Thank You, Mom
Just because you can't afford to buy her diamond jewelry or a Cartier watch doesn't mean you don't love your mom. If you're looking for a special way to honor the most important woman in your life this Mother's Day, consider these suggestions.
Use your green thumb
Plant a tree or flowering bush in her backyard as a living, lasting reminder of Mother's Day 2009.
Plant a forest
Plant a tree (or trees) in a national forest. The Arbor Day Foundation offers trees — and Give-A-Tree Cards to announce your gift -- starting at $5.
Buy a brick
Is Mom a NASCAR fan? Buy a commemorative brick with her name on it for the Ceremonial Plaza at the main entrance of the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Thousands of visitors will see her name each year.
Cruise on by
If your Mom lives near a coast, lake or river, give her a romantic lunch, dinner or sunset cocktail cruise.
Give her a break
Why not relieve Mom of some mundane chores so she can take a well-deserved break? Gift certificates are available for all kinds of services, from errand-running to house-cleaning. Or you could create your own coupons offering your services.
You're my shining star
When Mom's the star of your life, what could be better than an eternal flame that will shine in the heavens for thousands of years to come? For under $100, you can name a star after her and present Mom with the deed.
Up, up and away
How about a hot-air balloon ride for Mom and a guest? it's hard to imagine a more uplifting experience than floating through the sky at sunrise or sunset, enjoying breathtaking views below.
Are you crafty? Honor Mom with a framed scrapbook page dedicated to her. Simply combine a few photos with some text, flowers, buttons, ribbon or motherhood-themed stickers. Consider using a poem or quote as the basis.
Make a scrapbook
If you have more time to spend, create a mini-scrapbook based on a theme such as generations of love, happy childhood memories or the ABC's of motherhood.
Make it yourself
Anything made by your loving hands is a sure way to please and honor Mom. For example, you could needlepoint a favorite saying about motherhood.
Help Mother Earth
Does your Mom practically have "reduce, reuse and recycle" tattooed on her forehead? Honor both her and the environment by making a donation in her name to the Sierra Club, World Wildlife Fund, Nature Conservancy or National Geographic Society.
Maybe your Mom is more the adventurous, daredevil type. Give her a once-in-a-lifetime chance to take the wheel of a Corvette, dragster or Indy car at a speedway near you.
Make a donation to Mom's favorite charity or alma mater in her name.
If your Mom is no longer living, you can still honor her with a religious ceremony if your church allows masses or services to be reserved in a person's honor.
Another way to remember a deceased mother is to hold a family memorial at her gravesite. Bring fresh flowers, and have participants read a favorite Bible verse or inspirational passage.