of wipes (Costco) and one brand of diapers (pampers swaddlers) so getting anything else would have been a waste to me.

    Sorry if this post made me seem like a downer.

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  • lc07lc07 Sunny Southern California member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    KatWAG said:

    My only advice is no end time and no games. It would be hard to play bingo or any game really with 6-10 people. I think its so much better to just sit and catch up with people.

    I also dont like being asked to bring wipes/ diapers since I am already bringing a gift. Plus as a mom, I only like one brand of wipes (Costco) and one brand of diapers (pampers swaddlers) so getting anything else would have been a waste to me.

    Sorry if this post made me seem like a downer.


    You don't sound like a downer at all. Your advice is actually what I am leaning towards. I figure it will be shorter than most showers due to the small size. I'm planning on a kick ass brunch with a beautifully set table, favors for each guest, coffee, tea, water, lemonade/soda, champagne and wine, juice, a variety of food items (will check for dietary restrictions when I get RSVPs), time for gift opening for Mama, good company and background music and boom have a beautiful rest of your Saturday.
    RebeccaB88Alikat9614
  • My mom isn't a game player and always voices her dislike of them. However, she was recently at a babyshower where they played bingo and she said that wasn't bad. She enjoyed that one. If there aren't a lot of people, maybe you could use "phrase or word" bingo too. Add spots on the board for certain phrases/words and when someone says the phrase or word, they get to mark off a tile? It could help fill in tiles.

    I was at a shower once where we had to guess the flavor of the baby food. That shit is gross. 
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  • esstee33esstee33 Pittsburgh member
    Ninth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited October 2014
    For the love of all that is holy, please don't do the melted-candy-bars-in-diapers game. You seem like a sane, rational person, so I doubt you would, but it's seriously the most awful baby shower game ever. 10x worse than guess the baby food flavor.

    ETA: In general, I like games. But I also just like showing up and eating things and hanging out. 
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  • esstee33 said:
    For the love of all that is holy, please don't do the melted-candy-bars-in-diapers game. You seem like a sane, rational person, so I doubt you would, but it's seriously the most awful baby shower game ever. 10x worse than guess the baby food flavor.
    That sounds disgusting.
    *msstaticfancypants*
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  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    esstee33 said:
    For the love of all that is holy, please don't do the melted-candy-bars-in-diapers game. You seem like a sane, rational person, so I doubt you would, but it's seriously the most awful baby shower game ever. 10x worse than guess the baby food flavor.

    ETA: In general, I like games. But I also just like showing up and eating things and hanging out. 
    Don't make me smell or taste anything when it comes to games.

    doeydo
  • I echo the sentiments above that the guess-mommy's-girth, guess-the-baby-food-flavor, and guess-the-candy-bar games are all super tacky and uncomfortable. If you're looking for some non-cheesy games, there are quite a few games you can find online where guests either guess the titles of well known childrens' books based on an alternative title, or fill in the blanks from well-known lines from the books. Those have always gone over well at baby showers I've attended.
    lc07
  • lc07lc07 Sunny Southern California member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    edited October 2014
    All tasting/smelling games have been nixed FOR SURE. Glad to know I'm not the only one who thinks those are gross. -------------------------------------- I think my follow up question got buried (TK won't let me post paragraphs AGAIN) so here goes again: -------------------------------------- Shower is November 15 - when do I send out invites and on what date do I request RSVPs back?
  • lc07lc07 Sunny Southern California member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    scribe95 said:
    Showers I have been to have always been in the afternoon, like 2 to 5 or something like that. But they have not had a full meal. When I have hosted I love doing mini sandwiches and finger foods and cake and punch (punch is a must.) As for games I kind of don't mind them. Here is one that is usually good. Get a tray or some way to display a decent number of baby items you buy. Anything from bottle, pacifier, diaper, pins, bib etc. Like 30 items. Keep it covered. Unveil for like 30 seconds and then cover it again and you see who can remember the most items. Then the expectant mom gets all the cool stuff!
    That game does sound cool. Haven't seen that one before! Thanks! 

    What are your thoughts about my morning plan being that that's not the norm in your circle?
  • esstee33esstee33 Pittsburgh member
    Ninth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    lc07 said:
    All tasting/smelling games have been nixed FOR SURE. Glad to know I'm not the only one who thinks those are gross. -------------------------------------- I think my follow up question got buried (TK won't let me post paragraphs AGAIN) so here goes again: -------------------------------------- Shower is November 15 - when do I send out invites and on what date do I request RSVPs back?
    Oh, good. My family thinks this game is hilaaaaaarious, so I've had to play it at basically every baby shower. Thankfully there probably won't be many (if any) more showers save for my own maybe, so I think I'm safe. The game scribe mentioned is fun, too!
  • lc07 said:
    All tasting/smelling games have been nixed FOR SURE. Glad to know I'm not the only one who thinks those are gross. -------------------------------------- I think my follow up question got buried (TK won't let me post paragraphs AGAIN) so here goes again: -------------------------------------- Shower is November 15 - when do I send out invites and on what date do I request RSVPs back?

    SITB

    For a small event like this, I would send invites out 4-6 weeks in advance and have the RSVP date be 1-2 weeks in advance if it works for you.
    lc07
  • lc07 said:
    All tasting/smelling games have been nixed FOR SURE. Glad to know I'm not the only one who thinks those are gross. -------------------------------------- I think my follow up question got buried (TK won't let me post paragraphs AGAIN) so here goes again: -------------------------------------- Shower is November 15 - when do I send out invites and on what date do I request RSVPs back?
    I would send them a month out and have RSVPs a week out. I just got invited to a shower for 11/1 with a 10/1 RSVP deadline and I was super annoyed.

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    lc07
  • The last shower I was at, the Guest of Honour hated games, which I'm totally okay with. Instead of interactive games, they had cupcakes with chocolate filling, except one had blue filling (baby was a boy, obviously.) and the person that had to cupcake with blue filling won a little prize. I like this idea wayyyy better than actual games.
    lc07
  • I am throwing a baby shower for my SIL. I generally dislike the games but am going to do ONE so that I won't entirely disappoint those that like and/or expect them.

    We're doing "What's in the Bag?" - where there are bags with letters on them spelling out "baby shower" and each bag has an item for the baby that starts with that letter. I like it because it's not an organized game that needs to be played by everyone at once. We're just going to have the bags set up on a table where people can stop by, fill out a card with their guesses and leave it. We'll announce the top 3 winners toward the end and give them a prize. (Also, the mom to be gets to keep the items.)


  • lc07lc07 Sunny Southern California member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    scribe95 said:
    I prefer afternoon showers rather than lunch/brunch. But that is totally personal preference. This event sounds lovely.
    Thank you.
  • MGPMGP member
    Knottie Warrior 500 Love Its 500 Comments Name Dropper
    You have got some great advice already, so just wanted to point out for lurkers and everyone else that the diapers and wipes raffle thing is the baby shower equivalent to a dollar dance or money tree.  Just don't do it.  :)
    lc07
  • larrygagalarrygaga Czechoslovakia member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Anniversary First Answer
    I like games that also allow me to chat with the people around me. I also like games that are really entertaining.

    I went to a baby shower where you tried baby food and wrote down what you thought it was, and won prizes if you were right. This is a know your crowd game, but at that shower it was a hit!

    I would also let the party end organically. People won't stay all day, but they also won't be rushed.
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