Our Nesting Bird Baby Shower

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We finally had my sister's baby shower a couple of weeks ago, and it turned out so beautiful.

They wanted a "nesting bird" baby shower theme — partly to go along with their bird-themed nursery, and also to compliment their tree-loving personalities. So when guests walked in, they saw this:

That's a real tree branch spray-painted white, with styrofoam cones glues on to hold the "nest" cupcakes. And those cupcakes? White cake and white frosting, with toasted coconut to look like nests.

We went with crowd-pleasing favorites for the rest of the menu, rather than a strict bird-and-egg theme. Except for the clever cantaloupe fruit bowls cut to look like hatched eggs.

And the rest of the décor was all about birds, bird cages, nests, and branches.

I used Minted.com's new party package for the signs and banner because — hello — they have a "Nesting Bird" party theme. Done and done. I got a personalized banner ("Welcome to the Nest"), a bunch of signage, mini note cards (which we used for the Wishing Tree — read on), table confetti, paper straws (with tags), and even a stack of plates and napkins. It was worth every penny.

As for the rest of the décor, we did a lot of shopping at Michaels craft store, and I found some handmade birdcages (top right) at a local farm. We also used a lot of items that we already had — like mason jars and tree branches.

For party favors, we found little paper bird houses in the wedding aisle of Michaels, and we filled them with Jelly Belly candy "eggs."

But my favorite part of the shower was the Wishing Tree.

We made the Wishing Tree from real tree branches,which we stuck inside a cheap vase on sale at Michaels. And the branches were filled with hand-stamped cards that said one of four things: Always, Remember, Never, and I Hope. Guests chose one (or more) card as a writing prompt, and wrote a wish (or piece of advice) to her unborn son — and she's now assembling them into a book titled "Roots."

Each chapter of the book begins with a word — like "Always" — and then my sister and her boyfriend wrote a note around that concept. Then she inserted the rest of the "Always" notes before starting a new chapter, "Remember."

Not only did it keep everyone busy, but what a stunning keepsake! And leaving the writing prompt open-ended meant that people could be funny, serious, or profound in their wishes.

This was Noah's wish for his cousin:

"I hope you have good memories."

(Awwww.)

And now we're all just waiting for that sweet baby boy to arrive...