- Picture from the beautiful village my mother was born and raised -
1- Your mother is unique and so needs your gift to be. So you gotta think out of the box by all means! My mother loves plants and flowers, but somehow I couldn't please her with my expensive compilations or exotic clementine trees. Somewhere between her knowing I spent too much (she hates that) and me standing in line for two hours making the flowers look dead by the time she got them, I rarely got the satisfaction I crave for in her face. But there was one time when I went on a different smart direction. Somewhere at the back of the shop (I always find gems when I get into dark corners and storing space in all kind of shops) where I usually buy flowers from, I spotted a dusted wooden airplane serving as a vase for three cute tiny cactus in it. This was the most successful gift from the flowers edition (I'm sure the different vase stole her "beauty detector" eye and heart). Also, I made a great deal as no one was buying cactus that day and the owner was too busy pricing bouquets of tulips and orchideas, so he got rid of me with a fair price and simple packaging. Four times win (price, time, innovation, satisfaction).
2- In case your mother has a special love for sweets, cakes or non gluten biscuits, your job is easy, just make sure to get the best in town of what she likes. Or maybe a gourmet selection, a little bit of all the best. How about trying to bake something delicious yourself? She will appreciate the effort even if something goes wrong.
3- Even if you go with the traditional flowers bouquet, stick to only one kind and color to make a bigger impression. I'd suggest white, yellow or pink roses or carnations (that flower is the cheapest, but I find it so romantic and feminine in a bunch, except for when it is in red). To add meaning to this gift, write a little note for every flower in a tiny strip of paper, roll them around each flower and instead of the usual wrapping, put them in a transparent box (you can trim the ends of the flowers, so the total doesn't exceed 30 cm in length). Write anything you like, memories, your favorite things about her or the reasons you love her so much. Wrap the box in a big bow in a matching or clashing hue. Even if you buy only 10 cheap flowers, the result will be a show stopper.
4- If you have basic design software skills (such as Photoshop or InDesign) or collage skills/drawing, you can make a small culinary book. It could be thematic, like dishes from France, if that is a country she loves, or the best of seafood, if she used to live by the sea when she was little. Another option is to introduce your mom to some new recipes, helping her test her kitchen skills and making yourself never use the phrase "we're having ... again??" before a meal.
5- Go for something useful, something she needs, something that got old/lost or something she never had. Stay alerted when you go shopping or randomly pass by a window. Remember the dress she tried on and looked great in, but got away empty handed waiting for the sale season. If she seems to like something but you know she'd never buy it for the full price, it's your chance to surprise her because she deserve much more than that.
6- Consider a subscription if there is availability. My mother is crazy for design and interior magazines and I'd love to be able to have the best international ones delivered to her door every month. Unfortunately it is not an option in my country yet, but starting with one or two famous local magazines would be a nice touch to entertain her when she just needs some quiet time alone.
7- Sign her up for a class. This can vary from cooking pasta to baking cupcakes, from folk singing to floral arrangements, from yoga to DIY etc. You know her best and you know what she would enjoy doing if she wasn't busy serving all the family needs. I'd sign my mother in a creative workshop such as exchanging ideas over a topic or a quick interior course. She is great at interacting, giving ideas and has exquisite taste. And who knows, maybe this ends up with my mother quit her boring job and finally follow her passions.
8- If your budget permits, send your mom somewhere, as near as a B&B in the town or as far as Hawai, with your dad or her best friend. My dream is to book a hotel and two tickets for my parents to unwind for a week and just remember what having fun means (without children). Just be sure to pre check with your father on this one, because you don't want to waste money on a non refund ticket/reservation.
9- How about something really underestimated? Why don't you try to do all what she does for you everyday? Cooking, cleaning and all the thousand chores? Along with a promise to repeat this more often, coming home to a clean house would be such a relief and gratitude alert. Mothers can easily tear up, so be prepared if you choose to follow this idea.
10- Give the woman who gifted you time on this Earth the gift of time (the most important in my opinion). Go out with your mother and spend some time together, do something fun or what you haven't done in a while. Helping her master computer skills or getting over the fear of driving lessons would be a great meaningful choice that will bring you together more than one day per year. And of course you get to show her how much she means to you more often than you would normally during those busy days of our lives.
You can find more gift ideas form the past here, here, here and here.
Also, 10 things I have learned from my mother.
If you are looking for more inspiration, check out my "Gift ideas" board on Pinterest.
Now, I am curiously sitting here and waiting for your reports. How will you show your mother love on her day? And what is a gift you would really want to receive lovely mothers?
P.s : don't forget mothers in law, grandmothers, neighbors, friends, unknowns in the street. A "Happy Mother's day!", a smile, a phone call or a single flower goes a long way for making every woman around us happy.