An Open Letter to Dad's on Mother's Day
I'm not going to sugar coat this, I'm giving it to you straight.
First, get your head around why Mother's Day is such a big deal. I'm here to help you not screw this up. This day means a lot to moms!
Your performance on Mother's Day could dictate the temperature of the next 364 days in your life or whether she's going to go the extra mile for you and with what kind of attitude it will be done.
It’s a mom Christmas. It’s a mom Super bowl. Your efforts this day alone will tell her how great of a mom you think she is. That’s how moms measure themselves.
So set the stage; it's her special day, it’s the ONE day to celebrate her. To say THANK YOU for all crap that she's tolerated all year....capiche?
Important Note: You are also dealing with social media, wherein the past nobody knew how moms were being celebrated.
Those days are over.
All day, Mom’s everywhere will compare with other moms on Instagram and Facebook showing off their “Mother’s Day” appreciation pictures.
The easiest road to happy is to simply ask her what she wants! Moms who don’t want to risk getting another smelly soap, lotion, or candle will flat out tell you what they want if you ask.
However, some (most?) will say “Oh nothing, don’t worry about it.”
THEY ARE LYING. Yeah, I called your momma a LIAR. It is a trap.
So here's how to avoid that trap--I'm laying it all out there for you in this post: broken down by the age group your kids fall into.
Signed, Katie (Lyfetymes founder)
P.S. Lingerie is not a present. That’s a gift for you, not her.
Mother's Day Celebration Ideas by Age Group
Mommy’s First Mother’s Day or Little Ones
OK, this is your big chance. Not only is it the first of many to come, but there is also no precedent, all the while you are setting the precedence for the future! (no pressure haha)
Be practical but be thoughtful, above all else. A few things to consider so you don’t wind up sleeping on the lawn:
1) It’s been a long year covered in baby’s first moments, baby vomit, pulling all-nighters, baby poop, post-partum, a recovering body, etc. Your effort should be to impossibly try to do something representative of that. Not just a card, but with that said, DO NOT FORGET A CARD.
2) Do something to pamper her: send her to get her hair done or to the spa for a mani and pedi spa: both safe bets (and much appreciated!).
If you don’t have a ton of cash don’t worry, you can do things that cost zero money; make her breakfast, clean the house (yes, this includes the toilets), cook a BBQ or pick up dinner, change the baby all day, or let her lay in bed and watch Netflix all day.
3) Make or Buy something personalized, framed picture of mom and baby, or the family, something engraved, anything that can is a keepsake. Check out our list of handmade and personalized mother's day gift ideas here!
Your little ones are still sweet, and almost everything they do is perfect- they also can’t do anything for themselves so the only one to mess this party up is YOU.
Thank god for Teachers. They usually help Dads out by having the macaroni necklace, or hand painted craft being worked weeks in advance in class and ready the big day.
It's brilliant because Moms love anything their little ones craft (no matter how ugly it is!), timestamped with their little one's creative hands. But that should not be your fallback or your only plan.
1) My best advice is to email your kid's teacher and find out what they're planning. Not all teachers do this, and if they don’t, then you should get a DIY kit from Target so that the kids can make something fun at home and a homemade card.
2) Have the kids help pick out a gift, and it can be hilarious to have the kids explain why they think the most grotesque slippers in the world should belong to their mother.
3) Do not plan something that will require mom to do the work (If you cook, clean up your mess) or stress them out. What may seem like fun to you, might inadvertently require her to work to make it happen; so if you want a picnic in the park, you better be packing that basket and make sure she doesn’t lift a finger!
4) We all love it when the family busts through the day and shouts “Happy Mother’s Day” with gifts and cards in hand, even better with coffee and breakfast. So get in the spirit and make a big deal about it.
Teenagers or College Kids
For this you can refer back to the baby stage because kids this age (no matter how great they seem) are into themselves. They can’t remember what day of the week it is, let alone Mother’s Day, and stupidly we expect the most unappreciative age group to pull themselves together and produce a miracle of thanks on this day?
So, Dad, you will need to ensure that everything is in order because I can promise you, moms at this age are tired, older, know who they are, and don’t want to `wait THREE freaking hours for a table at the Cheesecake Factory.
My best advice is the 1-2-3 combo:
1) No matter what: hit it early, hit it hard and hit it fast: take her coffee and breakfast, kids at home should get their butts up and come in with the card, gift, hug, kiss-ready.
Kids away at college or not at home should be placing a call or even better a video call in the morning and not at 3 in the afternoon like an afterthought or halfway through the day.
2) Get her out of the house for either a day of pampering or a prearranged movie date with her girlfriend’s and their moms. Going out to restaurants on Mother’s Day can be insanely busy, and time is Mom’s currency, so think ahead and make reservations.
3) Cooking and Cleaning- no matter if you are ordering, cooking or organizing a “Mother’s Day BBQ” with all your friends and family, do something that will give her a break and not require her to clean up your “gift.”
It’s easy. Moms want to see or hear from kids who have grown and flown. If you are close make yourself available even if you have kids of your own. If you’re not close, make sure you send a card, or a gift and call at the very least (a text is not cool!).
Bottom Line of it all: It’s not about money or gifts, it’s about THE EFFORT.
Last note, please don’t just sign your name on the card.
I know YOU think Hallmark has built an empire of skillful poets that articulate what you want to say, but we have watched you pick out cards, and the effort put into it, so do more than “HMD! Love, Dad.”
So there you have it: an open letter to dads (with helpful suggestions for making this Mother's Day ROCK for the moms in your life) on Mother's Day.
Share or pin this post to make your girlfriends laugh and to clue in some of the clueless men in your life ;)