10 ways to make mom happy on Mother's Day

Compared to the gift they gave us, these ones are super easy

What do moms like? I'm not one, but from personal experience I know they like their kids a lot, for one thing. And they also like knowing that their kids are thoughtful, caring human beings. While that means that the most cherished gift this Mother's Day is your presence and time, just think if you combined that with a small token of your appreciation!

Like what, you may ask? We'd like to suggest the following 10 ideas, and to wish moms everywhere a very happy Mother's Day.

1. Brunch (or lunch, or dinner)

nait food and drink guideLet's start with the basics. If a classic Mother's Day brunch is just the thing, we've got your guide to finding a spot that's sure to hit the spot. Check out the NAIT Guide to Food and Drink and find something traditional, inventive, quirky, and always tasty. Get booking!

2. Great locally made gifts

gifted guide, make something edmontonWant to have a local impact while making a big splash on Mother's Day? The Gifted guide, assembled by Edmonton Made program manager Laura Masyk (Marketing ’09), is loaded with clothes, art, food, beverages, jewelry and much more, all made by Edmonton-area entrepreneurs.

3. Artisanal chocolate

rebecca grant, violet chocolate co.

We've lost count of all the awards Rebecca Grant (Culinary Arts ’08, Management ’13) has won for her handmade bars. The Edmonton chocolatier, and owner of the Violet Chocolate Co., has an excellent reputation for exotic and unexpected flavours, so get ready to shock the chocolate-loving mom who thinks she's tasted it all.

4. Flowers – but not just any flowers

Imagine if, instead giving a store-bought bouquet, you present mom with a collection of squash, carrots, onions and radishes. Having trouble envisioning her beaming smile? That's because we're not done yet. Check out the video above featuring a past Culinary Arts chair as he transforms a bunch of groceries into a bunch of flowers. Give it a shot. Good luck! (Remember, it's the thought that counts.)

5. A lovely walk

big lake pier, st. albert

If the sun is shining, head outdoors to marvel at the arrival of spring and its glory of unfurling leaves, early blooms and chirpy birds. Courtesy of science and nature writer Joan Marie Galat (Biological Sciences Technology – Ecology '84), here are three Edmonton-area destinations for a lovely stroll.

6. Plant something together

amur maple tree for alberta climate

Give nature a personal touch by taking mom to the local garden centre, picking out something nice and planting it together in the yard where, each spring, all that unfurling and blooming will make her think of you. Need ideas? Here are reliable choices that have thrived on NAIT campus, and even some maple trees that will thrive in Alberta.

7. Host a barbecue


Moms cooked a heck of a lot of excellent meals for us over the years, and passed along some invaluable tips and tricks that we still use today. So why not cook one in return – and make it just as good? Invite mom and the whole family over and fire up the barbecue. With these quick grilling lessons, you might even be able to pass along a few tricks of your own.

8. Jewelry is nice (but know what you're buying)

jewelry for mother's day

Does mom have a soft spot for shiny stuff? Here are tips on making the most of your purchase, from a NAIT alum who's been in the jewelry business for more than three decades.

9. Bake something together, for old time's sake

Brown butter spelt brownies, Renée Kohlman

You could bring sweets to pair with tea or coffee on Mother's Day – or, you could suggest that the two of you grab some aprons, roll up your sleeves and come up with something together. And there are few somethings more nostalgia-inducing than brownies. Try this recipe from award-winning food writer Renée Kohlman (Culinary Arts ’99).

10. Try floating this idea

epsom salt, modern gravity, float therapy, edmonton

It's amazing the difference 1,000 pounds of salt can make to a person's state of mind. It's not just a pile of salt, of course. It's epsom salts dissolved in 34 C water in a float tank at Modern Gravity, owned and operated by Matt Smith (Personal Fitness Trainer ’11) and Jamie Phillips (Millwright ’12). Each one is isolated in a sound-proof, light-proof room, allowing the occupant to float their cares away in absolute silence and solitude.

This is almost certainly the kind of gift that will elicit a surprised, "You shouldn't have!" But remember all those times in our lives, inadvertently or otherwise, that we completely deprived our mothers of any chance at peace and quiet? Maybe, to make up for it, a few precious moments of serenity is the least we can do.

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