11 Ways to Celebrate Mom at Home and From Afar

Send a Cake, Drop Off Brunch, Or Just Schedule Some "Me" Time


The Spruce

With much of the country still in quarantine, celebrations have looked different this year. Over the past few weeks, we've held virtual Passover seders, broken Ramadan fast from a distance, threw dinner parties via Zoom.

For many, Mother's Day—plus upcoming holidays like Memorial Day and milestones such as graduation—will also be celebrated from home. These tips will make the day feel just as special, whether you're turning your home into the hottest brunch spot in town or need ideas for sending love from afar.

  • With all of the recent stress and anxiety, make this year special by keeping it easy on everyone. Whip up a low-lift recipe like a Dutch baby pancake (no flipping) or an Instant Pot frittata (no cleanup) or a one-dish dessert. (Please do not leave any dirty dishes for anyone—especially Mom—to clean.)
  • Make mom feel special by being her at-home barista or bartender, so it feels almost as good as going out, with the servers being the people she loves. Try the recent dalgona trend by making the original whipped coffee, or get creative—we've seen variations such as strawberry milk dalgona, mocha dalgona, even a boozy white Russian with dalgona!
  • Create togetherness with an online cooking class. Do it as a family,or invite Mom to learn a special skill she’s been wanting to try.
  • Give a gift that keeps on giving, especially while certain grocery items are out of stock, and smaller businesses are struggling: monthly subscriptions of cheese, wine, steak, coffee, fruit, chocolate, the options are endless.
  • Order delivery from a favorite local institution to bring brunch treats or Sunday dinner to her door. (Bear in mind that it may be hard to get the timing exact and of course, tip generously.)
  • If you live closeby, use that sourdough starter or whatever you have to bake and deliver. One of our editors is making bagels and bringing them to her mom’s doorstep. You could whip up her favorite food and have it in hands while it’s still hot and fresh.
  • Send a sweet invitation with the time and place of a zoom call and organize your siblings or family members to join in for virtual hugs all at the same time. Right now, the greatest celebration might just be seeing each other.
  • If you’re living with your mom, set up some “me” time for her. Create an area for her to have some privacy and don’t bother her. If you are hunkered together, this could be as simple as clearing out the bathroom for a long tub soak or setting her up in a room that has no one else in it and supplying a mimosa, bloody Mary, or an Irish coffee. What better day for some light day drinking?
  • Ask (and obey)! Sometimes a good old straightforward question: “Exactly what would bring you joy to eat on Mother’s Day?” is the nicest gift of all. Surprises are wonderful, but so are granted wishes.
  • If you live nearby and can deliver, replicate a dish she made for you in childhood or a food that her mom made for her. It could be as simple as ants on a log or as ambitious as her famous lasagna. It may not be as good as hers and that is totally okay. If you don’t live close, you can make a video for her, or create a family cook-along over video chat or zoom, to recreate the recipe all together. Try to deliver the necessary ingredients or groceries to Mom beforehand and she’ll have the excitement of guessing what you’re going to make.
  • Cake for breakfast. Really.