John Maher: Hi, I’m John Maher, and I’m here today with Maureen Woodman, an event planner for on and off-site catered events at the Essex Room in Essex, Massachusetts. Today, we’re talking about how to organize a baby shower. Welcome, Maureen.
Maureen Woodman: Hey, John. Thanks for having me today.
Steps Involved in Organizing a Baby Shower
John: Sure. Maureen, what are some of the steps involved in organizing a baby shower?
Maureen: I think, one of the most important things right now, obviously if it’s a boy or a girl, [is] picking your theme and starting this journey of this baby’s life. Right now, it’s popular for the kids to have an unveiling party. After you have your ultrasound, and you find out what it is, a lot of people are making cakes and certain prizes where you open it up, whether you pop a balloon or something, and it’s announcing whether it’s a boy or a girl. That seems to be happening before the baby shower. Then, of course, once the baby’s born, or right before the baby’s born, usually somebody in the family wants to have something. Especially for the first born where you need all kinds of different things. Car seats and carriages, cribs, set up layette sets, etcetera. I think that this is something that the millennials don’t have where when I’m doing the weddings, they already have a house, and they’re already set up. But they didn’t have a baby before, so they do need a lot of this stuff.
John: Yes, they already have their silverware; they have their everyday dishes, all of those things from the wedding. But you’re right, nobody just automatically has a crib and a stroller and things like that.
Maureen: Exactly. When it’s your first baby, I think a lot of people want everything brand new, and they’re not accepting of hand-me-downs.
Maureen: When it’s your second or third or fourth child . . ..
John: Yes, it’s perfectly acceptable.
Maureen: Yes, it’s perfectly acceptable to use the old stuff. That’s something that I think is fun. I think, a lot of times the showers were in the house, they were smaller. But I think now because the kids need so much stuff, the ones having the baby, the young mom and dad, that I think the baby showers are getting quite large again because they need everything.
Hosting a Baby Shower
John: Right. What are some of the things involved in hosting a baby shower that make it unique or maybe that people might not think about?
Maureen: I think one of the things with the baby shower would be how to open the presents in a timely manner and have some fun going along with that. Whether you add some games like ‘Name the Baby’ or ‘Baby Bingo’ or ‘Try to Guess the Weight’ and have little charts and contests going, I think a lot of people like to add that fun element to it.
I think again, the color choice and all those things that go along whether it’s a boy or a girl. But there’s actually a trend now where people are not telling people what they’re having.
Maureen: If you’re on Instagram or anything, you’ll see this big surprise that’s going on. A lot of people are going back even though they know they’re not telling anyone or they choosing not to know after their ultrasound. It could just be a generic baby party, and everything’s yellow.
John: Right, Yellow and green.
Maureen: Yes, exactly.
Baby Shower Decorations
John: What type of decorations do people tend to use at a baby shower?
Maureen: I think a lot of times you’ll see stuffed animals, or you’ll see balloons or you’ll see something colorful that’s constantly in a pastel tone. I think that you’ll see baby blocks or something that can be reused as a baby gift. A lot of times you’ll see little diaper trees or things that are made out of things that you would need for when the baby’s first born. For the bath or whatever, a lot of people incorporate building pyramid style centerpieces out of things that the mother could use for the baby afterwards.
Food Served at a Baby Shower
John: What type of food is usually served at a baby shower? Is it a sit-down meal or does it tend to be just some hors d’oeuvres and things like that? What are some of the options that people can choose that would make the event extra special?
Maureen: Usually at a baby shower, it’s most likely going to be in that brunch category. Probably some scrambled eggs, some breads, a fruit salad, maybe a Caesar salad. But there’s always desserts involved, very mini pick up sweets, [and] a coffee station. Not typically do you see alcohol at a baby shower. Baby showers are usually earlier. They’re not so much of a night time [thing]. I think that they’re more sugary and less alcohol. Usually, you don’t see too many men at a baby shower. Maybe you would see the dad or you would see the parents of the mother and father to be. Maybe they would come, but it’s all girls.
Organizing a Baby Shower That is Memorable
John: Right. Are there any other final thoughts on how to make your baby shower memorable?
Maureen: No, I think as long as you have fun, and you try not to spend much time opening the presents. I think it’s important to make sure you do a good registry somewhere, whether it’s at Babies “R” Us or Toys “R” Us. I’m sure Target has a baby registry as well. I think you should think long and hard about what you’re going to get, because you’re going to use it all, and it’s necessary, and I think people like to know what you want.
John: Right, and make it hand it down to some other kids as well. It’s important to remember.
John: All right. Well, thanks again for speaking with me, Maureen. I appreciate it.
Maureen: Thanks, John. Thanks for having me today.
John: For more information, you can visit The Essex Room website at essexroom.com, or call 978-768-7335.