Congratulations, your daughter is having her first baby! Or your best friend just told you she’s expecting her fourth, BOY! Let’s say your sister finally adopted and promptly found out she’s pregnant…Yep, it’s time to start giving bliss! Paper is the first bliss symbol, given in month three | weeks 13-17 of pregnancy, when most expectant parents feel comfortable sharing their happy news. Paper is a timeless and practical material to represent the first symbol in a series of seven gifts given throughout the pregnancy of a close loved one. It’s also probably the easiest bliss gift to find.
BOOKS | When it comes to paper bliss gifts my first thought always turns to books. There is no shortage of subjects that make great gifts for a mom-to-be. From pregnancy journals and infant care to favorite children’s stories, books always make thoughtful gifts. These are a few of my (& my kids’ favorites).
Studies have shown that babies respond to familiar sounds they hear while in the womb whether it be mom and dad’s voices or a book read aloud. Oh, Baby, the Places You’ll Go!: A book to be read in Utero
is kind of like a starter Dr. Suess book to read while baby is in utero. No No Yes Yes (Leslie Patricelli board books) has been a favorite with all my kids. The simple communication style and darling illustrations are entertaining and help kids understand their world.
The Baby Owner’s Manual is a clever little book designed and written as a technical manual and makes learning to care for your offspring humorous and entertaining.
Dunstan Baby Language is the amazing discovery of a pattern of sounds that infants worldwide use during the first three months of life. Once parents familiarize themselves with these sounds they are able to understand their baby’s needs and respond with confidence. It worked wonders with my last two babes, I only wish I knew about it for my #1 son! Remember, when giving a book, add a little dedication on the inside cover. “To baby Smith, this was your mom’s favorite book and I can’t wait to read it to you too! Love Grandma B.” These little gems make a simple book a true bliss gift.
GIFT CERTIFICATES | As a gift giver, I’ll admit that giving a gift-certificate is not very creative, however I have many friends who would prefer a day at the spa or a dinner out with their spouse to almost anything else I could buy them. This is especially true for the veteran mom who doesn’t often take the time to indulge herself. Keep the gift certificate specific so that she can’t spend it on the kiddos and has to treat herself! Maternity clothing, professional infant photos and restaurant gift cards would all be fun ways to express your friendship and excitement for her new bun-in-the-oven.
MEMORY BOOK | One of my favorite items to give is materials to build childhood memories. My inner archivist wants to collect pictures, cards and cute kid’s quotes to save for posterity. There are so many different ways to do this and it’s a big job. Most of the moms I know feel overwhelmed when it comes to organizing photos or scrapbooks.
This brilliant little album keeps things simple. It’s a 20 Questions Birthday Interview. Conceived and designed by a mom. Basically, during birthday festivities each year take a few moments to ask your child about their favorites. What is your favorite breakfast food? Favorite color? What are you grateful for? What do you want to be when you grow up? Slap a photo on the opposite page and you have a fun annual tradition and archive of your quickly changing child. This book starts on the third birthday when children can start expressing clear opinions, but I stuck a few pages in the front with general growth statistics and fun facts about my babes in their first few years. New moms will love this album and be excited to know they have a really doable way to capture memories.
So that’s it… choose a paper gift be it a book, gift certificate or just a beautiful greeting card. While expressing your sentiments, include a short explanation of bliss, preparing her for six more surprises over the course of her pregnancy and …you’ve started giving bliss.
An expectant woman who is finishing up her first trimester, depending on her circumstances and how bad her morning sickness has been, may be having a hard time getting excited for baby. The first bliss gift is a wonderful way to show your support and excitement for her. Believe me, your expectant friend will be blown away by your thoughtful gesture.