Here is a gripe about a baby shower. I'm not emily post-esque, nor do baby showers thrill me or fill me with despair. But we're going to a shower this weekend and it's making me tense. Back story - one of our couple friends moved last year, a thousand miles away. The male half is very outgoing and constantly organizing dinners and parties and outings, so when they moved, we lost some connection to going out. Not that, now with two kids, we're all that social, but it's always nice to be invited places and on the nights we do decide to eat out, have friends we can call and say meet us at wherever, or come over and watch whatever sporting event. So they move and now the wife is pregnant. She is from Pakistan, but very secular. But she has no family in the US. The shower is for them. The guy is a pretty practical, pragmatic guy. So the baby shower is turning out to be a pragmatic way for them to get gifts and it is just grating on me.
The good thing is our friend wants to get together with the large group of friends he left behind. And the wife is pregnant, so a combined party/co-ed baby shower seems smart, right? But many of his friends are younger and the ones who volunteered to host don't have a large enough place, so at first the shower was going to be at someone parent's house. But the parents have a very nice place and don't like kids, so people couldn't bring kids, to a weekend afternoon party. Difficult. So now they've decided to move to a restaurant. And they are charging people to attend - not much, $15-20/adult.
Every other day there is some e-mail message with more details, all written by the husband, our friend. Since they're flying, don't bring big gifts to the shower. They didn't finish the registery, so you can buy things from whatever the store is and have it shipped to their home. They aren't finding out the sex, so please nothing pink or blue. Please don't forget gift receipts if you do bring a gift. Etc.
I scream a little scream with every e-mail. Logically, this all makes sense. They've moved a thousand miles away, we'll see them once a year at best, so this is a great way to see them both, and they get to see our kids. We love them and want to get them something for the baby. She doesn't have family or close friends here so a co-ed shower/party means we'll see them and a lot of other people. It's great we don't have to worry about babysitters. A restaurant is expensive, so everyone chipping in makes sense. But somehow it is just reduced to such a mercenary transaction, you know? I really just wish we had offered to host, honestly. But 40 people is a bit of a stretch for our very small place, and these other people had stepped forward and put these plans in motion before we ever even learned they were coming to town. So tell me, how petty am I, or would this bother you?
4 days ago