Thursday, October 30, 2008

Rubber Ducky Theme

This is a great neutral theme for a mom-to-be that doesn't know the gender of the baby yet. There are so many fun things you can do with this theme. You can float rubber duckies in the punch bowl or if you're not serving punch, in a bowl of blue-tinted water on the main table. You could also have a galvanized tub or plastic kiddie pool filled with water and floating duckies, some marked with an X on the bottom. Guests can have a turn to pick a duck and if they have an X on theirs, they get a prize. You can sprinkle ducky confettti on tables and in invitations and have ducky party favors, such as the ducky body butter and soaps I have pictured below. You can go simple with pastel yellow partyware or go with colorful ducky party supplies. Duck cookie cutters can be used to make cookies or cut-out sandwiches to serve. For games, you could do a word find with words like bathtub, robe, soap, rubber ducky, etc...You could also use those same items on a baby bingo card. Ducky diaper cakes make great centerpieces or you could go with a baloon bouquet, using a balloon like the one shown below. The possibilities are endless for a ducky shower.

Baby Picture Game

Make a note in the shower invitations asking guests to bring in a baby photo of themselves. At the shower, attach a number (written on a small square of paper) with a small paper clip to each photo, careful not to cover the face. When it's time to play the game, give each guest a pen and a piece of paper. Pass around the baby photos (or if it's a smaller shower you could just hold them up) and have the guests write down the number of the photo and who they think it is. The guest who gets the most right wins a prize. This is a fun game because everyone enjoys seeing what others looked like as a baby and are curious to find out how many others recognized their picture. It works especially well at parties where there are a good mixing of guests from different families, co-workers and friends so they won't be able to recognize the pictures as easily.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Cherry Delight Salad

1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 can cherry pie filling
1 20 oz. can crushed pineapple, drained
1 12 oz. pkg. Cool Whip
Optional: chopped nuts

Mix mild and pie filling. Stir in pineapple. fold in Cool Whip and nuts. Serve Chilled.

Books for Baby

One trend that is becoming more common at baby showers is buying a small book for the baby instead of a card. Guests are asked to purchase a small, inexpensive storybook for the baby and sign & date the inside cover. It's a great way to start a library for the new baby. A great choice for this is My First Real Mother Goose board book.

Caramel Apple Dip

This is delicious and perfect for fall showers!

1 tub cool whip
1 (8oz.) pkg. cream cheese
1 jar caramel sauce
1 tsp. vanilla (opt)

Mix caramel sauce with softened cream cheese. Fold in cool whip and vanilla. Serve with apple slices, graham crackers, vanilla wafers and whatever you'd like to use for dippers.

Bellissimo Baby Shower Favors

Baby shower favors are a way for each guest to have a special keepsake to take home. I found some absolutely adorable ones at Bellissimo Favors. They are reasonably priced, unique and they have so many cool choices.

Here are some of them:

A bottle stopper

Baby Shower Lip Balm

Love Beyond Measure Measuring Spoons

Manicure Set (I love this one!)

And if you are having a large number of guests or are looking for budget favors, you can get these adorable baby block favor boxes for 37 cents each and fill them with mints or almonds.

Diaper Pins and Rice Game

Take a large bowl and fill it half full with dry rice. Then take a pack of small gold colored diaper pins and mix them in with the rice.

Each guest will have a turn to find as many pins as they can within a given time (about 1-2 minutes) while blindfolded. After each turn, make sure you put all the pins back into the bowl of rice for the next guest.

The guest who finds the most diaper pins is the winner.

This is a classic baby shower game and while it sounds super easy, trust me, it is NOT! While you are blindfolded the pins and rice feel the same.

*Important tip for this game: make sure the bowl you choose is a LARGE one or else you'll end up with rice all over the floor!

Lemonade Punch

This is an easy punch recipe that can be easily adapted to other flavors such as raspberry or orange by changing the drink mix and sherbet flavor.

1 can frozen lemondade concentrate OR 1 pkg. lemonade drink mix
1 2-liter bottle of 7-up
1/2 gallon lemon sherbet

Mix lemonade according to directions. Pour lemonade along with 7-Up into punch bowl. Right before serving, add scoops of lemon sherbet to float in the punch.

*For one baby shower I hosted that had a pink and yellow theme, I made 2 batches of this, one lemonade and one pink lemonade with pink sherbet and put both punch bowls on the table.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Diaper Cakes

Diaper cakes are my favorite centerpieces for showers. Not only can you customize them to any theme you've chosen, you have the option of making one yourself or ordering one. There are many online vendors who sell them. They are great conversation starters, the guests always comment on them and they are practical for the mom-to-be. Here are some pictures to show how you can customize them:

The first three are from Lil Dumplin Diaper Cakes and the last two are from They make the most adorable centerpieces!

Ice Cube Game aka My Water Broke game

This is always fun and easy for guests to play. Buy tiny plastic babies, you can find them online, at party supply stores, I've even found them at Walgreens before. Make sure you have 1 for each guest. Place on baby in each compartment of an ice cube tray. Then fill the tray with water and freeze them. To play the game, give each guest a small cup with one of the baby ice cubes in it. As the shower goes on, they have to keep one eye on their cups to see when it has melted. Once it has melted enough that the baby breaks free of the cube, that guest yells (or if they're shy, they may say it in a quiet, polite voice) "my water broke". The first one to break gets a prize, but it's fun even after the prize is given, people still watch their cubes and like to call out when their water broke too.

This is what the little plastic babies look like and if you want to order them online, you can find them through the link below.

The Party Works

Soothy's Satin Baby Blankets

These are a great gift idea. It's part doll, part blanket made out of satin. They are so sweet, aren't they? It just looks so snuggly and most babies have some kind of lovey, whether it's a dolly or blanket and this is both. I think these make a great baby shower gift. They are machine washable also (very important in choosing baby blankets). :)

Click the link to find them and a lot of other unique baby gift ideas.

Shower Favors & Gifts

Cucumber-Watercress Tea Sandwiches Recipe

These are thin, light and an elegant addition at a baby shower.

32 thin slices peeled English (hothouse)

4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room

8 thin slices white sandwich bread

1/2 cup watercress leaves, plus more for garnish

1/2 cup radish, onion or sunflower
sprouts (optional)

Coarse salt, preferably fleur de sel, to taste

Using paper towels, pat the cut surfaces of the cucumber slices to remove any excess moisture. Lightly butter one side of each bread slice. Scatter the 1/2 cup watercress leaves evenly over all of the buttered bread slices. Layer the cucumber slices over the watercress leaves on 4 of the bread slices. Top the cucumber with some of the sprouts and a pinch of salt. Top with the remaining 4 bread slices, buttered side down.

Using a sharp knife, cut off the crusts from each sandwich and then slice the sandwiches in half, either straight down the middle or on the diagonal. If smaller portions are desired, cut each half in half again.

Arrange the sandwiches on separate plates of a tiered plate stand or on a cake stand or platter. Garnish each sandwich with a watercress leaf. Serve immediately. Serves 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma, Entertaining, Edited by Chuck Williams (Oxmoor House, 2004).

Game Ideas for the Busy Hostess

Fun games are a favorite part of baby showers. While it's fun coming up with your own games and I will be posting lots of creative game ideas in the future, sometimes a hostess just doesn't have the time to do that. If you are a hostess and want to save time and stress of planning your own games, there are a lot of sites where you can buy and print pre-made games that are creative and fun.

I found a great site for Baby Shower Games. Click here for the Best Baby Shower Games on the internet! Print and play in 5 minutes. They're unique, easy, and fun.

Baby Shower Theme Ideas

When planning a Baby Shower, consider choosing a theme to tie everything together, from invitations and decorations to food and games. Themes can be chosen from the nursery decor, favorite color, a story or fairy tale or a special interest of the mom-to-be. A favorite theme for a mom expecting twins is Noah's Ark. Here are some fun themes you might want to consider:

  • Colors or color combinations can be simple and classic, try pink and yellow or blue and green.
  • A favorite character such as Curious George, Raggedy Ann or Peter Rabbit.
  • A holiday or seasonal theme such as a Valentine's Day shower or Summer Barbecue.
  • Choose a theme to go with your favorite sports team, you can find invitations, decorations, even diaper cakes that match your favorite team.
  • A Mexican Fiesta can spice up any shower with colorful decorations, fiesta music and a taco bar.
  • Tea party-serve a classic and elegant tea with lace tablecloths and a Victorian style china tea set.
  • A Jungle theme with bright colored decorations and stuffed animals.

The possibilities for a theme are endless, and I will be going over many in detail to help you plan the best way to carry out the theme. I also love getting ideas from readers so if you have a great theme idea, please leave a comment.