Enlist an ally. “For my shower, I brought my sister-in-law into the loop and said what I wanted—a quiet afternoon with friends, in my home,” says Jasmine Trillos-Decarie, a mom of one in Boston, Massachusetts. No feathers were ruffled, and she got a laid-back celebration. “Friends told me it was the best baby shower they’d ever been to!”
Make it more meaningful. Want an eco-friendly party, with paperless invites, unwrapped presents, and an organic salad bar? Would you prefer donations to a cause rather than gifts? Mention that, too.
Rope in your husband. A his-and-hers shower—aka a “Jack and Jill” shower— is a great way to change up the game. “I suggested this for my second shower, and loved it,” says Jennifer Marshall, a mom of two in Tucson, Arizona. “It kept the traditional silliness out of the equation. Everyone knows boys don’t want toilet paper games!”
Do a registry reality check. Go for gifts in a wide range of prices. And resist the urge to register for blankets and toys, notes Shannan Carr, a mom of three and owner of Bottles to Britches, Pennsylvania, a service that helps expecting parents plan for everything from pregnancy to preschool. “Those are usually items people buy in addition to the items on the registry, so you will end up with a ton!”
Relinquish control. People love you and want to celebrate your happiness. So if friends surprise you with a shower that includes goofy games and a cake shaped like a diaper, go with it. Think of it this way: You’ll have some great stories to tell at junior’s first playdate.