Let me start off by saying, “I love a party.” I do. Weddings? You bet I’ll be on your dance floor. A holiday soiree? Count me in. For goodness sake, I even love kids birthdays parties (that start after 11am and involve booze). So you better believe if you’re sending me an invite to your baby shower I am totally in. I want to celebrate you AND that beautiful creature you are about to bring into this world. But here is what I don’t want to do. I love you, I really do, but I do not, unfortunately, want to watch you open one more gift in front of me.
I’m not sure where this whole shower tradition began but, the truth is… it’s got to end. And not just because the whole thing gives me a knot in my stomach. Sure, your dear Aunt Jean may want to see every itty bitty yellow sock that you pull out of beautifully wrapped box and make you a ribbon hat. But the majority of us don’t want to have to whisper our conversations for the next hour or say “aw” for the 100th time. Even if everything really is that cute. Because it is! But it’s exhausting. For you too! Especially for you. I can tell you from experience. And when you get a gift that actually isn’t cute after the 25th gift opening? Let me tell you, it gets harder and harder to feign excitement. And the last thing you want to do is offend grandma. So save yourself the grief and opt out of opening gifts at your baby shower.
I know, I know, some of you will say: “Well, that’s rude not to open gifts that your guests bought you!” To that I say: “Hold up.” Gifts should be given selflessly, and the mama-to-be does not owe a pressured and showy “ooh or aah” to anyone. What she does owe is a gracious thank you, quality time spent with each guest and, of course, a lovely thank you note.
Here are 5 ways to Just Say No to traditional gift opening at your baby shower.
- Go Eco. Ask friends and family to bring gifts unwrapped with a gift tag or card saying who the gift is from and display them on a table for all to see.
- Request Direct Shipping. One of the biggest obstacles about your kind guests bringing you gifts to a party at all is getting all of those wonderful gifts home. Request for guests to ship gifts directly to you.
- Make it easy. Saving up for your Pinterest-worthy nursery is no easy task, so in lieu of physical gifts, include your guests on your dream nursery design by setting up a cash gift fund for guests to add to! They’ll love seeing you post photos on Facebook knowing they added to the cuteness.
- Be Clear. OK, OK, your cousin reeeaallly wants to do that ribbon game at your shower. Ask guests to wrap your gifts in cellophane and tie them up with a bow. It will give your guests one more reason to walk by the gift table to ooh and aah.
- Graze. Still feel bad about not opening gifts in front of everyone? Do it one by one. Give guests the option throughout the shower. Chances are not everyone will opt for you opening it in front of them so you’ll be able to give your loved ones who say yes to opening the gift the attention and thank you they’re looking for.