Mother’s Day is just around the corner. A day that we celebrate those wonderful women who brought us into this world, threatened more than once to take us out of it, supported us even when they thought we were crazy, but above all, regardless of the situation, they always love us. Being a mother is one of the greatest achievements of my life, even on the days when I have to reign myself in because I have no idea what I’ve just stepped in, where the fingerprints came from, why the dog is wearing a tu-tu, or where my sanity went. Each year Mother’s Day rolls around and I’m reminded that these sweet little monsters that we’ve created, are truly one of the greatest things to have ever happened to me. When they hand me hand-crafted cards with glitter and buttons, and flowers that I know they’ve plucked from my garden, I’m not even upset about how much glitter actually landed on the floor, or that I have bare spots in my flower beds now. Because, these are the things I will always treasure, no matter how old they get.
When it comes to Mother’s Day, we all want so much to show our moms how we feel about them and how much we appreciate the wonderful woman they are. Sometimes we can have the urge to go above and beyond, but we may not always have the means to buy huge bouquets of flowers, or treat mom to a fancy dinner. So how can we still show mom we care, while being on a budget? With just a bit of forethought and careful planning, you can save big while still celebrating Mother’s Day in style.
1.) Frugal flowers
Nothing says “I love you” quite like a vibrantly colored bouquet, but those beautiful blossoms can cost a bundle. Start your savings on mom’s flowers by doing some of the work yourself. Instead of relying on the florist to provide the perfect base for the bouquet, bring your own basket from home. Alternatively, you can pick up a cheap but pretty vase at a craft or thrift store, adding a strand of ribbon to customize it to mom’s style.
Also, consider shopping your local grocery store or sidewalk stand before visiting a florist. You might find significant savings – such as a bouquet for as little as $10 – by cutting out the middleman.
Lastly, if you’re shopping at a floral shop, be sure to call first to find out when their flowers are delivered so you get the freshest of the bunch.
2.) Gift it right
More difficult than dreaming up the perfect gift for mom is scraping together the money for it. Solve both problems by getting creative. Mom would love something you personally crafted, like a decorated framed photo of a shared memorable moment, or a scrapbook of your best childhood memories. You can even make your mom a playlist of songs that both of you love.
If you’d rather purchase a gift than create one yourself, remember to shop early so you don’t feel pressured into buying something you can’t afford. Also, don’t forget to carefully mine coupon sites like RetailMeNot, Coupons.com and Couponcabin to see if you can snag a deal.
Remember, gifts that show effort and thought matter a lot more than how much you spend.
3.) Dining out (or in) for less
Of course, celebrating Mom’s special day won’t be complete without sharing a wonderful meal together. But restaurants can be expensive, so don’t book reservations without carefully considering if they’re absolutely necessary.
Maybe Mom would enjoy a home-cooked meal more than an evening out. You can whip up her favorite foods, set the table with long candlesticks, your finest dishes and best silverware, and enjoy a deluxe, sumptuous dinner at home.
Or throw together a family barbecue. Load the car with Frisbees, balls and kites, pack up a cooler and stake out a corner at the local park. Then, get the grill fired up for a delectable dinner that’s fun to prepare and even more fun to eat!
If you’ve got your heart set on taking mom out to a restaurant, shop around for the best Mother’s Day deals. It’s worth making a few phone calls and checking out sites like Groupon or LivingSocial before making reservations.
Once you’re at the restaurant, save money by checking the left side of the menu first. Restaurants usually put their pricier dishes on the right side of the menu since that’s where most people’s gazes automatically land. Also, consider sharing a few bigger portions instead of ordering individual plates for every diner. Lastly, be sure to wait a bit between courses so you don’t end up with a table full of leftovers that you’re too stuffed to eat.
4.) Plan ahead
It’s never too early to start saving, and it’s not too early to start thinking about next year’s Mother’s Day. While you obviously can’t buy mom flowers that far ahead of time, shop the post-Mother’s-Day sales for fantastic deals on greeting cards, wrapping paper and gifts for mom.
It isn’t that hard to save on Mother’s Day expenses. And it’s worth it. After all, no one will be happier to see you saving money than dear sweet mom!
I try to mix up the gifts from year to year, but one of my personal favorites is a thoughtful card and a beautiful potted flower that my mom can plant and enjoy year after year. Maybe I should drop that hint to my family, so I’m always in excess of flowers knowing that my kiddos like to play florist in my garden. I’m Claire, the Afena blog mom. Thanks for reading!