As you know, we found out our little one is a BOY on Monday, June 27, at our ultrasound. I had been planning how to share the gender news with our families for the past month. I really wanted to do something special that allowed for the elements of suspense and surprise. We both wanted to tell our parents and siblings on the same day we found out. If I sent anything in the mail in advance, it would have to be something that could go either way, pink or blue. After perusing Pinterest and looking at gender reveal blog posts, I decided to do a Pinata Gender Reveal with a bit of a Tex-Mex flare. We were going to do one for Michael’s parents too, but they were out of state on vacation at the time, so we got to share the news with them over the phone.
I enlisted the help of my sisters, and they were very excited and eager to participate. They even named the pinata, which was a donkey, Burro Bambino, and started referring to the top secret plan as Operation Burro Bambino. All of the supplies, including the donkey pinata, came from Amazon. I sent 3 pounds of pink taffy and 3 pounds of blue taffy to my sister Lisa. I sent Burro Bambino to my sister Mary.
Operation Bamino Burro was kept secret from my parents, nieces, nephews, and other sister, Christina, because she would have a surprise gender reveal upon her arrival in Ohio. On the big day, Mary and Lisa were waiting together with the pinata when I called them with the news. We did FaceTime, and I proudly held up the ultrasound pictures to reveal that Baby McLees was a baby boy. The blue taffy was stuffed into Burro Bambino. My sisters, brother-in-law, Richard, and their kiddos headed over to my mom and dad’s house with the pinata in tow. My mom was just expecting a phone call from me after the ultrasound. I did call my parents around the time Burro Bambino arrived at their house, but the purpose of the phone call was to keep them distracted in their office while the pinata was prepared outside.
I pretended we sent my parents a YouTube video about the ultrasound, but the video I sent was actually a video of baby mice I had in my classroom when I was teaching. Michael helped keep my mom in the office long enough to allow time for the burro to be hung up by emailing her malfunctioning links to the video. When the pinata was ready, my sisters texted me, and I told my mom, “actually, what we’re trying to show you is outside in the backyard!” Operation Burro Bambino had commenced!
My mom stayed on the phone with me while my nieces and nephews tried to break open the pinata.
Eventually, blue taffy started spilling out of Bambino Burro, and the gender was revealed!
My mom found this adorable wooden cradle and used it to showcase the blue taffy.
Even though we would have loved to be there in person to share the news, Operation Bambino Burro provided a special and suspenseful way to orchestrate a long distance gender reveal. Since my other sister, Christina, was traveling up to see us with her family on the day of this gender reveal, we kept it a secret from her. I sent her a very convincing email explaining that the ultrasound tech was unable to determine the gender. I told her I was very disappointed, but grateful Baby McLees was healthy. Meanwhile, I had another Burro Bambino and blue candy waiting for them at our house!
Christina and her family arrived on Wednesday, so we only had to wait 2 days to share the news with them. We told her we had a pinata for the kids and explained that it would be something fun for them to do after being in the car all day. Michael and I waited till he had attached Burro Bambino II to a tree and the kids were ready to swing. Then, we told them we actually knew the gender of Baby McLees, and it would be revealed when the burro burst open. They were all shocked and eager to break the pinata open.
Amusingly, both Burro Bambinos were extremely resistant to the kids’ attempts to break them open. The heads came off easily, but the bodies, where the candy was stashed, refused to budge. Adult assistance was needed during both gender reveals.
The second gender reveal, this time in person, was a success!