Sooner or later you will find yourself hosting a bridal shower. For some, this is nerve-racking and others it is right up their alley. Celebrating the bride-to-be is a time-honored tradition and held in high esteem. The key to a successful shower is to plan and host within your budget and abilities. You do not need to be a “Martha Stewart”, just be you. And YOU can find lots of help if you just ask and seek.
Photo Credit jill 111
Here comes the bride
I have had the pleasure of helping plan, serve at, and to host a few bridal showers. I personally love to plan, organize and execute. However I recognize for some this is not “their jam”, so I just want to assure you there is loads of help out there. You can either choose to take on this honor and plan it yourself, phone a friend and explain your desperation, or you can hire a local event planner. For the purpose of this article, you are going to grab the bull by the horns, so… “Let’s Do This!”
Today having a “theme” at your shower is very popular. This is easily remedied by asking the bride if she has a theme for her wedding or finding out some of her interior decorating likes, maybe honeymoon vacation plans or a hobby the bride and groom share. From there you would gather some simple information on how many people you will be inviting. You will decide if this shower is going to be a traditional sit and stay program, or a come and go open house. The budget will be set. You will begin to make plans to gather ideas for decorating, planning the menu, and implement some games (stop rolling your eyes this can be fun and light-hearted) around this theme. Some themes might be farming, rustic decor, camping, biking, Hawaii vacation, just to name a few.
Photo Credit jill 111
Next, I would make a bee-line for the internet site Pinterest. They have a WEALTH of suggestions and how-to’s for bridal showers from themes down to the menu. So do not fret friends, you can not fail. Be sure to set up an account if you don’t have one and then you can start setting up a “board” to pin your ideas about that board. I would suggest that you make your “bridal shower” board a “secret board” and invite anyone helping you access to the board. Then you all can collaborate on everything from theme decorating ideas, invitations, games, type of shower, venue (your home, church or rent a facility) and menu. Remember, this is supposed to be fun and simple, so like the head of a corporation, you can delegate.
I know people who know people
You have people in your family, church, and sphere of influence who have talents. Most of these people, more than likely, would love to help you if you feel unqualified to tackle a certain project. You just simply have to ask. With serious confidence and talent to back this up or a great group of friends who have said confidence and talent, you decide to make this bridal shower an open house allowing guests to come and go.
Even though you could have bought some nice invitations from the local card shop or had some made at the printers, you splurged and made some yourself (it’s a nice way to honor someone with a homemade item as well as it being a keepsake). Plan on 100% attendance but realistically not everyone is going to attend. The adage “Better safe than sorry” applies.
Since this is an open house, you are wide open for food ideas. You could do a brunch, a light luncheon, after dinner finger foods, an afternoon tea, an evening of appetizers, or a dessert bar. Really, the choices are endless. It just depends on the day, time of day and how involved you want things to get.
Photo Credit FotografieLink
Most of life is all about expectations and how you handle your expectations when they and reality don’t meet up. Being a Type A person can lead to total meltdown when party planning and executing, so my best advice to any “type” person is to have a plan but be ready to flex. Perfection is not the key. You do NOT want to be known as “hostzilla”. This party isn’t about you. This bridal shower is about launching the bride with confidence in her new role as a wife. It is also about encouraging great attributes in homemaking, cooking, baking, child rearing and developing her God-given talents.
It’s Go Time
The shower day is here. You have given yourself ample time to plan a simple little Saturday after lunch bridal shower. There is a nicely decorated rustic themed table where you have placed some apple slices with peanut cream cheese dip, bourbon-whiskey meatballs, decorated cupcakes, water, coffee, and a fruity punch. The plates, cups as well as napkins are color coordinated. People are coming and going as their time schedule allows. The bride-to-be receives gifts and opens them as she graciously socializes with the party guests. A member of the bridal party snaps photos to commemorate the day. Ta-da! The shower is a success and you have enjoyed your time mingling and tending the food table.
Personally, my favorite party is basically self-serve. Crock pots, coolers with ice, coffee carafes and disposable dinnerware are my entertaining “bff’s”. But I also enjoy getting out the fine china, nice silverware and putting my heart into making a baked dessert, coffee cake or favored treat. Life is precious and short. So do your best to celebrate!
Pass it on Down
I will leave you with a few recipes:
Banana Slush (Non Alcoholic)- Mary Paul
2 cups sugar and 3 cups water, boil these together making a syrup. Pour syrup into a gallon size container or ice cream pail.
Take 40 oz can pineapple juice, 2- 12 oz. can orange juice, 2- 12oz. can lemonade, 4 mashed bananas and blend these ingredients all together and add to syrup. Mix well and place in freezer for 24 hours.
Taking an ice cream scoop, fill a glass with 3 scoops slush and add to it 7-Up or a white soda of your choice. Serve with a stir stick.
Bourbon- Whiskey Meatballs recipe can be found at https://www.keyingredient.com/recipes/67513686/bourbon-whiskey-meatballs/. This is a wonderful crowd pleaser.
Taffy Apple Dip – Ann Marie Busker
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup salted Spanish peanuts, chopped
Mix cream cheese, brown sugar, sugar and vialla with an electric mixer until smooth. Stir in chopped spanish peanuts and serve with sliced apples. Store leftovers in the refrigerator.
Michele Bruxvoort is sure to draw you in with her delightful sense of humor and love for living life. She enjoys reading, repurposing, as well as remodeling the family home with her husband. Drawing from her life experience as wife, mom, and follower of Jesus, Michele brings you a very honest and real perspective on life. When you don’t find her writing, you can find her mowing lawns, stocking shelves, and tackling her latest life adventure.
Wisconsin native and empty-nester, she now makes her home with her husband of 26 years in the South West Prairie plains of Minnesota.