So, it’s mother’s day. What next?

How do you acknowledge Mother’s Day? For more ideas about thrifty, creative and eco-friendly ways to raise children see more on this blog or get my book Homemade Kids, out of the library. This post is by Nicola Baird, also see www.nicolabaird.com

Me with my two daughters. (2015)

Mother’s Day in the UK  is in spring – this year it’s Sunday 26 March 2017 – conveniently after my spring birthday, and before my own mum’s spring birthday. But Mother’s Day in the US, Australia and NZ is not until Sunday 14 May (one day I must find out why & thanks to Vanessa-Jane for sorting out my now corrected error).

Me and my Mum. (2016)

As if that wasn’t enough confusion for those of us with mothers, or who are mothers… it turns out that “76% of Mothers with Young Children Want a Break from Parenting Duties this Mother’s Day.” They don’t want a card, or a gift, they want time out… claims info from a survey organised by onbuy.com (a British-owned market place allegedly similar to Amazon).

Luckily for Onbuy.com, mums don’t mind if money is spent to get that precious time out… For instance they’d be OK with:

  1. A relaxing spa day- 19%
  2. Date Night- 17%
  3. A quiet night in with wine- 14%
  4. An extra three hours in bed-11%
  5. No housework- 9%.

Admittedly Numbers 4 & 5 are free, so that’s good news for all Mother’s Day gift givers. And I’d be happy with any of these too. But I was shocked that onbuy.com found out that the average spend is a huge £38.50. I suppose that is because more adults are buying for their “old” mum, rather than little kids raiding their tooth fairy money.

Buying flowers is a cheat. I really treasure hand-drawn cards (as my daughter Nell knows they can be inspired by communing with the great outdoors), but for my own mum I’ve bought her a bunch of flowers this year… and it’s not the first time either!

Obviously a big bunch of flowers tops the gift list. I’ve always really enjoyed taking a bus journey through London on a Mothering Sunday to see which people are carrying a huge bunch of blooms to their mum/wife/partner. But tragically the research found that very few mothers with young children were that pleased about this particular gift. They felt keeping the flowers alive added to their stress, they were picky about the flowers they wanted (eg, British-grown, particular types) and – by implication – a waste of money they’d rather have spent getting someone else in to do a spot of spring cleaning.

The information has left me a bemused. I’d planned to hop over to the Scilly Flowers website and send my mum a monster bunch of scented narcissi. But now I don’t know. Admittedly she has grown up kids, who don’t live with her, so the cut flowers can die when they want and then be composted.

As for what my family will get me – I have an internal shopping list wheeled out for second hand shops, jumble sales and occasional Freecycle swoops – but I don’t think they’d want to keep an eye out for the sort of items on it, eg, pillow protectors, a new-to-us sofa cover and a scrap of oil cloth to cover the garden table so that I can eat outside without chicken poo spoiling the experience.

Over to you?

What do you like getting – time or gifts – on mother’s day if you are a mother? And/or what has been your most successful gift to your mum?

 

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5 Comments on “So, it’s mother’s day. What next?”


  1. I have to say I think flowers are a great gift – I rarely buy flowers for myself and so it’s a lovely treat when someone else buys them for me (ironically my mum – who lives next door to us – often buys me flowers, and vice versa). My parents are away at the weekend so I’ve bought some bulbs in a basket that should bloom when they come back (and then they can plant in the garden). Have also bought flowers for my mother-in-law – both were bought from a local florist so feel I’m supporting a local business too. Have a great birthday! 🙂


  2. Hi Nicola! For me, in terms of gifts (not just for Mother’s Day, but any occasion), what I’ve always appreciated most from my children is when it’s something that they’ve arranged to give me themselves, rather than another adult getting it for them, or someone telling them to make something for me. I really don’t mind whether it’s something bought, homemade, or collected from nature, it just always feels special if they’ve done it on their own initiative.

    A few years ago when I think my son was 11, for Mother’s Day he ordered online for me a bottle of Prosecco that had a specially printed label with my name on. He chose and paid for it himself, nobody knew he had done it. I was partly amused and partly a bit shocked at how easy it was for an 11 year old to buy alcohol online! But that aside, I appreciated the thought he had put in to choosing it and ordering it himself.

    By the way, I think you’ll find that Mother’s Day in the US is also 14 May – it’s always the second Sunday of the month there. I believe we are the only ones to have it on 26 March. Our origins of it are different which is why it falls on a different day.

    • nicola baird Says:

      Hi Vanessa-Jane. really enjoyed seeing your recent post. Thanks too for responding on here – i’ve been slack as mostly busy interviewing on http://www.islingtonfacesblog.com However I really enjoyed your comment and laughed so much – aghast & impressed in equal measures – at your son’s mother’s day prosecco. What a sweetie. Looking forward to hearing what he goes for this year! Nicola


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