A World of Baby Showers – Baby Showers in India, China and South Africa
Baby Showers are popular all around the world – even in the distant lands of India, China and South Africa. The customs of celebrating Mums-to-be may differ from the Baby Showers that we know here in Ireland. But they are all wonderful ways of sharing the joy and excitement of becoming a new Mum. In this blog we look at A World of Baby Showers – Baby Showers in India, China and South Africa!
In India Baby Showers are called ‘Godh Bharai’ which has a lovely meaning – it translates as ‘to fill the lap’. The tradition is to fill the Mum-to-be’s lap with gifts, sweets and fruits. This is to bless her and her little one with abundance and prosperity.
The Godh Bharai is usually held at the end of the 7th month or in the 8th month of pregnancy. The Godh Bharai is a women-only party with singing and dancing, fun and games and feasting. Gifts include jewellery and money for the expectant Mum, baby clothes and accessories that she will need once her baby is born. Silver bangles are given as they represent prosperity, intelligence, success and strength – all good wishes for both Mother and baby.
As the Godh Bharai is for women only. There is normally an amount of teasing and fun. But it’s also a great way of giving the Mum-to-be love and support at such an important time in her life.
Baby Showers in China are known as ‘Red Egg and Ginger Parties’. They are held on the evening of the first or second full moon after the baby’s birth and are big celebrations. They are banquets with 8 course meals and gifts range from little red envelopes full of money (red is a lucky colour in China), prams and pushchairs to baby clothes and accessories. Guests are presented with hard boiled eggs that have been dyed red (to symbolize happiness and the renewal of life). And pickled red ginger (which is supposed to balance out an overtired new Mum’s yin and yang with a little heat).
In South Africa Baby Showers are called Stork Parties and are often planned as a surprise for the Mum-to-be. They take place typically when the expectant Mum is about 6 months pregnant.
Stork Parties are very similar to American Baby Showers due to the high volume of American television programs viewed in South Africa. They are relaxed and informal but they really go to town on their cakes! The cakes made as central pieces for the Stork Party are beautifully crafted and decorated, with several bakeries specialising in them. Even the cup cakes are stunning! In fact Stork Parties are becoming so popular in South Africa they have professional event planners to help organize them.
It’s good to know that Mums-to-be are celebrated far and wide – perhaps some of these different Baby Shower traditions will help to inspire you if you are planning a Baby Shower yourself!
Owner of Baby Shower Ireland