This Mother’s Day is going to be extremely difficult for millions of Americans due to quarantine and social distancing. Even if you live nearby, you are likely hesitating to visit in person for fear that you could expose your mom to COVID-19. Though I am within driving distance of my own mom, she is immunocompromised so I won’t be visiting this year. I would never be able to forgive myself if my negligence infected her so I am showering her with love from a distance.
There are a couple ways to celebrate Mother’s Day this year and not violate quarantine. First, there is the basic phone call and short conversation wishing our mothers well. Our mom’s love hearing from us so this is a good start, but it is not quite the same as actually being able to see them. Luckily we live in a time when services like Zoom, Skype, and FaceTime are available. I’ll be using FaceTime since both my mom and I have iPhones, but I have used all three of these before and recommend these services over just a phone call since it is a bit more personal.
But what if your tradition is to get your mom some sort of gift? Well what about one that aims to distract your mom from the continuing quarantine? If this resonates with you, there are several options that can serve as distractions and sources of enjoyment in this difficult time.
Nothing says distraction like hobbies. There is a wide range of hobbies that you can help your mom get started with, but there are four in particular that stand out to me as being both fun and relaxing.
- Calligraphy: Best thought of a being visual art related to writing, modern calligraphy is expressive and relaxing work for anyone interested in picking it up. It is also pretty cheap to get mom started with a book on the subject starting at $6.99. Honestly I am somewhat surprised my own mom hasn’t gotten me this book yet, since I have been repeatedly told my writing looks like chicken-scratch.
- Knitting: Another relaxing hobby, in knitting you can turn yarn into a wide range of clothing which (if you are lucky) will mean that you will get a handmade sweater for Christmas like I did one year. Though many make fun of “ugly sweaters” the fact my mom took time to make me one by hand just makes me love her all the more. A nice knitting kit, including a bag to store the tools and yarn, starts out at $39.99.There is also a wide range of yarn to pick from at various price points, and there are even kits of multiple colors available.
- Painting: This has been my personal path to relaxation in this stressful time. There is just something about putting brush to canvas and trying to create something that allows me to distance myself from my work and the stress of this quarantine. If your mom is artistically inclined, painting might be a fun hobby to introduce her to. A good acrylic kit starts around $45, which I recommend because she will have everything she needs to start out without getting bogged down in getting too many materials all at once, though simple how-to books like this one can give some guidance. If your mom is one who enjoys learning by watching someone else, the videos by Bob Ross are very good, which she can watch for free if she has Amazon Prime (though she can also start it with a discount here).
- Photography: Of the four types of gift ideas mentioned here, photography is the only one my mom hasn’t had experience with, mainly due to the costs to get started. While I have purchased myself a nice camera kit when it was on a steep discount, it is still a pretty big chunk of money for a Mother’s Day gift. That being said, if your mom enjoys being outside taking pictures of nature or animals, and you have some money to spare, getting her a camera like mine might well clinch you the title of favorite child in the family.
Cooking and Kitchen
Though it is a bit of a cliche, you might also consider getting your mom some gifts for the kitchen. Whether she enjoys baking or cooking, chances are there is something she has had her eye on, or something that you know she will love for her kitchen, that you can get her for this Mother’s Day to distract her from being cooped up inside during quarantine.
- Baking: When my mom’s set of baking pans started to fall apart, I got her a new 10 piece set of the Rachel Ray Bakeware at $79.99. Again, though a bit pricey, it has really held up well for her, and the set has a wide range of pans for her to make basically anything. Including the lemon poppyseed muffins I love whenever I am able to visit. If she really (and I mean really) loves baking, you might consider a KitchenAid mixer this year to partly make up for not being able to stop by in person. My dad got my mom one and she swears by it, mainly because of how much time she saves. You might also include a few of your favorite baking recipes.
- Cooking: I also got my wife a nice 15 piece knife set for the kitchen (on discount) which, being completely honest, is somewhat a gift for myself since she cooks that much more know that prep work is easier. She really does an amazing stir-fry. If you don’t want to spend money, I am sure a mom inclined to cooking would also enjoy some new recipes to try.
Though I am the bookworm of my family, my mom freely admits to enjoying the occasional novel, though she differs from me in that she prefers thriller novels like those by James Patterson. While I can respect her taste, I will always be more of a fan of fantasy novels like those by Brandon Sanderson or dark fantasy like those by Glen Cook. That being said, she surprised me a few years ago when she told me that digital books were more her thing (they are for me since they are cheaper, and I have Kindle Unlimited) so I ended up getting her a giftcard since she had already by herself taken advantage of Kindle Unlimited after experiencing the first month free.
At the end of the day, the most important thing that you can give your mom is the recognition of everything she has done for you and just how much you appreciate that you have her in your life as your mother. Whether you decide to give her supplies for a new hobby, a new book, or even decide to upgrade her computer setup to play some FPS with you on the weekends (hey, some moms are into that) please make the decision to reach out and express your love. Especially now in these stressful times.
This article contains some affiliate links to gifts like cooking supplies and books for moms in quarantine this Mother’s Day. If you choose to purchase these books or products via my affiliate links, you will help support my writing and research at no additional cost to you.