Some are predicting that several months from now, when social distancing has eased, we’ll discover that something wonderful came of those stay-at-home orders—and invitations to baby showers will start to arrive again! For blessed events coming sooner, get creative with virtual baby showers and gift delivery. You can bring some joy and relief to expectant parents cooped up at home when you think carefully about how to choose a baby shower gift.
Use the Registry for Inspiration
It’s natural to want to be creative and unique with a baby shower gift. However, expectant parents who have taken the time to create a registry have made their hopes and wishes clear. Use the registry as a guide for the items parents really want, and then choose a complementary or add-on item they might not have considered.
For example, if the parents identified a car seat or stroller, look for a complementary item like a versatile, breathable nursing cover that doubles as a car seat cover.
Pamper the Parents
Baby showers are as much or even more about the parents than they are about the baby. When there is a baby in the house, self-care goes by the wayside for many parents. Select items that pamper parents or save them time. Pillows to prop them up during feeding or cozy, non-skid slippers for those endless hours walking baby around the living room are a couple of ways to show expectant parents that you’re thinking of them as well as their infant. Subscriptions for baby food delivery services, a gift certificate for a couple’s massage (with a homemade redeemable ticket for babysitting services), or a set of monogrammed terry cloth robes will give sleep-deprived parents a much-appreciated boost. A full body pillow provides wonderful support for sore necks and knees after a long day of carrying the baby around. A month of house cleaning service, a fruit-of-the-month club, or a regular delivery of their favorite pizza will send new parents over the moon with relief.
The parental wardrobe in the first three months consists of sweatpants, t-shirts, and pajamas—the softer and the easier to care for, the better. Select sets that can pass as clothes for a quick run to the grocery store or the gym when parents switch shifts. Patterns and colors that hide stains well will extend the item’s useful life.
Think Practical and Personal
The number of diapers they go through in a week can stun first-time parents, as can the number of pacifiers that get lost in the car, in the grocery store, or at Grandma’s house. A large baby bag filled with bottles, wipes, diapers, baby wash, and lotion will get new parents off to a good start.
Create a custom playlist of favorite, classic children’s music or audiobooks, or give them sturdy hardcopies. While kids outgrow onesies, pacifiers, and teething rings, favorite books and music last many years and can even become keepsakes passed down to the next generation.
Journals or diaries for parents to record developmental milestones are a wonderful way to create and preserve memories. A digital photo frame that displays a carousel of pictures parents can update as their children grow is a gift that will stay useful and relevant year after year. Floor mats and blankets marking months and years create photo opportunities to mark a baby’s growth.
Think about the parents’ favorite activities and how having a baby might change things. Parents who love the outdoors will want to share it with their new baby as soon as it’s safe to bring the baby along. Many outdoor equipment manufacturers have come up with clever outdoor gear to accommodate babies, from backpacks to child-sized outdoor tables with cup holders.
Sports fans love baby items with team insignia. Among the first photos parents with strong team loyalties will post to social media are of their newborn swaddled in team colors or logos. Team hats, t-shirts, sweatshirts, or towels sized for each member of the family are a fun acknowledgment that a new fan has joined the cheering section.
If you are a skilled knitter, sewer, painter, or woodworker, a handmade gift can be among the most cherished items new parents receive. A knitted baby sweater and matching bonnet, a custom bib, a painting of a favorite place, or a custom-made rocker personalized with the baby’s name are the kinds of gifts that go in the baby shower hall of fame. These things take time, so start working on them as soon as you know your sibling, friend, or co-worker is expecting.
Timing is Important
If the baby is coming in mid-summer, items that offer sun protection or cooling and will last for more than one season may be appropriate. Then again, summer turns to fall and winter before you know it, so there’s nothing wrong with looking ahead with a cozy blanket or adorable hat and mittens. Just keep size in mind, and factor growth into the calculation.
We hope you’ve gained a few tips about how to choose a baby shower gift and that you’ll find something with Milk Snob.