Ruby's Baby Shower

I'm reaching the tail end of my pregnancy (two months left to go!), and I spent my last week of real mobility flying back to Nebraska to visit my family and have the loveliest baby shower thrown for me by my sister and very best friends. It was a coordinated effort from across the country (the girls live in Nebraska, Minnesota and Michigan--and I live in New York, obviously) and I am so, so, so happy with how it all came together.

I cannot thank my sister Jen, and my friends Ashley, Carly, Keeley, and Ellen for all of their help in planning and executing the shower. I felt so loved.

Before the event took place, guests were informed about the when and where of the shindig when an invite designed by the kind and talented Chelsea Brink arrived in their mailboxes. I cannot say enough about how much I love this invite and about how absolutely touched I was that she took time out of her busy career to design them for me.

The shower took place at The Rogers House Bed & Breakfast (no relation, just happy coincidence!), which I highly recommend for both overnight stays and party rentals. The staff was helpful, accommodating and enthusiastic, and the space itself is adorable. We had our run of the whole first floor, which allowed us to have separate spaces for eating brunch/playing games/opening gifts, housing the brunch buffet and mimosa station, and the scrapbooking station.

When guests arrived they were greeted by an adorable chalkboard welcome sign and interactive chalkboard guessing game.

 It was so fun to see what everyone thought Ruby would look like when she arrives. My due date's the 18th, so most people thought she would come early--probably due to my advanced size. But they also thought she'd be average height and weight when she's born. She's measuring a full pound ahead of schedule and is taller than most babies, so I'm anticipating a pretty big baby. Both of the redheads at the party thought she'd have red hair (totally possible! Grant's dad and brother are gingies and my sister had strawberry blonde hair for years), but I was shocked that only one person thought she'd have blonde hair. Grant was a tow-headed baby, the kind of blonde where it looks almost white, and my hair didn't get really dark until I was much older, so I think she'll be blonde. The coolest part is that both of our families have every color combo possible, so she really could look like anything!

I utilized several services that I used for my wedding and was just as pleased this time around as I was the first time. The folding wooden chairs, gold receptacles for the flowers, china/flatware/glassware, and all of the serving pieces came courtesy of Nostalgia Vintage Rentals, and Melissa at Blooms & Bouquets knocked it out of the park once again with a collection of pretty white blooms and greenery that made the place smell amazing. 

Another piece that we rented from Nostalgia was this vintage baby buggy, which was perfect for holding gifts. Grant and I made out like bandits (mostly adorable baby girl clothes that I still find myself ogling daily), and I will never be able to express how thankful I am to everyone for their generosity. 

While searching for napkins on Amazon, I found a smaller pack of these monogrammed napkins for the same price as a large pack of plain ones and snatched them up. I also got a cheap pack of wood blocks that I painted with gold acrylic paint, and each guest was gifted with a pretty pink nail polish. 

My sister and I spent an afternoon crafting these paper mache letters to serve as a focal point over the fireplace. The project itself was super easy and didn't cost a penny (we used cereal boxes, newspaper, glue and acrylic paint) and I think that they're so much cuter than the plain ones you can buy in the store. I'll definitely be finding a place for them in the nursery. 

Guests started out the afternoon by indulging in the most delicious brunch. Food came courtesy of my dear friend Ellen's husband Jim, who is a culinary genius. Everything from sweet (mini cherry pies, tartlets, scones, biscotti, fruit) to savory (meats and cheeses, salad in bacon bowls) was covered and adorably presented. Guests were also welcome to enjoy coffee, juice and water. 

Let's talk about this cake. Naked Berry Shortcake. Best thing I've ever tasted. Think about it everyday. Gift from Ellen. Made by Angela Garbacz. Just the best. 

In addition to the food, guests were also invited to enjoy a mimosa bar. With a variety of champagnes (and sparkling juice for me), juices and garnish to choose from, it was the perfect addition to a delicious brunch. We rented the hutch from Nostalgia and all of the styling was done by my pal Carly. This might have been my favorite part of the whole shower--and I didn't even get to play!

While we ate we played a couple of fun shower games, moderated by my BFF Ashley. First I had to guess Grant's answers to a number of pregnancy and parenting questions--and was punished for my incorrect answers with a jar of baby peas. His answers were hilarious (baby will need to be changed 3 times a day), sweet (he wants Ruby to be funny like me, since he knows she'll already be pretty), and surprising (the man is very concerned with passing along his love of technology). Then we played the belly circumference game. As usually happens, most people cut their ribbons too long, but Keeley (and her clothing design degree and skills) guessed exactly right. It was pretty impressive. 

After eating, everyone was invited to complete a scrapbook page for baby Ruby. Picking out supplies for this was SO fun and the end result is absolutely adorable. Guests had a variety of pages, markers, pens, tape, buttons and stickers to play with, as well as a mini Polaroid camera. This was the biggest hit of the party and proved that Polaroid pictures are cuter than all other pictures. Ladies also participated in a fun activity where they wrote messages on diapers (funny, sweet, encouraging, silly), so when I'm changing a number two at 4 a.m. I have something to make me smile. I haven't read them yet so I'm excited for the surprises!

Because the pages are big and sometimes scrapbooking requires creativity, I made up these cards to get the juices flowing. They just have sentence starters ("I hope you learn...", "I hope that you become...", etc.), and the responses are both touching and hilarious. 

 Look at some of the finished products! So good!

At the end of the afternoon (and about when I needed to take a very long nap), I opened my gifts. My friends and family were so generous and wrapped everything up absolutely adorably (extra bonus awesome points from me on that one), and I felt so wrapped in love the entire day. Thank you everyone who helped put the day together and everyone who came, Ruby and I are two lucky girls. 

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