Blue Star Mothers honor military families with a baby shower

30 Apr

For two hours on Sunday, 13 expectant — or brand new — military mothers were showered with gifts, sweet treats and breakfast pizza when the Blue Star Mothers Rochester Chapter NY8 (BSM NY8) held their Baby Shower for Military.

The annual event, held at the Cottreal-Warner American Legion Post, is designed to recognize and provide for young mothers and expectant mothers in local military families. The event was open to active duty, veterans and military spouses of active duty service members, who were expecting or have children up to six months old. For many of these mothers, this may be the only baby shower they get, since they’re usually stationed far away from their close relatives.

Each mother left the event with three huge IKEA bags packed to the brim with age-appropriate clothing items, toys, bottles, baby wipes, hand-made boppies, hand-crocheted sweaters, booties, hats and blankets, and lots more. A fourth bag was filled with personal care items, lotions and soaps just for Mom, and for Dad, snacks and a book to read to the baby during those midnight feedings.

I mean, they thought of everyone!

I spoke with one young mother, Kat Welch, who was enjoying the event while cradling her 6-week old daughter Evelyn. She and her husband have only lived in the area a short time, and her folks live in New Zealand. So, “I didn’t have a baby shower or anything,” she said. “We didn’t have any kind of celebration.”

Kat found out she was pregnant with Evelyn, their fifth child, last August, only two weeks before her husband was deployed to Africa for a year. They’d pretty much given up on conceiving another child, so Kat had already gotten rid of most of her baby stuff. She went home Sunday with not only the four bags of clothing and baby necessities, but also a stroller, a Diaper Genie and a brand new bassinet.

She was especially grateful for the bassinet.

“We weren’t expecting (Evelyn) to be as small as she was (only four pounds), so she’s too small to sleep in her nursery,” Kat said. “She’s currently sleeping in my bed. So it’s a huge help because she can now sleep next to me in my bedroom.”

While the annual Military Baby Shower is organized and coordinated by the Blue Star Mothers Rochester Chapter, it truly is a community effort. The group’s members have been collecting items for months in preparation, fanning out to local businesses to solicit donations of food, baby products or gift cards. Individual community members went online to the Blue Star Mothers’ Amazon wish list and purchased larger-ticket items like Diaper Genies and strollers. And at the actual baby shower on Sunday, three local small businesses — Rosy Glow Maternity, Artistic Boutique and Studio, and Karen Reyes Massage Therapy — volunteered their time to make the day even more special.

Several members of the 209th Regiment of Cadets were also on hand to help set up tables, put all the bags out, and carry items to cars when the mothers headed for home.

Blue Star Mothers are mothers, stepmothers, grandmothers, foster mothers and female legal guardians who have children serving in the military, guard or reserves, or children who are veterans. The Baby Shower for Military is one of the most important service projects of the Blue Star Mothers Rochester Chapter.

Here are a few more photos from the shower:

* * *

email me  at“Like” this blog on Facebook and follow me on Instagram (@missyblog)

You can also get email notifications every time I post a new blog by using the “Follow Me” link on the right side of this page.

(posted 4/30/2023)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: