How to Host a Baby Shower

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When celebrating an event as joyous as a baby's imminent arrival, you can be as silly - or as traditional or creative - as you want to be.

Things You'll Need

  • Party Supplies
  • Baby Socks
  • Address Books
  • Invitations
  • Baskets
  • Candles
  • Flower Bouquets
  • Prizes
  • Table Centerpieces
  • Gift Certificates
  • Give yourself plenty of time to plan. Showers usually take place in the seventh or eighth month of pregnancy.

  • Decide whether the shower is for women only. Traditionally, you throw a baby shower for the mother-to-be, with only female friends and relatives as guests. But today, showers that include men - with both expectant parents as guests of honor - have become increasingly popular.

  • Determine the time of day and location - making sure above all that it's convenient for the guest(s) of honor - and approximately how many guests you'd like to invite.

  • Decide whether to make the shower a surprise. Keep your honorees' personalities in mind - remember that not everyone likes surprises.

  • Think about possible shower themes, such as teddy bears, bottles or balloons. Or pick a gift theme like 'Around the House,' assigning each guest to bring a baby gift for use in a different room - the kitchen, the bedroom, the bathroom and so forth. (It's OK to ask for more than one gift per room.)

  • Create a guest list. If the shower is not a surprise, consult the guests of honor about whom they'd like to invite; if it is a surprise, consult a close friend or relative to make sure you don't leave anyone out.

  • Send out invitations at least three weeks in advance. Include directions, surprise-party instructions if applicable, and the theme, if you've chosen one. If possible, mention the color scheme and theme of the baby's room as well.

  • Find out if the parents-to-be are registered for gifts at a particular store. Have this information ready in case any of the guests ask.

  • Make a table centerpiece composed of flowers, a basket and candles, bouquets of baby socks or a baby doll - or buy a centerpiece at a party store. Coordinate the centerpiece and decorations with your theme, if you've chosen one.

  • Decide if you want guests to play any games. If so, buy small gifts for the winners - some possible prizes could be plants, blank books, candles and bookmarks.

  • Make food, buy takeout or hire a caterer. Don't forget supplies - cups, plates, napkins and utensils.

  • At the shower, keep track of presents as the guests of honor open them - this will help them when they're writing thank-you notes.

Tips & Warnings

  • Consider coordinating the gifts if you know the guests well, so Mom and Dad don't end up with 13 diaper bags. Or several guests can go in together on a big gift such as a crib, stroller or gift certificate.

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