Sunday, 27 October 2013

Julie-Ann's baby shower (27th October 2013)

Julie-Ann (aka JAK) had given me a heads up about her baby shower awhile back and when I received the email invitation a couple of weeks ago, I RSVPed straightaway – I’m definitely in! Traditionally an event given only for the family's first child and only women were invited, these days baby showers are just a way to celebrate the upcoming or recent birth of a child by presenting gifts to the parents at a party. JAK and partner Andrew had a small request of guests – to bring a book instead of a card for the baby. Finding the right book turned out to be a bit of a challenge not due to the lack of books but because no one actually knew the sex of the baby (JAK and Andrew chose not to find out) so I was looking for books that were gender-neutral; most books I’ve seen in the shops were quite targeted like Bob the Builder or Thomas the Tank Engine for boys, and brightly pink books such as Angelina Ballerina for girls. I managed to get them two books suited for children age 0-6 months (so they can put them to use from day one) – these books included nursery rhymes with steps for the parent to act and play them out with the baby, encouraging interaction and bond between parent and baby whilst the baby learns.

JAK’s aunt had very kindly offered her residence for the party and around 11am, I arrived at St Leonard’s train station and made my way to Crows Nest where the party was held. Trays of baby-themed cupcakes, cookies and lollicakes filled the dining table, and there was even a chocolate fondue fountain with cut fruit on sticks on the side for your dipping pleasure. I left my present on the gift table and headed into the backyard, mingling with other female guests over copious cups of the delicious fruit punch JAK had prepared. I found out that almost everyone invited to the party (who weren’t family) were at some point work colleagues of JAK’s – very impressed that she has continued to hold such strong friendships with people from her former jobs, some going as far back to when she was on her OE in the UK :) And speaking of former work colleagues, look who just arrived – Violet!

Baby-themed biscuits

Cupcakes of assorted designs

Lollicakes!

Cute animal banner at the baby shower

With only a few weeks left before the bun in the oven pops out, JAK was totally glowing and in great shape – she was fit as ever, the only major change in body shape was just the protruding tummy. I want to be like that when it’s my turn!

Andrew’s younger sister had organised a little activity for the everyone to keep us busy while lunch was being prepared. A long table was set up with paintbrushes, empty palettes, sponges, colourful tubes of paint, small plastic containers of water to clean used paintbrushes as well as paper plates, each with an unpainted letter of the alphabet. Guests were encouraged to put their creative hats on and pick a letter to decorate – these letters were to become part of the wall decoration for the baby's room. What a novel idea and adds a personal touch too! I went for alphabet A (for Angelica, obviously), giving it a sunny shade of marigold and dotted with little flowers. Not sure what to paint? Don’t fret – there was a colour chart and several design templates on the table you can use as examples. The painting area was not very big so guests took turns, some painting while others adjourned to the outdoor dining area and helped themselves to the fantastic spread the family has prepared for lunch.

Guests getting creative painting alphabets for the baby's room

I couldn’t stay long so caught a ride with Violet to the nearest train station around 2pm. We said our goodbyes to our lovely hostess and were given party favours, little bags filled with an assortment of goodies to take home. Aww, JAK, that’s really sweet – thanks for inviting us :) Looking forward to meet the new addition to the family soon!

Baby shower party favour - biscuit, chocolate, cookie cutter and nail polish


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