Is it possible to have a baby shower without the mom-to-be present? Not only is it possible, but there are a variety of options available for holding a fun-filled unforgettable event. Technology has made it possible to reach out and touch someone in numerous ways. Throw caution to the wind and get creative!
If mom-to-be has recently relocated to a new town and has left behind a slew of friends and relatives, don't fret. Getting her to travel weeks before her new arrival may not be possible, or advisable, but perhaps you can bring her shower to her...
Want to create a memorable shower, send it to her! A complete baby shower delivered directly to the door of your mom-to-be.
If you live in the same town as the mom-to-be, and all of her family and friends reside elsewhere, send invitations to everyone requesting that they send all gifts to your address, and add a request for a few games to be completed and submitted in a sealed envelope with the guests' name on the outside. Games can be guessing baby stats (date, length, weight), a list of baby related items that guests need to price, or with the invitations, send a picture of a baby bottle filled with baby safety pins and guests will have to guess the number of pins (or any others that you can think of). Once the gifts arrive, the hostess then boxes them up and deliver them to the mom-to-be to unwrap and enjoy.
If the hostess does not live near the new mom, she can do all of the above and simply box up all of the gifts and send them to her.
If your mom-to-be lives out of town, but all of her friends and/or family reside in another state or city, set up a video camera and have the shower without her! Yup, complete with all of the games, goodies, favors and all! Then package up all of her gifts and send her a copy of the tape as well! She'll love seeing all of you have fun, and will be thrilled to have her event captured on video. If you have speakerphone, she won't even have to miss her shower, she can participate in all of the festivities.
For an added twist, have everyone bring their unwrapped gift and wrapping paper to the shower. That way the guests can show off their gifts and then wrap them at the shower for the mom-to-be to open when they arrive at her home.
Or perhaps she would prefer to get together with everyone anyway...
By Air (waves that is)
The desire to have everyone present at a baby shower, no matter the distance, has caused on-line showers to gain in popularity. Guests communicate via private chat rooms and web cams if they have them. There are several companies that have raced to fill this niche and offer everything from invitations and registries, to photos and typed backup. The level of service and options vary by site, but the end result is the same, a way to bridge the distance and celebrate the wonderful event together.
It's All in the Delivery
Note: For those of you who like the idea of a long distance shower, but are a little antsy about the cost of sending the goodies on to the mom-to-be, don't despair. The U.S.P.S. has created a wonderful service called flat rate shipping. For $13.95 you can stuff a large shipping box (12 1/4" x 12 1/4" x 6") chock-full of baby gear! The extra good news - they're priority mail boxes, so they'll even get there quicker. And you can order your boxes online and have them delivered to your door for easiest service. Simply visit http://shop.usps.com.
To Send or Not to Send - That IS the question
Another common question is what constitutes proper etiquette for baby shower invitations when friends and relatives live too far away to attend. Should they receive an invitation, birth announcement, or both? Well, it all depends on the individual. A close friend or relative may want an invitation as a keepsake, despite the fact that attendance is highly unlikely. On the other hand if attendance is not possible, a birth announcement is a wonderful way to keep them in the loop. Often, gifts are sent by friends and relatives once birth announcements are received. Thus, it is not necessary to send shower invitations as well.
To further involve those too far away to attend a shower, why not ask them to write a special something to the newborn. Like a letter to be opened on a milestone date like a 13th, 16th or 18th birthday, graduation, etc, or a video relaying a special wish or a little family history. Not only will your friend or relative be thrilled to be included, but the new addition will have precious mementos.
Lastly, the purpose of a baby shower is to offer support and encouragement to the parents-to-be, and to shower them with tools to make the transition easier. Planning and communication will go a long way in creating the desired effect. Whether long distance or in person, a little creativity can make your shower a smashing success!
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