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It’s Mother’s Day once again, but why give her those same-old boring gifts and flowers you have every single year? And for some of you, with the recession still going strong you may not be able to shell out the big bucks for Mom this year. But don’t worry! It’s not too late to wow her with some great gifts, and she’ll never need to know how much you didn’t spend.
If your mom is sentimental
If your mother is sentimental, why not arrange for a family portrait this Mother’s Day. Think about it: when was the last time you and the entire family got together and posed for a few seconds for a gift that will last her a lifetime? Speaking of classic kid gifts, you can also break out the old art set or an ink pen, and get to work on a poem or a picture. A homemade greeting card might seem corny to you, but the odds are Mom will love it. Another great gift idea for you musicians out there is to write her a song, or to sing her favorite song while playing guitar or some other instrument. Make her proud by showing her that those piano lessons you had 30 years ago are finally paying off.
Pink flowers for mother's day 
If your mom is a gardener
If your mom is a gardener, secretly plant some flowers in her garden and bring her outside in the morning. If you want the flowers to return each year, plant perennials. Or if your mom has a flower’s name—such as Rose or Lily or Daisy—you can plant some of these. Your best bet is to plant flowers that will stand out, so that each time she comes out to her garden to play in the dirt, she’ll think of you.

Spending some quality time
Spend some quality time with Mom. Is she a movie buff? If so, take her to a film on her special day. No, don’t go see Meeting Evil (unless she’s a horror fan) or Marvel’s The Avengers. Take her to the movie that she wants to see and try to enjoy yourself. Or instead of taking her out for dinner like every other year, you could take her on a lovely walk through the park or through the old neighborhood where you grew up. You can reminisce about your childhood (just as long as you avoid talking about your infamous teen years). But if you’re hell-bent on getting her food, remember that jewelry is always good, and we’re sure she could always use a new macaroni necklace.
Antiques and collectibles
Ceramic clown with frowny face and green hatMaybe your mom has made a hobby out of collecting certain items, such as figurines or coke bottles. See if you can’t find a new addition to her collection at the flea markets around town. The key is to buy something that she doesn’t already have, an item distinct from her other ones. If she collects creepy porcelain clowns and you’ve found the coveted frowny face clown with the designer flaw green hat that she keeps talking about, buy it immediately before any other sharp-eyed collector spots it. We can assure you that Mom will love you for it, and she’ll brag forever to her friends that you definitely inherited her eye for quality collectable clowns.

Volunteer your time to mom
All moms are busy. And you know your mother deserves a break, so offer to finish her to-do list. She’ll be grateful to sit back and relax as you vacuum the carpet, dust the window sills, rearrange the pictures on the wall, change her car’s oil, finally take down the Christmas lights, mow the lawn, and finish all of the other tasks that Dad has been “getting around to” for the past several months.
Woman volunteering for construction 
You and mom volunteer for a good cause together
Giving is a gift in and of itself, so why don’t you and your Mom join forces and volunteer for a cause you both believe in, for just one day or longer if you really care. And here’s a great suggestion! How about supporting Habitat for Humanity’s National Women Build Week where nearly 10,000 women volunteers across the country will pick up their hardhats and tools throughout the week leading up to Mother's Day (May 5-13). Sponsored by Lowe's and themed "The Build Generation," the event calls on women to devote at least one day to creating simple, decent and affordable housing in their communities. There will be “How-To” clinics at local Lowe’s stores,. and volunteers will then put their new-found construction skills to work alongside low-income families at 275 Habitat build sites across the country. Larger events will include five build locations in Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Detroit and Nashville, Tenn.

For more information, to donate or to volunteer, please visit, or follow us on Facebook or Twitter or join Habitat’s blog community here.

The gift of music
It’s a well know fact that moms generally love to rock. If your mom likes the Stones or Tom Petty or (for some reason) Miley Cyrus, and this performer is coming to an auditorium near you, buy her two tickets and offer to go with her. If she looks at you like you’re crazy for thinking that she would waste a hot date on her kid, gracefully back off. If you’re lucky, though, she’ll love the idea of banging heads with her progeny while rocking out to The Prodigy.
A common misconception is that re-gifting is solely reserved for people you dislike. Not true. If you have a gift that you’re not using, and you think she would enjoy it, wrap it up and let her know that you had it laying around the house gathering dust. Just make sure you don’t re-gift this month’s electricity bill.
You might look at these gifts and say, “How cheap!” Really, though, your mom will take one look at your gift and say, “How thoughtful!” She will appreciate these gifts much more than any amount of money you could have possibly spent on her. / Issue 169 - September 2846
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