a blessingway is just so lovely for any mom...I have hosted a few and everyone, including grandparents and conservative parents, always loved them. The entire event can be as simple or as traditional (with chant, sage smudges, blessings read aloud, song) as the mother would like it to be. I always recommend a small group of close friends to the mom, those who she knows will share only good birthing vibes.
my best friend is hosting a blessingway for me, I am so excited to take part...I just hosted hers in April...it was so lovely to plan and will be so lovely to enjoy!
We do things like belly casting, making a birthing necklace, foot soaks, foot and hand massages, henna on the belly, creating a basket with goods for the mom and add a few special touches based on what we know of the mom. One nice thing to do is to have a blessing written out from each person there and rather than the pressure of reading them aloud, place them into a book for the mom to read in her own time. Not everyone feels comfortable sharing their thoughts aloud, but may have something to wish for the mother.
Our next one is in a couple weeks...4 of us this year in our close group of friends...
I'm sure someone in my family will host a baby shower after the baby comes...but only because I lived 6000miles away for dd and didn't have one. Otherwise I have heard they are only for baby #1.