I couldn’t have been more surprised because creativity is definitely not one of my strong suits. But she stated a very specific reason for tagging me – my baby shower ideas, which you can find here and here.
This reminded me that there was a much ignored unfinished post languishing in my Drafts – the post on the lovely baby showers that I was privileged to be at the receiving end of last year.
The post on the baby showers was supposed to go up, as would have been ideal, before the baby arrived. But it was still partially written when the delivery date got advanced and the rest, as they say, is postpartum chaos. So I am completing the post, correcting tense and posting it now. Better late than never and all that jazz…
This pregnancy was extra special because of all the extra love, attention and blessings I received for myself and the baby. The big difference from last time was the fact that I have a virtual life beyond my real one and ever since I announced my pregnancy, I have been amazed by the amount of goodwill I have got from readers of the blog, both on and off the blog. Thanks, guys. :)
The other thing that really maxed out this time was the baby showers. I had four absolutely awesome baby showers, each different and unique in its own way. Last time, I just had the traditional baby shower that my mom did. But this time there was that and three more from different group of friends.
The first shower was a lovely mish-mash of Indian and Western traditions. There was a sort of godh-bharai element – a sari was draped around my shoulders, flowers were put in my hair, glass bangles were arranged on my wrists and fruits placed in my lap.
Then all baby girls in attendance fed me some kheer to ensure that the baby would be a girl (it worked!). There was also a lovely cake and lovelier gifts like a handmade blanket, a super-soft Mothercare blanket and a ‘Big Brother’ tee for Ayaan.
The second shower was the traditional Tamilian valai kappu ceremony, or rather, our version of it, that my mom organised in Jaipur. I was decked up in a sari, a huge bunch of flowers in my hair and a flower garland around my neck.
The ceremony required me to pray to a Ganesha made out of turmeric. All the other ladies present came and paid their respect to the idol. Later, it was dissolved in a bowl of water and the water was thrown outside the house, representing the discarding of any evil spirits. Then everyone present put bangles on my wrists. And I got some moolah and some nice gifts like a set of silver rattles for the baby.
The third baby shower was thrown by my office gang. Now ,I had organised three unique and pretty rocking (even if I say so myself) showers within this same gang so these guys were under a lot of pressure to outdo my shower. And they really did. It was a mad, crazy, and definitely more than a little risqué baby shower.
The theme was ‘kindergarten’ and all the women took this opportunity to wear their miniskirts and skinny tees, while the boys came (yes, it was a co-ed shower) in their rattiest shorts. We were all given handkerchiefs and name tags to pin to out chests and lollipops to snack on. Now, this is where any resemblance to the innocent environment of a playschool ended. To start with, there was free flowing ‘big people’s juice’ (what Ayaan calls alcohol) so everyone (except poor old abstaining me) was nicely buzzed.
The first game involved three of the guys standing with balloons under their tees. I was supposed to guess which balloon had a baby inside and then burst the balloon to see if I was right. I was terrible at it and went through the two wrong balloons, with a set of balls and a toy frog in them respectively, before I got to the one with a remarkable ugly baby doll.
The next game was a ‘Sniff and Taste the Diaper’ game. Yeah, gross. But basically, different diapers had different brands of chocolate bars melted into them and the team to guess all right won. That, I hope, will be the last time that I eat something out of a diaper :D
Then everyone divided into groups and performed somewhat R-rated scripts revolving around me and ranging from the moment of conception to Ayaan’s discovery of the birds and the bees. It’s a good thing that I was already in my ninth month because there were moments there that I was laughing so hard that it could just have started off labour!
The cake was hilarious too. It has this woman lying back in the throes of labour with the baby crowning. And in memory of my erstwhile (pre-pregnancy) sins, the lady was holding a glass of wine in one hand…I guess it’s probably obvious why I won’t be posting a picture of that on this otherwise G-rated blog :)
Again, there were many gifts and unknown to me, one of my friends was writing down my responses to each gift. He later announced that there is an old wives' tale (yeah right!) that a woman’s response to her baby shower gifts is what she said at the moment the baby was being conceived. So here’s his list of what I said, printed verbatim from his much embellished notes:
- Oh sooo cute (about 50 times)
- So sweet ya!
- Oh Ayaan can use this!
- It's a onesie... (don't ask)
- Oh it's pink and warm
- Oh, Ayaan will definitely love this
- Can't get over how small this is
- Oh this is very useful
And then there was the last, but definitely not the least of my showers thrown by some of my oldest friends. The funny thing was this happened to be on the very next day after the previous shower. Of course, I didn’t know this since I happened to land up at my friend’s place thinking that we were meeting for a small, intimate girls’ afternoon. Surprise!
The theme for this shower was ‘Yummy Mummy’. The girls put a lot of effort into the décor and there were standees and posters of pregnant celebrities, Angelina Jolie and Britney Spears to name a few. And there was one special standee where my face had been plopped onto some famous, pregnant woman’s body. If only I had looked that fit!
There were fun games too. We were made to sample various Gerber pots and guess which vegetable/ food they were. They all tasted uniformly terrible, I have to say, and we all vowed never to shovel the stuff down our kids’ throats. Then we had to check for a list of things in our handbags and the person with the most things won. But the most fun game involved this chart which had pictures of babies (celebrities as well as friends) on it and you had to identify who they were. Good fun, though one of my friends was not amused when I guessed her baby picture as being Salman Khan!
Again, lots more gifts. Buy my favourite gift of all was this caricature of preggo me that my friend got made.