8 Strange Gifts I'll Give You at Your Baby Shower

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So you’re having a baby shower. Cool. You made a registry? How cute. I made one too when I was pregnant. I registered for nothing I needed. Hear that? NOTHING. I thought I knew what I was in for when Wee Cee was still on the inside. I insisted that my maternal intuition kicked in the moment implantation occurred and that I knew what I needed to be prepared for C. I registered for gadgets and gizmos aplenty. My Target registry had whosits and whatsits galore. But those baby thingamabobs are now collecting dust after having been used maybe once, twice tops. So here’s what I’ll be bringing you to your baby shower. You can thank me later.

1. A roll of clear packing tape
Murphy’s Law is the prevailing rule of babydom. You’ll buy your child tons of sturdy board books, but she’ll become obsessed with the big-kid paper books. This is Truth. She’ll love them so much that she’ll want to destroy them. Hence the tape. I’m sure you’ll find other uses for it too, like packing up all the clothes she grows out of. *Sniff.*

2. Adult diapers
Not to scare you or anything, but after you give birth, things will be a little disastrous down there for awhile. Eventually, you will run out of the Tucks pads they give you at the hospital. That’s why when the baby shower is winding down, I am going to be discrete and pull you aside and gift you a pack of these things. You’ll look at me in horror and wonder what the frack is wrong with me that I have confused baby diapers for adult diapers. But when the baby has arrived, you’ll be glad you have them, and you’ll be even gladder you didn’t have to buy them yourself. You’ll be glad you have me: your adult diaper friend. Also, I will be able to put “Adult Diaper Friend” on my resume. We all win.

3. A bag of ground coffee
Coffee, because duh. Now, I could buy you a gift card to Starbucks, but that assumes that you have the wherewithal to get up, get dressed, get the baby dressed, pack said baby into her car seat, hope that she doesn’t throw a tantrum when she tires of her car toy, and then recall the esoteric code for “double whip skinny caramel macchiato latte with an entire chocolate bar on top” that you’re forced to recite once you get to the coffee shop. So here’s some beans. Let’s cut out the middle man.

4. A vinyl tablecloth
I suppose you could use this tablecloth for nesting. However, putting a cloth over the table once the baby arrives is about as high on my priority list as ironing my husband’s socks. So yeah, ain’t gonna happen. Put it down as a tarp under the baby’s highchair. That way, when you do get around to having a fancy-schmancy candlelit meal with other grownups, you won’t have to get down on all fours and shampoo pureed squash and peas out of the carpet.

5. A CD I burned of all my our favorite kid songs
Parenthood is a series of concessions, but the music you and your kid listen to together does not need to be one of them. I am a good friend so I have suffered through the horrible, mind-numbing stuff for you. I thumbed-down all the junk on the kids stations on Pandora and got to the root of the good music for you. Here is the fruit of my labor presented to you in a jewel case. It may look shabby, but I guarantee that one listen and you won’t be pulling your hair out or waking in the middle of the night with all ninety-seven verses of “The Green Grass Grew All Around” stuck in your head.

6. An outfit sized 18 months
Clothes are the bread and butter of the baby shower, but it seems like all of them are for when the baby is an itty bitty. That’s why I’m giving you a brand-new outfit for when your kid is bigger. By the time she’s 18 months, you will have discovered the joys of the thrift store, hand-me-downs, and baby consignment. And while we love heavily-discounted used bargains, we like new things too, so here’s a cute outfit for when your baby is a little older.

7. A giant decorative box
You’ve already heard that babies like to play with simple toys, so yours will get a kick out of playing with this one if that’s how you chose to use it. However, this box is really for you. It’s for when you want to clean up but not really (read: all the time). Take all the random crap the baby has strewn around the house in the span of a day and dump it in the box to be put away later. Outta mind, outta sight.

8. A really trendy necklace
Babies love your stuff. You can try to give them a kid substitute, but they will thwart you. C was totally unimpressed when I got her a little plastic baby keyring to substitute for my own filthy set of keys, which she was obsessed with. That’s why I’m giving you a really trendy, cheesy piece of jewelry. By the time Tim Gunn says it’s impossible to make it work any more, you can hand it off to the kid, who, by this point, has developed a sizable fixation on it.

Guess which one she still wanted to play with.
Guess which one she still wanted to play with.

What is something you wish you had been given before you had kids?

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