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Okay!  I showed my mother the article about what NOT to get your Mom for Mother’s Day and, typically enough, her response was, “Okay, now that you’ve eliminated everything, what SHOULD you do?”  I love my mother (Hi, Mom!), so this article is a shout out to her.  Also, to be fair, next month I’ll be doing a piece on what fathers like and don’t like for Father’s Day.

Most mothers aren’t hard to please.  I happen to be one of those (as is my own mother).  However, I’ve noticed that some gifts Moms like tend to be grouped into four groups.  Group A is from her children under the age of twelve.  Group B is from her children between the ages of twelve and eighteen.  Group C is from her children over eighteen and Group D is from people of any age who love her.  So, in the interest of space and not being boring to you intrepid readers, I’m going to give you four items in each category.  I’d planned on giving you ten, but there’s only just so much space we can work with here and I’d like to have some comments, if I can get them.

As before, don’t listen to me if you know your mom well enough to know what she’d like to get from you.  Your mileage and mother may vary.  So, here we go.

Group A: Children 12 and under

  • Any handmade crafts.  I don’t know of a Mom who’s not fond of these things.  Just yesterday, my daughter gave me a paper flower that she made with some shiny paper, glitter, a dowel, a foam cone and some glow-in-the-dark paint.  What’s more, some Moms will keep them like a treasure trove while other Moms may eventually throw them out, but it’ll be real hard for her to do that.
  • Handprints.  My mother kept a huge collection of all our handprints which our teachers routinely sent home from school.  Handprint turkeys, handprint Christmas trees, or just handprints in paint or clay.  These are wonderful because they remind Mom how small you used to be as you get bigger and Mom starts to wonder where the time went.
  • Paintings and drawings. If you drew it, Mom will love it. As with handmade crafts, she may decide to laminate it to keep it forever or she may, with difficulty, eventually toss it.
  • Handmade cards.  As with any gifts made by her children, a Mother is more likely to treasure these things and have a hard time throwing them away when she goes to declutter her desk.

Group B: Children 12-18

  • Store-bought or e-cards.  Moms love getting cards.  However, the older you are and the more responsible you get, the more disappointed Mom may feel at getting a handmade card.  Let’s be blunt, if you’re between 12 and 18, and you give your mom and handmade card, it probably better be an example of some of your best art.
  • Paintings and drawings.  If it’s some of your better work, she may even decide to frame it. As with handmade crafts made by younger kids, she may laminate it to keep it forever or she may, with difficulty, eventually toss it.
  • Chores.  Okay, yes, I know children your age live to find excuses not to do chores.  However, this is Mother’s Day.  She’s given her life for you.  The least you can do is give her a day off.
  • Homemade knick-knacks.  Yes, I know I said not to do anything that would mean more work for Mom.  However, Moms love these.  They keep them.  They wrap them up in bubble wrap and put them away safe, then dig them out and show them to their grandkids.  By the way, when I say “Home made” I mean you made it.  Not somebody else made it by hand (handmade) and you bought it.

Group C: Children 18 and over

  • Store-bought or e-cards.  Assuming you’ve left home now, odds are you either lack the time or the talent to make a homemade card for mom, not that it’s not still nice to get them, but Mom doesn’t want you to sacrifice your time just to show her some love.  You’re supposed to be out there building a life for yourself.  So, unless you have no money, or your Mom doesn’t own a computer, stick to the cheaper store-bought cards and the, often free, e-cards.
  • A phone call.  Yes, I know I just said Mom doesn’t want you to sacrifice your time for her.  However, how much time do you sacrifice on a phone call, really?  Mom wants to know you’re still alive and you still think of her.
  • A letter.  No, I don’t mean an e-mail.  I mean snail mail.  Come on!  Give your local postal worker something else to do besides leave bills and junk mail in your mail box.
  • A visit.  Again, assuming you’ve left home by now, what Mom wouldn’t be thrilled to have her baby (Yes, you’re still her baby) come over to visit with her.  Ever hear of a thing called “Empty nest?”  This will alleviate that to some degree.

Group D: Anyone

  • Store-bought or e-cards.  Yes, I know this is the third time I’ve mentioned this. Realize, though, that the likelihood of kids under twelve having the ability to get mom a store-bought or e-card by themselves, is very low.  However, if you want to get her a nice card as a family, feel free.
  • Cut flowers.  I read someplace that roses were a poor choice.  I don’t know about that, but then I like roses.  Even if you bring her a bouquet of dandelions from the yard, Mom will be pleased.  Just be careful about harvesting the flowers in Mom’s flower bed.  If you’re one of Mom’s kids, get Dad’s help for that.
  • Sweets.  Depending on your mom, this can be anything from a basket of fresh fruit (mmm, peaches), to a box of chocolates.
  • Homemade coupons.  Someone said these should go the way of the dinosaur and I don’t agree, plus they are so easy to make and don’t require a lot of time.  Keep it to about a five sheet booklet and make the coupons good for about a week or four, so she doesn’t have time to get bored with them.  Also, make the coupons good for stuff she wants, like a shopping trip or a spa day or, for younger ones, a hug and a kiss or cuddle time or a get-out-of-chores-free coupon.  Side note:  This is usually only a good gift if you’re living at home.
  • Gift Cards.   If you’re away from home, consider giving her a gift card from her favorite boutique.  In my opinion, that’s a fun way of saying, “Mom, you have great taste and you deserve a treat.”

I hope some of this has been helpful.  If you have other ideas of gifts you, as a Mom, have enjoyed or would enjoy, or that your Mom has liked, please feel free to leave them in the comments below.

Happy Mother’s Day!

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