Mother’s Day On A Budget

Along with the blooming flowers and blazing sunshine comes the plans for celebrating Mother’s Day. Our moms are always there for us, and now is when we show them how much we appreciate all they do.
However, between flowers, gifts, and dining out, Mother’s Day costs can quickly add up. How do you keep within a reasonable budget while still showing Mom how much she means to you?
Fortunately, it’s easy to save big while celebrating Mother’s Day in style. Here’s how:
1.) Frugal flowers
Nothing says “I love you” like a vibrantly colored bouquet, but those beautiful blossoms can cost a bundle. Save on Mom’s flowers by doing some of the work yourself. Don’t rely on the florist to provide the perfect base for the bouquet – bring your own basket from home or pick up a cheap but pretty vase at a craft or thrift store.
Also, consider shopping your local grocery store or sidewalk stand before visiting a florist. Significant savings – like a bouquet for as little as $10 – can be had by cutting out the middleman.
Lastly, if you are shopping at a florist, call first to find out when their flowers are delivered so you get the freshest of the bunch.
2.) Gift it right
Get creative! Mom would love something personally crafted by you, like a decorated framed photo of a shared memorable moment or a scrapbook of your best childhood memories.
If you’d rather purchase a gift, shop early so you don’t feel pressured into buying something you can’t afford. Also, carefully mine coupon sites like RetailMeNot, and Couponcabin to see if you can snag a deal.
3.) Dining out (or in) for less
Of course, celebrating Mom’s special day isn’t complete without sharing a wonderful meal. But restaurants can be expensive, so don’t make reservations just yet! Maybe Mom would enjoy a home-cooked meal more than an evening out. You can whip up her favorite dishes, set the table royally and enjoy a delicious dinner at home.
Or throw together a family barbecue. Get the grill going 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, though, shop around for the best Mother’s Day deals. And, of course, check sites like Groupon or LivingSocial before making reservations.
4.) Plan ahead
It’s not too early to start thinking about next year’s Mother’s Day. Shop the post-Mother’s-Day sales for fantastic deals on greeting cards, wrapping paper, and gifts for Mom.
It’s worth the extra effort to save money on Mother’s Day expenses. After all, no one will be happier to see you saving money than dear sweet Mom!
Your Turn: How do you celebrate Mother’s Day on a budget? Share your best tips with us in the comments!

Four Ways To Save This Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is just around the corner and it’s easy to get caught up in the last-minute scramble for gifts. Much to the delight of florists and gift vendors, this happens every year. With expensive flowers or jewelry as the top gifts, it’s easy to go over budget if you look to traditional options. To help decrease your stress level and save your money, we have found some surefire ways to tell Mom how special she is without breaking the bank! Whether it’s something you can do for her, or something you do with her, you’re going to be a big winner this Mother’s Day. Here’s four ways for you to save money this Mother’s Day:

1. Do something for her.

Remember the “coupon books” we used to make mom as kids? This time, we’ll make sure it happens! Rather than just offering to do some task in the future, take care of something that will make her life easier today. If she has dogs or pets, you could bathe and walk her dogs, or groom and clean up after other pets. If she never gets a chance to wash her car, clean it out, wash it, and detail it for her. Even if you have to go somewhere to do it, it’s a big gesture for a small amount of money. Cleaning the inside of cars can be hard work and it’s an easy chore to overlook when you’re busy! Having someone else take the time to do it for you is nice. You could also find chores she has to do all the time and do them for her. Tackling tasks, like cleaning the house or maintaining the yard, will let mom spend some time relaxing on her special day. What you do is less important than actually doing it. Pick something you know she would rather not do herself, and do it for her. She’ll appreciate your effort and the results will last a lot longer than just Mother’s Day!

2. Swap out an expensive, traditional gift for something that’s more personalized.

If you were thinking of getting her flowers, don’t spend your money on some cut stems! A rose bush or a flat of small flowers costs the same as a dozen roses and lasts much longer. You can also share the joy of planting the gift with her. If you were going to take her out for lunch or dinner, cook something for her using her favorite dishes or ingredients. You could also pack up her Mother’s Day meal as a picnic for some extra flair! Spa gift cards are expensive, and it might take months for her to get value from it. Instead, look online for some do-it-yourself spa treatments, like bath oils or sugar scrubs. She’ll be more likely to use them right away if they’re in her bathroom and sh’ll appreciate the personal touch.

3.Find something you can do together.

ier if you can do it with someone you know. Rather than just giving mom another gadget, give her a new experience this year. By doing something new together, you make it fun. You also get to spend more time with her: a win-win situation.There are lots of free-to-try classes at gyms, like free introductory yoga or exercise classes. If there was something she’s been meaning to try, call around and see if you can set up a day to take a free class. The effort is important. Many grocery stores now offer cooking classes for free or discounted rates. Some even bring in rotating instructors to get a variety of cooking styles. It could be a real adventure to try a meatless cooking class or a course on a type of cuisine that she likes. There are also lots of inexpensive classes that are offered through most Parks and Recreation Departments. A beginner’s painting class, a dance lesson, or even a guided hiking group might be a fun activity. By making her interests the center of your focus, you’ll be able to make a big impact, and may even help her find a new activity to enjoy. Bring her a registration confirmation for a class or a business card with a date and time on it for the activity. It may not have the presentation value of flowers, but it will prove that you took the initiative. Show her that you care about her interests and value time with her.

4. Go see your mother.

It may sound like a greeting card, but spending time together is a real gift. Invite her over for the day and just enjoy time together. You could always tour museums or hike at a park if you need more to do. Cooking a meal (or even baking cookies) together will give you something to do while talking and is a great bonding activity. If you don’t live near your mother, you could consider helping her set up a free video chat service. That way it will feel more like you’re together, even from miles away. If you still have some home movies from when you were growing up, take a bottle of wine or some snacks and watch them. There is no wrong way to spend time with your mother, but she’ll definitely remember that you did. Have a happy Mother’s Day!