Baby Shower Basics for the Hostess

Planning a Baby Shower? Nothing is worse than feeling scattered, penniless and stressed for time as the party goes from concept to reality.  It doesn’t have to be that way.   If you ask yourself the right questions first, the rest will fall right in to place.

Don't Break the Budget

Unless your last name is Gates or Buffet, you probably have to think about the money you are going to spend getting the shower ready.  A realistic budget depends on several factors: the size of the crowd expected to attend, the kind of food being served and the cost of favors, gifts and decorations.

The most important factor, however, when setting your budget is how much can you really afford to spend? If you only have a beer budget, then either recruit co-hosts or downscale your champagne ideas (it's ok, we all have to do it sometimes).

Time is of the Essence

Time of day is important, and really dictates the menu, as well as other shower activities. Mid morning events denote a brunch; afternoon time slots can get away with light refreshments, while 6 pm is a full dinner affair.

When considering time think about the guest list.  As a courtesy to elderly grandparents or those who may have a considerable drive to attend setting a shower time in the early evening or mid-day is always appreciated. If the guest list is not dominated by geriatric or out of state attendees, then evenings work well to accommodate the work schedules of professional women, so long as it doesn’t conflict with a school night’s curfew.

Priorities When Setting a Date

When setting the date these three factors should get equal billing:  Mom’s availability, host’s availability and possible conflicts with major events that would prevent guests attendance.

Mommy’s Sensibilities

The theme of the baby shower is one of the most fun elements of the party, but don’t get so carried away that mom is lost in the shuffle of color schemes, party favors and flower arrangements.

If mom hates pink, don’t use it even if the baby is a girl.  If mom despises loud over the top affairs, shoot for understated elegance with your theme. Remember the baby shower is held to honor mommy and the baby, not the host’s ability to throw dazzling parties.

Food for All

Lastly, when setting the menu consider any guests who might have food limitations.  Nothing is worse for host or guest than to have someone unable to partake in the food due to allergies, diabetic concerns or plain pickiness.