Alternative ideas for your Mum

Motherhood means different things to different people. It’s just over a week until Mother’s Day in the UK. Still plenty of time to do one or more of the following things before next Sunday. motherhood–       Book a table in your mother’s favourite restaurant and order a bottle of sparkling something [champagne, prosecco, cava] to be waiting on your table;

–       Write her a letter [yes, with pen and paper, putting it into an envelope, attaching a stamp, and posting it in a letterbox, the red things on street corners] telling her you love her and mean to tell her that every day and that just because you forget does not mean you don’t think about her;

–       Buy her a greetings card, if you must, though she would prefer a letter I think;

–       Cut some wildflowers from the hedgerow, or flowers from your garden [not someone else’s, not without permission anyway], and wrap them up in some brown paper or gift wrap paper. Much nicer than a supermarket bouquet in plastic film;

–       Order her a book about what it is like to be a mother and a daughter, written by mothers and daughters [including me, the daughter bit not the mother bit]: The Milk of Female Kindness: an Anthology of Honest Motherhood [featuring two of my short stories, in case you didn’t know!]

–       Book theatre or cinema tickets to take her to see a film or play you know she really wants to see, that you think is boring. Just do it! You will both have a lovely time.

–       Take her for a walk in a park or by a river or on a beach, with a rug and a flask of hot tea and some nice cakes. Find somewhere to sit with a view and eat as many cakes as she wants. No cake guilt on Mother’s Day.

Read a review of The Milk of Female Kindness here at My Train of Thoughts.


‘The Milk of Female Kindness: an anthology of Honest Motherhood’ [UK: K James] Buy now

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Alternative gifts for #MothersDay THE MILK OF FEMALE KINDNESS #books via @SandraDanby


  1. I have hand drawn a card for Mum and ordered some soap from ‘Lush’…both have arrived already but she has managed to restrain from opening them, honestly she is like the child now and has asked if she can open them on Saturday….I did point out that as far as I know it’s called mothering SUNDAY 🙂

  2. One of my saddest regrets: My parents loved to go to Palm Springs, not all that far from where we live, to see an event called The Palm Springs Follies. It’s an absolutely silly show of aging Las Vegas dancers, canned music, a few tired magicians and musicians, patriotic fanfare, and an emcee with more schtick than pizazz. If you know about The Follies, then you know how much it’s loved by the old timers who come in buses and vans to stand in line and see this show year after year. I sat through two years of performances and then declined the last time my folks invited me to attend with them.
    My dad died shortly after that last invitation. My mother is now too ill to attend the show again, even with me. My heart stutters each time I think about not going with them that last year. It was a stupid and dull revue, but it was right up their alley. They sat at the edge of their seats while I nearly slept through it. My dad loved standing as his due when American vets were acknowledged. I could have sat through another performance just to be with them, just to share their pleasure at such thin talent. And now they can and I can’t.
    So I suggest, find the silly dumb thing your mom loves and do it with her, just for her, just for the two of you. This regret hurts too much. Wish I had known then what I know now.

    • Shari, I’m sorry my post made you sad. But you have these happy memories of being with your parents all together at The Palm Springs Follies, so hold onto those. This will be my first Mother’s Day without my Mum and it feels really strange, I can feel a hard ball forming in my chest now as I think about it. My Mum loved walking and sitting looking at the sea view, ships passing, seagulls flying by, so until she was too weak to go out we would wheel her to the cliff top and sit and look at the sea. Sometimes you don’t need to say anything, just be together. SD