100 Words : Harsh

With chubby fingers she grips her crayon.  Her hands desperate to create on paper the masterpiece in her mind. She scribbles and scrawls crooked flowers and hearts. Her letters are reversed yet her face beams with pride over spelling her name – all by herself.

In her dainty ruffles and crinoline and patent leather Mary Janes, she proudly entered the kitchen where Father sat sipping his coffee.  His attention lost in the paper, business and politics deepen the creases in his brow. She tugs his jacket and offers up her card. He asks for her to return later. Daddy is busy.

My Top 5 Rants

mindbump suggested by Tattletale
“The top 5 things to rant about and end up with a blog post :)”

1. My kids. Usually when they are exhibiting behavior I myself do and should stop doing.  Like copping an attitude.
2. My in laws. Because I didn’t grow up with them so I don’t feel the need to “understand where they are coming from” like I do with my own parents.
3. My house. Because unlike my friends houses mine refuses to clean itself.  What the heck? I’m nice enough. I keep it warm and dry (mostly). The least it could do is the dishes. Geeeesh.
4. Companies. Actually, I usually tweet this. Comcast doesn’t exactly read my blog. Neither does RIM. So blogging about my internet failing or my blackberry being a glorified paperweight does me no good.  But I will tweet the heck out of it! (well, when the internet comes back up and my phone is working)
5. Finances. Do I really need to explain this one?

Baby Showers after the first baby? (Tips for a Unique Baby Shower)

Like most moms I had a couple (read: 4!) baby showers when I was pregnant with my first child.  With child number two, I didn’t have any parties nor did I expect to have any.  I did receive a few group gift bags from my work and hubby’s work, and a few gifts from close family and friends but no ‘showers’.  Maybe I’m old school, but the very idea of throwing me a shower seemed silly and selfish.  It wasn’t like it had been ten years since my last baby.  Add to that I was having another girl, so we couldn’t even say we needed ‘boy’ stuff.
With baby number three, I reluctantly let my mother throw me a baby shower.  I wanted it small because I still felt it was greedy of me to have one.  But, we had recently sold all of our baby things in a yard sale because we weren’t expecting to have another baby any time soon.
By baby number four I think everyone was a little bored with the “look Lisa is having a baby” routine!  (That is until they found out we FINALLY had a boy)

Between my first child and my last child I participated and/or hosted more baby shower then even I want to remember.  I’d like to share with you ten tips for having a unique baby shower the mom is sure to remember.

  1. Invite HER friends- Even at a workplace shower, it’s always nice to have her bff there, or maybe a sister.  It’s a sweet surprise to walk into the room and have one of your closest buddies there to share it with you.  If you can’t get the best friend try for the mom-to-be’s mother!
  2. Do games that create memories- Make a poem with the babies name, Draw pictures of the ‘baby’ on paper plates on your head, Have everyone sign a mat that can frame the baby’s first picture.
  3. Theme the gifts- Depending on the size of the party, and the relationship of the guests, you can theme the gifts for added fun: homemade items, gift cards, diaper/wipe parties, or ‘stuff for mom’ !
  4. Cool, Cool, Cool- Pregnant women, in my experience, tend to be on the warmer side.  Make sure the location is air conditioned, or if held in the winter time, make sure the heat isn’t up too high for the mom-to-be.
  5. Invite hubby!- My favorite shower was the one that included my husband. He spent most of the time standing in the back with the rest of the men but it was nice to have him sit next to me as we opened presents together.
  6. Cake not required- Remember that pregnancy reeks havoc on your body and your taste buds.  While I can’t imagine NOT liking cake, I do have a few friends who don’t care for that dessert.  If the mom-to-be is having issues with gestational diabetes then eating cake would be a bad idea.  Don’t get caught up on traditional party foods and get what the mom-to-be wants and needs.
  7. Surprise! – If you’re planning a surprise shower, consider sending her off to get her hair done before the party.  It’s an easy way to help her look and feel wonderful before she finds herself in a room of picture-takers.
  8. Quilt it! – Ask the guests to bring in a quilt square.  At the shower the group can take turns stitching the squares together to make a quilt cover! Maybe someone can volunteer to help back and quilt it.
  9. Blogger mom-to-be?  Instead of baby gifts, go online to her blogger world and find her some guest bloggers to write some posts for after the baby arrives!
  10. For the future – If the mom is pretty set on baby things, plan her a shower that focuses on the future.  Include a piggy bank for college funds, bring gifts for an older baby or toddler, and coupons for future free babysitting!

Keeping the party focused on mom is the most important tip I can offer, and that means letting go of what YOU think is the perfect shower and focusing on what she likes, prefers, and plans on doing as a mom.
To get your party started on the best foot, get your party invites at Tiny Prints!
“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Tiny Prints blogging program, making me eligible to get a $50 Tiny Prints Gift Code plus 25 FREE Tiny Prints Greeting cards (valued at $149.75). For more information on how you can participate, click here.”