We have awesome friends, and today, I get to brag about them. For the past four years, we’ve led a Bible study for newlyweds through our church called Newlyweds on the Hill, or NOTH. Another couple hosts the group (which is a good thing, because if we hosted it, it would’ve fizzled long ago). Not only is this couple awesome at hosting the group, they’ve also headed the planning committees for many baby showers over the years.
Saturday was our turn.
We were super excited about it for several reasons. First of all, this was our first baby shower for Teddy, our first opportunity to properly celebrate his arrival in our family. Secondly, we were thrilled to show him off to people who hadn’t met him yet. But we were also excited because we’ve seen the level of detail that has gone into previous showers. The planning committees are always meticulous about including the new parents’ interests in the decor and games. We couldn’t wait to see how they’d weave my love for grammar and Mike’s love of baseball throughout the party.
They didn’t disappoint. In fact, they far surpassed our expectations. Little touches were everywhere. And they didn’t stop with grammar and baseball.
As we walked up the path to their house, a sign on the door read “Welcome Teddy’s Fans”, and another sign, on the glass door in front of the main door, read “Standing Room Only” in block lettering. Our hostess greeted us and promptly informed us that stroller parking was available out back for $20, but luckily for us the guest of honor was exempt. Just inside the door was a table covered with snacks and labeled “Concessions.” Throughout the main room were little teddy bears sitting behind placards printed in black with well-known baseball sayings — with typos. Corrections were in red. (example below)
Walking through the room, we kept exclaiming over every detail we discovered. After mingling and eating chili and chips, mini sugar cookies decorated to look like baseballs, and teddy bear head cake balls, it was game time. The committee had put together a version of the presidents race, a crowd-pleaser that takes place during the fourth inning of every Nationals game. During the Nationals games, the race features Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson, and Roosevelt–and Teddy ALWAYS loses. I’m pretty sure it started out that the person who donned Teddy’s ginormous head for the race was just slower than the others. But now it’s a thing. And the Nationals have come up with some pretty clever ways for Teddy to lose.
For the baby shower race, we were divided into teams named for the four presidents, and we answered 9 “innings” of trivia questions, each inning featuring four questions. If you answered all four questions correctly, you scored a “run.” Each inning featured a different category of questions, including grammar (you do NOT capitalize seasons), baseball, famous adopted people (did you know Nelson Mandela was adopted?), bears, and capital cities (I have a goal to visit all 50). One friend mentioned they’d never learned so much at a baby shower before! Thankfully, I got all the grammar questions right. Unfortunately, I scored runs in only a couple other categories. Also, I’m ashamed to admit, I was on Team Teddy. And Teddy lost. (I think it was rigged.) Mike won MVP and was rewarded with two packets of Big League Chew, which he immediately tore into and stuffed his mouth full of for the camera.
There was one other prize that demonstrates the planning committee’s attention to detail: a box of Toblerone. That’s the name Mike has always said he wanted to give his first child. (“You call the kid Toby! Works for a boy or a girl!) Needless to say, I was never a fan, which encouraged Mike to bring it up at any opportunity. Now that Toblerone has been given proper acknowledgment, maybe it can rest in peace.
So thank you, planning committee extraordinaire and everyone else who has helped make Teddy’s arrival so special. It’s been a joy to share our son with you.