I have always been passionate about designing and making meaningful gifts and keepsakes and was very fortunate to able to start my own business. Lauren Nicole Gifts (name after my niece) was started in 2004 and was a great way for me to have my own business, but still move around as an Army wife. My husband recently retired from the Army and we are now permanently located in Ouray, Colorado

Friday, June 8, 2012

Seven Steps to A Successful Baby Shower - Guest Post

My guest post today comes from Katie who runs the blog More From Katie.  Katie writes informational articles about motherhood, prenatal health, and other useful topics:

Seven Steps to A Successful Baby Shower 

She's having a baby! You're ecstatic for her. What better way to get her off on the right foot to motherhood than to throw her a baby shower? Here are seven steps to making her shower a success:

1. Come up with a theme
A baby shower theme will color everything from decorations to games to snacks. Think about the mother's personality. Is she a nature-lover? What is her favorite color? Choosing a theme will help all other decisions fall into place.

2. Create a budget
Whether you're operating on a shoestring or money is no object, it is wise to create a budget. Once you know how much you can spend, it will dictate how much you spend on the venue, favors, decorations and refreshments.

3. Choose a venue
If you are short on time or manpower, it may be worth the extra money to throw your shower at a restaurant or full-service catering facility. In this case, the menu and most of the decorations are taken care of for you. If, however, you are short on cash, you may want to take the hands-on approach. Find a few happy helpers and get to work on the details.

4. Choose a menu
A brunch or luncheon is more traditional for a baby shower, but let the theme or the mother's personality color what is served. Also remember to be sensitive to her newly-acquired aversions and cravings. Don't forget the cake!

5. Come up with some games
The games for the mother-to-be need not be extravagant. They are meant to be a quick, fun addition to the shower. After all, the main attraction is the mommy-to-be.

6. Send out invitations

Ask mommy-to-be where she has registered and advertise for her in the invitations. Be the source of gift ideas for attendees. Many stores have systems in place where a mother can create a registry of clothes, toys and other items to help care for baby. Some mothers are even taking a more proactive approach to their family’s future health and use alternative gift registries like to help them utilize umbilical cord blood banking after delivery. Speak to the expecting mother what she would most like for her registry.

Invitations should be sent out at least three weeks in advance to allow for the RSVP's to roll in and the final count to be made.

7. Enlist help

No woman is an island. This is especially true in planning a baby shower. Depending upon the details, helpers may be needed to make the favors, decorate, cook, and clean up. Don't forget to assign someone to take pictures, record presents and their givers for thank-you notes, and do the heavy gift lifting for mommy-to-be.

With some careful planning, planning a baby shower can be a very simple, stress-free job that will result in a happy expecting mother having beautiful memories and fun gifts to begin her motherhood with.

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