Mother’s Day – Six Ways To Be Thoughtful

Mother’s Day can be a challenge for anyone.  Choosing the right gifts around special days can make things even more difficult.  It doesn’t take an expensive gift to make a mom feel special though, so today, I’m writing about six meaningful ways to make the mother of your children feel special – without spending a ton of money.

The most important thing you can do for your spouse is show her that you love her.  Figure out what makes her feel loved.  Remember to separate this from what makes you feel loved.  Then do those things.

We all experience love in different ways.  I love the concepts that Dr. Gary Chapman outlined in his book, The Five Love Languages.  Apply the thoughts contained in his book.  You’ll be making one of the best investments you could possibly make in your marriage.  In his book, Dr. Chapman describes five ways that we all experience and give love.  There might  not be time to do this before Mother’s Day this year, but buy this book and read it.  If you can just start applying the principles without telling her that you’re doing it… I’d bet money that your marriage will start to improve.  I’ve outlined some of his key points below to give you a quick start.  But don’t forget to read the book.  My summary will never be as good as the real thing straight from the source.

The Five Love Languages – Important Things to Consider When Choosing A Mother’s Day Gift

  1. Gifts – does a thoughtful gift thrill her heart?  My favorite gifts are simple and thoughtful, given by someone who remembered something special about me.
  2. Physical Touch – maybe she feels most loved when you sit next to her on the couch.  I love the nights we spend up watching tv together.
  3. Quality Time – some people really love to go out for coffee or dinner.  The time that I spend with friends over coffee is absolutely precious.  I wouldn’t give it up because we feed each other’s dreams!
  4. Words of Affirmation – some of us need to hear “good job” or “I think you’re pretty”.  Does she light up when you notice her?
  5. Acts of Service – maybe she really appreciates it when people help with getting something done.  If this is something she comments on frequently, pay attention. Acts of service might be the way she experiences love and affection.

So, with the five love languages in mind, here are some ways you might be able to bless a mom on Mother’s Day that are thoughtful.

  1. If you can, take your kids shopping and let them pick out a present for their mom. Don’t ask me how I know… but she might get a unicorn hat. Just in case that happens, back it up with a gift to support something you know she loves to do when you’re not around.  It doesn’t have to be big. Just thoughtful. If you have no idea what to do, call her mom or her best friend.
  2. Most of us love hot baths.  Fill the bathtub up with hot water and bubble bath so we can soak while you put the kids to bed.  If the baby needs to nurse, fill the bathtub while she nurses the baby to sleep.
  3. Come home a few hours early and do something to make the house is cleaner than it was when you left earlier in the day.  Now you have to really try to make this work.  Do the dishes.  Clean the sink.  Make sure the living room and the kitchen floors are free of debris.  Vacuum.  Make sure the toilets are white and not growing nastiness. Get the toothpaste off the bathroom counters.  Make her bed with clean sheets.  There’s nothing quite like clean sheets day. Just saying.
  4. Go somewhere and find at least one flower.  Remove the plastic packaging and the labels so she doesn’t know you went to the gas station.  Put it in a vase with some water.  Fold your letter (from #6) and put it in an envelope with her name on it.  Draw a heart or something else on the envelope.
  5. If you want to get her something sweet, please don’t buy her those awful fake chocolates from the grocery store.  Pick up a bag of chocolate chips and make some cookies.  If you carefully follow the directions and remember to soften the butter, it’s really hard to mess those up.  Cookies make the house smell amazing. If you can’t mix ingredients to save your life, Toll House makes these cheater cookies that you peel off of some cardboard and bake.  If she’s on a diet, don’t make cookies.  Buy her favorite berries and some heavy whipping cream.  Whip the cream up in your blender (don’t add sugar).  Put a pile of that smooth goodness on top of a pile of strawberries after the kids are in bed… and most of our hearts will melt.
  6. Lastly (and perhaps most importantly), grab a piece of paper and write her a letter about how much you love her and why you’re glad she’s in your life.  Be funny.  Be kind.  Be heartfelt.  So many of us live our lives serving others and often never get to hear much other than household administrative notes.  Announcements of hunger or complaints about bedtime can start to drown out what brought those little people around in the first people.  So use kind words, and remind her why you wanted to spend your life with her.

When you forget, there’s hell to pay, even if we say “It’s fine”.   So, no matter what, please don’t forget Mother’s Day..

Jenn is the Founder and CEO of Cotton Babies. She holds an Executive MBA from Washington University. She was awarded Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year award in the Emerging Category for the Central Midwest Region in 2011. Among many other awards, she recently received a 2017 YWCA Leader of Distinction Award for Entrepreneurship. Jenn holds many patents on various inventions in a number of different countries and is listed as one of 50 Missourians You Should Know. She is particularly fascinated by languages, chickens, and children (she has four) when she’s not reading economics journals.

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