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5 Mom-approved Mother's Day gifts that won't cost a cent

Deborah Cruz is a SheKnows parenting expert and blogger at The TRUTH About Motherhood, which she calls a place of "humor, support, honesty and integrity." Follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Believe me when I say these ideas are priceless. I promise, they will make mom happier than any pearl necklace or crappy diamond ever did.

Mother’s Day is fast approaching, and if you are like me, you look forward to this one day all year long. I look forward to it because it is my one and only day where I am free of obligation and responsibility. Moms never really go off "duty." I know that being a mom is not a "job" but it is a lot of work and a little appreciation goes a long way.

Don’t get me wrong, I love being a mom and love the surprise hugs and kisses that come with children even if they do happen in the middle of the night. I don’t even mind waking to random feet in my face while I sleep on my 11 inches of the bed. I love motherhood so much that I went back for seconds.

Because my family knows the one thing I appreciate more than anything is a solid day with no errands, laundry, dishes or cooking and some free time to myself, I spend most of the day being self-indulgent. My award for being selfless 364 days a year is one day of complete indulgence, and I love it.

So if you are floundering as to what you should get your mother or wife I have some great ideas that will rock her world and not cost you a penny. Believe me when I say these ideas are priceless. I promise, they will make mom happier than any pearl necklace or crappy diamond ever did.

Let her sleep in

Moms never get enough sleep. From the moment we get pregnant and our bladder finds out, restful sleep is a thing of the past. We donate our bodies to birth and are rewarded with insomnia. We walk through the world a haggard, exhausted mess. Let mom sleep in.

Let her bathe and pee alone

Nobody told me that I would spend the rest of my life with some tiny person either jumping in the shower with me or just randomly opening the door and literally scaring the s••• out of me when I was on the toilet (thanks kid). A long, hot bath in warm water without rubber duckies is awesome. Bonus points if you allow mom uninterrupted time to shave legs and other parts in need of, ahem, "trimming." Remember, bathing suit season is right around the corner and unless you want mommy embarrassing you with a little out-of-control "landscaping," let her take that long bath. Better yet, get her a gift certificate to a spa so the professionals can handle all that business.

Let her eat cake

Just kidding, it doesn’t have to be cake. Let mom eat warm food for a change. Personally, I haven’t had hot food since 2005 (except for on Mother’s Day) unless you count those times I choke down a piece of pizza before the kids put their hands all over it. If you really want to make her happy, cook her favorite meal. Honestly, any food that you don’t have to cook always tastes better, especially if you can eat it hot.

Dads, take the kids out for a couple hours or better yet, do all the housework

Breakfast in bed is awesome, and so is sleeping in, but why not give her a couple hours to herself to just relax. Maybe she’ll read a book, maybe she will watch her favorite movie uninterrupted or maybe she will just take a long nap. Either way, she will get to relax and enjoy those two hours of peace and quiet knowing that the kids are safely in your care, especially if you are all folding laundry while she naps.

Homemade cards and gifts

I lied, I do love diamonds, but do you know what I love even more? My daughters’ artwork (I hang it on my office walls) and handwritten notes usually make my heart explode. I keep every single one. My littlest one has made me “I love you mommy” notes on toilet paper and I cherish and keep them all.

Mother’s Day is not about expensive gifts; it’s about appreciating the woman who brought you into the world and all the sacrifices she gladly makes every single day. She doesn’t want a lot. Really, all we want to know is that you love us and that you actually notice all that we do. Give her lots of love and a little peace and quiet and you’ll give her the perfect Mother’s Day because, in the end, every mother knows that never sleeping again is worth getting to see those beautiful little faces every morning.

What is your idea of the perfect Mother’s Day?

Photo credit: The TRUTH about Motherhood
Photo credit: (With permission) Roots & Wings Photography
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