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Discussion Starter #1
If you have a mother who is still with you (or if you want to honour one who is not), or if you know a mother who you think ought to be celebrated, this challenge thread is to assist those of us who have "challenging" mothers in figuring out a fun and frugal way to wish them a happy Mother's Day.

My mother is one of those who finds fault in everything I do, which is strangely liberating, so in preparation for Mother's Day, I am going to knit her a few HM scrubbies AND I am planting some scallions in a pot for her. She likes having scallions on hand, and she always has to go out and buy a bunch, regardless of how many she needs, so this way, she can just harvest what she wants, toss a new seed or two into the pot, and continue. I just hope they will be big enough in two weeks for her to figure out what they are!! :D

I found a planter on sale at K-Mart a few months ago that is perfect. It is in the shape of a teacup, complete with saucer, with big pastel flowers painted on it.

Still figuring out what to give my sister.
 

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My mom is challenging too. (so Hubby came up with a creative solution)

Let's put it this way.

The mother's day after I had my second child. My dad said/asked "Okay moms where are we going out to eat?" I started giving suggestions based on the best place to breastfeed the baby and where the pre-schooler would eat best.

My mom interrupts and says "I should get to pick as I AM the MOM"

She still has that attitude although she thinks she doesn't (she is trying to work on it I believe well maybe I like to think she is)

So to give her the special center of attention day she wants and/or takes, Hubby says my mother's day is secretly Saturday and her's is Sunday. He thinks I should have a day to be special too to be celebrated for being a mom.
 

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My mom can be "challenging" too. Very critical and I was often called "too sensitive" if I was upset by something.

But she's not into gifts, so I'll just call her that day. It's practically free (part of what I pay each month for cell phone anyway).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Okay, will be driving up north to see Mom on Sunday, and I will have a Napa cabbage, and the little "cup" planter with scallions. I'm mailing off cards today, one from me, and from from her "grandchildren" (my parrots - drives her nuts).
 

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My mom is difficult to shop for because she has everything she could ever want and never asks for anything. About a year ago I found out she decided not to renew her People magazine subscription for whatever reason. She loves People and doing the crossword puzzle is the highlight of her weekend.

When I found out she did not renew, I got her a 6 month subscription for Christmas (I budget $100 for her gift - $50 of it covers the subscription). Then I do a three month renew for Mother's day followed by a three month for her birthday (I budget $25-$35 for each, Mom's day and birthday.) It has solved my "What do I get Mama?" dilemma all year long.

To make her gifts even easier on my wallet, I use some of Mypoints points and Swagbucks to get Amazon gift cards for the renewal purchases.
 

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My mil very difficult to buy for because she won't tell you what she wants; is happy with what she has. Soooo I finally came up with a good idea; I buy her 2 flats of flowers and last year I planted her an upside down grape tomato plant. She has never gardened in her life and I think she got a kick out of picking tomatoes in her yard.

I need to come up with an idea like this for Christmas and her birthday.

I recently heard of paying for an experience instead of stuff. I really liked that; just need to come up with that for mil.
 

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MadHen, we need an LOL button. That was funny!

I'm still thinking, but maybe some frozen meals to stick in her oven? Some frozen cake batter, corn muffin batter in cup cake liners ready to pop in the oven? Maybe some biscuit dough rounds, frozen and ready to pop in the oven? Low on funds, but I have food in the pantry.
 
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My mom lives far from me so I mailed her a card and a gift certificate to Tim Hortons. She (like everyone else) is addicted to it.
 

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What great gift ideas! I have already given my Mom her gift. I picked up some pretty flower pots with flower bulbs. She loves anything that has to do with gardening so this way they have already starting popping their heads out of the soil and she can transplant into her garden when it is warm enough. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
craftypam, I have been thinking along the same lines with my mother. She is older, so has trouble bending over veggie beds, and she lives in a condo, so only a small concrete "box" for an outside area. But it gets good sun, so I am thinking about building or buying her one of those raised gardening beds that allow you to plant without having to stoop over. She likes having access to a few fresh plants (scallions, cabbage, etc), so that would give her a place to plant them AND something to do outside (rather than sitting inside watching QVC).

pollypurebred, if she likes fruit, maybe a little strawberry plant in a container? I have a little alpine strawberry plant in a cut-off water bottle on my kitchen counter, and it is fun to be able to get up and just "harvest" a berry or two in the morning. :) Another idea, although you would have to plan ahead about two years, is to plant an orange seed now, then give her the tree in about two years, in a large pot. Most citrus does well in containers, and it will cost you very little, especially if you can get someone to give you an old 5-gallon nursery pot. Not sure if you'd get much fruit from it in your area, but they are pretty little evergreen trees, and can be successfully maintained indoors. Also, if you have poppy seeds, dill, etc in your herb stock, you can plant those.
 

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Mom is difficult because she wants everything!!

I will be getting her and my Grandmother a card and coming in for a visit on Sunday. It is a 3 hour drive each way for me.

Last month I had to loan her enough money to get her house out of forclosure, so I consider that gift enough.
 

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Everybody has such neat ideas!

MadHen, I think a strawberry plant is a great idea! I know my Mom would love that! Maybe I can make her a strawberry shortcake to go along with it! :)

I do have herb seeds, another great idea! Do you know anything about the orange tree/evergreen and it being toxic to animals? She has two cats and a tea cup Yorkie, I'd hate to give her something and have her babies get sick.
 

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My mom and I have a strained relationship most of the time. Right now things are not to bad so I am having her over for supper that way I can feel comfortable in my own home. My sister is coming and DD is excited.
 
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