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What you need to know about throwing a nesting party

Here's how to host a nesting party

Pregnant woman standing over wooden crib in rustic nursery
Ömürden Cengiz / Unsplash

Nesting parties have been gaining in popularity thanks to social media posts. If you haven’t heard about nesting parties, you’re not alone. Holding a nesting party is a relatively new thing. So, what is a nesting party, and if you’re expecting, should you host one?

Nesting is a term describing the urge parents-to-be feel near the end of a pregnancy to get everything in order before the birth of a baby. It’s from this practice where the expecting parents start putting together all those amazing baby shower gifts, painting the nursery, and more, where the idea to throw a nesting party comes from.

What’s a nesting party?

Baby bath supplies in a nursery
Ksenia Sandulyak / Shutterstock

Instead of the expectant couple doing everything to get the nursery and home ready for baby, a nesting party enlists the assistance of family and close friends. Using a nesting party is a way to get that lengthy to-do list before baby arrives completed. As the saying goes, “It takes a village to raise a child,” and hosting a nesting party brings your village together to help you prepare for your baby’s arrival.

Unlike a baby shower, a nesting party doesn’t involve giving gifts. It’s more about taking the gifts from the shower and putting them together. So, if you want to have a nesting party, here’s how to throw one.

Hosting a nesting party

Couple painting a nursery
Jelena Zelen/Shutterstock / Shutterstock

Unlike a baby shower, the central purpose of a nesting party isn’t social and doesn’t involve gift giving. Since throwing a nesting party isn’t your typical celebration, here are some tips to keep in mind when preparing for yours. The most important element of hosting is to make sure the guests understand what a nesting party is before they commit to coming and pitching in.

When to hold a nesting party

A baby shower is traditionally held during the third trimester. Since your guests will be helping you prepare for baby’s arrival, the best time to throw a nesting party is a few weeks after the baby shower. Choose a date that falls between your baby shower and due date.

Who to invite

You’ll want to keep your invite list small. Since a nesting party isn’t formal or strictly social like a baby shower, invite close family and friends who will be enthusiastic about helping. Casual friends and co-workers aren’t necessarily going to be on board when it comes to getting put to work. Include an RSVP date. You’ll need a headcount in order to decide who will be doing what.

Be upfront about the purpose of the nesting party

Since the concept of a nesting party is relatively new, make sure the invitees understand what’s involved when they say yes. Sure, there’s socializing, but the purpose of the party is to lend a hand to prepare for baby’s arrival.

Nesting party tasks

Once you have the invites sent, generate a nesting party to-do list. Think about the things the expectant parents need to get done before the baby comes. Here are some ideas to include on the list.

  • Painting or wallpapering the nursery
  • Assembling the baby furniture
  • Putting up curtains in the nursery
  • Washing and drying gently used and new baby clothes, blankets, and bibs
  • Folding washed clothes, blankets, and bibs
  • Organizing and putting away clean baby clothes, blankets, and bibs
  • Setting up the changing table
  • Stocking the changing table with diapers and wipes
  • Packing the hospital bag
  • Installing car seats
  • Putting together the stroller, bouncy seat, bassinet, and baby swing
  • Clean and sterilize baby bottles and pacifiers
  • Organizing and putting away baby’s new books and toys
  • Meal prepping

If the mom-to-be isn’t planning the nesting party, be sure to speak to her about the tasks on the to-do list. Some moms may want to complete certain things themselves.

Have supplies ready to go

Whether the guests are putting together furniture or baby gear, it’s important to have all the tools and supplies needed. Don’t expect the helping hands to be searching for screwdrivers or laundry detergent. Have everything people need to complete the tasks on the to-do list ready before they arrive.

Assign people projects they’ll enjoy

A nesting party is asking people to spend their downtime cleaning, prepping, assembling, and doing chores. So, be sure to give people tasks they don’t mind doing. Don’t ask someone who isn’t good at putting things together to assemble the crib.

Set aside time for fun

Don’t leave out the element of fun from a nesting party. Have refreshments on hand for people to enjoy. Veggie and fruit platters are ideal for guests to grab a quick snack while working. Finger foods are a perfect pick, too. Cool beverages like iced tea and lemonade are always refreshing. Sweet treats like cookies and cupcakes never disappoint. Depending on the time of year, you can make seasonal snacks like pumpkin muffins for fall or hot chocolate with whipped cream for winter. You can always toss in some baby shower-style games, too.

Show gratitude

While nesting parties are certainly a wonderful way to get a home and nursery ready for baby, they can also be a lot to ask of your guests. Make it a point to set aside some time to show your appreciation. Leave time to thank each guest personally. You don’t need to send people home with a party favor like a baby shower, but it would be nice to show your gratitude in some special way. Something as simple as a thank you bag of cookies is a cute and tasty way to show your gratefulness.

Throwing a nesting party

Nursery hamper
Alexandra Tran / Unsplash

If family and close friends constantly offer to help you prepare for your baby’s arrival, then planning a nesting party is a definite do. It’s a wonderful and fun way to harness that kindness and prepare for the baby’s homecoming.

Remember, expectant parents aren’t the only ones who can host a nesting party. Planning one for a sibling or a close friend is an act of love that will be greatly appreciated. Just make sure the parents-to-be are comfortable with a nesting party before putting one together. Even though it’s a new thing, it’s an act of volunteerism that makes everyone feel good, from the parents-to-be to the helping hands.

Dawn Miller
Dawn Miller began her professional life as an elementary school teacher before returning to her first love, writing. In…
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