I have a confession to make. I hate baby shower games.
What I have come to realize over the last decade of babypalooza (I’m just at that age, I suppose) is that most of you hate them, too. However, I’m sure someone is reading this and thinking, “No! I love to sniff melted candy bars posing as dirty diapers! Yes, please, stilted conversations, as we carefully avoid saying certain baby-related words! Let’s eat MORE JARS OF BABY FOOD!”
It’s true, some people have fun with all that sh*t. But for the rest of us introverts and antisocial cynics, many traditional baby shower games can be a bit, uh, torturous.
There is, however, a lovely middle ground where we can all relax and enjoy the party. A place where games do not force participation, put people on the spot, or humiliate anyone. Games that do not interrupt the flow of the conversation for those who would rather discuss the relative merits of epidurals.
Here are some of my favorite baby shower game ideas.
15 Baby Shower Games That Don’t Suck
This is the gift that keeps on giving. You get a pack of diapers (try to find some that are not covered in a print), and let people write notes to the parents-to-be. They can be motivational or hilarious and will almost certainly be appreciated at the dreaded 2 am diaper changing. One quick note - there have been reports of the marker rubbing off on the onesie, so either double check you’re using permanent markers, or just know a little marker smudge doesn’t hold a candle to the destructive force of the future baby’s butthole.
Fill baby bottles with beer or mixed drinks and let the guests race to see who can be the first person to finish. Pro tip – give the people you don’t like the preemie-sized bottle nipples. Before you plan this, make sure your guest of honor doesn’t mind that you all get to drink yourself into having a good time while she’s stuck talking to her great aunt about hemorrhoids.
Pin the Sperm on the Uterus / Egg
Who needs a donkey? This one is pretty self-explanatory, and all you need is some poster board and construction paper. For a fun twist, if you have a cornhole set, you can morph this into the soon-to-be classic, Sperm Cornhole (this really could use a less horrifying name). The gist is the same, but requires significantly less crafting.
Mommy or Daddy
Get the parents to give you some facts from their childhood, and let the party guests try to figure who each fact belongs to. Did mom breastfeed until she was five? Did dad once draw on the car with a rock? Who, exactly, took a dump in grandma’s fine china? Whoever gets the most correct answers wins a prize from grandma’s fine china cabinet.
This is one of those fun baby shower games that can be appreciated by guests from all walks of life. Ask the attendees to send you baby photos of themselves before the day of the shower. Then everyone can guess who the kid with the cowlick grew into. For added difficulty, include some celebrity baby pictures in the mix.
Baby Mad Libs
You can find these online, or make them. Choose between letting everyone fill out their own and making it a group effort. We did these when I was in labor, and I am happy to report that my daughter did not end up with 22 fingers, no matter what the Mad Lib suggested.
Labor or Porn
Find some birth photography. Find some porn. Crop out the faces and put them on a gameboard, then have people guess if the photos are depicting the miracle of life, or the miracle of orgasm. Sure, sure, you’re going to need to know your audience. But who knows, you might get a story out of it about how mom laughed so hard her water broke.
Set the timer, and give people five minutes to name every song they can think of that contains the word “baby” in the title. Winner can either be the person with the most titles, or the person with the most unique titles. You can also easily morph this into a Name that Tune type game where you play a baby-themed playlist and people have to guess the name of the song.
Print out pages with one letter on each, and let people draw what each letter represents. You can laminate them and turn them into a book later. Or two books, one for baby, and one for mom – W can be for “water” but it can also be for “wine.” You could even have it turned into a board book.
Baby Shower Bingo
The opening of presents can be sort of boring. Spice it up with bingo cards containing common baby items like baby socks, nipple cream, a diaper bag, spoons, etc. The free space could be seeing mom-to-be get up mid-present unwrapping to tinkle.
Set out tons of sharpies and/or fabric paint and let the guests go to town. Let the mother-to-be keep the sharpies – I’m still using the ones from my shower seven years ago! Sure, you’ll get some wild ones but she can use them as rags or give them to her kid for baby doll clothes.
I’m in love with this idea. Have guests bring in items to put into a time capsule for the baby to open at a predetermined time. Newspaper clippings, photos, a shirt from a concert, or anecdotes about the parents are always great additions.
Baby Face Mashup
Enlarge and print out photos of both the mom and the dad. Cut each photo into strips and let guests combine them into one hideous hybrid baby. You can use baby photos or recent — or for added horror, a mix of the two.
This is a delightfully creepy game of creating babies out of modeling clay. If I was judging the offering above it would come down to the mint colored blob in the top middle or the the screaming bottom right orange baby – it's a hard call.
This one deviates from my rules of good baby shower games somewhat, but as long as you don’t force people to play it can be an absolute scream. You can be as boring or outlandish as you want to be – really, what would be better than watching Great Aunt Bertha try to draw a placenta? Watching grandma draw lochia, that’s what.
What baby shower games have you played that did not entirely suck?
Or are you one of those strange people who think nothing could be more fun than trying to get a plastic baby out of an ice cube? (No judgment, we promise!) Let us know in the comments below!
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