Give the Gift of Words on Mother’s Day

Whatever beauty or poetry is to be found in my little book is owing to your interest in and encouragement of all my efforts from the first to the last; and if ever I do anything to be proud of, my greatest happiness will be that I can thank you for that, as I may do for all the good there is in me; and I shall be content to write if it gives you pleasure. ~ Louisa May Alcott (to her mother)

If  you live in the States and are lucky enough to still have a mum you love to cherish, you may want to create a unique Mother’s Day gift for her. If you’re a dad with young kids, some of the following  may give you ideas to surprise their mum with.

Use your words…

Writing is a gift you share with the world, every time you capture and express a thought or overflowing part of your soul in words. Why don’t you share that gift with your mum, especially if you learned your first words on her knee, handed her your first carefully coloured crayon drawings, saw her storing away every story and school essay you ever wrote?

Here are a few ideas you might like to try. In troubled financial times, please share them with others, too. If it’s too late for Mother’s Day, there’s always next year or Christmas or birthdays. Adapt the ideas to use with other loved ones. Use them to reach out and heal wounds. Let’s get back to making more meaningful memories and gifts.

Let your inner child say thank you with a photo…

Get a photo of you as a child, one that captures your essence. Scan it and then use Paint, Photoshop  or Gimp to write heartfelt words of love in a beautiful font at the bottom. They can be yours or a quote that expresses you. Frame it, wrap it in tissue paper tied with string or ribbon and slip a daisy or wild flower behind the string like you might have done as a child. Spray the wrapping with perfume; I used to do that when I was a wee girl and my mum loved it.

Make a card…

Let your thoughts run free on a one line theme and list them:

Mums are…warm towel hugs on cold windy beaches

…hands wiping hair from eyes and tears from faces


Because you love me, I can… love myself enough

… hold my head high, even when I’m scared

You could also use that same scanned photo idea from above to make a card.

Make a bookmark…

  • Pick a wild flower (I used to give my mum dandelions) stick it on to a book-length piece of card two inches wide with some beautiful inspiring words on it, laminate it, punch a hole in the end, thread and loop a doubled ribbon through and slip this book mark into the card. I guarantee she’ll use it forever.
  • Painstakingly write out the Desiderata and laminate it to make a book mark. I have one I made myself when I was seventeen. I still use it.

Make a small book of words and poetry and quotes…

Use A4 paper doubled to A5; spiral bind it or simply punch through several sheets and thread with ribbon, tied in a bow at the front. You could also thread beads or buttons through the ribbon, anything you might have used as a child. Accompany it with an MP3 or CD of songs that mean something to both of you or whose lyrics express your love .

If you can’t be with your mum, make her an ebook. I make mine in Word, then use an application called Primo PDF. If you send her an ebook, you can add links to music in the book.

Fill this book full of

  • sayings your mum drummed into you, wise words of wisdom that have stuck.
  • silly words and jokes you used to share
  • photos
  • famous quotations about childhood, motherhood and gratitude
  • wee haiku style poems about your mum or childhood memories (see for hints have a look at  haiku: showing essence, shedding skins and cultivating happiness)
  • do an accrostic poem. Write the word MOTHER vertically then write a word or very short phrase that symbolises motherhood to you across each letter. Here’s the start of one to give you an idea:

My best friend
hOt chocolate in winter
firsT smile in the mornings

Write her a short story or a longer piece of writing.

This was a commissioned piece about gratitude, but it ended up being a hymn to my mum and daughter:  And the Angels Sang

My mum died when I was pregnant with my son, so Mother’s Day is always poignant for me. I always feel closer to her when I write.

Dedicate a page of your blog to her.

Give your mum a beautiful cloud on Mother’s Day. Get inspired on

Give her the promise of your best future

Find her a beautiful pebble and a flowering plant; give them to her with this handwritten quote and a huge embrace:

Touch a rock and you touch the past. Touch a flower and you touch the present. Touch a child and you touch the future. ~ Anonymous

All of us mums want to feel like we’ve contributed to a better tomorrow by passing on the most precious parts of our souls. If you write something special for your mum, she’ll know she has.

Here are some quotes to get you started:

A loving and careful mother both recognises and even protects her daughter’s autonomy and also helps her dance out confidently on to a wider stage. ~ Rachel Billington

My mother raised me, and then freed me. ~ Maya Angelou

Her love is sustained and deep. Sometimes I feel like a drowning person, saved by the pulling and tugging, saved by the breath of air that is her caring. ~ Bell Hooks

If you have ideas for giving the gift of words, please share them with us here.


Spreading link love

These last few weeks have been been amazingly rich – lots to read,  lots to learn and enjoy.

A very special soul, Cindy Platt at NamasDaisy, wrote a beautiful poetic post about motherhood.

Marc, who you may know as WelshScribe, launched a new blog called DailyAikido which highlights what he’s learned about life through his Aikido mastery. I look forward to watching it grow.

Marc’s new blog uses the Frugal WordPress theme, designed by another friend, Eric Hamm, of Frugal Site Design. Please check it out if you’re thinking of updating your WordPress theme. It’s free but is built like a premium theme, with beautifully clean lines and no unecessary frills. You can have it customised by Eric himself. Leo Babauta of Zen Habits is happy to endorse Eric and his work.

I LOVED this post by Robyn McMaster of  Brain Based Biz. It’s all about coffee and…..the health benefits!!

Dave at Blogger Dad always makes me laugh, but his post about his son’s toilet training had me snorting and chortling as I read.

Special thanks to my friends Nadia at Happy Lotus , Randi at Foreign Quang and Chania Girl for sharing their talents and their readers with me this week!! I’m also grateful to Diana at Mosaic Moods for letting me build a post around her mosaics.

And finally, Tess at The Bold Life and Cheryl Wright made my week; I won a book in Tess’s Monday giveaway last week and Cheryl nominated me as an uplifting blog.  I leave you with some anagrams Cheryl sent me to make me smile after my humourous haiku post.

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:

When you rearrange the letters:


Have a great weekend! (I may not be able to respond to any comments promptly as we have family visiting for a few days.)


  1. Janice, this post is exactly why I adore you. It is chock full of valuable, sentimental ideas for mothers, appreciation for others and it ends with a healthy dash of humor ( I looked at those word puzzles and wondered how in the world anyone ever figured those out!) This post was joyful from the first word to the last. My own mother died in 2001 and she would have been thrilled with any one of the gifts you suggested.

    One other thing I like to do for people is make a video of the pictures I have taken of them and insert their favorite songs. It’s easy for people who have Windows XP because it usually comes with Movie Maker. It’s great fun to sit with the recipient and watch them laugh and cry to their lives set to music.

    Have a Wonderful Mother’s Day.

    Randi´s last blog post..Bloggers With Heart

  2. Thank you Randi! My daughter uses some programme or other to make movies so I’m wondering if maybe that’s it. (I’m not, as you’ve probably guessed, a naturally gifted techie person!)

    I was sorry to hear about your mum. I wasn’t sure whether to do this post or not, but I decided to go ahead in the end because the ideas can be adapted. Let me know what you think of Wordle – and if you’re a coffee addict, like me, and have time, you’ve got to check out Robyn’s post! You’ll sigh as you drink your next cup!

  3. You’re welcome. And thank you for having so many cool features on your site that point to people. I remember the first time I visited your blog – I was fascinated!

  4. Janice, you are a splendiferous woman. Every day you one up the previous post and this one is so full of so many great ideas and sentiments that the cylinders in my brain started firing in 360 degree directions. Our mums are in heaven having tea, smiling and sending rainbows and butterflies to surround us this weekend. I am certain they brought us together for this life.
    Happy Mum’s Day and happy you!

    Cindy´s last blog post..Mothers Who…

  5. You continue to astound me with your great ideas and suggestions Janice. Thank you. Thank you for the link love and thank you for sharing those great anagrams 🙂

    Marc´s last blog post..Key (Ki?) Moments

  6. @Cindy,
    That means a lot because I know you have a gazillion creative writing ideas. I’d really be interested to see if you and Sean can do something wonderful with Wordle in your writing programme for kids. I’ve seen some beautiful word clouds made there.

    And, yup, I think our mums are all up there drinking tea and coffee in Café Paradiso doing the celestial equivalent of blogging and spreading link love!

    @Chania Girl,
    I’m glad you feel that way. The menu may change here and sometimes it’s quiet, sometimes it’s livelier, but you’ll always find a welcome. Combining all the ingredients of blogging makes it hard work and time-consuming, no matter how much we may love it. We all risk burnout and confidence dips, so breaks are important. No-one need ever feel they have to comment here. I’m more than happy for someone to sit and read quietly in the corner by the window, watching the world go by, nibbling on a croissant or hugging a hot cup of something. If someone’s a regular, I get to know their needs and preferences.

    Thanks, Marc. The fact that you’ve blogged and supported folk quietly for years, often behind the scenes, rates highly with me and makes it easy for me to give credit and praise where it’s due.

    A coaching mentor once told me I came out with so many good tagged-on questions and ideas in my coaching sessions that it was an embarrassment of riches, and not helping folk as much as one clear, perfectly timed question or resource might. She was right. But ideas just gush out some days, the same way that my comments and posts are too long and my language can become overly lyrical and sickly sweet. The beauty of being able to blog my ideas is that I know everyone has the chance to graciously take or leave them and won’t judge me for being over-keen to inspire, support or help. If one person somewhere is made a moment happier by just one one thing I suggest or say, I’ll have achieved what I long to do.

  7. This made me smile! Thank you for letting me know. I hope it felt good and touched your daughter.

Comments are closed.