Mother’s Day for me has always been bit of a trial and error experience – firstly, because my mother has never been a great fan of the good old breakfast in bed. Being woken up early by three overeager children and having crumbs from her badly burnt toast scattered through her bed sheets with a substandard coffee (she insists she prefers to “make it myself and enjoy it”) is not her idea of a great treat.
So, over the years we learned to become a little inventive when spoiling our long-suffering mother. There was the time we made a treasure map that led her to handmade gifts hidden in the freezing garage; the coffee-maker we bought with her credit card that never seemed to work; the ugg boots that were two sizes too small; and many, many bad homemade cards – one which almost burned the house down!
Needless to say, the three of us (now all in our twenties) have learned that less is always more and now we prefer to say happy Mother’s Day with flowers … a big expensive bunch! Add to that a thoughtful handwritten card, and we know we’re bound to bring a tear to Mum’s eye.
But it got me thinking – what do mums really want on their special day? So I asked MiNDFOOD’s resident mums and daughters to give me their thoughts on the topic.
For managing editor Donna Duggan, it’s the simple things that make her day special. Like a sleep-in “ideally to at least 8am!” Next, she says, she’d like “a cuddle from my two boys, a homemade gift [I love my growing collection of drawings and craft], the newspapers to read in bed, and a hot coffee.” Here’s hoping, Donna!
Our chief sub-editor Kasey Clark, on the other hand, has her hands full as she doesn’t have just one special lady to spoil but lots of them, including her mum, stepmum, mother-in-law, and one very special aunt. To make things even more difficult, most of them live in the US. “My mother-in-law is more local, so we will celebrate with her in Newcastle,” Kasey says. “As for my other, far-away moms (as we Americans call them), I am usually good about the greeting cards, but this year, life got away from me, and I didn’t post them in time. Thus, I think it’s going to be a flowery year for them all — I’m planning to have the flowers delivered on Friday so they can enjoy them for the whole weekend. And I’ll Skype them all on my Monday morning, when it’ll be Mother’s Day in the States.”
For MiNDFOOD’s advertising manager, Karey Walker, Mother’s Day is usually about getting the family together for an update for the family album. “The last time we did this, the family cat decided she was sick of ‘posing’ with us and forgot her manners, swiping at my husband.” (See photo below.)
“We laugh whenever we look at this. Needless to say the cat is not invited to this event anymore!” she says.
However, when it comes to her own mum, Karey says the swapping of sentimental Mother’s Day cards between the two women is something she looks forward to every year. “Mum said Grandma always gave her one in shared appreciation of motherhood and all that it means. I think I will keep this tradition going.”
A nice and simple tradition, does it still count if we do this via text or email I wonder?
Meanwhile, deputy chief sub-editor Katrina Sichlau lives some 800-plus kilometres away from her parents so won’t get to spend Mother’s Day with her “awesome mum”. Instead, she’s opted for a “hilarious Hallmark card” and says she will be sure to call her mum on Sunday to wish her a happy Mother’s Day. “While I’m at it I’ll also have a quiet word to Dad and tell him to stop slacking off and cook Mum a special three-course dinner, as well as clean the house, wash the dog, and give her a well-earned foot massage,” Katrina jokes. “Oh, and happy Mother’s Day, Mum – thanks for always supporting me, no matter how old and independent I get! By the way – can I borrow $50?…”
I guess the old saying “a mother’s work is never done” is true, right Mrs Sichlau?
But we’ve saved the best for last! When art director Jacqui Triggs announced she had something to share with us we knew we were in for something brilliant. Having heard about many funny moments with her four children, which has so far included a fight over highlighters, what “brownie points” were exactly and if they could be traded for money, as well as 18-month-old baby Woody’s love for salt and vinegar chips and expensive red lipstick.
So you can imagine how the whole team crowded around my computer in eager anticipation of Jaqui’s contribution to this blog. According to Jacqui, her most memorable Mother’s Day included a breakfast in bed made by her son Jake, which consisted of:
– four pieces of stale bread, not toasted and unbuttered;
– a microwaved omelette, overcooked (as you can see from the hole);
– warm apple juice
– and a plastic fork
Of course, being the wonderful mother that she is, Jacqui ate every last morsel and exclaimed her delight at her “delicious” breakfast. She maintains that the memory is somewhat improved by the “world’s best Mother’s Day card” that came with it.
So the moral of the story is, when it comes to what mums want for Mother’s Day, it really is the thought that counts. No present big or small will ever be able to express the love we feel for our mums or give enough thanks for everything they have done and will continue to do for us – although the many attempts to do so will surely make them (and us) laugh for years to come.