Mother's Day Gift Ideas
Last updated: May 02, 2015
On Mother's Day this year, you might skip giving her breakfast in bed or treating her to brunch, and instead give a gift that serves up benefits for both of you. Try a Mother's Day gift with a caregiver bonus built right in.
Here, seven suggestions (and please, share yours"¦):
1. A whole day of hello's, so she knows she's not forgotten
Arrange ahead of time for a roster of her favorite people to take turns calling on the hour: her children, a grandchild away at college, an old neighbor, the bridesmaid at her wedding 50 years ago.
Benefit to you: Just by sending out a few e-mails or making a few calls to set up the schedule, you get a happy mom all day long -- without the cleanup.
2. An iPod, with a playlist of her favorite tunes
Get her to focus not on the scary new technology of the device but on what it can give her: all the music she loves -- dozens of whole symphonies, musicals, jazz greats, polkas, hits from her teen years -- all in one place. You customize the programming. And with a dock and speakers, she can learn to press a button to hear it all (or you can press it for her).
Benefit to you: Hours of improved mood.
3. Sweet shoes, so she won't fall
Every woman can use new shoes. Find her the right pair: something low and safe, made of breathable natural materials, with a sole that's neither slick nor rugged, that's a proper fit for both the length and width of her foot. For dexterity problems, look for Velcro fasteners; luckily they're in style.
Benefit to you: No tripping, no broken hips, no compounded caregiving nightmare.
4. A calendar promising some of her favorite things
The "things" can be literal (flowers, chocolate) or experiential (a manicure, a drive in the country, a movie, a hand massage). Obviously you have to tailor the offerings in this group gift to her level of functioning, but the idea is to involve other friends and family to each take a turn providing a gift. Write the gifts in a calendar: one a week or one a month.
Benefit to you: Spreads the hands-on time spent with Mom among others...better still if you give the idea to your sister or child to execute. (And you can share that chocolate, too.)
5. A shawl, so she stays warm
Banish old images of shawl-draped grannies. Sharp, stylish options are at any department store.
Benefit to you: Less awkward maneuvering into sweaters (and fewer complaints of "I'm cold!" or "I'm hot!")
6. Oh yes, flowers
Yes, they're cliché and don't last as long as a sturdy houseplant. But you can't beat a bouquet for that light-up-the-face effect at first glance.
Benefit to you: If she lives with you, you both get the proven calming boost of nature brought indoors. If you live apart, you get the satisfaction of having done the right thing. (Spring for a vase, too, so she doesn't have to scramble.)
7. A hug
Now here's the one gift I wish I could give. Don't undervalue it.
Benefit to you: Feel the petty annoyances and grievances melt away. If she has Alzheimer's, a hug lets you communicate what words may not.
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