Mother's Day: What your mum really wants (and doesn't want)

YES, we should show appreciation to our mothers throughout the year, but Mother’s Day is a good reminder to show our mums that we’re grateful for everything they do for us.

Whether you’re looking for ideas of things to buy your mum, or are a dad taking children shopping, here are some ideas from mums about what their best Mother’s Day surprises and a few things that could make the worst-ever-Mother’s-Day list.

5 Things Mums Love

Leave it up to the kids

Gifts made, or thought of, by young children can be among the most memorable.

In fact, when it comes to kids coming up with ideas, mothers are pretty easy to please.

Kylie’s best Mother’s Day gift was from her two-year-old.

“He walked in with a stick and a rock,” she said. “Then in the softest voice said, ‘Ta, love you’.

“He was so excited running into my room. I still have that stick and rock. The greatest gift in the world is seeing my kids happy and proud of themselves.”

Dee’s best Mother’s Day presents were macaroni necklaces made by her two children.

“My kids are 14 and 13 and I still have them wrapped in tissue paper in my keepsake box,” she said.

Naomi loves anything handmade by her children but one Mother’s Day that stands out in her mind had nothing to do with presents bought at a shop.

“By far my favourite Mother’s Day ‘gift’ was when Mr 2 at the time, after giving me all my pressies, trotted out to the bookcase and came back with the I love you Mummy book,” she said. “It was the sweetest thing.”

Another special book for mothers and children is the Peppa Pig version of My Mummy. Jodie said her daughter chose the book for Mother’s Day when she was two years old.

“Three years later and she is now reading it to me. Best present ever,” she said.

Breakfast in bed

Mothers are often making food for other people in the family. Being spoiled with a delicious breakfast, or sometimes quirky combinations, nicely laid out on a tray can be a real treat for mums.

Breakfast in bed from her very proud five-year-old was Kayleigh’s favourite Mother’s Day present.

The breakfast consisted of an assortment of fruit – two apples, a pear, four grapes and a lemon wedge!

THOUGHTFUL KIDS: Kayleigh's favourite Mother's Day present was breakfast in bed created by her five-year-old. Photo: Supplied

THOUGHTFUL KIDS: Kayleigh's favourite Mother's Day present was breakfast in bed created by her five-year-old. Photo: Supplied


You’ve got a couple of days to sneakily find out which are your mum’s favourite flowers, or choose an assorted bunch in her favourite colours. 

Buy a pretty vase to put them in and Mum will have something she can re-use after she’s finished enjoying the flowers.

Massage or day spa voucher

Most mothers love to be pampered and few take the time out to treat themselves and have ‘me time’. 

With help from fathers who can look after the children for a few hours, a voucher for a massage or other relaxing treatment can be a thoughtful gift.


There’s a proviso with this: Your mum must like chocolate and she must want chocolate! If she’s been trying to eat super healthy, a chocolate gift box probably isn’t a good idea.

Worst Gift Ideas

Appliances or anything to do with cleaning

Some mothers might want a brand-name steam mop or a robotic vacuum cleaner that could make house cleaning easier, but it is good to be absolutely sure that this is what your mum wants and that she’s happy to be given it for Mother’s Day.

Some mums don’t want to be reminded, especially on their special day, that their homes need cleaning and may not ‘feel your love’ if they find an iron inside the wrapping paper.

Double gifts

If your mum has a birthday near to Mother’s Day, it shows a bit more thought if you remember each occasion. It’s all about helping your mother to feel extra special.

Something kids (or dads) want

It can be a challenge for young kids to think about what their mums would like as a gift, but sometimes it can be difficult for fathers too.

While Carmen’s birthday often falls on Mother’s Day, she says her husband is usually good about getting it right.

“The worst gift I have received so far would definitely have to be a petrol whipper snipper,” she said.

“He thought I would be impressed since it’s a top of the range thing with all sorts of attachments like a pruner and chainsaw.”

Thoughtless gifts

The idea of Mother’s Day is to show our mums that we appreciate them. Fathers or other family members can help facilitate this and steer children in certain directions, but mothers can tell when little thought has gone into a gift.

If your mum has recently bought herself winter pyjamas, then think of something else that she might really appreciate.

Something she doesn’t use or wear

Take note of the jewellery that your mum wears, or the perfume she likes before going out and spending money. She will appreciate it more and it shows that you pay attention to what she likes and wears. If she only wears silver jewellery, don’t give her a gold necklace! If she drinks wine, don’t buy her a home beer brewing kit!


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