By Charlene O'Hanlon
A baby shower is one of the best ways to celebrate the impending birthof a child. It's an age-old tradition that is as practical as it isfun, giving friends and family a chance to honor the parents-to-be whilefilling their coffers with gifts and supplies for the wee one.
When it comes to planning a baby shower, however, let tradition go outthe window. Baby showers can - and should - celebrate the parents asmuch as the baby, with themes appropriate for moms and dads and giftoptions 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 thatbest reflects the parents. Here are a few ideas:
- Hey, Sports Fans - In our house, the New YorkYankees reign. So it was only appropriate our baby shower featured bluepinstripes. If the parents are known for their die-hard love for aparticular 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 andICYMIs. Decorate cupcakes with Pac-Man, Mario Brothers, Donkey Kong andother computer game characters.
- For Those About to Pop (We Salute You) - Formoms-to-be who are close to their due date, fill the room with balloonsand 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 adifferent way after baby is born, so give them the opportunity tochannel their inner Ozzy Osbourne or Pat Benatar. Decorate with bandposters 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 thelogo of the parents' favorite sports team. Or how about matching shirtsfor 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 andincorporate the interests and personalities of the parents to create atruly personal and memorable experience.
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