Thursday, June 11, 2015

Baby Love - A Simple School Themed Shower

One of my best friends (one of my oldest friends, too - we've been buds since we were 9!) is having a baby in July! A girl baby, at that! Woop! This is a little extra exciting because among my friends and family it's been boy after boy after boy these last few years. I'm thrilled baby K will be adding some feminine energy into the mix.

As soon as she announced her pregnancy, myself and two of our other friends pretty much decided that we'd throw the shower. We knew we'd really have to step up our party planning game because the mama to be is really the queen of crafty and we wanted to do her and baby proud. I think we succeeded!

We held the brunch shower in my backyard over the weekend. Mama to be is a teacher, so we thought it'd be cute to include some school-ish details with the d├ęcor.

I made these cute little vases by gluing and tying crayons to some jars. I also purchased some mini pink pencils to use as well. Centerpieces generally consisted of a couple thrift store golden books, a small floral arrangement, a handful of wooden blocks from the dollar store and an apple. Cute, ya?

We also spray painted some cans and decorated them with alphabet and number magnets.

We found some cheap thrift store picture books and flash cards that we could use as garland. I punched some holes, strung some ribbon and bam. I also made some using scrapbook paper. These hung over the food table, drink station, patio tarp thing and the area behind where the mama sat to open her gifts. My sister and I also made a few tissue paper flowers and one of those paper chain things just for kicks.

For brunch I prepared a spicy sausage, kale and gruyere strata, a zucchini, tomato, parsley and fontina strata*, three kinds of simple croissant sandwiches (turkey + avocado, ham + havarti, salami, mortadella + provolone), a big garden salad with a lemon vinaigrette, caprese skewers, a fruit tray and yogurt parfaits. The grandmas-to-be brought an assortment of mini desserts and co-host M made a yummy, boozy punch with basil, raspberry lemonade and lots of orange juice and champagne to make your own mimosas. She had a ton of left over mason jars from her wedding which we used as glasses for our guests.

*I'll post my strata recipe another time. Do you make strata? They save my life when cooking for a crowd. They are so easy, so adaptable to any taste and they can be completely prepped the night before. They actually need to be prepped the night before. Such a hit. Thank heavens for strata, I say.

A few weeks before the shower I snapped some maternity photos of the mama and daddy to be. One of the co-hosts had them printed and framed and placed around some of the communal tables, along with some fun framed baby photos of the expectant couple.

We had a few different cards printed out with different prompts on them for the ladies to fill out - What's your favorite thing about being a mom, What's your favorite thing about your mom, and What's your favorite motherhood memory. Mama to be actually had a hand in this by letting us know early on that she didn't necessarily want "advice" from her friends and family, but would rather they share a special memory with her about being a mom or about their mother. I thought this was such a great idea. Our friend and shower co-host is going to compile the responses in a scrapbook. In addition, I made a little "Dear Baby" template where guests could write a little note to the baby if they wanted.

We aren't really big on organized games, but we did want something optional and fun for the guests to participate in - other than, you know, stuffing their faces and drinking mimosas. We contacted the grandmas and asked them to share a few funny stories/quirks about their kids. We chose a handful, printed them out on cards and had guests guess which of the baby's parents the story is attributed to. The winner received a couple outdoor lantern candle holders. Pretty simple.

Since baby's name is Adalene and baby's mama is a teacher who loves rice krispy treats, my sister made some as favors with an icing A on them. We figured our guests deserved an A for their attendance. ;)

 All in all it was a super sweet day. I can't freaking wait to squeeze that baby's face off.

And if you care:
Invitations here
Spotify playlist here