When I say 3 showers, I mean there will be a possibility of one "traditional" shower that is for the benefit of the grandmothers for whom this is a first biological grandchild from my husband. His family also didn't get to participate in the births of my sons. They love my kids tremendously and do treat them as grandchildren but the boys didn't come into their lives until after babyhood.
The wonderful elderly lady I do caretaking for happens to be my husbands step-grandmother, and I know she is so excited about the baby at age 83, and I want her to be able to celebrate in the way she would feel "appropriate". So, a very small midafternoon, everyone gets dressed nice and has tea and cake, and I very uncomfortably open gifts while people stare at me (I HATE OPENING GIFTS IN FRONT OF PEOPLE!!!) with my step-mother in law, husband's step-sister, step-grandmother, and possibly my mother and step sister in law if my mom would actually drive here. Other than that, maybe I would politely beg my two closest friends to attend for moral support and so I have the appearance of friends there :p
As far as a blessingway goes, this is something that has been a tradition within my special mama circle for many years, and traditional gifts aren't usually given, but what is is FAR more beautiful and meaningful. With Miles, my wonderful woman centered shower involved things like cleansing of the feet with traditional herbs, henna, belly art, photos, poems, songs, a birthing necklace with a special bead and a story or throughts from each woman. A beeswax candle hand rolled containing all of the gentle birthing wishes and love written out on tissue paper from my mamas for me to burn and put out to the universe while I am laboring... It is an amazing thing, and I wouldn't dream of not having this amazing celebration with my mamas. This is going to be a very small thing with just a couple of mamas on a weekend where we already have something going on together.
And then, I would really love to have a "shower" (people often call the types of showers where they have most everything they need and just want to get together to celebrate a "sprinkle" rather than a shower, which is far too cutesy for me, and of course, makes me think immediately of Annie Sprinkle) to celebrate the impending baby with all of our friends. A potluck or barbque at a park with everyone and their kids, with a cake and possibly a pinata in bad taste, sumo wresting, etc. People can bring something if they would really like to (I won't tell people NOT to, because I think the thought of a new baby makes a lot of people, say, become insane and want to buy something PINK for the baby) and just a general good time to celebrate the life that is about to join us...
This is what I mean by 3 showers. I don't think it's excessive, I don't think it's selfish or a symptom of pregnancy insanity. I think it a great way to genuinely celebrate this new life in a myriad of ways with all of those important to our lives and the life of this new baby.