Thursday, August 27, 2015

That's What Little Girls Are Made Of...

Last Sunday, I helped to host a baby shower for a sweet friend of mine at church. I first met Anna when she went to work at Faulkner in the office with my mother. Over the years, we got to know each other through church, as well as the university, so when it came time for her church shower, Mama and I both volunteered to help.

As you know, my usual partner-in-crime is Nancy Itson, so it took a little time to adjust to working with Mama. We butted heads a little until we both figured out who was in charge. (I say me, she says her!) 

Anna's nursery theme is "What are little girls made of?" Above you can see the beautiful quilt the ladies of our congregation made for her. Jewell embroidered a square with a pair of gloves and a little handbag for the quilt. She did a beautiful job! Anna has chosen mint green and peach for her nursery colors. Once I knew her theme and saw the colors, I immediately thought of the sign you see above - "Sugar and spice and everything nice, that's what little girls are made of". It hangs in Jewell's bathroom right as you enter into her bedroom. I knew it was the perfect place to begin my planning.

I consider Anna to be a classic Southern Belle with a modern twist! Mama and I talked about it and thought it would be neat to pull together items to decorate with that represented the transformation from a sweet little girl to a strong Southern woman. We did a little brainstorming and then each went through our homes to pull different items we thought would work with the theme.

The shower was held in the Fireplace Room at church. It has recently been repainted and the new neutral colors work so well now when we host parties there. We set up two tables for the shower - one for food, and one for gifts.

It's dark, but here's a long view of the food table. We had the light refreshments on one end with the punch on the other end. The decorations went in the middle.

To set our theme, I used an ornate chalkboard and wrote the words "Precious Southern Babies become Sweet Southern Ladies".

This picture gives you a chance to take it all in at once. As usual, I began with my white linen tablecloths. If you look closely in the top right of the above picture, you can see a little bit of mint green. This tablecloth belongs to my mother now, but it was once my father's mother's. It was the perfect shade of mint. The only thing I bought for this shower was the piece of lace-stamped burlap you see above. Burlap is so popular right now, and it is so quintessentially Southern. When I found this piece at Joann's, I knew I had to get it. It was on sale, plus I bought what was left on the bolt, so I got about a yard and a half for $5.00! I can't wait to find another way to use this fabric! 

The little dress above was mine when I was about a year old...all six inches of it! Y'all remember it was 1969, and I'm sure Mama had a pretty lacy diaper cover under it. The baby booties are ones that my mother-in-law crocheted for Jewell when she was born. Underneath it all was yet another layer - a little rectangular lace runner that also belonged to my mother's paternal grandmother. Mama brought it, as well.

Here is an heirloom Bible I received at one of my showers for Jewell. It covers a child's white New Testament now, but one day, it can be worked into her bridal bouquet. You can also see Jewell and Brack's silver hairbrushes. The well-loved rattle was first used by my mama's "little" brother about 60 years ago, but somehow it found it's way into our family, and me and my brothers played with it, as did all of our kids. It has dozens of tiny teeth marks all over it!

Placed in the middle and helping to make the transition from little girl to womanhood, is a couple of items from Jewell's tea set. Her nursery theme was fairies, and I found this tea set before she was born and had it on display when she was little. Little girls love to have tea parties - something Southern ladies never get tired of, either. You can also see Jewell's first pair of teeny-tiny ballet slippers! 

The beautifully carved wood fan belongs to Jewell. She got it a couple of years ago in Williamsburg. The delicate statue of mother and child was given to me by Gerald's Aunt Linda when Jewell was born. It was also a perfect match. As Jewell grew up, I moved it from her bedroom to my guest room. The triple strand of pearls belonged to my mother's mother. The gold and pearl earrings and mirror belonged to my great-grandmother for whom Jewell is named. The strand of pearls lying on it are my mother's. The white kidskin gloves and beaded silk clutch are also my mother's. She got them both while she was still in high school. I remember playing with them and the white satin shoes Mama wore when she and Daddy got married. She used to even let me try on her wedding dress!

I made my classic white cupcakes with cream cheese icing. We also served nuts and fruit. Mama and I both have the round and rectangular white "Dress Me Up" trays from Southern Living at Home. It's so simple to add a different ribbon and get a totally different look! I also made the blue mason jars holding the flowers. It was simple, and I think they came out really pretty. I'll share the details in another post soon.

I was least happy with my napkins. I couldn't find a true peach, so this was the best I could do. It's a little more salmon colored, but it did give the table a little punch of color. I was also able to find matching organza ribbon for the platters.

The punch was simple, but sherbet and ginger ale. It was sweet and frothy, and the color was beautiful against the mint and white table linens. I snipped some gardenia leaves from outside the church building and used them to form a wreath around the punch bowl.

The baby's quilt anchored one end of the gift table...

While a precious bunny atop a diaper cake anchored the other. You can also see Anna's corsage beside a sign reading "Blessed". Mama did a fantastic job on the corsage. She picked up the white mums and baby's breath at Costco that morning after church, and used a whole spool of ribbon to soften it and hold it all together.

Here's something I have never seen before, but thought was so precious. Instead of having everyone sign a guest book or her baby book, Anna had an adaptation of the classic Dr. Seuss book "Oh the Places You'll Go".

Guests were invited to write baby Perri (named for Anna's grandfather) a sweet note.

We had so much fun celebrating Anna and her sweet baby!

Everyone had a wonderful time, and she even got a little help opening presents from a young guest!

She received so many beautiful things!

Look at this beautiful couple!
Don't you know sweet baby Perri is just going to be precious?
We wish Anna and Nathan all the best!

I really enjoyed getting to work with my mother on this shower. Together we pulled together so many items that we love, but that more importantly, reminded us of people that we loved. It was a wonderful afternoon!

I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!
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