UNITED STATES—Another holiday is upon us America, this one is all about mom. If you have been sleeping under a rock, Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 14. Yes, I’m writing this column in advance to give you some preparation because I have no clue, but there is something about Mother’s Day that has everyone in a panic every single year. Yes, moms are very important and they do quite a bit for the family. Giving actual birth is at the top of the list, but they do more beyond that.

They tend to be the cooks in the kitchen, take the kids to school, do the cleaning, do all the planning, take care of the kids when they are sick or ill and a host of other things. The big thing about Mother’s Day for so many Americans is what you give as a gift. For me, a card is always a must. I think it is important to choose a card that speaks from the heart, and say what you want to your mother or stepmom, sister, or anyone who is like a mother or second mother to you.

For many of us, it is not always easy to say what you want to say and that card gives you the opportunity to speak your mind in a way that conveys the perfect message. In addition, you have the option of flowers. I don’t do flowers. I never have and I never will. I think they are just a waste of money. However, if mom is someone who likes flowers go big if you choose to do so. I’m more of a breakfast, lunch or dinner person. My mother likes to dine out, and more now than ever as a result of cooking for a bevy of kids for years and having to prepare meals for my stepfather who is suffering from dementia.

So if I can give her a day, where she doesn’t have to worry about preparing a meal and she can just sit back relax and enjoy the food, I want to ensure I can give that to her. Indulge mom on Mother’s Day; let the day be all about her and what she needs or desires. That brings us to the notion of gift giving.

I like to think I’m a great gift giver because I listen to what people say and I do it in a way that is subtle. However, so many of us get so entangled thinking bigger is always better and that is not always the case. Look the economy is tough right now. Inflation peaked last summer, but it has not lowered in all honesty. Things that were cheaper in 2020 and 2021, they have nearly doubled or tripled in price in 2023.

Best advice I can give is not to wait till the last minute. Why? If you wait to the last minute I can almost guarantee you that you will be spending more money. The retailers know people are going to spend money for Mother’s Day and as a result the notion of a sale will not exist. This is the week to start shopping for a gift if that is your plan.

In addition, be sensible, think about what your mother wants and go for that. It might be a purse, a designer purse, a piece of jewelry, clothing, shoes, there are a host of things that you can get for mom. Some moms are not fans of the kitchen gadgets or devices, same with bath salts and lotions, and I don’t think it is wise for kids to give their mom lingerie. If you’re making a trip to Victoria’s Secret, it would be wiser to just give the person you’re gifting a gift card.

When it comes to jewelry I am just going to say it: women are picky as hell. So if that is your route ensure you’re purchasing something they like or they have advised you it is something they actually want. If not you might want to steer clear of such. The same applies to shoes and handbags. If you know your wife, sister, niece, mother, cousin, aunt, grandma, whoever it may be style, then it becomes easier. If you don’t know the style, you don’t want to purchase a pair of shoes or a purse that they will never wear.

You’ll know if you did a good job based on the reaction you receive. It is easy to spot because some people just cannot hide the emotion on the face. Right now is a good time to head to the malls because plenty of places are offering sales and those sales allow you to stick within your budget without spending more than you can actually afford. Don’t break your bank to go all out on Mother’s Day, it is sometimes the simple things that matter, like cleaning the house, treating mom to a spa or massage, actually cooking breakfast, lunch or dinner or doing something for mom like taking the kids or handling all her duties for the day so she can have a well-deserved day off.

Written By Zoe Mitchell