Indulge in a Flight of Fantasy Baby Shower

Even a serious mommy-to-be would enjoy escaping reality for a few hours in this fantasy baby shower. If you can imagine a cross of Scheherezade's 1001 Arabian Nights with the Nutcracker Suite, you've got it.

Fantasy is the order of the day, and the invitations are the best way to announce that to all the guests. Look for a card with an Arabian-style motif and print the details of the fantasy baby shower inside. Or, create your own fantasy invitation using glitter, netting, and colorful feathers. You want it to look like Mardi Gras on paper. Put each one in a large enough envelope and put in a tiny pinch of glitter to add a bit more flair.

Next, the decorations. Conjure up an outdoors tent (you can even set this up indoors) and decorate it with filmy netting “curtains” in jewel colors of bright pink, purple, and aqua to make it feel like a genie set it up. Clip some battery powered mini Christmas lights inside. A nice touch would be to replace some of the white bulbs with colored ones to add an unexpected flash of color to the tent. If you can find a cutwork metal lamp, hang it in the middle of the tent to complete the Scheherezade feeling.

No tables needed! Lay a carpet on the floor or perhaps a bedsheet in a wild fantasy pattern. Finish off your setting with floor cushions and set your placemats and table setting directly onto the carpet. If you can find a hookah, that would be the perfect centerpiece to this outlandish setting. Set it directly at the center of the floor. No flowers or anything else required.

The food table should be decorated in about the same way. Try serving the food on silver trays to make it a little more unusual. A terrific and easy centerpiece here would be more of those fantasy feathers set into tall, clear vases filled with coordinating colors of jelly beans or mini gum drops.

The food should be as dry as possible, considering the floor cushions you have set up. Little savory pastries, tiny sandwiches, chicken tenders, and vegetable sticks are terrific choices. An assortment of cookies and a selection of sweetmeats from your neighborhood ethnic grocery would round this out nicely.

A cake is a must, of course. Ask the mommy-to-be what her fantasy cake is and indulge her, if you can. Otherwise, a tower of multicolored cupcakes makes a terrific highlight for the food table. Sprinkle each one with edible glitter, if you can find it.

A great game for this fantasy baby shower is “Telling Tales.” Just like any veteran storyteller, your task will be to add to the next part of the story. The hostess starts out by laying the basic setting. For example, “Once upon a time, a man and a woman lived at the edge of the Enchanted Wood. The woman found out she was about to have a baby and...” It's up to the next guest to continue the story and each guest has the chance to contribute to it as it goes all around the room. Give a very special prize to the best storyteller. This would be a great part to record!

The favors for this baby shower could be packaged in a velvet pouch that can be filled with all sorts of treasures: silvered Jordan almonds, chocolate coins, a scented candle, and the richest hand cream you can find.