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Few occasions in a person’s life are more exciting and celebratory than a pregnancy and the birth of a child. In fact, if you ask any mother what the most exciting day of her life was, she will most likely forgo her wedding or graduation day and without hesitation cite her baby’s birth as the number one best day ever (we can easily understand why).
Of course, we are not living in typical times. The coronavirus pandemic has put many in-person celebrations on hold, including baby showers, gender reveals and any other in-person events of that nature. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still celebrate.
Here’s a look at the history of some of the key celebrations surrounding pregnancy and childbirth, how they’ve come to be the occasions we know and love today and how you can celebrate these exciting milestones with your loved ones.
While baby showers seem to be a relatively recent concept in history, they actually date back pretty far—all the way to Ancient Egypt, Greece and India. Yep—for thousands of years, cultures around the world have been hosting baby showers, although they didn’t go by that term, of course. Interestingly, many of these ancient celebrations were held after labor and birth.
During the Victorian era, women would gather for afternoon tea parties to celebrate mothers-to-be, which very well may be where we got the idea to host modern-day baby showers during the day time instead of having them be an evening affair. This wasn’t a universal practice however—these celebrations were typically reserved for the wealthiest and noblest of families.
It wasn’t until after World War II that baby showers started to look the way we know them today. Close friends and family would gather a few months prior to the mother’s delivery day to shower her with gifts for her new baby (hence the name). These were typically only reserved for first-time mothers and were held at the woman’s childhood home.
What if you want to celebrate your second, third, or fourth child? Having a "sprinkle party" is perfect. A "sprinkle" is just that – less extravagant and more modest. Instead of a lavish event showering the first-time Mom with tons of gifts. It’s a low-key gathering where she is "sprinkled" with a few special things for her and baby.
How to throw a virtually baby shower:
BABY SHOWER THEME: FLORAL
BABY SHOWER THEMES: FRUIT
BABY SHOWER GIFTS: snuggler+book set, new mom handbook, e-design service
You’ve probably heard of a gender reveal party—and may have even been invited to one. Typically this type of celebration happens in place of a baby shower (although some people have both!) and centers around finding out the gender of the baby-to-be. Usually the parents-to-be are also finding out for the first time alongside their friends and family. It didn’t become mainstream until the late 2000s, so it’s a relatively new concept and there are several ways the parents-to-be go about the reveal process.
During their 18- or 20-week ultrasound, when they usually find out the gender, they have their ultrasound tech write down the gender on a piece of paper and close it in an envelope. They then give this piece of paper to a baker who will put blue or pink icing in a cake or cupcakes, or a party professional who will put blue or pink confetti in a balloon. Of course, there are plenty of other ways to go about the big reveal as well—the more creative, the more fun!
Given the pandemic, getting everyone together sadly may not be a safe option, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still celebrate.
Virtually Gender Reveal ideas:
FAVORITE GENDER REVEAL IDEAS
SIP AND SEE
While far less known than the traditional baby shower, these celebrations originated in the South. Southern Belles would host friends and family at their home some point after the baby was born for a little sipping and seeing (the baby).
It makes a lot of sense, actually, when you think about it seeing as the mom-to-be isn’t able to join in on the sipping when she’s pregnant, but can likely do so after the baby is born. It also makes a lot of sense for new and exhausted mothers who would prefer to have their friends and family come to see the new baby all at once instead of having to schedule 10+ different meetings throughout their baby’s first few weeks of life. It’s a nice way to get all of the introductions over with.
Sip and Sees are tend to be a bit more informal than traditional baby showers, but often still include gift giving and selections off of a registry.
Virtually Sip and See ideas:
SIP AND SEE THEME: Rosé
SIP AND SEE GIFT IDEAS: adoption necklace, personalized swaddle, personalized neckace
Chances are, you haven’t heard about this type of party, which is kind of in between a baby shower and a sip and see. A weaning party, as it’s called, doesn’t have anything to do with breastfeeding—though the name might suggest otherwise. It actually has to do with celebrating a woman being done with having children and breastfeeding them.
The idea of the weaning party is to celebrate a mom being done with popping out babies! Now she can essentially reclaim her body as her own—something we definitely think is worth celebrating! As you can imagine, cocktails are usually flowing heavily at these parties as moms cheers each other in celebration of the beautiful lives they’ve created (but are done making!).
Virtually Weaning Party ideas:
WEANING PARTY GIFTS: