I got a promotional e-mail today that shocked me to my core…the subject line read: “Last day to send Mom’s gift in time with Standard Delivery”. I knew Mother’s Day was coming soon, but I didn’t realize just how close it is! Mother’s Day is one holiday that deserves proper attention, especially if you’re lucky enough to have an extraordinary Mom like mine. Use this weekend wisely and pick out a great gift, your Mom deserves it! The ‘perfect present’ varies from woman to woman, but here’s a secret to picking out something your Mom, specifically, will love. This is a little more psychology-driven than I ever planned on getting in my posts, but bear with me for just a moment. We all have a tendency to express love the way we want to receive it, but there are so many ways to show someone you love them! If you take the time to think about how your Mom (not you, your spouse, child, sibling or friend) feels most loved, you’ll be situated on the right track towards finding something that’s perfect just for her. Here are the five most common “love languages” (ways people express and receive love) and a some special Mother’s Day ideas for each.
Acts of Service
If your Mom lit up like the 4th of July every time you offered to help with the dishes or cleaned the car without being asked, she may feel most loved through acts of service. Instead of a traditional gift, why not surprise her by hiring a cleaning service to come every few weeks and help her out around the house! It’s a great way to make her feel like a queen. This gift isn’t suited for everyone, so think before you proceed. If your Mom is the type to misinterpret your gesture as a suggestion that her home is messy, then abort mission! It’s not a cheap gift, but it’s certainly one that keeps on giving. If you know she’d appreciate the help, it’s worth it!
If you really want to buy her something tangible, consider making a purchase from a company that contributes to charitable organizations or causes she supports. As someone who values service, she’ll appreciate the extra effort you went through to make sure your gift honored something she feels is important. Give her a magazine subscription through Dial America and at no additional cost to you, 12½% of the price will be contributed to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. They’ve got all the magazine’s she loves and low subscription prices- Better Homes and Gardens for $15.97, Martha Stewart Living for $19.95, and Architectural Digest for $24 just to name a few. Okay…maybe those are the magazines WE love- but you get the idea.
Words of Admiration
No matter what your “love language” is, words are a powerful, powerful thing. If you know your Mom is particularly fueled by words of esteem, we’ve got a great gift idea for you! Make your Mom a love book. If it sounds like a project you made in preschool for Mother’s Day it’s because it’s kind of the grown up version of just that. Visit the Love Books website and you can create a completely personalized, hard cover, professionally printed book that lists the many reasons you love your Mom. Choose from a wide selection of pre-made pages that list admirable character traits (I love that you are selfless), activities (I love cooking with you), and talents (I love that you’re a great singer). They even allow you to add your own custom pages (I love that you help me with my temperature control issues)! Each page (both predesigned and custom) is decorated with cute stick figure illustrations, and a 54 page book costs less than $40!
I read today that the average person needs four hugs a day for survival, eight for maintenance and twelve for growth. I’m not sure if that’s true or not, but I DO know whoever wrote it is a proud member of the “love language” category physical touch. If your Mom is a hugger, she may be part of the group too. I had the best intentions of finding a really beautiful massage chair that defied typical oversized office-looking robot-esque rules. After some time searching I’m sorry to report this doesn’t exist. It appears “ugly” is a massage chair pre-requisite. Until a entrepreneurial designer fills this gaping need (Could be you…or us! We’ll look into it.) you’ll have to stick with either gift certificates to your local spa or a massage cushion like this little Shiatsu number from Homedics.
We’ve used this one before and it’s really great. The best part is you can easily stash it’s ugly mug in the closet when you’re done.
Just because your Mom’s “love language” is gifts doesn’t mean she’ll be disappointed with anything less than a massive present. It also doesn’t mean she’ll be thrilled over just any nonsense as though her goal in life is to acquire as many items as possible. What the average person in the gifts category usually appreciates most is a present that suits their life and personality really well. I know…everyone likes that. But for this kind of Mom, presents are an even bigger opportunity to show you care. If you really want to make her happy, try to buy something she mentioned in casual conversation awhile ago. Since we’re not privy to your personal conversations with your Mom I’m afraid we can’t make too many specific recommendations… unless of course she enjoys decorating her home (and really, who doesn’t). Check out Aviva Stanoff’s unbelievable collection of vases, bedding, stationary and our favorite- pillows, pillows and more pillows! She makes some of the most beautiful I’ve seen...I’d buy them all if I could.
If your Mom’s love language is quality time then center your gift around activities you can do together. Purchase tickets to an event you can both attend or buy games you can play as a family. For a special treat for her home check to see if there are any pieces of cookware or serving platters she needs replaced or added. Buy enough groceries for one of her favorite meals and bring them to her house so you can cook together. Cook or serve your gourmet masterpiece in her new present! For a maximum amount of time spent together, pick up Williams-Sonoma’s All Clad Deluxe Slow Cooker. It’s a top of the line Mom-must-have-item.