Friday, April 28, 2017

Friday Finds: Mother's Day Deals


I've been a mother now for 13 years, and nothing gives me understanding and compassion for my own mother like looking into the eyes of my children. Growing up, I often felt motherless - my mother suffered from PTSD long before the world knew that PTSD wasn't just reserved for soldiers.

My mother was a soldier in her own right, a warrior. When her first marriage collapsed and she found herself largely alone with two children to raise, she picked herself up and moved on. She coped in the best ways that she could, and she tried to pull herself together for my brother and I. She worked her ass off, but she made a life. She met a man when I was little, a man who was beautiful and charming, who was kind and sweet. He was the caretaker for his handicapped younger brother, and he loved my mother, my brother, and me.

His name was Greg, and he wanted us. He wanted to marry my mother.

She turned him down - she didn't want him tied to a ready-made family; he had just entered her 30s and he was in his early 20s. Now, as a single mother for the second time, raising children suffering under the pain of the loss of their dad's presence in their lives, I understand her.

Perhaps she was afraid he would leave too. Perhaps she saw that my brother and I loved him already, perhaps she was trying to protect us. She broke his heart, preventing him from breaking ours. And I understand that in a way I couldn't before, when I resented her for sending him away.

She believed again though eventually, and met a man who made her think he was perfect. He was charming and wild and fun. I imagine by that time in her life, exhausted and lonesome and tired of carrying everything herself, she saw what she wanted to see in him, because she needed a break and wanted a partner to share her life with. For so many years, I resented her for bringing him in to ruin our lives - I resented her for believing in the man he wasn't, for allowing him access to wreak havoc in our family. I despised her weakness and hated the lasting effects of her mistake in trusting him.

But I'm a mother now, single and carrying so many burdens on my own. I'm tired and I'm worn down and honestly, some days I don't think I can handle it all on my own. I want someone to stand next to me reassuringly. I want someone watching my back, a shoulder side-by-side with me in the battle of life. I want pillow talk and a man to fix the sink and a ring on my finger. I understand my mother, and the depth of emotional longing that once made her weak.

She's been single ever since that second marriage. She hasn't been on one date that I know of, hasn't been courted one time, hasn't given out her number, hasn't dressed up to go to a bar. She hasn't opened herself up.

And I understand what makes her strong now, what makes her ready and able and willing to stand alone - because I am all those things too now. I have felt trapped, and battered, and betrayed. I have felt cornered, and beaten, and broken. But like my mother, I have survived.

Scarred, yes. Changed? Yes.

But for the better, I think. Less naive, less dependent, less ... porous. And where once there were horribly shattered places, missing pieces, and ugly brokenness, there is now something new, something artfully beautiful, something stronger in the gold that binds it all together.


With more understanding, there is less resentment, less anger. I'm sorry for the time I've wasted with my mother, and with the tension that still lies between us due to our history and the jagged edges left behind by the past.

One of my biggest goals in writing is to reach financial success before she dies - to give her the satisfaction of knowing her daughter "became" something, and to give myself the certainty of two things:
  1. that she will go in peace, knowing that her children are alright; and
  2. that I will be able to care for and honor her in death the way I could never afford to in her life.

But there's still time yet, and she's still here - she'll be 59 years old next month. just under a week after Mother's Day. So, as I look forward to celebrating my mother, I thought this would be a great time to help you find a way to honor yours.

My mom's a total sucker for fancy-looking flower arrangements, and over the years she's filled her house with dozen of arrangements she's created with dried and realistic artificial flowers. In one corner of her living room, there's a giant vase so full it can no longer be lifted, with over a hundred bits and pieces of flowers and greenery arranged in it. So I know the last thing she needs is MORE flowers, but she so loves them that I thought a fruit bouquet would be a great substitute gift for her on Mother's Day! (promo code FBFREE expires May 31, 2017)


I really love these three shown in the banner below - aren't they cute? The photos are from the site's product pages on fruitbouquets.com - I can't decide if I like the one in the middle or the one on the right more. (promo code FRUITNOW expires May 30, 2017)

Enjoy 20% Off sitewide on fresh fruits arrangements from Fruit Bouquets by 1800Flowers.com! Use code FRUITNOW

And if your mom is a little crazy and doesn't love beautifully arranged chocolate covered fruit, why not send her a care package of beautiful things from DressLily? DressLily is great for the fashion-conscious gift-giver who likes their mom to look nice without going broke - their clearance section is always full of gorgeous things to wear, beautiful accessories, and fun little novelties that impress without breaking the bank, and actually, I've shopped from them before with great results.


Bonus: You can have a package delivered right to your mom's door, you can get 12% off sitewide, AND you can do it with free shipping - just use coupon code:2017DL  (promo code 2017DL expires July 31, 2017)

But what do you do for a mom who has everything? The mom who has her life together and literally needs nothing? When you know you're too old to get away with a handmade card and a rock you found beside the driveway? When you've become a parent yourself and now you understand all those times she used to say how tired she was? Or when you've REALLY messed up and you need to make things better with the woman who birthed you and raised you and loved you enough to not drown you in the bathtub?

Well, then I recommend picking up one or more of these fun but thoughtful gifts for moms.

Here's to a Happy Mother's Day for your mom in the next few weeks - and for you if, like me, you have a MUCH better understanding of your mom these days.

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26 comments:

  1. Happy Mother's day early to you and I hope you and your daughters have a wonderful day that day. I always try to do something special for my Mom with her being 71 this year I never know how much longer she is gonna be here for me to talk to. We are super close and I'm grateful to have her in my life. I've cleaned her house for her before as sometimes that is really what she needs with her taking care of my Dad.

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    1. Aw, thanks Karen! I hope it's an awesome day for you too, and that you get to spend some great quality time with your mom!

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  2. wow these are great Mother's Day deals! I was running out of ideas!

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  3. These are great ideas. So far I got my mother something from Etsy. They always have great gifts there. I might do the chocolate dipped fruit for my MIL!

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    1. It's amazing how many great little stores there are on Etsy, isn't it? I bet your MIL would love the fruit - so yummy, and pretty too!

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  4. Happy Mothers Day to you and your mom! My mom loves flowers as well so every year I get her something to put in her garden that season.

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  5. Mother's Day is one of the most important days! We should all show our mom's love, they sacrifice so much for us!

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  6. I love to receive a fruit bouquet. They look great and taste even better. These are great Mothers Day gift ideas.

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  7. It's true. We understand our parents the most when we finally have kids of our own. I think you and your mom are strong and amazing women. Please continue to be an inspiration to many single moms out there.

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  8. Both you and your Mom went through so much, I am inspired by your story, you deserve the best. You have great ideas, I hope you'll get a great time celebrating with your Mom.

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    1. Yeah we've been through some things for sure, but it's just about living through, right? I hope that by sharing honestly here, someone going through things I've been through might be reminded that they can survive it too.

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  9. You have both had your struggles and your endless stream of ups and downs but her strength is something I can see in you. Sometimes we choose to fight our battles alone because we are scared of getting hurt and often do it to protect the ones we love. Your mum sounds similar to my aunty-who I see as my mum- she had been alone since she caught the father of her child- my cousin- cheating on her and she too has rarely been on a date since. I wish your mum and you a very happy mothers day x

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    1. Aww, thanks Ana! I always love seeing your comments here because I feel like we've been through such similar things. Your story and your honest vulnerability inspires me every time I visit your blog, so it's great to see you here.

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  10. I Time fly so fast and now It's almost mothers day! Happy Mothers day to you and to your mom! Glad you share this story with us

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  11. I believe our moms deserve the best! These fruit bouquets are absolutely cute, I would love to buy it for my mom or get one for myself:)

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  12. Great Mother Days gifts. Love all of them.

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  13. My mom would love one of those fruit arrangements. I need to take advantage of the savings and have one delivered to her.

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    1. Definitely do! They're so pretty, they're easy to order, and it means you don't have to chase a good idea anymore.

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