Last Updated on April 25, 2023
Are you planning a baby shower for the first time and feeling lost amid a sea of details? Do you find yourself wondering things like “How long are baby showers?” and “What games and activities should I plan?” If so, it’s totally okay, and you are definitely not alone!
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, nearly 3.7 million babies were born in the US in 2021. And while those numbers will continue to change with each year, the fact still remains that there are millions of babies born in the US every year.
And that means . . . there are plenty of baby showers taking place across the country! This also means there are plenty of stressed-out hosts trying to pull it all together.
But no worries, Major League Mommy is here to help.
In this article, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive guide to planning a baby shower, including when to have it, how long it should be, and tips for first-time hosts.
So be prepared to take some notes, and let’s get planning!
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When Do People Usually Have Baby Showers?
It’s understandable to feel overwhelmed with planning a baby shower, especially when it comes to deciding the perfect time to host it.
No worries, I get it.
I remember stressing over all the little details when trying to plan a baby shower for my bestie.
The good news is that there is no hard and fast rule for when exactly to have a baby shower.
However, there are a few things to consider that can help you narrow down your options.
Traditionally, baby showers are held during the expectant mother’s third trimester, around the seventh or eighth month of pregnancy.
This time frame allows the mother-to-be to be comfortable enough to enjoy the celebration but also helps to minimize the chances that the baby is born before the shower.
Another factor to consider is the schedules of the guests. It’s best to choose a date and time that typically works for everyone, especially key guests like close family members and friends who may have to travel.
Typically, weekends are the most convenient for working guests or out-of-town guests.
Ultimately, the timing of a baby shower should be based on what works best for the expectant mother and her loved ones.
Don’t stress too much over the perfect date and time; just focus on creating a memorable celebration for the mom-to-be and her bundle of joy. And don’t worry, we’ll give you plenty of tips in this guide to make this special event memorable.
How Long Are Baby Showers?
When planning a baby shower, hosts may wonder how long the event should be.
The truth is, there is no set time frame for a baby shower.
Traditionally, baby showers were hosted as luncheons or afternoon parties, but nowadays, they can be held at any time of the day or evening.
It’s up to the host to decide when and for how long the baby shower should be, based on the preferences of the mom-to-be and the guests.
Some hosts prefer to keep the baby shower short and sweet, while others choose to throw a longer celebration, especially if there are many guests attending or if there are several activities or games planned.
Whatever the case may be, it’s important to consider the comfort and enjoyment of all guests, as well as the schedule of the mom-to-be.
As previously mentioned, choosing a date and time that works best for those who are closest to Mom is key.
It’s also important to provide enough notice to the guests so they can plan accordingly.
Once the time and date are set, the host can decide on the best length of time for the baby shower.
Ultimately, the focus of a baby shower should be on celebrating the mom-to-be and her new arrival.
As long as the guests and expectant mother are happy and enjoying themselves, the length of the baby shower doesn’t really matter.
With that in mind, let’s move on to some baby shower planning tips for first-time hosts.
Baby Shower Planning Tips for First-Time Hosts
When it comes to hosting a baby shower for the first time, it can feel overwhelming to know where to start. But with a little bit of planning and preparation, anyone can throw a perfect celebration for the mom-to-be.
First-time hosts should begin by setting the date and time, then deciding on the right length of time for the shower as we previously discussed. Remember that the focus should always be on celebrating the expectant mother and her new arrival. Now, let’s discuss a few pro tips for first-time hosts.
Create a Guest List
One of the most important aspects of planning a baby shower is deciding on the guest list.
The number of guests invited will have an impact on every other aspect of the party, from the location and food to the decorations and favors.
When creating your guest list, start by asking the mom-to-be who she would like to invite. This will ensure that everyone she actually wants to celebrate with is included.
Make sure to also consider the budget and space limitations when deciding on the number of guests.
Think about the variety of people included on the guest list as well.
For example, if the mom-to-be has family members and friends from different areas of her life, it may be wise to plan separate events so everyone can feel comfortable and connected.
Remember that the focus of the baby shower is on the expectant mother and her little one. (I cannot emphasize this enough).
Keep this in mind when deciding on who to invite and how many guests to have. With the guest list finalized, you can move on to planning the perfect decorations for the occasion.
Plan the Decorations
When it comes to planning a baby shower, there are a lot of little details to consider.
One of the most important aspects of the event is the decorations. After all, you want the venue to look festive and welcoming for the mom-to-be and her guests.
Start by thinking about the theme for the shower. Are you going for a traditional pink or blue color scheme, or something more unique?
Once you have a theme in mind, you can start brainstorming decoration ideas.
Balloons, streamers, and table centerpieces are all popular options, but there are plenty of other creative ways to decorate as well. (Seriously, check out all the Baby Shower Decoration Ideas on our Pinterest Board!)
Keep in mind that the decorations should complement the overall vibe of the event.
If the baby shower is going to be more casual, you may not need as many decorations as you would for a more formal affair.
Think about the space you’re working with too – a smaller venue may require fewer decorations than a large banquet hall.
With the decorations sorted out, you can move on to planning the perfect menu for the baby shower.
Choose the Perfect Menu
Whether you’re serving a full meal or just snacks and desserts, there are plenty of tasty options to consider.
Think about the time of day and length of the shower when planning the menu – if it’s a morning or afternoon event, brunch foods like quiches and fruit platters could be a great option.
For an evening event, consider a buffet with a mix of sweet and savory appetizers.
It’s important to also consider any dietary restrictions or allergies of the guests.
Offering a vegetarian or gluten-free option can ensure everyone has something to enjoy.
For drinks, consider creating a signature mocktail or offering a variety of non-alcoholic options.
Remember, the menu should complement the overall vibe you’re going for. A casual backyard barbecue may call for classic comfort foods like sliders and mac and cheese, while a more elegant affair might feature delicate finger sandwiches and petit fours.
Keep in mind the budget you’re working with and don’t be afraid to enlist the help of other guests in bringing dishes to share.
With the menu planned, it’s time to move on to the next important aspect of any baby shower – games and activities that will keep your guests entertained and engaged.
Baby Shower Games and Activities
Besides delicious food and adorable decorations, games and activities are key aspects of any successful baby shower.
These elements provide opportunities for guests to bond and have fun together while celebrating the mom-to-be.
When thinking about which games to play, consider the guest list and the overall atmosphere you want to create.
If you’re hosting a more formal affair, classic games like baby shower bingo or baby shower trivia can be a great fit.
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For a more laid-back gathering, consider games like diaper pong or a diaper-changing race.
And if the mom-to-be is more of a foodie, a cooking or baking challenge can be a fun option as well.
Don’t forget to think about the prizes! Small gifts like candles, chocolates, or even a cute mug can be fantastic incentives for guests to participate in the games.
If games aren’t your thing, consider having a craft station or activity area instead.
Set up a table with supplies for guests to decorate onesies, create a scrapbook, or make a mobile.
This can be a great way to keep guests occupied and provide a fun, creative outlet.
With the games and activities planned, the final step is to consider what party favors you’ll provide for guests and how you’ll thank them for coming.
Party Favors and Thank You Notes
As a thoughtful host, you’ll want to send your guests home with a little something to remember the special day. This is a Major League Mommy tip you’ll almost always find in any of our party-planning guides. (What can I say, we’re givers around here).
Party favors are a lovely way to thank your guests for their presence and let them know how much you appreciate their support.
Favors can be anything from small trinkets to personalized keepsakes, and the possibilities are endless.
Consider your budget and the theme of your baby shower when selecting party favors.
If you’re on a tight budget, you can easily create DIY favors such as homemade soaps, candle jars, or sweet treats.
If your budget allows for a more elaborate gift, consider personalized items such as customized wine glasses, picture frames, or tote bags.
You can also offer practical favors such as mini hand sanitizers or lip balms.
In addition to party favors, be sure to thank your guests for coming.
Personalized thank-you notes are a thoughtful and effective way to express your gratitude.
You can purchase pre-made cards (we’ve got you covered in our Etsy shop), or get creative and print your own.
Make sure to include a sincere message of thanks and remind your guests how much their presence meant to you.
In conclusion, planning a baby shower can be a bit stressful, but with the right tips and guidance, it can also be a very fun and rewarding experience.
Remember to keep the timing and length of the party in mind, and create a guest list that will make the mom-to-be feel loved and celebrated.
Pay attention to the decorations, menu, and games, and don’t forget to thank your guests with thoughtful party favors and thank-you notes.
Above all, have fun and enjoy the special occasion with your loved ones.
As Maya Angelou once said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Let this sentiment guide you as you plan a baby shower that will make mom feel special and loved.