A Mother’s Day Gift Guide for Catholic Moms
If I ever want to feel flooded by gratitude, joy, and humility, all I have to think about is Mother’s Day. And when I say “think about Mother’s Day,” I really mean considering all of the women who serve as mother figures for me (from my mom to my grandmothers to the elderly mentors at my parish to friends of my parents and the parents of my friends!) and all of the little people to whom I have the privilege of being a mother of sorts (including my children, their friends, neighborhood kids, and my godchildren).
Simply put, I am the person who I am because of who all these individuals are to me. My mom raised me and set the foundation for my life, and my children have helped me reach my highest vocation. Different women have inspired, encouraged, and nourished me along the way, and different children have summoned forth from me various gifts, callings and moments of growth. For all of them, I couldn’t be more grateful.
Mother’s Day is coming right up (May 9th this year) and while I am certainly looking forward to celebrating my motherhood (I’ll take that breakfast in bed, yes please!), I also relish the opportunity to honor the moms in my life. Here are some ideas of gifts that I’m sharing with Catholic moms:
The ability to identify with Mary, the Mother of God, has deepened my spirituality, enhanced my understanding of my role as a mother, and made me a better mom (at least I hope and think so). I love wearing something that reminds me of my connection to Mary and of all the lessons that Mary has to teach me about motherhood; throughout the day, when my necklace becomes twisted and I pause to readjust it, or when I catch a glimpse of my earrings in the mirror, or when I idly twist the ring on my finger, I am nudged to pray. It’s in these moments that I whisper words of gratitude to God for the opportunity to raise his children and prayers of petition to Mary for her guidance, her wisdom and her intervention. Knowing how much my Marian jewelry means to me, I am quick to gift pieces to special moms in my life. Some of my current favorites include this Blessed Virgin bracelet, this Sancta Maria necklace, and this Lady of Lourdes ring.
There’s this line from a T.S. Eliot poem that I’ve always loved — “I have measured out my life with coffee spoons” — but in response I say, “Well, Mr. Eliot, I have measured out my life in post-it notes.” Is it just me, or is that a mom thing? A note on the refrigerator with grocery items needed, a note scrunched up in the bottom of my purse reminding me of my children’s next dentist appointments, a note stuffed in my pocket reminding me of a vacation idea to run by my husband. A journal like this one is the antidote to the post-it-note proliferation that threatens to overtake my home. And if a place to corral various lists isn’t what the moms in your life need, this beautiful notebook can be used in many other ways, from documenting special “mom moments,” to writing prayers, to reflecting on the happenings of the day.
When in doubt, candles are my go-to gift for many occasions. They smell good, they add warmth and light to a home, and the flickering flame reminds us of Christ’s light, ever present in our hearts. Giving a candle to a mom is a simple way to add a touch of luxury and sensory delight to her everyday… and what mom doesn’t deserve some delight?
A Book like Theology of Home
One of our primary roles as mothers is to make home a haven for our families. There are hundreds of large and small ways to do this, from providing nourishing meals, to offering our listening ears, to cultivating traditions in both day-to-day life and at the high points of our liturgical and civic calendars. Let’s be real, though. Sometimes it’s hard enough to get everyone dressed in clean clothes before the school bus is honking at the door. Sometimes frozen pizza is the best I can do for dinner. Sometimes I feel like I barely have enough time to give everyone in my family a quick hug, let alone be available as a patient, calming, and listening presence. And you know what? That’s okay! We’re all doing our best and so long as our best is earnest, honest, and loving, it is enough for God and for our families. I do think, though, that we can accept where and who we are while also always striving to become better, and books like Theology Of Home: Finding The Eternal In The Everyday, and Theology Of Home II: The Spiritual Art Of Homemaking guide me in my efforts to create a loving, inspiring, and Catholic home. Written by three wives and mothers, either of these books is the perfect Mother’s Day gift.
Mary is the Queen of Mothers, and this little statue draws immediate attention to that fact with its portrayal of Our Lady gathering little children into her arms. At just about six inches in height and hand-sculpted in Poland, this piece of art can be a reminder to Catholic moms that motherhood is a sacred calling, and that we have a heavenly mother to whom we can turn in our times of trouble.
Mother’s Day is the perfect opportunity to express gratitude and love for the women in your life who have nurtured you into being, and a beautiful gift is a tangible way to say thank you. I hope that your gift-giving this year fills you with joyful gratitude as you show your love and appreciation through giving. Happy Mother’s Day, friends!