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it’s all in the details…


Creating a party around a theme is all about the details. The little touches that tie it all together add up to a lot.

head table

Once the theme for Tram’s baby shower was solidified in my mind, I began scouring my house for items to build the theme around. Chalkboards, Scrabble tiles, various items with the number 2 on them, scales, globes, children’s books, etc. Then I made a list of the additional items I’d need to purchase to make it complete.


Two such purchased items were these Dr. Seuss flipbooks. I bought them at Half-Price Books and then proceeded to take them apart.

take apart

In doing so, I could use the flashcard-like pages to place all around the inside and outside of the house.


Similarly, I cut up the pages of other books to make garlands and bunting.

books and bundting

These were strung on just about every surface available cabinet front.


I used vintage flashcards from an ABC set I already owned to make not only the garland seen below, but…


… also to scatter about as seen on the tray that held the classes at the drink station.

numbered glasses

Notice that many of the glasses themselves are numbered, adding to the schoolhouse theme.

hopkins ruler

Other school-type items I used were rulers and yardsticks. This one is my favorite. It is from my husband’s family’s old lumber and fuel store in Rockton, Illinois. You can see just how vintage it is by the 5-digit phone number.

Oh, but not everything was a hit.

the game

Tram and I had decided that neither of us wanted to “play games.” But at the last minute, I thought I’d put one out, just in case anyone felt the urge to partake in a little competition.

celeb babies

I found a Celebrity Baby Name Game on the internet and printed it out. Actually, I found two, so I printed them both out and called the second one, “Extra Credit.”  There were no takers. I should have known better and gone with my first instinct to forgo any and all games!


Much more popular was the opportunity for guests to give Tram a favorite parenting tip. Guests wrote down their best hints and tricks. Tram, Peggy, and I read through them after everyone left. Some were funny, others were sweet and touching and some should prove to be quite helpful to the first-time mommy and daddy.

book drop

When guests first entered, there was a place to drop off the unwrapped books they brought …

build it

… to build the twins’ library.

top of trunk

I started it off with a set of ten classic children’s novels. (Oh, and the book in the wagon was sent FedEx by a sweet friend who lives in Texas – so very thoughtful!)

set of 10

And this is what it looked like by the time the party ended.

books after

Over on the gift table…

gift table

… we started out with a gift from Peggy and me and a second one that a friend who wasn’t able to attend had dropped off.

time has not been set aside for gift opening

Another decision Tram and I made ahead of time was to not open gifts during the shower. This sign informed the guests of that matter upfront as they dropped their gifts off.

It reads, “Time has not been set aside for gift opening. We will be enjoying our time together ‘mingling.’  If you would like to have Tram open your gift while you are here, just pull her aside.”  Tram and I were happy with the decision, I hope the guests were too.

gfits after

This is what the table looked like at the end of the shower. Such generous guests!

party people

Speaking of the lovely guests… here they are.

Emma, Tram, Jen

Emma, Tram, and Jen.

Lin and Tram

Lin Sue and Tram.

Heather, Tram,Matt, Kacie

Heather, Tram, Matt, and Kacie.

Tram, Cruz, and Veronica

Tram, Cruz, and his mommy, Veronica.

Cassie, Jill, Michelle, Tram and Stacey

Cassie, Jill, Michelle, Tram, and Stacey.

Hailey and Tram

Hailey and Tram.

Fay, Carrie, Tram, Dar, Leyla

Fay, Carrie, Tram, Dar, and Leyla.

tram and sonya

Tram and Sonya.

2 hot mamas

Caribe and Tram. Caribe just had a baby girl on December 26th and had planned to take her maternity leave at her home in Texas. She stayed an extra week just so she could come to Tram’s shower. Now, that’s a sweet friend!

Tram and Kim

Tram and Kim. Kim was in a life-threatening car accident in mid-September. Many of her friends and colleagues hadn’t seen her since, as she’s been recuperating at home for the past four months. It was a very emotional scene when Kim walked in! She is healing and looking fabulous and it meant the world to Tram to have her here!

I’ll be wrapping up the rest of the shower details in Friday’s post, saving one of my favorite things for last.

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1 Tram Mai { 01.16.14 at 12:00 PM }

Awww, what a sweet, thoughtful and touching blog. The details and creativity were so over the top- BRILLIANT!!! Honestly, it couldn’t have been more perfect. There was so much thought and effort put into every single little corner. (For the record, I did see some people attempt to do the celebrity baby name game!) Building the library was one of my favorite features- what a GREAT idea to pass along to the other baby showers, even birthdays! 🙂 And I love how you ended this blog- so sweet, celebrating with everyone I adore! Thank you Linda for creating an unforgettable experience! XOXOXOXO

2 Lin Sue { 01.16.14 at 2:07 PM }

An amazing party with incredible eye for detail. You left out pictures of your darling milk bottle/cookie desserts. Saw them in pictures and kicked my self for having to leave before they were served. ADORABLE!!!!! All the food was exquisite.

3 Linda Hopkins { 01.16.14 at 3:39 PM }

Thank you, Lin Sue. Pictures and descriptions of the Milk & Cookies were put up in yesterday’s post. So wonderful to see you, thank you for coming celebrate with sweet Tram.

4 Lin Sue { 01.16.14 at 5:44 PM }

Oh good. Now that I think about it… that dessert deserved it’s own post. Will check it out. xoxo

5 Amanda { 10.19.14 at 11:06 AM }

Thank you for posting the picture of the sign about gifts not being opened at the party. That is what we intend to do for my shower, but hadn’t figured out a polite way to notify guests. Yours is just perfect and I’ll be plagiarizing it. 😉 Thank you!

6 Linda Hopkins { 10.19.14 at 12:11 PM }

Amanda. It worked like a charm for us. Everyone was fine with it and respectful of the “mama to be” wishes. Happy wishes for your shower.

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