Phases – they are clearly not just for the moon. I’ve been through plenty of them, as we all have.  The Terrible Twos.  Scooby.  The New Kids on the Block.  Bronze eyeliner.  Dirty blonde hair.  Pink streaks.  Dark blonde hair.  Dark brown hair.  Sun-in highlights.  Two hundred dollar highlights.  Light brown hair.  Reddish brown hair.  The Friends cut.  The sorority years.  The Brown Hornet Years.  The orange-house-on-Toole-Avenue years.  The law school years.  The yellow-house-on-Stoddard-Street years.

There was a long stretch of Bridesmaid years.  I’ll be in another wedding this coming weekend, a very special one.  But I think it’s safe to say that I’m entering The Baby Shower years – these days, my fridge is not littered with save-the-date magnets, but rather with baby shower invitations and birth announcements.

Earlier this year, I wrote about the love that Southern women pour into the bridal showers we give our dearest friends.  Well, love for our girlfriends is not limited to the South, of course.  This weekend, I journeyed to Missoula to help shower an expectant girlfriend with love for her baby, due September 8.

What do you need for a Montana baby shower?  A pretty pregnant lady, of course.

Here’s mommy and daddy-to-be, with Mommy’s delightful mother, Jo.  They’re pouring over darling pictures of Mommy when she was a little tiny thing – she’s still pretty tiny, with the notable exception of Pooka, as they’re referring to the expected baby, altering her body and sense of balance.  I swear that Mommy’s face hasn’t changed a bit she was born.

Mommy has always been a bright and shining star in our lives!

We borrowed a Hot Bun’s beautiful backyard for the soiree:

One of Mommy’s good friends who was unable to attend sent her love via a festive banner welcoming Pooka to our circle:

There were, of course, beautiful flowers:

And yummy food.

And of course, there were darling gifts to open and oooh and aaah over.

And little onesies to decorate:

So in many ways, throwing a Montana baby shower is not terribly unlike throwing a Southern bridal shower.

Except that in Montana it just wouldn’t be a party without a few good dogs.

And at least one animal head.

And our men.  After all, this is Mantana.  They outnumber us gals nearly two to one.  To have a festive gathering without the boys would just be silly.

So if Pooka is a boy, we’ll teach him how to win the game and woo the women of Montana.  And if Pooka is a girl, we’ll protect her fiercely.  Either way, we’ll be there for the phases, fun and un.

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