Each year I watch as mom’s all around me give the loving, “Oh. You shouldn’t have!” to husbands and kids on Mother’s Day. It seems that although Dad’s and Kids love their mom, they just don’t seem to be any good at treating them thoughtfully on Mom’s day. For the mom’s who do enjoy their gifts, it’s usually the quintessential “woman-friendly” gift of flowers, candy, dinner, etc. But Mom’s work REALLY hard all year long and giving their Mother’s Day gift 30-seconds of thought just seems a little lame.
And so, as a mother I am compiling a list of thoughtful and loving gifts that mom’s would actually enjoy. Pick from this list and you’re sure to make your wife/mother the envy of mom’s everywhere this year!
For mom’s who have very young kids, the idea should be to give them something thoughtful and then turn them loose because chances are, they need a break! Consider making her breakfast and having the children give her personalized drawings, then sending her off with her friends for a day at the spa, a concert, or a night out with friends. Please note Dads, Mom does NOT want to come home to a messy house and a Dad complaining about how difficult the day was for him. Suck it up, clean the house, and give her a little piece of mind.
Once the chaos of having a house full of young children has passed, mom’s often find themselves wanting MORE time with their kids. Maybe she has teens that are always off with their friends, or adults who are busy with their own lives. If this is the case, plan a day of togetherness. Maybe the entire family goes out for a nice dinner and to a show, or weather permitting, plan a cookout and invite everyone over. But, make sure you’re not stressing mom out with having to clean, cook, or do any of the actual planning herself. That is the opposite of what a mom wants to do on Mother’s day.
I want to start by saying that if your wife/mother doesn’t wear jewelry, don’t buy her jewelry purely based upon her status as a woman. Your wife/mother would not appreciate that. But, if she regularly wears jewelry, make her Mother’s Day gift something personalized. There are options for rings with each child’s name etched into them, necklaces which hold birthstones, or charm bracelets to represent different aspects of mom’s life. If she has a family heirloom piece that is broken and unable to be worn, consider having it repaired for her or having it made into a new piece for her to wear.
Several years ago for my Grandmother’s birthday, we asked for all of her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren to submit a letter that they had written to her to tell her how much and why they loved her. For the little kids it was just a drawing, and for us adults it was a heartfelt pouring out of our souls. We compiled them all into a beautiful scrap book and gave it to her at her surprise birthday party. She went on for weeks about how she loved those letters and told me that she cried every time she read one. If you want to go big for your Mom, try something personalized in that way. Knowing how loved and appreciated she is will be the best gift she’s ever received!
Is your wife/mom a bit of a fashionista? Have you noticed that she’s been eyeballing a certain bag for weeks, just hoping it would go on sale? Buy it! As mom’s we often feel guilty if we make a big purchase on something just because we want it. And so we’ll wait until it goes on sale or just buy something else so that we can spend that extra money on our family. Tell mom you love her by just getting her the thing she wants!
6. Pick Up the Slack
I am in no way suggesting that doing household chores should be your ONLY gift to your wife/mother, but taking care of them will certainly make a good addition to any other gift you give her! For the record, those “coupon books” that mom’s so often receive with coupons for things like, ‘One Free Vacuum’ are pointless. Although cute, mom’s don’t feel right whipping out some coupon in order to force her family to help out. And never try to do mom’s chores while she’s home. Not good. Wait until Mom is away and go on a chore binge! She’ll be super grateful!
Most mom’s have a hobbie of some sort, and many of them rarely get to enjoy it. Consider what your mom likes to do in her rare moment’s of free time and hook her up with something to encourage her in her hobbie. For instance, if your mom loves to garden, maybe you can give her some gardening tools, build her a new greenhouse, or buy her that specialty tree that she’s been wanting. Is she a photographer in need of a new camera? Does your woodworking mama need a new saw? This is also a great idea for mom’s who are more practical. But beware. You don’t want to give your mom seven flats of flowers that she is then obligated to spend an entire day planting. You want to give her something that makes life easier and more enjoyable.
For the wife/mother who just isn’t in to ‘things,’ consider gifting her an experience instead. Has your mom always wanted to go zip lining? How about hiking a certain trail? Has she just been dying to see a show or visit a new museum? Whether it’s something that she can do with the family, or a solo adventure, she’ll surely be grateful for the memories!
What it all comes down to is taking a few moment’s to think about your wife/mother and who she REALLY is as a person. She’s more than just the one who cooks, cleans, kisses boo boos, and takes care of her family. Making her Mother’s Day gift thoughtful and engaging will show her that you appreciate all of her hard work and love her deeply.