The baby shower was the entire reason for this trip, of course, and it was wonderful. My sister Heather and cousin Molly were the official hostesses, and they outdid themselves. My mom and Aunt Debbie also did quite a bit to help out, and my college roommate Kristina offered to do the adorable favors. My dad was an all-star, too, and allowed us to use his home as the venue and took care of chair rental, cleaning, and I'm sure other things I don't even know about. Having so many wonderful people come together to plan such a great day for my daughter and me is really heartwarming - almost too much for a hormonal pregnant lady to take!
(Here we go - brace yourselves for lots of pictures!)
Molly and Aunt Debbie arrived at my dad's house around noon on Saturday to get things set up, and my mom was not too far behind. Everybody got right to work!
Can somebody please help my poor sister hang this banner?!
My dad soon arrived back after picking up my grandmother, so I spent some time chatting with her. She is 90 years old now and was so excited about this shower! It was so sweet to see. I was so glad she could be there, and I'm glad she had such a good time!
Pre-shower visiting with Grandma
After catching up with Grandma I went out into the kitchen to check on the progress. Everything was looking fabulous! For food, we had sandwich, fruit and veggie platters, plus peanut butter candy balls and cupcakes. To drink, the main feature was the Rubber Ducky Punch, which was adorable - even after all the little duckies did nosedives and went down face first into the punch. Ha! The decorations were all pink and lavender, and pictures of baby me, pregnant me, Baby Girl and even our "Morph Thing" picture of what a hypothetical future child of Eric and me would look like were hung on the walls. In the kitchen they also had two activities set up: wish cards for people to fill out for Baby Girl, and wooden blocks for people to decorate. In the living room, chairs were set up in a circle for game/gift time, complete with the adorable votive favors Kristina brought.
Heather modeling the lovely table setup
Peanut butter candy balls, rolled in a variety of different toppings
Cute favors Kristina put together!
As guests arrived, they helped themselves to food and drink and got started on the blocks and wish cards. The wish cards had a series of "fill in the blank" questions, such as "I hope you learn____," "I hope you become____," etc. I just loved reading them after the shower! Then, to decorate the wooden blocks, Molly had cut out a bunch of adhesive scrapbook squares and people used those along with stickers and markers to make a very cool block set for Baby. Again, I loved looking at all the blocks after the shower! What a cool keepsake, right?
Heather, Aunt Debbie and my mom starting on the wish cards and blocks
As everyone arrived, Eric was also hanging out on Skype to say hello to people. And remember that inflatable remote-controlled shark I bought him for Christmas? He had it set up and flying around in the background while Skyping. So, we all got a glimpse into the wild life he leads when I'm out of town. Ha!
Eric on Skype, with the shark flying around to his right and Achilles (probably being rather nervous) on the couch to his left
When everyone had eaten some food and done their blocks/cards, we moved into the living room for games and gifts. The game was a matching game, in which you had to match up words having to do with babies/giving birth with names of candy. Some examples: Mike & Ike = Boy Names, Lifesavers = Epidural, Raisinettes=Baby Poop. It was pretty cute, and my grandmother was adorable as she said the answers aloud as she figured them out!
Game time! (L to R: Grandma, Mom, Stephanie, Gramz & Toni)
Aunt Debbie commandeered Kristina's little baby Lena to help her with the game!
Heather gives this shower a thumbs up so far, and I agree!
Aunt Debbie, Lena and Grandma discussing answers for the game
After the games, it was gift time. Let me just say that I have been absolutely blown away by the generosity of our family and friends. Even people who weren't able to make it to the shower have been sending us incredible gifts, and those at the shower did just the same. Honestly, Baby Girl will want for nothing and I am so incredibly humbled and touched at the kindness of our loved ones in helping us prepare for her arrival. Once again, it just warms this hormonal pregnant lady's heart to see how loved our little girl is already. It is just incredible. So, here's a big THANK YOU to everyone! You all have no idea what your thoughtfulness means to me.
Time for some gifts!
Monkey on the butt. It's my weakness. (Also, I hope Baby Girl likes pink, because probably about 95% of her wardrobe is pink!)
This is my family baptism gown. My mom brought it for me from Cleveland after Christmas. This baptism gown is probably over 60 years old, and was worn by my mom and all her siblings, as well as by me, my sister and our cousins. I am so thrilled that now Baby will get to wear it and add another generation to the tradition!
Some sports wear: Gator shoes from my Grandma, and a Rays dress from my dad!
Aunt Patty, Kristina, Debbie (and Lena) and Grandma looking on during the gift-opening
Two more of my favorite women: Gramz and Toni. I'm so glad Eric's family came, too!
My high school friend Fran, and her sweet daughter Hailey
Cousin Molly sporting a cute baby bump herself, and my sister modeling Baby Girl's new shades
After the gifts, things started to wind down. I did as much visiting as I could before people left, and tried to get lots of pictures with my guests.
With my friend Fran, her baby and her mom
Another high school friend, Cathy, whose baby girl is due one day after mine!
A couple of very fun ladies, Kristina and Lauren
My college roommate Kristina and her adorable little girl, who I have decided will definitely be MY baby girl's college roommate in 18 years! Look out, Florida!
Another shot with Grandma
And of course, we had to do a shower hostess photo shoot:
My mom, my sister, me, my cousin and my aunt
Baby's Auntie Heather!
With my mom and my sister (and Heather's giant heels)
The Cousins Club!
And, just in case you thought things couldn't have been any more perfect, I will also throw it out there that thanks to Molly's suitcase-packing expertise (seriously, the woman is a packing genius), all of the shower gifts fit neatly into my one checked back for my return flight. Perfection, indeed!
Thanks again to everyone who helped make my shower such a wonderful occasion - my hostesses, all those who helped out, and everyone who came. I loved every second of it, and I love you all!