Hosting a Summer Baby Shower

Happy is the baby that is to be born in the warm days of summer! With the warm summer sunshine and the gentle breezes, the cool, rich green of the landscape takes over. With summer too comes dreams of tropical islands, balmy breezes, and the azure sea as far as the eyes can see. How rich is the season with ideas for a summer baby shower!

There are many themes that a summer baby shower can adapt. From a poolside party, to a celebration Hawaiian style, to a beach party, a picnic, an outdoor barbecue, or even a Fourth of July party, the hostess has her hands full. Of course, the most quintessential American summer baby shower theme would be an old-fashioned outdoor barbecue!

You could take a Western tone to the barbecue, which seems to suit it very well. A suitable invitation could be a post card that features scenes of the great American West or one that simply shows a platter of barbecued ribs and a cold beer. Your choice of invitation would also depend on whether the baby shower is a females-only or a couples shower. Presumably, the males at a couples shower would prefer to have the beer.

Set the scene simply for this type of baby shower. You could use flaglets in red, white, and blue to decorate the party area or streamers in red, white, and blue to hang from the walls instead. Balloons in these same colors would also make the party area more festive.

Drape the tables in the traditional brown paper if you dare. If you prefer to be a little more formal, use a chambray tablecloth to cover both the guest and the buffet tables. Since the barbecue is very informal, set a jug of white daisies or other wildflowers in the middle of the table. Set each place with either plastic utensils and paper napkins in red, white, and blue or in beautiful spatterware.

For the buffet table, you will need bricks to act both as risers for the food and as trivets for the hot plates. Serve the grilled meats in wooden trays and extra sauce from sauce boats set near the platters. Accompany the meats with the regional favorite, be it white bread, potato salad, corn bread, or even fried rice.

Make the desserts classics, too. Serve an apple pie with vanilla ice cream, brownies topped with cheesecake filling, or simple sliced fruits like peaches or strawberries topped with whipped cream and ladled over piping hot biscuits. There are things that you just don't mess with.

These kinds of baby showers also need traditional games to accompany them. Why not have a good game of tug-of-war or maybe a slew of carnival games like the bean toss or shooting down the glasses? These are fun and comfortable games for everyone to take part in.

As for favors, keep them as uncomplicated as the party. Why not give out a personalized bottle of barbecue sauce? Or hand out bags of that other summer favorite, caramel popcorn? No matter what you choose, it's sure to be a hit.