If you’ve ever been to a baby shower, you know that kids are almost never the main guests at the event. Baby showers are generally celebrations held for grown-up friends and family members. Even if the hostess suddenly decides to celebrate a kids’ baby shower, don’t think she’s somehow lost her mind!
Because in these cases, we need to consider the mother-to-be, as she might have special people in her life that have children, and maybe even kids are in somehow a big part of her closest circle of people.
Is she an elementary school teacher, works at a DayCare or has been a baby sitter? Or maybe she has older sisters/brothers who have kids and she’s their favorite auntie. Also, let’s not forget that baby shower’s don’t have to be a one-time event.
You can definitely have two or even three separate showers. This will allow the mother and parents to celebrate with each group of friends and so that everyone feels comfortable during the celebration.
You may think it’s a hassle, to throw different showers at different times, but it’s actually pretty common. Plus, some kids are just not of the right age to attend an adult baby shower, and celebrating a shower especially for kids can turn out to be a blast.
Baby Shower Etiquette for Showers with Children as Guests
Traditional baby showers were only celebrated for the expectant mother and her closest friends and family. It was traditionally held for women only. As meals, if your baby shower was held after 5 PM, you’d be expected to serve hot food and sit down around a table. Cupcakes were completely out of the picture and the cake was preferably white and stunning, with something very baby-like on top like baby blocks, a crib or just a baby.
If you’re hosting a baby shower with kids as guests, you know that this is not the “traditional” way of doing things, and that’s ok! A lot has changed in the past twenty years in terms of etiquette for baby showers. And just for fun, we’ve come up with:
“Baby Shower Etiquette for When Kids are About”
1. Should you register for gifts?
Kids won’t arrive alone, they’ll most probably arrive with their parents, and most likely they’re also friends with the expectant mother too. You can register for gifts, of course, but register for reasonably priced gifts. However, if you really want to go the whole way, you may also feel the need to opt-out of registering for gifts, and just enjoy with your little guests!
2. Request Modest Gifts
For regular baby showers, it’s nice to skip some of the most expensive gifts on your list. Register for everyday objects you’ll need, and make sure you take care of the “bigger” things such as the crib, bedding, or other expensive gear.
What about for the kids?
For the kids, you can even make a fun, DIY list for them to participate in gift making/giving and bring to the shower. You can ask for drawings or clay pieces for the nursery room, make the kids feel part of the experience too. Manifest that this is not optional if you wish.
3. Invitations for the Little Guests
Make them feel welcome!
They’re your little guests of honor, design some specific invitations for them too. This is to make sure they arrive and are notified by their parents. You can design a formal invitation for parents, and inside, you can include a cute little invitation for the little guest. Another choice is to look into e-invitations systems which work quite nice as well. To make them feel important, ask them to RSVP too. They’ll be in for the whole experience!
4. The Mother’s Role
Well, as the expectant mother, your only job at the celebration is to be the elegant guest of honor and gift recipient! However, in a shower filled with lovely kids, it’s very possible that you’ll be standing up and playing around with them as well, as it is a possibility that the hostess doesn’t share as close a relationship with them as you do. However, you should make sure you enjoy yourself at all times.
5. Timing is Key
If you want your little guests of honor to attend the shower, make sure you consider timing. Usually, hard times like nap time, weekday afternoons, or Sunday afternoons (many kids use this day to go to sports practices and even tournaments), and we think that weekdays are off the table since most kids are in school or doing summer activities. However, depending on their age, you may have the chance to make the shower work on a Friday afternoon, just after school is out or just before dinner time, but we’ll leave that up to you. Also, you might need to consider working parents and their own timing in order for the little ones to attend, as they need to find the time to transport them to the location.
6. Thank you Cards
Make sure you send out cute thank you cards to all of the kids who showed up to the celebration, not only for the gifts but because they attended your celebration. They’ll surely treasure it forever.
So now that we’ve gone over the baby shower etiquette rules for kids, let’s move forward.
Things you’ll Need to Consider Having Ready for the Kids
1. Type of Food.
The type of food you decide to serve will depend on the time of the shower. We would recommend maybe around 1 PM thru 5 PM. Since it’s after lunch and there’s a whole lotta time to have fun. Since children are fidgety and will surely be running around, you’ll need to serve food that is fancy but still kid-friendly.
- Slightly “sophisticated” finger food
- Various types of small sandwiches
- Different types of sauces arranged around the table
- Decorated plates with fruits and vegetables
- For the dessert table: Fun candies.
2. Cake or Cupcakes? Or maybe… a cupcake cake!
You can definitely go for one or the other, or a combination of both! But we feel that cupcakes are actually ideal for a shower with kids. They’re practical and don’t require any cutting.
Plus, don’t expect them to have a seat to eat, they’ll be running around. But with cupcakes, you’ll avoid accidents from running with utensils which can cause accidents. Also, a cake is most likely just one flavor, with cupcakes you can have a huge variety of flavors and decoration, so everyone’s happy and excited!
If your shower consists of adults and kids, consider having a cake for the adults and cupcakes for the little ones. If not, just cupcakes for all! Trust us, nobody’s going to complain, they’ll be too busy munching and having a great time.
Read also our article about: 55+ Amazing Baby Shower Cake Ideas that Will Inspire You
Baby shower games are fun and silly! Kids will have a blast with any of the games you propose for the day, but we’ll give you some ideas too. The goal is to keep them interested and having fun. However, consider not awarding gifts and prizes to avoid harsh feelings or kids getting upset. You’ll know on that day. Here are some baby shower games ideas that kids will love:
- Place the baby on the belly. You can definitely print this out or have some paper cutouts to make it yourself. After that, you’ll pin the bigger poster of the belly on a wall, and ask kids to “pin the baby on the belly” blindfolded. They’ll have a blast and so will you!
- Guess How Many: This game is also pretty easy to play and assemble. You’ll need a big baby bottle and some candy. Ask the kids to take a guess at how many candies are inside. Take note, and whoever is the closest to the actual amount, wins!
- How Big is Mommy: Kids are always curious about mommy’s belly, so have them find out how big it is! All you’ll need a tape measurer. Have someone measure the belly and have kids write down how big they think it is, the closest to guess, wins.
- Choose a Letter and Draw a Picture: Set up a creative station, the kids will need to choose a letter from an animal alphabet, they’ll have to draw a baby version of the letter they chose. Example: W for Whale. They would need to draw a baby whale.
- Decorate a Block. This one is so much fun! And it will surely leave you a couple of pieces for you to remember. What you need are some small, wooden baby blocks, undecorated. After that, set up a creative table, in which kids can pick markers, paint and other materials to decorate their own block. There are no winners in this game, only friendly and creativity. This will keep them busy and excited during the shower, plus, can you imagine the adorable photos you can take?
- Read a Story: This isn’t a game, it’s more of an activity for kids of reading age. Set up a corner in the space and set out some baby story books. Have them read their favorites stories to the crowd. The mommy-to-be can read a couple as well! You could even ask the kids to invent their own stories through writing or pictures. Super fun and adorable.
Babies at the Baby Shower
It seems ironic that babies at a baby shower are rare, right? But this is only because, traditionally speaking, baby showers are meant for adults. However, there is always the case in which a friend or family member, needs to attend with their baby and that’s ok. (By “baby” we mean non-mobile babies that need to be held constantly). Make sure that anyone with babies, know, beforehand, that you’ll be celebrating a kids shower and it might get loud. This way they can decide if to attend or not.
For moms, it might be a difficult decision and might even consider not attending in order not to cause discomfort to your baby or to other guests, that is if your baby feels uncomfortable and starts feeling a bit cranky, or if you yourself have to pump, put them down for a nap, or attend to their needs throughout the shower. If you decide not to go, don’t feel guilty about it, you can still send your gift and a baby shower card.
Ensure a Safe Baby Shower
You’ll surely need the extra adult help when planning for a kids baby shower. Not only to help keep the party going, but to also keep the little guests from fighting, running off into unsafe areas (like a nearby road, if the party is held outside), get lost, or stray away from adult supervision.
The expectant mother is the guest of honor and even if she’ll be participating and having fun with the kids, she should not be required to monitor or keep an eye on the kids, she should limit herself to enjoying her celebration. To ensure this, ask parents and adults to be on the lookout and helping with supervision, if this is done, everything should go super smoothly.
Make sure the space is safe, and if held in a park or a home with a backyard nearby a road, make sure you set boundaries from the beginning of the party. Talk to the little guests as well as the parents about the rules, where they should stay during games and running and where they shouldn’t go.
Baby showers with kids as the guests of honor is a recipe for a great time. Kids bring joy, laughs and make us all remember our inner children. You’ll know how to keep them busy with the games and the mom-to-be will be glad you, the hostess, invited her special friends to the shower as well.
Remember to ask her for her opinion, if you feel she is leaning towards inviting kids, make her consider two separate showers. If she doesn’t want to have two, make things work with all the tips you’ve read throughout this article. We’re almost sure you’ll have a blast!