Whether it’s a best friend, stepmom, aunt, mother-in-law, sister, or your own mom, the women in our lives have profoundly impacted us. We’ve been loved, laughed with, encouraged, believed in, challenged, prayed for and nurtured in a thousand ways. Whether the special lady you want to honor for Mother’s Day is your mom, or a mom-figure who’s played an important role in your life, it’s worth saying ‘thank you’ in a way that’s meaningful to her.
Everyone receives love differently, as noted in the New York Times bestseller The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman, and that goes for moms too! Some women value words of affirmation or enjoy receiving gifts. Others feel most loved when they get to spend quality time with the important people in their life, or are comforted by physical touch. And still others deeply appreciate acts of service on their behalf. While this list is far from exhaustive, I hope it triggers ideas for how you can make the moms in your life feel special!
If she values words of affirmation…
- Get a blank card and fill it with all the ways you admire and look up to her.
- Where is she needing encouragement in her life right now? Build her up the way she has to you.
- Tell her all the things you love about her with this What I Love About Mom journal.
- Say thank you. Whether verbally or in writing, tell her what you appreciate about who she is, as well as what she does.
- Does she live far away? Grab your phone and instead of texting, give her a ring and spend some time catching up. Do it regularly.
If she values quality time…
- Does she live nearby? Schedule a one-on-one lunch date with her. Silence your phone and enjoy being fully engaged talking and listening.
- What reminds you of her? Recreate a happy memory with her and enjoy reminiscing and reliving it.
- Spend time engaging in an activity that you both love. (Ex. Gardening, flea market shopping, a cooking class, etc.)
- Treat her to a new experience that you think she would enjoy. (I took my mom wine tasting!)
- Surprise her with a visit from loved ones she misses and hasn’t seen in years.
If she values receiving gifts…
- Create a treasured keepsake with a photo book or collage and preserve precious memories.
- Make yourself available emotionally and support her in practical ways, especially when she’s going through a rough time.
- Find something unique and handmade to suit her taste and interests.
- Go the DIY route and craft something personalized for her.
- Treat her to something she would really love, but never get for herself.
If she values physical touch…
- Even if you’re a big kid, snuggle up next to your mom with some popcorn and watch a favorite movie.
- Pamper her with a home spa experience complete with a peppermint foot rub and pedicure.
- Give her lots of hugs!
- Take a walk arm-in-arm at a local park or arboretum.
- Offer her some stress relief and indulge her with the luxury spa service of her choice.
If she values acts of service…
- Make arrangements for her to cross off an item on her bucket list.
- Host and prepare a special dinner in her honor.
- Surprise her by tackling some of the least favorite chores on her to-do list.
- Help her with a task she’s been wanting to accomplish for a long time.
- Babysit the kids so she can have a day (or night) totally off and to herself.
Though not a mom myself, I get to be a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a friend and a daughter-in-law. I want to honor the moms in my life for what they give to their families, and the world. And I want to learn from them so that even if I never have children of my own, I still will live with the heart of a mom and be encouragement, wisdom, faith and unconditional love for someone else who needs it.