Alternative Baby Shower Ideas for Your Favorite Mom-to-Be

Are any of your friends or relatives expecting babies, and you're involved in planning their baby shower? Here are some ideas from a reader for less typical baby shower. Hope you like them!

Having a baby is a wonderful time for any expectant parent, but it can also be hectic. Not only do you have to go about your everyday life as before, but you also have to get ready for an entirely new person to come into your life, heart, and home. Things will never be the same again.

In most cases, an expectant mother will also be expected to throw a baby shower (or ask a friend to do it for her). These can range from a small gathering of close friends to a huge elaborate party. Now, baby showers are great, but some moms-to-be aren't as keen on the idea. Fortunately, in recent years, many 'alternative' baby showers have exploded in popularity, so there are a lot of ideas out there if a game of ‘guess what’s in the diaper’ is firmly off the table.

Donate to charity.

If your mama-to-be already has everything you could ever need and more, ask the guests to make a charitable donation in her name (or baby's name, if you know it). Make a shortlist of charities you'd like to support, or whose values align with the mother-to-be and provide information about them on your invitation. If you're not planning to send out invites, you can let people know via email or when they arrive. You could also ask for donations of baby equipment, food, or clothing to donate if you'd prefer, and donate to a mother-and-baby group or charity.

Send love from afar.

If the parents-to-be have friends and family who don't live nearby, instead of having them send gifts, ask them to write or record a message of love and support for the new family. If it's their first child, any advice will surely be welcome, and encouraging messages can be re-read and re-watched whenever new parenthood gets tough. You never know, they might even play the messages for the baby when they turn 18!

Craft circle

If the mother-to-be is from a particularly crafty, creative circle of friends, craft circle baby showers can be an excellent way for everyone to get involved in the baby's impending arrival. You could get together and make things for baby's nursery, knit clothes, draw, paint, and whatever it is that you all enjoy best. This is perfect for some productive yet relaxing pre-baby time.

Go out for a pre-baby brunch.

Not all mothers-to-be (or designated hosting buddies) want to deal with a huge post-cleanup baby shower, and the idea of going out with the girls one final time before the baby comes is extremely appealing to many. Keep it chill with brunch at mama’s favorite place, and turn up the party vibe with non-alcoholic cocktails, cute table decorations, and gifts. Laid-back brunches are especially great for mothers expecting their second or third child.

Stay in with the girls.

The 'girl's night in' is a cornerstone of any female friendship. Why not celebrate your ongoing love for each other, while also marking one of the group's journey into motherhood? You can hang out, catch up on life and motherhood, and eat and drink delicious treats. Just make sure there are plenty of baby-safe options for the mama to be!

Sprinkle over shower

A baby sprinkle is much like a traditional baby shower, but for mothers-to-be who don’t want to be the center of attention. These 'sprinkles' are much more casual gatherings. Yes, there can still be gifts, food, and games, but just a toned-down version. Try serving finger food and light snacks and keep games short and simple.

Group gift

If the expectant mother already has all her baby stuff, why not get together with a bunch of friends and pool cash for a group gift? Group gifts are great as you can think outside of the usual ‘diaper genie and rompers for baby girls' box and make a real statement. Go for something practical like a house clean, a prenatal massage, a spa day, or even some decor for baby's nursery. You could also just put the cash into a card, or onto a gift voucher, so the parents can spend it later on something they need.

Stock up on stuff.

Most of the stuff you usually find on a baby registry are things like diaper cakes, onesies, cute cuddly toys, rattles, and all those other lovely baby items. Change it up by forgoing these traditional gifts, and instead, help the new parents stock up on practical stuff like nursing pads, diapers, wet wipes, and toiletries. It's a little bit less romantic, but just as useful.

Include both parents.

Most baby showers focus solely on the mother, but in recent years, 'Jack and Jill' parties, which celebrate both parents equally, have seen a sharp rise in popularity. These showers are a great opportunity not only to recognize both the people who will be parenting the new baby, but also to scale back some of the more traditional activities in favor of a more relaxed vibe. Men who aren’t the expectant father can be invited, too.

Have a spa/treat day.

Instead of a baby shower, why not spend an entire day doing solely activities that the mother-to-be wants to do? This is a particularly good option for mothers expecting their second or third child, who may not have had an entire day to themselves to just do what they want for a while. You can go shopping, head to the spa, get your hair and nails done, or just veg out in front of the TV with popcorn and chips. Even simple things can feel luxurious in the right circumstances. As long as it's what she wants to do, everything is on the table.

Invite the baby.

Many couples now choose to combine their baby shower with a welcome party for the baby. That way, they don't have to hold a whole separate celebration once the baby has arrived. It's also a fantastic way for the new parents to introduce their new baby to all their loved ones at the same time.

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal

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