Some women, like myself, are into throwing more of a party than a shower when it comes to celebrating upcoming baby. I’m due any day now, and for my own baby shower, I threw a two-hour, co-ed, cupcakes-and-wine very loose event for friends and family. I can't stand stuffy parties or events, plus, it costs a fortune to host a lunch for a lot of people (who drink a lot) and I need that money for wine, antidepressants and nannies.
Here’s how I went co-ed:
Included both very good female and male friends
Inviting just women felt like I was excluding some good friends who I really wanted to spend time with. So I invited my good male friends, and couples I consider good friends, too. I was happy to see everyone in one place, since I’ll likely not be leaving the apartment for the next five years.
Made it guy friendly
The Masters was playing on the TV, and I threw the gathering in the party room of my building, so it was very casual. Along with cases of Ruffino wine I ordered for the ladies, I made sure to have beer for the guys.
There was no sit-down meal
Not many people admit that baby showers are are pure torture. Who wants to sit through an extended lunch while a mom-to-be opens diapers and baby toys? We get it. We know what's under the wrapping. It’s a baby shower. I'm not screaming for diapers.
There's just dessert
I had both a candy bar and a cupcake bar and set it all up with help from my sisters. I ordered tons of pink-wrapped candy online and bought glass apothecary jars from Home Goods and it looked amazing. We ordered cupcakes from Amy’s, a local bakery that makes delicious cakes, and had little to-go bags and cups for everyone to take goodies home. I made sure to warn everyone it wasn’t a proper sit-down meal, and held it from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. so that everyone could eat lunch before and head to dinner afterward.
Left the present opening for later
My husband and I opened our gifts the next day and I wrote funny, thoughtful Thank You cards as we went along. No one wants to sit there and fake "ooh" and "ahh" over baby crap when all they want is another glass of wine. Believe me. Just make sure each thank you includes exactly what each person gave you, so they know their effort didn’t go unnoticed and you show you are grateful.
Made it quick
Two hours. In and out. No hard arrival time, but you gotta be out by 4. Blame it on the building, or restaurant, and say they need the space. They probably really do. And you can get back to your bed.
I knew if couples were going to swing by for an hour or two on Saturday, they’d likely be coming or going to something that involved their kids, so I told them to bring them if they wanted. I'm not so kid-friendly, and really, it’s not as awful as it sounds. I got to see all my friends' kids, and the kids got to play with each other. Hate kids? The room was big enough to ignore them and go drink and swallow your birth control elsewhere.
Overall, remember that when you're hosting a co-ed shower, it's going to have a different vibe than just an all-female party. Keep both sexes in mind when it comes to games (I didn’t have any, you're welcome), food, drinks, and time limits.
Also, make sure other guys will be attending in addition to the expectant father, so he has company. Don’t send out frilly invitations if guys are included, make them classic and unisex (not pink). Remind everyone again with a final note that guys are welcome, it’s guy-friendly, and it’s not your traditional baby shower.
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