From hand-crafted cards and gifts to elaborate bouquets of flowers and elegant luncheons, our Mother’s Day gifts evolve as we transition from childhood to adulthood. Our relationships with our parents also evolve over time, from the ones receiving care to becoming the caregiver.
Mother’s Day is the holiday to celebrate your mom as well as all of the love and support she has given you over the years. If your mother is still living in her home and trying to maintain her independence, Mother’s Day is a perfect excuse to help her with tasks that she can no longer physically or financially perform herself.
Help her prepare her home for warmer weather with a little spring cleaning on Mother’s Day, such as checking and updating the batteries in smoke alarms, changing light bulbs, securing slippery rugs and installing safety items like bathroom grab bars. This is also a good time to clean up around the outside of the home; sweeping porches, preparing and opening a swimming pool as well as taking out and cleaning off any lawn furniture, grills or gardening equipment.
For moms who enjoy flowers or fresh vegetables but can no longer cope with all of the work involved in preparing a garden, why not bring your mom to a garden center to pick out her own plants and flowers. Make an afternoon of it by purchasing any desired mulch, decorative stones or soil as well as the desired plants and flowers. Then assist with preparing and planting the garden, window boxes or planters back at home. You may want to end the day with your mother by relaxing with an afternoon tea or an early dinner.
If you are fortunate to be able to see your mother frequently with your family, consider doing something special that just involves the two of you this holiday. Depending on what activities you and your mom both enjoy, you could take her out to her favorite restaurant or shop, treat her to a spa day or even just go for ride to explore a new place. Regardless of what you do, the most important element is giving your mother your undivided attention, even if it is only for few hours.
Looking for a Mother’s Day idea that involves the entire family? How about sorting through old records and photos to spark memories and conversation as well as discover your mother’s favorite songs and images. Consider recording her stories and making note of the songs and images that evoke happy memories so your children can help create a modern version of your mother’s personal history by scanning old photographs and making a playlist of classic tunes to present to her on her birthday.
For those of you who do not live nearby or are unable to spend a lot of time with your mother, consider a Mother’s Day gift of useful services, including hiring someone to do yard care, house cleaning, handyman services, pet care or meal delivery. Helpful gifts also include gift cards for groceries, beauty parlors or car maintenance services, such as an oil change or car washes.
If your mother is home bound or living in an assisted living facility and you will be able to visit in person, ask her if there is anywhere special she would like go this Mother’s Day. Perhaps she would enjoy visiting friends and relatives that she hasn’t seen in awhile, would like to attend a service at her old church, temple or house of worship or even take a trip to a grocery store to pick up some of her favorite foods and products.
Most likely your mother still tries to take care of you. You can help her feel needed by bringing her to your home for the holiday and asking her to help you with a task. Depending on her physical and mental status, she could help you prepare, or you could ask her advice on how to make, a family favorite meal, bake dessert or arrange a display of flowers.
Just remember, you don’t have to wait for a holiday to spend time with your mother. Many elderly people are afraid of being considered a burden, so anytime is a good time to show your mom that you love and appreciate her.
If the time has come that you or a family member is no longer able to maintain an independent lifestyle, contact ElderLink to discuss elder care services and options available throughout California.