Jewish traditions recognize the belief that each child brings blessings into the world. Jewish baby name ceremonies celebrate those blessings with friends, family and the community. The ceremonies offer a time for you to share in the joy of the new child's birth and give the child a celebratory baby name gift.
As with many baby gifts, those for a Jewish baby name ceremony take on special meaning when they are personalized. Red Envelope offers many ways to personalize gifts for newborns. Whether it be having the baby's name added to a bib, or choosing a new baby girl or new baby boy mezuzah along with a mezuzah scroll, the act of personalizing the gift shows both thoughtfulness and consideration.
The Jewish baby name ceremony is a religious ceremony. When you give a gift as part of such a ceremony, you want to select a gift that conveys a proper sense of decorum and sensibility. Thoughtful and traditional gifts, such as a Kiddush cup (a goblet often made of silver or pewter and used in the Kiddush ceremony), acknowledge the solemnity of the occasion.
It's useful to keep in mind that different types of Jewish baby name ceremonies have slightly different significances depending on whether the baby is a boy or a girl. The ritual circumcision ceremony for boys, the Brit Milah, has long been Jewish tradition, while the parallel ceremony for girls, the Brit Bat or Brit Chayim, first came into being in the latter half of the 20th century. The ceremony for boys represents the baby's entry into the covenant; the ceremonies for girls may have a variety of meanings with a greater or lesser focus on the covenant, according to the beliefs of the parents. For all ceremonies, a simple gift such as a brightly-colored Aleph Bet quilt or wall hanging shows that you are thinking about the child's heritage.
Gifts to the baby from friends may have a different significance than gifts from family. While gifts from friends may include traditional baby gifts such as a baby blanket or picture frame with the baby's name, it may be appropriate for family members to give items with Jewish significance. Gifts such as a Hebrew name plate, on which the baby's name appears in both English and Hebrew, along with the baby's date of birth in both the common and Jewish calendars, can become family keepsakes representative of their Jewish heritage.
If you are considering gifts of clothing, note that the ceremonies for boys and girls generally take place at different time periods after the baby's birth, and that babies often grow very quickly. For boys, the Brit Milah takes place eight days after the boy's birth. For girls, the ceremony may take place as long as a month after the baby girl's birth. Because the ceremony for girls is relatively new, though, the dates can vary.