The Good Hostess Guide
to Surviving a Baby Shower
Okay, the prep work is done, the house is clean and now the guests are arriving for the shower. If you remember in the 8-step Baby Shower Guide, it was suggested that you try to keep the coatroom and the guest gift bags close to the door. When the guests arrive, you can quickly deposit their coats, take their gift and get them seated with a beverage in the party room.
Their gifts will be displayed close to where the guest of honor will be sitting so you can easily pile them in the spot provided while you are getting drink orders.
If you have a game that will be running throughout the shower, such as Diaper Pin "Baby" Game, give them a rundown of how to play the game as you take them to the room. It is helpful to have someone assist you in getting everyone drinks while you greet guests but it is not imperative and most guests will understand that you have a lot to do in those first few minutes so they won’t be upset if their beverage takes a few minutes to get to them.
When you bring in guests, try to get them to strike up conversations with people they know. This can be done by saying things like “Jane was just telling me ...” or by introducing people to each other and explaining how they know the expectant mother. If you can get the conversations rolling as guests arrive, you will have less work to do in the long run.
After the guests and the expectant mother have arrived and are immersed in the shower, it is good to bring out a few appetizers for people to munch on. Take a few minutes to freshen drinks and to also relax, setting the overall tone of the party. If everyone is immersed in good conversation, don’t rush into any games; just let it wind down until some of the guests start looking for something else. At this point, you will pull out a game and fill the room with competitive laughter.
Generally, the game will wind down with a victor and good conversation, and then you can make the decision to let the conversation go on or to start another game to keep the entertainment going. If you have hired an entertainer, this is an excellent time to have them come out and entertain. This is also a good time to play any videos you might have from long distance guests who weren’t able to make it. While the guests are being entertained by someone other than you, go and finish off the meal.
Mealtime will follow a pretty general time line and most people will be immersed in food and conversation, but you can play another game while everyone is eating. Make sure it is simple and hand’s free so that people can participate. You can play the Name Game from Becca, or the guests who have finished eating can play Cotton Balls, contributed by Shelly.
Once you are done with the meal, you will have to do a quick clean up and get the tea or coffee on and the desserts ready. While you are doing this, I would suggest encouraging women to share some delightful stories. This can be done by passing a hat around with topics to draw from or you can let it be a free-flow style of storytelling. You will be able to get your work done and still enjoy the stories and the companionship of your guests.
Next you can have the gift opening. Make sure you pass the gifts around for everyone to see and that you have marked who brought which gifts. This is for the mom-to-be when she is writing those thank you cards. Leave the special large gifts until last if there are any.
Finally, after you serve dessert and tea, the party will start to wind down on its own. This is a time when you can play one last game but usually it is not necessary. Take cues that guests are ready to leave and walk them to the door, giving them any prizes and gift bags as they leave. Don’t rush the guests but give small hints that the party is ending shortly - things like cleaning up and putting away food are good indicators to the guests. For more tips on this stage of the party, check out our Wrap Up page on the 8-Step Baby Shower Guide.
So now that you have read through this handy little survival guide, I hope that you have everything mapped out on how to be the perfect stress-free hostess of a wonderful baby shower.
Go to Step #10 of the The Good Hostess Guide to Surviving a Baby Shower >>