We’ve all had a mother. She may be the most wonderful woman in the world…or not so much. If your mom is still part of your life, though, now’s the time to recognize the part she had in bringing you up.
What can you do to celebrate Mom?
It’s not just the bucks. My local paper, The Denver Post, seems convinced that mothers are dying for a large and bulky piece of furniture, especially a couch. Somehow, I doubt that. Most moms might enjoy an expensive tv or piece of jewelry, but it pales next to what they really want: contact with you.
But if you are going to spend, make it meaningful. Instead of things, why not fund a trip together? Cruises can be had for very reasonable prices right now. After we found a Caribbean cruise for a screaming deal ($299 for 7 nights on MSC), we talked it over…and decided to combine Mother’s Day, birthday and Christmas presents together, and offer to take Mom on a cruise, instead. Her response? “I don’t need any more stuff — but I’d love to travel more — especially when it’s cold out.”
We’re headed there in December.
Your mom may not want the hoopla of an ocean cruise, or a long trip. A lunch together or movie out may delight her just as much. It all should depend on her — not you.
Think food — like a long tradition: breakfast in bed. Chocolate ‘bread’ (actually a croissant variation) is surprisingly easy (less than 5 minutes to shape!) when you use the recipe from Pretty/Hungry. Plenty of other recipes on this link, as well, including breakfast pizza, hot chocolate and a dainty fruit tart.
Other moms prefer lunch out. If finances are tight, perhaps a picnic lunch at the riverside would do the trick, rather than an expensive brunch. Or suggest a potluck, with dishes brought by each of your siblings. Not enough kids in your family to pull this off successfully? Combine forces. Get together with cousins…or make your friends’ mothers yours for the day. (It’s also a special way to celebrate, if you can’t be with your own mom.)
Spend time together…even if you’re apart. Even if that only means a phone call every other day or so, because you live a thousand miles away. Social media like Facebook are easy ways to trade photos and quick comments. (Skype works too, for face-to-face calls.)
An afternoon in person is nice — but an afternoon every other week, or once a month, will be much more appreciated, even if it’s just for a stroll. If it’s regular, she can enjoy it now — and look forward to it in the future, as well.
Remember: she was once young, too. She’s got plenty to teach you in terms of saving money, dealing with stubborn children or hard times, and how to adapt gracefully to your own encroaching age. Take time to listen, and you might avoid some foolish mistakes in your own life.
Shorter, smaller and simpler may be better. Instead of a lavish bouquet, send two less expensive ones — one now, and another when in a month or two, when the memory of the earlier blooms have faded. Instead of a long letter, why not shorter notes, once a week? Quick phone calls remind her you’re thinking about her. (Fit them in around your regular schedule. My mom knows she’ll often get a phone call while I’m on the way home from an assignment. She doesn’t care, as long as we talk.)
Don’t forget the other “moms” in your life. The neighbor who loves on your children. The older friend who’s been such an encouragement, especially during difficult periods. The mentor who kept you focused in your work; without her, you wouldn’t have accomplished what you did. You’ve always wanted to thank these people — this is a perfect time to send that small gift, card or note that says:
Thank you. You made a difference to me.
Happy Mother’s Day, Mom…with love.