Gifts for Mother's Day

I have been sending my husband links to things I like on the internet.

He really appreciates me doing this (wink, wink).  It gives him an idea (or a selection of options) and each item is but a click away.

I remember, as a girl, giving my mother things like pillows and dish towels…things my mom NEEDED.  For the HOUSE.  I couldn’t understand why someone would waste a perfectly good gift experience on an antique pillow for a sofa that no one is allowed to sit on.  I mean, really. 

When we bought our first house, I had a fleeting thought of “oh no, am I going to start getting house stuff as gifts?”  I still wasn’t ready to give up a perfectly good gift experience. 

And then it happened. 

We moved into our house in November, and my birthday quickly followed.  A HUGE box, lots of excitement, to find…a black light fixture for the dining room.  That I had apparently picked out. 

Except I hated it.  It was ugly.  I mean, UUUUGGGLY.  My sweet, sweet hubby insisted I had selected it.  In hindsight, chances are we were roaming the aisles of Lowe’s, he pointed to it, I absently nodded yes I like it (because I didn’t want to hurt his feelings -- remember, we were still kinda' newlyweds) and that’s how it got selected.

It. Had. Begun.

Just as I feared.

I burst into tears.  Poor thing, he was so confused and hurt and I didn’t have the words to really explain to him how I felt and the fact that I hated it.  I was truly horrified at my behavior, yet powerless to stop. 

Years later, I regularly ask for…and receive…things like bushes and rugs and bolts of fabric and (gasp) even pillows.  It took the financial responsibility of having a house, and later a family, for me to understand that sometimes the best gifts are the things you might want but won’t necessarily buy yourself.  Because, let’s face it, when you’re raising a family, budget constraints dictate prioritizing and ranking the happiness/necessity/longevity factor of your purchases.  Sometimes you just can’t justify that new outdoor rug when your son needs cleats.  Far too often we moms guilt ourselves into not buying because we feel selfish.  And that money can probably be used for something else.  Do you see what’s happening here? 

This year for Mother’s Day, I originally asked for a new purse, or a necklace…and then I found some curtains for my bedroom that I ordered instead.  I look forward to the smiles and hugs my children bestow on me all day, their artwork and cards, and everyone being on their best “i-love-mommy-so-i-will-be-sweet” behavior.  And maybe a little alone time.  And I can’t WAIT for those curtains!  Because they help make our house feel like home, like someplace special…comfortable and cozy and warm and sparkling.  Just like my house growing up.  A beautiful home where we were surrounded by furnishings lovingly selected by my mother, who asked for pillows and lamps instead of jewelry so that she could share her treasures with her family.  

I want my children to feel the same way.  I’ll settle for a warm, loving, special place to spend our days over that new pink JPK bag or tortoiseshell chain link necklace any day. 

Happy Mother’s Day!


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