House Nerd

Follow House Nerd

Follow on Bloglovin

Peeking into People's Places

Search House Nerd

It’s a Boy! Our Gender Reveal Party

Posted Thursday, January 29, 2015 in: Nerd Life

So recently we found out that our baby is a boy! We threw a gender reveal baby shower to celebrate the occasion, where Mr Nerd and I - as well as our closest family and friends – all found out the baby's gender at the same time by smashing a cake open.

It’s okay if you’re puzzled. A lot of people initially were when we said "gender reveal party". I myself had never even heard of gender reveal parties until Mr Nerd brought it up one night when his parents came over for dinner, telling us a colleague had had one. What you do, Mr Nerd explained, is when you go to the 19 week scan, where they can tell what sex the baby is, you tell the sonographer to NOT tell you the sex. Instead you get him to write it down and put it in an envelope.

Party styling by Turtle and the Pelican, florals by Floral Army, photography by Earthbound Images. Pink and blue bunting handmade by my mum!

Team Blue moments before the big reveal! I love these photos :) Thank you Alanna from Earthbound Images!

Go Team Pink! Mr Nerd and I were on Team Pink because we were sure it would be a girl (WRONG). Nala is giving Mr Nerd a high five.

I love the signs Emma from Turtle and the Pelican made for the party. Photography by Earthbound Images

Then you give that envelope to your designated baker, and you tell them to make a sponge cake covered in white icing, where the inside of the cake is either pink for a girl or blue for a boy. Then you have a party with your friends and family, where you cut cut - or smash open - the cake to reveal what you're having. "I want to do that," I said immediately. "We HAVE to have one," and I had the distinct feeling Mr Nerd was regretting telling me what a gender reveal party was, partly because the next thing he said was that he wished he’d never told me what a gender reveal party was.

But it was too late, we were having one. I LOVE planning and styling parties. And this seemed like a way more fun idea than a traditional baby shower, which I have never really been that keen on. With a gender reveal party, the menfolk could come, and drink beer and feel manly while (hopefully) only feeling minimally uncomfortable amidst all the pink and bunting and baby chatter.  

A party would also give me something to look forward to when I had my head stuck down the toilet bowl. Some of you may have realised I have really not enjoyed being pregnant so far - okay, so many times I have downright hated it. But a party to cap off reaching the halfway mark seemed like a nice sort of milestone to celebrate.

Some people have gone to me, "Oh but why would you want to know the sex? It's fun not knowing. Finding out the gender is like the last surprise you have left." Yeah, nah. Trust me, I'm still surprised I'm pregnant per se! Pregnancy alone is surprise enough for me. There was no way in hell I wasn't finding out what we were having. On top of that, I am an anal obsessive organiser-type person; finding out the sex months in advance would satisfy my need to plan things and buy things. I could not wait to find out.

Prepping: The party was on a scorching hot summer’s afternoon. We asked guests to dress in pink or blue according to what they thought the baby would be. We were going to play team games, pitting Team Pink against Blue, but on the day it was way too hot to do anything active! We used things we already had in our garden - like the rusted lanterns, lights and iron chairs - teamed up with props from and furniture from Turtle and the Pelican and florals by Floral Army. Photography by Earthbound Images

Our backyard is very much an Aussie backyard. Emma loaned us this pretty screen to help conceal our compost bin and woodshed!

The 'Gender Guess' voting table.

We also asked guests to bet on what they thought the baby would be by leaving a vote in either a blue bucket or a pink bucket and a gold coin in a jar. Once the cake was smashed, revealing the sex, a winner would get drawn from the winning team’s bucket and that winner would get the jar of gold coins.

I very rarely buy anything new when we have parties and try to re-use things. The little buckets were my mother's, the wooden sign a piece of wood I pinched from my parents' veggie patch, the voting slips bits of scrap craft paper and the concrete [Geo]Forms were presents given to me by my friend Bec Tougas, who handmakes these - I love them. Photography by Earthbound Images

Alicia from Floral Army hanging their gorgeous swings. Photography by Earthbound Images

So we set a date for the party, to be held in our backyard, booked the ultrasound and contacted a baker - the lovely Peter at Glory Box Cakes in North Perth, who make some of the most delicious cakes I have ever scoffed. (Check out their cafe menu - they supply all those amazing cakes you can get at Greens & Co. in Leederville). Only Mr Nerd wanted to smash the cake instead of cutting it neatly. "SMASH CAKE," he intoned one afternoon in a weird voice.
Eventually I relented, only because a) it was his birthday the week of the party and b) how many times in your life, when you are not one year old, do you have a legit reason to smash a cake?

When we realised how many people were keen to come to the gender reveal (70+) and I had to meekly tell Mr Nerd the baby shower was going to be a bit bigger than originally expected, it was time to up the ante on the party planning a bit. I always think having a party is such good incentive to finish stuff around the house and garden, so Mr Nerd and I spent days working in the yard to make it look nice for the party (together with my parents, after I played the 'but I'm heavily pregnant' card).

I wanted the party styling to look kind of rustic and pretty, as our house is rustic (which is what I like to call it instead of calling it old and patchy). I asked my friend Emma, a stylist who owns her own events styling and hire company called Turtle and the Pelican, to make the party look pretty. Emma hires out everything from gorgeous chairs to arbors for weddings to glassware and vintage-looking drink dispensers. She has this amazing arsenal of beautiful things, gorgeous taste and I knew that I could just show her our yard, tell her to do what she wanted and trust that she would make it look awesome.

Alicia and Annita from Floral Army (you might remember they did our wedding flowers) put together beautiful floral arrangements which just set everything off perfectly and made it look even more special. They hung wooden swings overflowing with flowers in the garden, filled glass containers with blooms and Emma’s milk glass vessels with flowers that they set about through the house and garden. Our back yard had never looked so pretty and it really felt special. Alicia and Annita are the kinds of creative people where I would never tell them what to do because I know that whatever they create will blow me away. It’s always nice to be gloriously surprised.

Emma mixed in an assortment of chairs form her own range with our Shedwallah chairs to give everything a mismatched look that wouldn't look out of place!

Mr Nerd during party prep: "Why did I have to tell her what a gender reveal party was? Whyyyyy." Beautiful table blooms by Alicia and Annita from Floral Army. Table from Turtle and the Pelican, photography by Earthbound Images. 

Nala couldn't make up her mind which team she was on, so my mum made her a special bandanna. 

Meanwhile Otto, my parents' in laws schnauzer, was Team Pink all the way.

For guests who weren't sure yet if there were on Team Blue or Team Pink, we put out a box of props.

Emma loaned us two vintage-style drink dispensers and glass bottles. The original idea was to make a blue punch and a pink punch. That plan went out the window when we realised, despite my avid Pinterest-ing, that there are no yummy blue punches with ingredients you can find easily in Australia! So pink punch and water it was. Styling by Turtle and the Pelican, florals by Floral Army, photography by Earthbound Images

Blooms from Floral Army on our outdoor coffee 'table'.

Emma supplied us with tubs from Turtle and the Pelican for beer and drinks.

Emma mixed in an assortment of chairs form her own range with our Shedwallah chairs to give everything a mismatched look that wouldn't look out of place!

Floral Army blooms - on the right atop my Chrissy present from Mr Nerd, my awesome stool made of recycled wood from Andy at A Good Looking Man

I asked Alanna from Earthbound Images who does beautiful wedding, celebration and portrait photography to photograph the afternoon and I LOVE how she captured everything - our family and friends, the Crap Shack, our garden and especially the photos of us smashing the cake.

It is always nice not having to worry about taking photos at a party and I think it will be nice later when our kid is older to show them the photos - of his parents, of all the people who will surround him growing up. The party would not have come together anywhere near as well without Emma, Alicia and Alanna, and I thank you guys massively!

We placed a chalkboard sign we used at our wedding with a vintage typewriter from Turtle and the Pelican, dolls from my mum (the 'creepy dolls' as Mr Nerd called them) and flowers from Floral Army. The painting is by my friend Francesca Gnagnarella.

We WERE going to play a party game I invented called Toss the Baby, which involved pitting Team Pink against Team Blue, throwing these dolls around and running in circles, but it was just way too hot. *dolls breathe sigh of relief*

Cupcakes made by my mum.

As I have no ability to cook food for 70 people, we asked guests to bring a plate to keep everything easier. Photography by Earthbound Images

Feeling very thankful we decided to hire chairs for the party! Thank you Emma!

Me and Emma - stylist whiz from Turtle and the Pelican. Flowers from Floral Army. To keep costs down, we raided my mum and dad's garden as well as my own for greenery.

A party's not a party without some serious business talk... my dad with some mates.

My dad (back) and one of my sisters Tash (front in pink skirt). Sadly my other sister Simone could not attend as she is off working on the Disney cruise ships in the Bahamas. But she was there in spirit!

By the time we smashed the cake, I felt extremely jittery! I was about 90 percent certain it would be a girl. It sounds irrational but Mr Nerd and I were just so sure it was a girl. It was an understatement to say I was astonished when we smashed the cake to reveal blue sponge. I couldn't believe it was a boy!

The photos crack me up. I think Nala believed the entire party was thrown for her. We definitely didn’t expect her to go for the cake the moment she thought we weren’t paying attention. Normally she would NEVER dare eat something off a table unless we told her it was ok! But I think she knew we wouldn’t tell her off in front of so many guests. She makes me laugh.

Mr Nerd, about to fulfil his lifelong dream of smashing a cake. I later found out my loving father secretly suggested Mr Nerd smash the cake in my face. Thank God he did not because I would have murdered him, then my father. Photography by Earthbound Images

My sister Tash and my mum.

Mr Nerd thought it fitting at this point to rudely remove my pink sash and fling it away. Table and Nala's chair from Turtle and the Pelican. Photography by Alanna of Earthbound Images - these photos make me laugh!

Photography by Earthbound Images

It took a few days for it to sink in, I have to admit. What would I talk to a little boy about?! was one of my first thoughts. I have just never been around little boys very much – just girls. I understand little girls - I like Barbies and Frozen and ponies and Babysitters Club and secret clubhouses with No Boys Allowed signs.

But now I feel way more relaxed about it. A boy will be fun.... and be possibly very spoilt by a trio of aunties! It's so clichéd, but we had both known from the start we’d be happy with either as long as it was healthy. We were both on Team Pink as we were guessing it would be a girl, but I laughed my head off when Mr Nerd ripped off his pink shirt to reveal he was sneakily wearing a blue T-shirt underneath. (He said he had a Superman moment when he found out it was a boy).

Gender Guess winner Ryan, who asked that the gold coin jar go to the new baby, but we insisted Ryan spend it on beer. My dad on the far left, looking pretty chuffed. My dad suggested we let the winner of the gender guess name the baby. We said no.

It was Mr Nerd's birthday that week, and he (not being a birthday person at all, unlike me) graciously put up with a cake being brought out to celebrate it. Nala got excited again at this point and barked through everyone singing happy birthday, possibly excitedly awaiting her chance to nab more cake on the sly.

Big sister! (who cares more about cake)

Sisterly strangulation

My friend Meghan JUST missed out on the big reveal as they had an earlier engagement and was so disappointed! Luckily, Sarah from Silver Lining took a video she could watch. Photography by Earthbound Images

Then I watched it.... it is ALWAYS weird and uncomfortable seeing yourself in a video!

Oh and the cake from Glory Box was DELICIOUS. Nala can attest to that.

Pregnancy has made me realise my own limitations when it comes to throwing a party! Big thank you to my ace party team - Alanna from Earthbound Images, Emma from Turtle and the Pelican and Alicia from Floral Army

Our friends sure make good-looking kids.

L-R: My sister Tash, me, my dad and my mum... a family with three girls! A boy is definitely unknown territory - but will be fun.

Thanks everyone for coming to our crazy baby shower - we had such a good time and felt so surrounded by all your good wishes and cheer! Little Nerd will be born into a circle with so much love. Maya x


L-R: Alanna, Emma and Alicia.

Our gender reveal party would not have looked anywhere near as pretty without a lot of help! Thank you to our ace party help team.

Events Styling and Prop Hire: Emma from Turtle and the Pelican
Follow on Facebook, Instagram @turtleandthepelican or Pinterest.

Flowers: Alicia and Annita from Floral Army
Follow Floral Army on Facebook, Instagram @floralarmy or Pinterest.

Photography: Alanna of Earthbound Images
Follow Earthbound Images on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram @earthboundimages.

Cake: The Glory Box Wedding Cakes, North Perth
Follow on Facebook.

Also thanks to my parents and Mr Nerd's parents, and my mum, who made the really pretty pink and blue bunting, as well as Nala’s special “I can’t decide whether I’m Team Pink or Team Blue” bandanna.

Have you read?