Gifts and activities to make Mom feel special
Stumped on what to get your mom for that special day? It's no surprise. With birthdays, Christmas, Hanukkah and so many other gift-giving occasions, it's easy to feel sapped of creativity by the time that lovely Sunday in May rolls around. Instead of buying a token gift or relying on the same old restaurant brunch, here are some novel, stress-free ways to show Mom she's special:
- Buy her a gift certificate for a spa, Gift certificates are a great idea, but can end up in a drawer, unused – so go with her. She'll jump at the chance to spend an afternoon relaxing with you. And don't you need a massage and a seaweed wrap, too?
- Is the spa too expensive? Book massages at your local massage school instead. They frequently offer low-priced massages both by students and by highly skilled instructors.
- Take her out for dessert or high tea. A fresh take on a shared meal can make the day more meaningful and more fun. Check local high-end hotels, especially in your town's historical district – more of them are offering high tea, Devonshire tea or English-style tea, which means tea, cake, scones and lots of clotted cream. If high tea isn't offered in your area, look for a specialized dessert establishment or pick a fancy restaurant where a full meal would be outside your budget. Be sure to wear a fancy hat!
- Does she have grandkids? Think a digital video camera. There are several new models of easy-to-use video cameras in the $75 to $200 range. She'll have a ball recording your children and e-mailing the videos to family and friends.
- Take her to a concert or a play. One appealing aspect of this kind of activity is that it works even if your mother isn't someone you want to spend a lot of time talking to. You both get to have a special experience, and it's easy on you. Too expensive? Your local college or university may have lower-priced events that community members are welcome to attend. Check their Web sites for possibilities.
- Consider a scrapbook kit. If your mother's the creative type, let her craft some memories of family activities, recent travels or play time with grandchildren. You can assemble the kit yourself: an archival-paper scrapbook, photo corners, colored pens and stickers will get you started. Corner punches (these craft punches help you edge photos or paper with professional flair), colored papers and rubber stamps (don't forget a stamp pad!) will whet her appetite.
- No children in sight? Go to the zoo anyway! Chances are neither of you has been to the zoo in ages. Zoos take on a new light when you attend as an adult. You'll get some exercise and reflect on shared past experiences. No children to keep track of means you can really focus on what you see. And you're guaranteed not to run out of conversation.