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Last Minute Gifts for Mom this Mother's Day

Posted by Christina Boyes on

Tomorrow, it’s time to celebrate your mother. If you’re still scratching your head and looking for a last minute gift for mom, read on for a few tips. Getting what mom really wants for Mother’s Day isn’t that hard – you might already have it.

A Little Background on Mother’s Day

Celebrated since the time of the ancient Greeks and Romans, celebrations of motherhood are a large part of human culture. From Ethiopia to Edinburgh, mom is a prized member of the family whose role is celebrated in many ways. The American holiday was created by the efforts of a single, childless woman, however. Anna Jarvis was a woman with a mission – she worked for many years to make Mother’s Day, a holiday she created in 1908, a national holiday. Jarvis finally succeeded in 1914. Her story doesn’t end there, though. According to an article on, after the holiday was recognized she worked hard to remove it from the calendar!1

Now that you know how the holiday got its start, it's time to figure out what to do for your mom...after all, the clock is ticking. 

Too Far Away to Visit Your Mom?

Photo by jackietrains on morgueFile

Send your mother a home video of you and your family wishing her a Happy Mother’s Day. It’s free, won’t take you long, can be kept for years, and will likely bring a tear to her eye. If a home video isn’t something you’re really thrilled about doing, consider subscriptions to things she’d like – a healthy snack box, bottle of wine, or a selection of fine chocolates delivered once a month can be a real treat. Best of all, it doesn’t take any extra planning, shipping, or wrapping paper on your part.

Are You an Avid Gardener?

Photo by Kim Newberg

Forget buying fancy bouquets of flowers from the local florist or grocer – most moms are tired of them. Your mom has always loved the little things you do and make. Now that you’ve got your own space to garden in, the perfect last minute gifts for mom might be in your garden. If you grow vegetables, see what’s ripe and bring it to her in a nicely decorated basket. Flower gardening your thing? This Mother’s Day, pick a bunch of flowers from your garden, arrange them nicely, and tie them with a ribbon. Take them to your mother as a special way of saying that you love her.

Do You Still Live with Mom?

Photo by George Hodan

If you’re still sharing living quarters with your mom, give her a few things she’ll really appreciate: a little time to herself and some help with the chores. According to a survey on RetailMeNot, 53% of moms would really like a little help – it doesn’t cost you anything, but can make a world of difference to her. Looking for a detailed breakdown on what mom wants help with? The survey also stated that “If assistance were being offered, moms wish for someone to clean (33%), cook for their family (20%) or take care of their children (14%).”

Instead of rushing to the store to buy a half-hearted Mother’s Day present, make your actions the best present of all. Even if she’s not the one who does all the cleaning on a regular basis, the gesture will still be appreciated.

Help Her Escape

Mom loves what she does, and she loves you, but she also needs a break. Motherhood is a 24/7 job, with no vacation, no sick days, and no paycheck. Show her how much you appreciate her by helping her escape for a few hours, a day, or even a week. In a survey by RetailMeNot this year, 13% of moms said they’d love a day at the spa for Mother’s Day. If you’ve got a job that pays well and the extra funds to do it, invite mom on a vacation to the destination of her choice – a once-in-a-lifetime trip with you could be a life-changing experience for the two of you. If that’s not in the cards, consider sending her on a solo adventure or take her for a weekend getaway closer to home.

Are You Always Busy?

Even if you live at home, the perfect Mother’s Day gift for mom might be time with you. This year’s RetailMeNot survey showed that “The majority of moms see Mother's Day as both a day to be appreciated by their families (58%) or to spend time with their kids (55%).” You know your mom. There are those that need a break from kids and family time, but the majority of moms actually want to spend a day being pampered by the people they love. If you’re always on the go and so is mom, slowing down to celebrate her, spend time with her, and connect might be all she really wants.

Focus on Her Health

Photo by George Hodan

Mom is always on the go, taking care of the family, keeping the home organized, working…there’s no time to slow down and take care of herself. According to a 2012 survey on, the majority moms do get a little down time, but usually when everyone else is asleep. In short, mom is likely taking a little time to herself (which she needs), but at the expense of getting a little rest (which she also needs). You can’t magically make more hours in the day, but you can put mom’s health first by giving her gifts that help her stay fit, eat well, and be healthy. Giving her a gift that cultivates a little “me” time for mom is a good move, too. Consider giving her a gift certificate to a hobby class like painting or photography, or another experiential gift. While this isn’t the gift most moms are begging to get, it may be the one Mother’s Day gift she really needs.

The Perfect Companion to Last Minute Mother’s Day Gifts

Photo by  Elisa Xyz

Most moms have one thing in common – they’d love to get a card or a letter from you. It doesn’t have to be fancy, and while homemade or creative touches are great, they aren’t required. Write her a message that means something, instead. Mom’s got a sentimental side, even if she doesn’t let it show often. Knowing that you took the time to tell her how much she means to you and why is the perfect gesture – whether it’s a last minute gift for mom or a gesture you’ve been planning for months, appreciation for her hard work and unconditional love is everything your mom really needs.

Where We Found the Survey Data: