Mother’s Day is May 12th, so you definitely have enough time left to plan something nice for mom. Note: we said “enough time” — but not so much time that you should forget about this again until May 10th. This is a holiday that demands forethought.
If you’ve gotten mom gift cards for a few years running, it’s time to step up your game. The point of a good Mother’s Day gift is to reflect a spirit of gratitude and you can’t do that with $15 bucks at the local big box retailer. To help you out, we’ve compiled some of our favorite “mom qualities” and paired them with ways to thank her for those traits.
Check it out, then get to planning.
She always makes you laugh.
What you want to thank her for: Was your mom the funniest growing up? Did she come up with ridiculous games when you were bored on a rainy day? Did she make your friends dissolve into laughter at sleepovers? Or was she the one who watched your favorite movies with you a million times, because she genuinely enjoyed it when you were delighted?
Your mom always entertained you, sparked your imagination, and made you laugh. That was a gift every day.
This Mother’s Day: All those games and the movies she tolerated over and over? She did that because you loved them. There were times when she was tired, but she made your day a little better anyway. This Mother’s Day, think about those things that she loves that you usually avoid. Take her to that movie she’s excited about but you know you might hate. And rather than roll your eyes at how much your mother loves gritty, ultra-violent revenge stories (you thought we were gonna say romcoms, huh?), engage with it. Love it because she loves it, and be able to discuss it genuinely after.
“You’re right, mom, the way that vigilante took the assassin’s head off in one machete swoop was very impressive.”
She taught you to love food.
What you want to thank her for: Cooking for children is rough. Trying to give them a positive relationship with food while also making sure they eat healthy things is an endless job. Growing up, one minute you loved carrots, and then the next day, out of nowhere, you probably threw the carrots your mom spent 30 minutes preparing (exactly the way you liked them) in her face.
And not only did she keep feeding you, but she also kept challenging you to broaden your palate and experience the world through food. Then, as you got older, she taught you to cook, passing down family recipes and stories along the way. You have #kitchenskills because of her.
This Mother’s Day: Cook the entire dinner or brunch this Mother’s Day and truly show that you took in all she taught you. You might not make your grandmother’s empanadas or kielbasa quite as delicious as she does, but you’re proving that not only did you listen to her for all those years, but you’re also committed to passing on those traditions.
Just make sure to do the dishes after.
She loved you, unconditionally, just as you are.
What you want to thank her for: Your mom loved you, even those times you were sure she totally didn’t get you. Or when you picked a life path that was totally different than what she would have done. Through the triumphs and proudest moments to your mistakes and failures, she just loved you. Exactly as you are.
No matter what you did, there was someone always on your team, cheering you on, and loving you more than anyone or thing in the world. That was your mom.
This Mother’s Day: Get her something she can wear that is a constant reminder that you love her back, unconditionally, for every perfect parenting moment, and every (inevitable) mistake she made. You love her for all the ways she shaped you, and always will. Which is why we think Pandora Jewelry makes the perfect gift.
The Tree of Life collection is a sweet reminder of the roots she gave you so you could grow, while the Joined By Love collection will show her that no matter how far you go, you’ll always be connected. Browse Pandora jewelry for all the stunning pieces they have — each sure to show your mom that you appreciate everything she did for you.
She gave you a love of learning.
What you want to thank her for: Your mother was the kind who put you to sleep by laying next to you and reading the next chapter of a book together. She found fun ways to help you contextualize history, loved talking to you about what you were learning in school, and modeled that love of learning herself. Whether she always had a novel in her hand or loved nerding out in museums, your mother instilled a spirit of constant questioning, learning, and growing.
This Mother’s Day: What really sparks your mom’s curiosity? Maybe find a lecture series you can sign up for together or a class where you can learn a new skill. Or spend a day at her favorite museum exploring their new exhibits. If you really want to get crazy, you can turn this into a weekend trip. If your mom loves wine, wouldn’t she love learning about it in Italy? Or sign up for a writer’s workshop with one of her favorite authors.
Pick something this Mother’s day that will make both of you a little smarter.
She took you on your first adventures.
What you want to thank her for: It’s way easier and less expensive to travel without kids. But every trip your mom did with you, she did to broaden your world. She took you camping in a National Park to give you practical skills and a love of nature, she shuttled you to the beach so you could spend time in the water, and off to Europe to see the Louvre.
Even though you probably got bored on a walking tour of historic Boston or skinned your knee ziplining in Costa Rica and complained or cried, she still took you out into the world.
She gave you that sense of adventure that carries you through your life.
This Mother’s Day: This is the Mother’s Day to try something thrilling. Surprise your mom with a road trip, just the two of you, to see her favorite band in concert, or find out from her spouse, partner, sibling or best friend what your mom has always said she wanted to do and never splurged on or had the time. Then make it happen.
This is the perfect time to make one of her most adventurous dreams come true.