How To Host a Baby Shower

1) Find out dear friend is pregnant.  Agree to host shower about 4 months before it will become a reality.  Feel optimistic.

This is going to be someone’s mother.

2) About 2 months before, realize friend is due right after the holidays and every weekend between now and due date is bananas.  Choose Sunday for shower date as Saturday conflicts with football.  Become irritated that people in South like football so much. Watch 30 Rock reruns in protest.

found on tumblr

3) Spend a ridiculous amount of time clicking through  minted while looking for shower invites.  Send the ones featuring ultrasounds  to preggo friend and threaten to choose them. Despair that you are not wealthy enough to buy the designer cards that are cuter. Realize these are stupid invites that people will just throw away and decide to pick cutest budget option.

4) Spend half an hour with proper Southern mother on phone debating appropriate invitation wording.  Are registries crude? How do we suggest people bring storybooks  to compliment our theme without preventing them from actually buying useful baby items?  Can’t I just write, “Look, we think it would be fun for her to open a bunch of books because she likes books, but it’s not essential and you should buy something off her registry if you can’t afford both.  But no big deal, this is supposed to be fun”? (Mom’s answer: “No, you cannot write that.”)

This is the invite. But I don’t know who this Samantha person is.

5) Send invites and completely wipe shower from mind until 2 weeks before it will take place.

6) Receive RSVPs by email and don’t compile any kind of checklist of who has responded, which you will later regret.

7)  Realize one of your planning weeks is Thanksgiving. Curse self.  Eat Turkey.  Forget all problems and become optimistic again with glow of holiday rest.

This is Dad. He really likes Thanksgiving.

6) Spend all free time on Pinterest.  Convince self you can make a dozen brunchy appetizers in one week AND make your own decorations.  Consider making onesies as shower gift. Realize own limitations. Sulk.  Get annoyed you have to work for a living because you could get SO MUCH DONE if you didn’t have to sit at work for 8 hours.

A glimpse at my Pinterest.

7) Get together with co-host and compile menu and decorations lists.   Fight for French toast even though it’s more effort.  Have third glass of wine. Give up on French toast.

8   ) Make cheese biscuits a few days early so you can freeze them. Eat a third of what you bake and resign self to making a second batch.

I ate these. All of them.

8) Fold and fluff Martha Stewart tissue paper puff balls while watching Hart of Dixie.  Realize that you actually like this show even though it’s objectively not great.   But they are self-aware and make jokes about formal shorts!  And Rachel Bilson is too cute!

Puffballs!

9)  Meet up with co-host to make ribbon lights. Pour glass(es) of wine and start tying ribbons while watching X-Factor.   Realize you have ribbon to only cover fourth of light string. Curses.   Hang around to watch Simon be a douche noodle even though you don’t even like this show.

Ribbon lights!

10) Go to Target/Michael’s/Home Goods  every night for one week.  Wonder uselessly why Target won’t carry candy melts and floral wire because that would make things easier.

11) Queue up Lost in Austen and make cake balls.   Get really irritated that Elizabeth and Darcy  (spoiler alert) don’t end up together.   Go online and look for critiques of movie that also note this as drawback. Find nothing but glowing reviews and get annoyed. Eat cake balls to soothe your disgust.

I have met Elizabeth Bennett. And you, my friend, are no Elizabeth Bennett.

12)  Wrap 20 books to give away as shower gifts. Ponder if guests will think you are cheap for giving away your own books as presents. Remind self of environmentally friendly nature of gifts and dwindling holiday bank account.

13)  Skewer marshmallows on candy canes and dunk them in chocolate to use as hot chocolate drink stirrers.  Try in vain to keep peppermint sticks from leaning like that tower in Pisa.

Nailed it.

14) Get up at 8:30 AM on day of shower. Go to party room at condo complex to decorate.  Find room in the following condition:

OMFG

15) Freak the ‘eff out.

16) Try to call maintenance to no avail. Try to call office emergency number and learn that office will helpfully address all emergencies on next business day.  Find co-host and screech that everything is ruined because some 30th birthday party revelers from the night before didn’t clean up their mess.

17)  Start to remove the belongings of the previous night’s occupants.  Mentally calculate how long this will take.   Start to see red.  Converse with co-host on the subject of your anger.

My trash overfloweth.

18) Stop cleaning when previous night’s occupants arrive with their guns blazing and their Russian accents cutting you like a knife.   Exchange heated words about state of party room.  Engage in pointless discussion about who will pay for flowers that were turned upside down when items were moved.  Experience Soprano-style insults hurled at you in Eastern European accent.   Have your mental faculties challenged despite the fact that you’re not the one who broke the rule posted on the wall for EVERYONE TO SEE that you must clean the room before you leave it.

19) Hold door open for mean Russian party goers while they try to remove their trash. Offer them use of your garbage bags as they are obviously unprepared. Feel morally superior when they have no choice but to accept.

20) Continue decorating for party while mentally composing angry letters to send to office staff on Monday morning.

Baby pictures of Lauren provided by her mother

21) Shower and get dressed quickly. Worry that angry Russians will return and tear down decorations.

22) Help co-host with last-minute food, salivate over brown sugar bacon that her dog will eventually steal from trash and which will result in dog going to vet. Worry there’s not enough food.

Look at that bacon. Delicious.

23) Greet Baby Mama and her Mama. Set up Baby Mama’s baby pictures. Meet first guest.  Cause awkward moment  by offering beverage that has not yet been made.

The Baby Mama and her Mama

24) Mingle. Pour self Bloody Mary.    Eye pile of baby presents and wonder if someone will throw you a shower because you’re not even close to being married and pretty soon everyone is going to have kids and all you have is a dog and your   YA manuscript is just languishing on your desk and it’s unlikely you’re ever going to publish a novel and  ohmigod just get another Bloody Mary and eat something, for heaven’s sake.

Yes, those are blue cheese stuffed olives.

25) Give literary toast to Baby Mama in which you comment  that the Christmas music is suddenly loud now that you are the only one talking.  Compare Baby Mama to Hermione Granger. Success!

25) Play non-offensive shower game in which guests try to guess Baby Daddy’s answers to baby-related questions. Marvel that Baby Daddy thinks a snowstorm is ideal birthday weather.  Fear for Baby’s life.

26)  Corner each guest and bully her into writing something in advice book for Baby.    Look menacing. Fail at looking menacing.

Dear me, wasn’t she the cutest kid?

27)   Write down which guest gave which present.  Feel simultaneously curious and revolted concerning  “snot sucker.”

You would be surprised what babies need .

28)  Tell guests to choose a party favor book before they leave.  Explain first come, first serve and advise you can also fight someone to the death for the book you want. Feel relief when  there is no bloodshed. Look forward to Hunger Games movie.

29) Take down decorations, eat remaining Quiche and cheese biscuits. Drink enormous tumbler of vodka, apple juice, and cranberry juice with co-host while you question if angry Russians have connections to mob and if you should be concerned about your safety. Decide not likely.

Scrabble tiles born again.

30) Collapse on sofa and watch  BBC’s Pride & Prejudice  while remaining decorations and various party detritus linger on the floor by your door for at least the next three days, at which point you will have to clean because your dog is starting to get braver about approaching the puff balls and it’s only a matter of time before she tries to eat one.

Already licking her chops.

** Special thanks to my co-host Melissa for providing almost all of the photos.

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Posted on December 7, 2011, in Real Life. Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.

  1. Virginia MacIvor

    Wonderful Miss Maryann!!!!

  2. Love it! I’d elect you to host my non-baby/non-bridal shower any day. You’re a great friend, M!

  3. I will totally throw you a shower… better me than Diette, right? 🙂

  4. She wouldn’t even know what Pinterest was..

  5. I heart you, M. Love, L. PS – I look so badass in that top pic. Top Gun called.

  6. You are a great writer and an obviously great friend to Lauren. I had a baby shower hosted for me just 8 months ago and am going to host one in a few months and this had me laughing hysterically [as I sat in my company’s tiny phone booth doing a motherly “duty” and be-bopping to the sound of a trademark yellow pump. You don’t know me – i just thought I’d give you kudos for your penmanship and your party-throwing skills!

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