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Baby Shower Planning: Make it Personal

By Charlene O'Hanlon

A baby shower is one of the best ways to celebrate the impending birth of a child. It's an age-old tradition that is as practical as it is fun, giving friends and family a chance to honor the parents-to-be while filling their coffers with gifts and supplies for the wee one.

When it comes to planning a baby shower, however, let tradition go out the window. Baby showers can - and should - celebrate the parents as much as the baby, with themes appropriate for moms and dads and gift options the whole family can enjoy.

When choosing a theme for the celebration, go beyond pictures of pink- and blue-wrapped babies delivered by the stork and select a theme that best reflects the parents. Here are a few ideas:

  • Hey, Sports Fans - In our house, the New York Yankees reign. So it was only appropriate our baby shower featured blue pinstripes. If the parents are known for their die-hard love for a particular sports team, decorate with the appropriate banners, inflatable balls and team swag.
  • Go Geek - Technology practically runs our lives (just think of how many hours a day we spend in front of a computer). Create invitations using "text-speak," complete with LOLs, ILYs and ICYMIs. Decorate cupcakes with Pac-Man, Mario Brothers, Donkey Kong and other computer game characters.
  • For Those About to Pop (We Salute You) - For moms-to-be who are close to their due date, fill the room with balloons and serve cake pops, champagne or sparking apple juice and kettle corn - anything that reflects the "popping" theme.
  • Rockin' Out - Parents-to-be will be rocking a different way after baby is born, so give them the opportunity to channel their inner Ozzy Osbourne or Pat Benatar. Decorate with band posters and hold lip-syncing and air guitar contests for all guests.

These themes also make it easy to choose gifts for parents and baby. Here are a few ideas:

  • Baby blankets, baby clothing or room accessories adorned with the logo of the parents' favorite sports team. Or how about matching shirts for the parents and onesies for the baby?
  • A tablet device or gaming system complete with games for both parents and baby (when baby gets a little older, of course).
  • A prenatal or couples massage session (to help ease some of the pressure before "the pop")
  • A rocking chair, so parents can still "rock out" after baby is born.

The best baby showers are those that go beyond the norm and incorporate the interests and personalities of the parents to create a truly personal and memorable experience.

Read More by Charlene O'Hanlon

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