If you think I am going to play one more game of Baby Bingo, you're out of your frickin' mind.
Katie Wisdom Weinstein: I just hosted a coworker's baby shower at work. Wow! It has been a long time since I have had babies or hosted a shower! I asked friends, families, and Google for all kinds of advice and got more than an earful. Baby shower games and parenting advice? No way! If I had been given a shower with half of this so-called "advice" back in the day, I would have run screaming for the hills!
I am shocked that people still participate in the archaic rituals of baby shower games. Baby Bingo? People, have we not evolved? I thought it would be funny to play a game called "Don't Shake the Baby," where we play hot potato with a life-like baby doll. No one else in the office thought this was amusing. I guess "Seven Minutes in Heaven" was out -- that game was why we were probably there in the first place, plus who really wants to make out with coworkers? I went to a baby shower website, and on their blog, someone suggested a game where you melted a candy bar in a diaper and everyone had to guess what candy bar it was. WHAT?! Are you friggin' serious? I have a 7th grader's sense of humor, and even I thought that was crossing the line!
My favorite game at baby showers usually happens naturally. It is called "Nightmare." This is when a guest, who is already a mom, forgets her audience and starts telling the gnarliest, most horrifying story of the birth of her child. The story uses words like fluids, tearing, purple/blue, crotch ice packs, and howling. The mom-to-be starts to look scared and her eyes glaze over. Nice. Everyone wins that game.
Advice for the new parents is never a good idea, unless they ask specifically. Everyone has their own style, of course. In any given room, you will get 10 different suggestions for one question. I remember my husband's grandmother telling us no one should get close to the baby at all. Like, never. She told us we should not kiss the baby, at all. She then wanted us to make sure we never left the baby with anyone we did not trust (no duh) who might shake the baby. I suppose she would not have appreciated my "Don't Shake the Baby" game, either. I remember another mom telling me to bite my child back when he went through a stage of biting. What an idiot. I felt like biting her.
When I was pregnant, a friend threw me a shower. The hostess at the party wanted to swing a crystal in a circle over my belly. I thought it looked like rock candy and I wanted to eat it. I think it was to determine the gender of the baby. Never mind that we had decided NOT to find out the gender, the hostess wanted to play her game. She was wrong about the gender. But, really, the shower was lovely. We all laughed, and they were very generous. I did receive a book, where everyone wrote a piece of advice. It did not include "Don't kiss the baby," and it did not tell me to sniff the dirty diapers to see if they smelled like chocolate.
I sound like I refuse to be cheesy. That would be incorrect. I like the occasional cheesy effort. After all, I made a diaper cake for the shower. A what? A diaper cake! I know, I am such a hypocrite. I rolled those little tiny Pampers up and stacked them in the cutest cake shape, jammed the layers with toys, washcloths, and baby goods. I loved it. I guess when all is said and done, I am a sucker for a baby shower.
Our office baby shower was short and sweet. No games. No advice. Just a decorated conference room, cool baby gifts, lots of laughing, good food, and a stunning diaper cake.
|Katie Wisdom Weinstein is a professional modern momma. She lives in Portland, Oregon in a 100 year old house with her husband, Jess, and her two children Ruby, age 10 and Skylar, age 12. Cooking, camping, negotiating with pre-teens and allowing a zoo of animals in her house are her pastimes.|