Bridal Showers Out Of Control Everywhere?

Lounge By funcakes Updated 3 Oct 2007 , 4:24pm by crislen

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funcakes Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 3:58am
post #1 of 47

Good evening my cake friends,

I hope you can help with my curiosity. Tomorrow I will be going to yet another bridal shower. I remember when showers were limited to immediate family and close friends. Now, most of the ones I go to are attended by 50 to 75 women. Is this the way it is all over or only here on the east coast?

I am not usually a bitter old bat, but I am not looking forward to this. It is over an hour away and I do not know the bride, and I only knew the groom when he was a child. I will not know any of the other guests. My husband has been friends with the groom's dad since high school. I would have made an excuse and just sent a gift, but the groom's mom called. My husband answered and said-She'd love to come, before I could shove a sock in his mouth. The thought of sitting through the shower, not knowing anyone is not appealing to me. These showers usually last more than 4 hours, considering 30-45 minutes waiting to surprise the bride to be, then hours of opening presents. How many hours can I remain excited over pot racks and linens? I already know every gift she will get. I have seen the pics on her registry at Crate and Barrel, Macys and Best Buy. (Did they really think I was buying that huge flat screen TV when they registered?)

Please tell me the honest truth. Do you all really enjoy these huge celebrations and I am in need of a serious attitude adjustment or are several of the other guests "faking" having a good time? Do you really enjoy the silly games or do you guys just go along to get along?

Maybe I'm just envious because my opportunity for a shower of my own is over-unless of course I start a new trend and have a shower when my family carts me off to the assisted living facility!

Thanks for your opinions. I really appreciate any thoughts you have on this. I can't ask my friends just in case they invite me to the next shower and I would have hurt their feelings by letting them know in advance that these showers are rather boring to me.

46 replies
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Luby Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 4:16am
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Personally, I absolutely hate wedding and baby showers! Call me a Scrooge, Stick-In-The-Mud, Grouch or whatever - I still hate them. They're boring and a total waste of time, IMHO!

If I never get invited to another one (which I know is impossible) I couldn't be happier. Given the number of nieces, nephews and friend's children I'll probably be hosting a few in the not too distant future icon_rolleyes.gif

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indydebi Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 4:21am
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Put me in the "I hate silly games!" column! When we throw a shower, it's more of a "girls day out" .... lots of good food, and cake of course!, NO games, and just a bunch of friends sharing a celebration. At my daughter's baby shower, we not only had cake and food but a chocolate fountain running. Chocolate with a roomful of women..... ahhh! is good!

Feedback indicates people like coming to showers we throw. a LOT of people used to ask "You're not playing any stupid games are you?" By now, they all are reliefed to know ahead of time that we will not play silly "little girl" games. So I would venture to say that most women think they are silly. I find them usually to be demeening and degrading.

I am 50 years old. do NOT make me stand up and do something demeaning in front of 40 other women!

Most showers I go to are 15-20 people. I have been to showers that had 40 and 75 guests, respectively. One was a college-age girl and all of her co-workers AND sorority sisters came. (I thought co-workers threw an office shower? icon_confused.gif ) The other was mostly the groom's family ... he came from a large family and he was the youngest son that was FINALLY getting married!

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leily Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 4:33am
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I am young and I still try to avoid these... I only go to ones that are close close friends or close relative (Of course I went to my aunts baby shower... oh wait I hosted the shower! but she is my favorite aunt!) We did a co-ed shower for that (which is a whole nother can of worms) but it with a lot of guys there we did more keep sake items for the baby and it was great (only game we had was the baby in an ice cube and whoevers melted in their drink first got a prize... I fought my mom tooth and nail NOT to have games!)

Anyways... sorry I got side tracked, as for wedding showers... ugh!! The last invitation I got was actually received in the mail (not even post marked someone dropped it off) on the day OF the shower?!? The only game I have ever liked at a bridal shower is the sister of the bride walked around and cut a piece of string as long as anyone wanted... Ended up that string you had to wrap around your finger and talk at the same time about how you knew the bride and any fun memories you had of her... this was really interesting to learn more about the bride and learn about everyone that was there... (edited to add that you had to talk the whole time you were wrapping the string around your finger, so if you wanted a long string then you better wrap fast or talk slow LOL)

Last baby shower I went to was more of a "girls day out" and it was great... it was set up at a country club and we had a sweet bread, a great chicken/fruit salad, and lemon pie. It was good just to get together and chat.

I am actually afraid that someone in my family/friend cirlce will actually give me a "traditional" wedding showers and baby showers, can I just have indydebi do both for me when it is time??

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ShortcakesSweets Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 5:15am
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I can see why you would be uncomfortable going to this shower. I think it's a little unusual to invite someone you don't know real well. We don't do the silly games anymore either, just good food, cake, talking to friends and the bride-to-be or mom-to-be opening gifts.

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SugarFrosted Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 5:34am
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I have come to believe these showers with a gazillion guests are a symptom of the acquisitiveness of society these days... sorry, that means "I want more, and more and more" and to me it also means "I want it now!" I hate those stupid games too. What a waste of time!

indydebi: I love your chocolate fountain shower idea. Life is good indeed!

I also see that in kid's birthday parties in the last 10-15 years. People invite 50 kids to a 3 year old's birthday party. That is insane! Who wrangles those kids? And a lot of the time, the birthday child does not even open gifts at the party. How rude is that! And how can a child reciprocate by attending the birthday parties of those 50 guests? When my son (now 19) was small, I invited only as many children as how many years old he was. 6 guests for his 6th birthday, etc. It was always manageable and we made it fun!

And don't forget those horrendous TeenZilla Sweet 16 Parties...OMG! another thread on another day...

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Ohara Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 11:41am
post #7 of 47

SugarFrosted wrote


I have come to believe these showers with a gazillion guests are a symptom of the acquisitiveness of society these days... sorry, that means "I want more, and more and more" and to me it also means "I want it now!"

I agree. I just did a shower that there were 25 people and it was considered a small shower icon_confused.gif I threw a bridal shower 2 years ago...there were 60-75 people in attendance.(expensive to host a party of this size) It was an amazing shower (even if I say so myself). Well she is now expecting....and expecting that I will throw her another amazing shower, however, she has said " only this one there will be more people. icon_eek.gif
I agree in some areas showers have gotten out of control, and expected.

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lsawyer Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 1:55pm
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Yes, showers are typically boring. I've learned to arrive late.....very late.

Gee.......wouldn't it be a shame if your car suddenly wouldn't start when it was time to leave? These things can be quite a mystery......they seem to start up just fine about the time the shower ends. Guess you'll have to mail the gift instead.

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JRAE33 Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 1:59pm
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SugarFrosted wrote:


I also see that in kid's birthday parties in the last 10-15 years. People invite 50 kids to a 3 year old's birthday party. That is insane! Who wrangles those kids? And a lot of the time, the birthday child does not even open gifts at the party. How rude is that! And how can a child reciprocate by attending the birthday parties of those 50 guests?

I completely agree. My BIL's step-daughter had a 1st birthday party for her son...over 100 people invited icon_confused.gif My daughter had pnuemonia so we couldn't go...darn. I don't get it. For our kids, we invite grandparent's, aunt and uncles and cousins. That's enough!! When my son started school last year we decided that they would not be having birthday parties. There were 24 kids in his class and I thought 24 gifts would be out of control! Instead, I allowed him to pick a holiday and we would invite his class over to celebrate that. He choice Halloween so we had a Halloween party. That way he could get a party but we didn't have to worry about these people giving gifts. It was fun! This year he wants to have a fall party and his sister is having a Christmas Cookie Decorating party.

I do have to for the opening of gifts...I'm on the fence on that one. My daughter does not like to be the center of attention. When she opens her gift at her b-day party (and remember, it's just family) she gets extremely embarrased and does not show excitement. I'm always afraid she will offend someone. Heck...last year when we sang Happy Birthday the poor girl was literally in tears..she just doesn't like it. So I'm thinking this year she can open gifts as people arrive or just do it when they are gone so she doesn't have to sit in front of the whole group and do it.

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indydebi Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 2:17pm
post #10 of 47

Oh first birthday's really frost me! (no pun intended!). 100 people to an event that the kid isn't EVER going to remember???? icon_eek.gif

That party wasn't for the was for the parent.

Had a former sister in law who would make snide comments about those who had the GALL not to show up at her son's birthday parties. "HE knows who shows and who doesn't!" she said. Oh bull! SHE was keeping track of who showed and who didn't.....the 2-year old kid couldn't care less!

If birthdays are important to your family as a celebration of life, then I say do it as a celebration ..... not as some social status or popularity contest between the parents!

I'm not anti-party ..... I'm anti "message we are sending our kids" with these kinds of parties and the attitudes that go with them. there a question on why "kids today" (oh geesh, there goes that age-giveaway-phrase again!) are so I-Me-My orientated? (is that a word?)

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Candy120 Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 2:20pm
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I was asked to be a hostess...BY THE MOTHER-TO-BE...I thought people volunteered to be a hostess, not asked by the honoree! Anyway, a gazillion people were invited and the only ones that showed up were the embarrassing for her!!

Then I went to a bridal shower and there were a gazillion people there. I was sitting close to the bride-to-be and when she was opening her gifts she would read the card and then ask her sister who was sitting next to her "who is this?" that's pretty sad when you don't even KNOW the people that were invited. I agree that it is a "I want lots of stuff NOW" kind of situation.

I was amazed when I moved here the size of showers that they throw. I am always curious as to how many hostesses there are. When I read it in the paper, there are at least 25 hostesses. From where I came from, if there were 25 hostesses there wouldn't be anyone to invite. And then they put the picture of the honoree and all her family in the paper and describe the shower. "Refreshments of quiche, sausage balls, cavier, and finger foods were served on silver and crystal appointments"...what the heck is that all about?? When I threw a baby shower for my best friend's son's wife, I asked her if it would be okay to put in the paper: "Refreshments of cake and store-bought mints and nuts were served were served on paper plates decorated with rubber duckies" icon_lol.gif

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dueter Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 2:33pm
post #12 of 47

the trend around here is to have a "toy" party for the bride. everyone gives her "store credit" instead of gifts. NOT ME!!!!!! i feel weird doing that so my kids always seem to be doing something that day that i have to take them to. since your DH accepted for you let him be your excuse. decline by saying you had to take him to the hospital to have something removed from his rear. "your foot" maybe?

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indydebi Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 2:46pm
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candy120 and dueter, thanks for giving me my first big laughs of the day! Luv it!

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mbelgard Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 3:03pm
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Originally Posted by lsawyer

Yes, showers are typically boring. I've learned to arrive late.....very late.

Gee.......wouldn't it be a shame if your car suddenly wouldn't start when it was time to leave? These things can be quite a mystery......they seem to start up just fine about the time the shower ends. Guess you'll have to mail the gift instead.

Or something came up that you HAD to do, hubby didn't realise you had a prior commitment, you're sick. Come up with something and then sit your husband down and have a little chat with him about commiting you to stuff. For every hour you spend doing something that he commits you to (notice that HE doesn't have to go) he has to spend two doing something that you like and he doesn't. After the first hour sitting watching you get your nails done or clothes shopping he'll think twice about saying that you'd love to do something.
For someone you hardly know there is no reason you should feel obligated to go to the shower. They're best if they're close friends and family anyway.

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mkerton Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 3:44pm
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Count me in to the seriously annoyed about parties in general. I have thrown several bridal and baby showers, we dont play games and not once has some one come up to me and said, darn I was really hoping to play some games! Dont get me started about birthdays, I invited about 20 to Drew's first birthday because it was a big deal to ME obviously my son didnt care.....but since then its only family members who are invited. My child does not need 20+ toys (I am big on the not too many toy thing because I think kids today are getting too many toys and are not forced to use their imagination--topic for another day). Anyway I think things have gotten crazy, I look at registries these days and I just am in shock, you registered for a $400 vac, $500 set of pots and pans, $25/each towels etc etc.... its not about helping a couple set up house anymore....... Its about helping a couple set up a LUXURY home! (by the way I am 28 and seemingly in the thick of showers so I am quite bitter).

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mkerton Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 3:49pm
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Just looked at the registry of a shower I have coming up....... $70 tea pot......... I could never have put that on my registry!

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mommachris Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 5:39pm
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Just went to a shower last weekend. It was for a mom having her fourth child, another boy. No girls for her. icon_cry.gif
I know, a shower for the 4th child!!

Anyway, I was glad to attend as I knew the back story. Turns out she and her husband had decided to stop having children after the third boy and God had other plans sending them little Benjamin.

They had donated everything to the Crisis Pregnancy Center. They didn't have anything for this little guy.

Since they were open to what God was doing for them, another son, I was happy to bless them with some new clothes and a beautiful shower cake. She really was a humble lady and touched that her friends would be so giving.

Now, if I thought for even a moment that the 'honoree" of any kind of shower was having a party as a gimme-gimme thing. I'd be busy that day. I'd send my well wishes in a card and ask God to watch over them.

I have to agree with the others, have your dh make the call as he was the one who made the acceptance. If he is unwilling then make your own phone call. Send a card and don't feel guilty.

Remember the 60 percent rule we all follow for weddings, a hostess can't expect that every one on their list has the day free to attend their event. You won't ruin their day by not showing.


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SugarFrosted Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 7:23pm
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Originally Posted by mkerton

I look at registries these days and I just am in shock, you registered for a $400 vac, $500 set of pots and pans, $25/each towels etc etc.... its not about helping a couple set up house anymore....... Its about helping a couple set up a LUXURY home!


When I was younger, so many couples got married right out of high school or during college and moved from parents' house to an apartment together. They needed EVERYTHING! Before I got married (the first time) my (ex-)husband and I spent the 6 months before our wedding buying household goods to furnish the little house we were going to rent. I would never have dreamed of asking anyone to buy me a $400 vacuum cleaner! Back in those days (the 70s...the dark ages) I also had a "hope chest" ...anyone remember those? I accumulated all sorts of items: new bed linens, bath towels, kitchen things. But these days, while I know that some do get married young, most couples are already established, living in an apartment alone, with roommates, or together, and they have a lot of "stuff" already. Sometimes 2 of things! Yet they gift-register and list new stuff to replace the stuff they already have. I'd rather someone give me a $25 gas card than a new toaster or a "$70 teapot." It's just nuts!

Edited to say, I forgot to mention my favorite bridal shower given before I got married the second time. We already had 2 households furnished, so friends in our church gave us a "Pound" shower. An old southern custom, to give the new couple a pound of flour, a pound of sugar, a pound of salt, etc. And recipes, LOTS of recipes. The food at the shower was from the recipes. It was great! And so much fun! Those were simpler times, I guess. And we were more grateful.

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mpitrelli Posted 8 Sep 2007 , 11:33pm
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The last bridal shower I was at was terrible. They had been living together for a few years and prior to that the groom had owned his house at least 3 years prior. She told me that she wanted all new stuff for the house so she was asking for everything. Believe it or not she got the $400 vacuum, the flat screen TV all the expensive stuff. Marraige lasted 4 months and she took everything out of the house.

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TheDomesticDiva Posted 9 Sep 2007 , 2:15am
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The last wedding shower I went to was so packed that you could barely move in the house it was held in. There were about 200 people there and I got to wave hello to the honoree and that was it! After that I never saw her again for the whole day! She and her fiance spent HOURS opening all the gifts out on the packed deck and the rest of the people just stood around thinking of something to do, because it was so full that you couldnt get close enough to even see what she was opening. Not only that, but it really felt like one of those "Invite anyone you can think of" things, so that they would get as much as possible. It wasnt her fault though, it was a surprise shower. But I do have to say that my dear Mother in law and I were quite taken aback when we found out that it was her 2nd shower and that she had 2 more to go!! And they'd ALL been as huge! It's just WAY too impersonal, at least the ones I've gone to lately *including baby showers*.... I loved my wedding shower, I had just moved to Virginia from Georgia about 6 months before and didn't really know anyone, so I didn't expect a shower from my husband's family. I knew I wasnt getting one from my family (We just didnt do things like that back where I'm from, if someone wanted you to have something, they just brought it to the wedding and sat it on a gift table!) So it was a total surprise! My mother in law invited family and a few of her closest friends and the wives of my husbands friends that he'd grown up with that were my age (and those wives of friends are now my best friends!). Most of the people I had only met a couple times before, but it was so special. There were probaly 15-20 people total, and it was perfect. I got to know everyone so much better and it was so appreciated that people who didn't really know me that well wanted to wish us well and get to know me better. To this day, I can remember what each person gave us for our home. ....Actually at that huge shower we went to that I was describing above, my mother-by-love's (she prefers this to mother in law icon_smile.gif) best friend was there and I told her how much I still love and use the serving dishes she gave me at my shower and she was SHOCKED that I remembered exactly what she'd given us, and she really appreciated it. Theres no way in a year's time that that girl that had 4 showers of 200+ people will remember a serving dish that someone put thought into.

So, I guess that's my answer. I think it's all become a "let's have a contest to see who can do it bigger and better and get more things than my neighbors did!" type thing.

I am co-hosting a wedding shower for my soon to be sister in law next month. She's kind of in the same boat I was in, from a different state and having her "new" family throw her a shower. We are going to make it small and intimate for her, closest friends and family. People that it will benefit her to know, and that she will cherish getting to know better. Not just someone that we met in Pottery Barn one day and thought "OH! I bet they'd give an expensive gift!"

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AuntieElle Posted 9 Sep 2007 , 6:30am
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I don't do showers like that. If i were hosting i would never call to see if someone were coming. That is what RSVP is for although some people still don't do it! It iriitates me to no end. The registry items in the previously mentioned posts. They just want stuff, that's why they invite 300 people and then want a gift at the wedding too??????????? I had this happen at the last wedding I went to. The b/f of the bride says. . ."T is so upset becuase the gift table doesn't have very much stuff on it." WTH? I said NO she's had a shower and most probably gave their gifts then! It's ridiculous these days. I do like the idea of people giving the amount they'd like to an "account" that goes toward the honeymoon.


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LaSombra Posted 9 Sep 2007 , 3:47pm
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Call me weird, I know it...but I kinda like the dorky games icon_redface.gif but then, I've only ever gone to showers of good friends and we've never had more than 20 guests at a shower, with one exception...

My best friend got married a couple years ago and I was the matron of honor and the two other bridesmaids are my other two closest friends. We decided not to have any of the dorky games at the shower but we did have a couple not-so-dorky games. One was "how well do you know the bride?" and they had to answer questions about the bride. The other game we played was where we set a timer when she was opening gifts and when it went off, whoever's gift she was opening got a door prize.

This was the big shower of over 20 guests. She invited a lot of people (she's a little spoiled) and it got to be a really expensive shower for us. We rented a place to have the shower because one of our houses wouldn't be big enough (according to the MOB & FOB) so they paid for the place and gave us money for food and decorations also. I was relieved when I found out they were giving us money for this thing. It was kinda crazy. The party went well and we really did a good job but whew! I would never expect anyone to throw me a party like that in a million years! Am I just modest??

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funcakes Posted 10 Sep 2007 , 1:46am
post #23 of 47

Thanks guys for the feedback. So, it isn't the east coast only that has these extravaganzas!
So, the shower was yesterday. I didn't make an excuse not to go like some of you suggested. My DH offered to drive me because it was over an hour away and I am not at all familiar with the area. So, we follow the directions and can not find the exit we need to take off one of the highways. We call the place and after asking for directions they say "Oh, I have another call" and hang up. We call again. Can't give better directions. "Go to the mall, we are on the same street!"-Only, we don't know where the mall is. They can't give directions .to the mall. So,DH stops at a gas station, "Oh, says the attendant they are doing construction. They have closed that exit. The only way is to take the service road. It's hard for you to find, because it is not marked.
DH says Okay we gave this a good try. Let's just drop off the gift at the house. We went to the FOG's house. It was a beautiful day and his house overlooks the water. Had a drink on the patio, talked for a while. Laughed about our "Search for the Shower" and left. When I got in the car I had to turn to my DH and say "Darn, I think that was the best shower I have ever gone to!"

I do agree with the rest of you-small get togethers are the best. When someone at work is getting married or is having a baby we always come to my house, eat, drink, laugh and celebrate. Those with kids bring them and the little ones are so excited to see each other. They play so well together.
and we love to see them. As the party finishes they change into their PJs so they can be tucked in bed as soon as they get home. Such a better time than those formal, inpersonal affairs.

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LaSombra Posted 10 Sep 2007 , 2:18am
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That does sound like the best shower ever icon_lol.gif Glad you ended up having a better time and were able to say you tried to go and such thumbs_up.gif I like smaller parties too. You can actually visit with people. With bigger parties, you're expected to go around talking to all different people and you never get to really visit well with anyone in particular.

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christeena Posted 10 Sep 2007 , 2:34am
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I can top any of these shower stories!! My DD future in-laws threw her a bridal shower and it was just family, and close friends and it was the only shower she was going to have which they hosted at the family B&B. Well, earlier that a.m. my EX- and his 3rd wife drop off a "gift" as wife #3 can't attend as they have a reunion that afternoon. The ex and wife #3 were actually bad-mouthing my DD the whole time to her future in-laws as they are dropping of the gift and then . . . they actually showed up as the shower was winding down, breeze in and act like the Beckman's expecting the quests to hang on their every word. My poor DD was practically in tears and after one month of marriage the ex is still trying to turn her in-laws against her!!

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mkolmar Posted 10 Sep 2007 , 2:44am
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Oh this is going to sound bad but.... I had a large wedding shower, 75 people came. In all fairness though they were just family a few friends and church family. I just have a LARGE family and I was raised in the same church so almost everyone came since they watched me grow up.(and I'm close with many of them) I didn't wright out the guest list though my mom, aunt and best friend did. I was 18 at my bridal shower so I didn't really care what I got. I'm a pretty low key person and the less stuff I have is the less stuff I have to clean. icon_wink.gif (I kept getting told my slip was showing during the shower *I hate slips* finally just took it off and threw it at my mom laughing. She was embarrased and the pastors wife just laughed and announced "Now that's Melissa, she aint no girlie girl" For some odd reason everyone was nodding their heads icon_lol.gif

Baby #1 came along *remember big family and church family* had about 70 people there.

Baby #4 came after I had gave all of my baby stuff to Goodwill and sold to second hand shops. Got preggers on the pill icon_cry.gif My friends felt so bad for me that they threw me a small shower with 15 people (more my style--low key and low in number)

With all that said I HATE SHOWERS! I'd rather be doing something else. Thank goodness everyone I know is down to earth so they are not registering for crazy cost expensive items but for just the basics.

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chele_belle Posted 10 Sep 2007 , 2:52am
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I personally believe if a bridal shower includes anyone who is not either in the wedding or family/very close friends they are only doing it for the gifts! icon_mad.gificon_mad.gif
That totally burns me!

The same goes for birthday parties.

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mommapaul3 Posted 10 Sep 2007 , 6:24pm
post #28 of 47

I agree, large impersonal showers that invite people not really close to you are all about getting as much stuff as possible. I loved my shower. We just had an open house and the invitation just said to come between one time and the other and people were welcome to stay as long as they like and visit or just pop in and out to say hello. I just opened everyone's gift as they arrived, so if they had to leave, they could at least see me open theirs and all the gifts were out, so they could just see what I had already received - but only if they really wanted to. Let's face it, cookie sheets and towels are not all that interesting to just look at.

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CambriasCakes Posted 15 Sep 2007 , 8:33pm
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It irritates me too that some brides have showers and invite everyone under the sun, put where they're registered at on the invitation and then expect another gift at the wedding too! That's just plain tacky.

On the other hand, I'm happy to go along with the cheesy games because you have to remember that the months leading up to her wedding is such a special time for the bride. It's a time for her to relax a bit and take her mind off all the planning and chaos and just be pampered a bit. I'm all in favor of personal showers, where you give the bride cute little nighties and things like that. And I love the idea of the "pound" shower! You can't use all that new cookware without any ingredients to put in it right?

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tchrmom Posted 16 Sep 2007 , 1:26am
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I'm Southern, but I never heard of a pound shower-- what a great idea, though. I have never been a fan of sill games, and made the friend who hosted mine promise not to have any. One guest did take all the bows to make a bouquet for the rehearsal-- and that was about as "cute" as it got.

I also, until recently, thought it was very bad form for family members to give showers for one another, but apparently I am in the minority. My husband's family, being from too far away to come to the one here, did hold a family/close friends of theirs shower without me for just before my son was born. They called me during it and put me on speakerphone-- that was nice. They also asked that instead of cards people bring books for the baby-- which could also just be the gift-- and it started my son a collection based on some of their childhood favorites. That was really neat.

Our school's hospitality committee does one for brides and new mothers, but usually it's gifts from the different grade levels and is mostly an excuse to eat cake and socialize.

I cannot imagine having 75 people to invite to a shower.

I also agree with whoever said that kids have too many toys-- even believing that I am having trouble slowing it down.

I have had his party at home every year but one, and for his last two (3rd and 4th) we have had about 12- 20 kids, all family, neighborhood, or children of our close friends, and with all the adults it's 30-40 people. However, we do not have a bunch of formal games-- we did a pinata, a couple of crafts for those who wanted to, and they played in my son's room, and it went great. It was a little crowded and chaotic because it rained and they couldn't play outside, but not bad, considering. We did not have him open gifts at the party, but we don't have a room where everyone fits and everyone was having so much fun we didn't want to stop them. I do hate for kids not to see each other open them, though, so I have mixed feelings on that one, and he certainly helped me write thank you notes to everyone.

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