The best method is to figure out what we want the gift to inspire, e.g., tears of joy, laughter, etc. If you’re looking to inspire resentment and depression, any of these gifts will suffice.
1. Cleaning Supplies
Nothing says, “I think of you as my personal maid” like a shiny new mop, vacuum, or other cleaning appliance. Even if she needs one, Mother’s Day is not the time to buy it.
2. Flannel Nightgown
An oversized nightgown may keep her cozy and comfy around the house, but it’s guaranteed to make her feel like a frumpy old lady every time she puts it on.
3. Breakfast in Bed
Photo source: Eggybird (cc)
Bringing someone breakfast in bed is a truly sweet gesture—unless it’s at 6 a.m. on a Sunday morning when Mom’s just trying to sleep in and isn’t interested in soggy cereal. Move it to brunch time instead, make her favorite meal (I’m guessing it’s not a bowl of Special K) and don’t forget to clean up the kitchen afterward!
4. Mom Poems
Surely there’s a better way to tell our moms how much we appreciate and love them than through someone else’s generic, bland attempt at sentiment.
First of all, despite most people’s assumptions, the fact that she’s an older woman doesn’t automatically mean she loves candles. Also, a candle gift makes that last-minute stop at Walgreen’s on the way over to Mom’s house all the more obvious.
6. Dish Towels
This gift is the opposite of thoughtful. As my dad says whenever he received an obviously terrible gift, “Gee, uh … thanks.”
7. Mom Jewelry
Believe it or not, sometimes moms want to be thought of as something other than moms. Branding them as “soccer moms” robs them of their individual identities … plus it’s just tacky.
8. Perfume/Body Lotion
Mother or not, just being a female guarantees that you’ll get a lotion or perfume gift set in scents you’ve never once expressed interest in and will probably never use. Unless you know her favorites, steer clear of this gift option.
Man, even that crappy-looking Mother candle would be better than nothing at all.
10. Text Message
A “Happy Mom’s Day!” text is the same as no gift at all. Don’t even go there.
This year, why not give Mom what she really wants—one whole day to forget about being a mother. Give her some spending money, get her a massage at a spa, and write something that expresses how you really feel about her, not how some sappy writer at Hallmark thinks you should feel.