A green baby shower is one that celebrates a new mom and baby while minimizing waste.   You don’t have to break the bank on so-called eco-friendly food, decorations, and presents.  The Oregon Environmental Council has put together an online green “baby shower kit” with tons of resources to help you plan an eco-savvy party.  Here are some theme ideas for green baby showers that are gentle on the planet.

No gifts, please

If the new mom already has everything she needs, ask guests to bring wish list items for a favorite charity such as blankets, toys, or books for children in a nearby children’s hospital in lieu of gifts. After the party, the guest of honor can deliver the donations and take a picture to include in thank-you notes.

Blessingways

A blessingway is an old Native American tradition that honors the mother-to-be. During this type of shower, attendants gather together to tell stories, sing songs, share birth stories and offer parenting wisdom. Participants can also write out wishes or blessings for the new addition that the host can make into a keepsake book.  To learn more about blessingways, check out www.blessingwaybook.com.

Share the love 

A share the love party is a great way to green a baby shower and still ensure that a new mom receives all of the “stuff” she will need and want while raising a baby. For this kind of shower, simply request that attendants bring along secondhand gifts, passing along treasures from their own babies. Guests that haven’t had babies in the last few years could be encouraged to bring gently used toys, clothes, or books from a local thrift store. 

It would be helpful if the host of the shower coordinates gifts to avoid duplicates. If there is one main thrift store in your area, you may even be able to ask them to keep a running “register” of gifts to help guests make better choices about what to purchase.

Baby book bonanza

At a green baby book shower, guests can bring along one or two of their favorite children’s books. A baby will treasure books long after she grows out of those cutesy clothes or noise-making bouncy seat.

Food freezing fete

Another great idea for a green baby shower is one in which the attendants bring along prepared foods such as casseroles, desserts, or snacks that can be frozen until the baby is born. That way, the new parents won’t have to worry about cooking for those first few sleep-deprived weeks of caring for a newborn.

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