I never pass up an opportunity to throw a party! So, when a friend of mine asked me several months ago to co-host a baby shower with her I excitedly said, “ABSOLUTELY!” This was in my first few weeks after arriving in Kigali and I immediately took to pinterest and google to come up with a menu and shower party ideas. After months of anticipating and planning together, we finally threw the party two weekends ago and what a success it was.
We had everything from overnight french toast to quiche to a yogurt bar with homemade yogurt (my first time making with my new gadget!) and a croissant bar. I even made chocolate chip mini pancake pops after watching an episode of The Chew while working on the brunch menu! My husband thought I was crazy for relying on my new piece of kitchen equipment, a yogurt maker, to make such a vital component of a yogurt bar! However, it turned out well with all the tartness of plain yogurt. I think one reason I love throwing parties is coming up with the menu and picking new items to add to my repertoire. Maybe it doesn’t make sense to him or others, but I find it is a great opportunity to get immediate feedback from people on my food! Of course, it also increases my stress level as I have to make sure everything turns out perfectly.
For drinks, we elected to have a “Mom-osa Bar” with sparkling cider and champagne as well as blue Kool-Aid. Last year for mother’s day, I did a mimosa bar as well and it was a hit. Everyone can customize their own drink and try out different concoctions from a variety of fruit and juice choices. Looking around the table at the shower this Saturday, I saw many variations on the classic mimosa.
But a party wouldn’t be complete without fun & games, presents, and treat bags for the guests. My co-hoster found great games that got the whole room laughing and chatting with one another. She picked baby mad libs, what’s in your purse?, and guess how many legos in the mason jar. Surprisingly, someone guessed the number of legos exactly right.
If you want to replicate the menu and “mom-osa bar” frames:
- Go to Michael’s or your local craft store and pick up 8×10 translucent paper from the cardstock section. Also, pick out your favorite cardstock pattern or solid color to match your party decor.
- Create your menu or drink menu on the computer being sure to line up your text with the size of frame opening you plan on using. Print your text onto the translucent paper.
- Using a paper cutter or ruler and scissors, carefully cut the translucent paper down to size for your frame. Do the same with the cardstock.
- Place the translucent paper in front of the cardstock and insert into your frame.
- For the mom-osa bar, I didn’t have another white frame with a 5×7 frame opening. So, I got crafty and cut the cardstock to the appropriate size for the frame and then cut the translucent paper to the 5×7 size. I matched up the two pieces of paper and put two individual hole punches through them. I wrapped ribbon around the holes to keep the two pieces of paper together. I then inserted them into the frame (after removing the glass). There are always ways to improvise when you make mistakes and no one at the party would be the wiser!
- You can also find other ways of displaying your menu or instructions for your party. For the mother’s day brunch last year, I used a chalkboard instead of frame for the mimosa bar and used twine and cardstock to label the juice carafes.
Good luck with throwing your own baby shower or other themed party!