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Old 10-01-2006, 09:40 PM
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Baby shower traditions in Germany?

My SIL is German, and pregnant. We (her American siblings) want to throw her a baby shower, which she's declined, saying she'd prefer to wait until after the baby is born.

That's all fine, but we'd like to be able to incorporate some of her traditions into the shower if we can. And, of course, we'd like to do it without alerting her that we're going to do it.

Any thoughts from any of our German dopers?
Old 10-02-2006, 11:38 AM
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Baby and childhood pictures of the mum and dad placed around for folks to look at is one I saw at a German/American shower. Can you get some of her baby pics from her parents?
Old 10-02-2006, 11:44 AM
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There may not be any, here in Spain there isn't such a thing as baby showers (you bring the presents when you're going to meet the baby). No bridal showers either, for that matter. Do you know any other germans you could ask? Preferably ones not related to her.
Old 10-02-2006, 12:14 PM
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We don't really have a tradition of baby showers. Apparently there are a few people who do it but it's definitely unusual. Normally people give their presents when the baby is born. At the moment I can't think of any special traditions.
Old 10-02-2006, 02:24 PM
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A German baby shower? Wear a slicker.
Old 10-02-2006, 03:59 PM
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I had to look up what a baby shower is - never heard of a similar tradition in Germany, FWIW.

BTW I can understand your German SIL's attitude of preferring to wait until the baby is born - it is my impression that we Germans tend to avoid tempting fate. Another example of this is that if a birthday party cannot be scheduled on the birthday it's generally held later rather than sooner, in order not to tempt fate (beginning some time before midnight seems to be regarded as safe enough, though).
Old 10-02-2006, 04:14 PM
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Not quite a baby shower tradition, but I was walking in Nuremberg once when I was accosted* by a group of women who told me (after some difficulty with the language) that one of them was getting married the next day and it was a tradition for me to give her 50 cents and pound a nail into a piece of wood. No one I have told about this has ever heard of such a thing.

* "Accosted" is too strong a word, but the whole thing was kinda strange.
Old 10-03-2006, 11:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tschild
BTW I can understand your German SIL's attitude of preferring to wait until the baby is born - it is my impression that we Germans tend to avoid tempting fate.
That describes her perfectly, and given all that she has had to give up to be here, it seems the least we can do is honor her wishes.

So I'll call her and confirm she wants to wait, and see if she even wants a shower. If there's no such tradition in Germany, then maybe she'll want to skip it altogether. (Although it might be fun to show her some baby shower games... )
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robot Arm
I was walking in Nuremberg once when I was accosted* by a group of women who told me (after some difficulty with the language) that one of them was getting married the next day and it was a tradition for me to give her 50 cents and pound a nail into a piece of wood.
I'll ask her about this, and if she's heard of it, I'll post.
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