Being a woman in her early thirties, I’ve been to numerous baby showers and no matter the decor, there is always a common theme, duplicate shower gifts. Even those guests that study the mommy-to-be’s gift registry carefully have been in that awkward position of watching as an identical match to her gift is unwrapped.
I absolutely hate this moment. It’s uncomfortable for everyone involved. The guest of honor doesn’t know what to say, the gift givers shout out simultaneously, “I used the registry! Something must have happened,” and the other guests start rattling off bizarre untruths about how great it is to have two mobiles.
I’ve made a solemn vow to myself that I’ll never be one of these unfortunate gift givers who knows, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that after all the time it took to find the perfect present, it will be returned. Still, I’m not a fan of just giving money, because I like the ooh’s and ahh’s my gifts get when their opened and I want the mommy-to-be to know that I gave some thought and consideration to the needs of her family.
The best way to insure that you’re gift will be unique is to give something homemade. Mom’s love personalized blankets, quilts, nursery decor and ornaments, but alas, I wasn’t blessed with gift-quality crafting skills. If you’ve got ‘em, use ‘em!
I have to rely on purchased baby shower gifts to get by, but there are still ways to shop without getting burnt by the “how nice, I’ve got another…” bug. I’ve never liked just giving cash in a card, because while one size does very much fit all, it lacks a personal touch. With this in mind, I generally give the new mom and baby a cute stuffed animal or rattle attached to one of the following gift cards.
Portrait Sitting: Every new mom wants to show her baby off, but once they get a handle on how expensive a new baby can be, family portraits can be hard to squeeze into a budget. You can buy a gift card for a family or baby portrait or photo baby announcements
Restaurant: Those first couple weeks of new motherdom are rough. You barely have time to eat much less make a decent meal. Food gift certificates may seem unorthodox as a baby shower gift, but I guarantee both mom and dad will genuinely appreciate the break
Bookstore: Whether she wants books about parenting, board books for her new little bundle or a great book to read on sleepless nights, because we all know there are plenty in store, she can choose whatever she wants
Spa Package: Nobody, but nobody, deserves a relaxing getaway like a new mom, even if it’s for a few hours
Jeweler: Whether she wants to celebrate her sweet baby with a mother’s ring, locket or charm bracelet, she can pick out the perfect sparkly to match her taste and personality
Choosing the right baby shower gift can be stressful for a gift giver. Giving a special gift card shows you care, but prevents you from any awkward moments when your enjoying some pastel pink baby shower cake.
Jessi Arias-Cooper is the senior writer and an editor for Advice4Parenting.com. She is a work-from-home mother of 3 boys and has been married for 10 years. If she had time for hobbies and interests outside of parenting and keeping house, they would be jewelry making, baking, watching bad B-movie horror flicks and creative writing . If you have a question for Jessi, click here.