Moms: Appreciate the effort as much as the gift!

By Eric Morken

With Mother’s Day around the corner, I’m reminded how difficult gift buying has become at this point in my relationship with my wife.
There’s some pressure heading into next week because this has become the new favorite holiday since our daughter was born almost 16 months ago. My wife has always loved celebrating birthdays, and that’s what last year felt like for Mali’s first Mother’s Day.
Getting her a gift was pretty simple at that point. Aubree was a little more than 3 months old, so I collected four of the cutest pictures I had of them together and placed them in a picture frame with a message from Aubree written on it.
That was my go-to move, and now it’s gone. So here I sit, knowing I will end up waiting until the day before I figure out exactly what to get her from the two of us.
Gift giving is a struggle after being together almost 10 years. I ran through the common pieces of jewelry in no time when we started dating. First it was a necklace, then earrings and a bracelet before going back to another necklace. After three years, the only piece of jewelry left to buy her was a ring.
We were years away from that happening, so it forced me to be creative. I took her to concerts as far away as East Troy, Wisconsin. That was my new thing – find something we could do together.
I think it’s safe to say most women love that, but it doesn’t work for every special occasion. That’s why we need a little help with ideas. I ask every time a birthday and Christmas rolls around and always get the same answer – books.
That’s fine. I’m happy to get her any book she wants, but when she asks me what I want for those same occasions, I give her the item number to a $150 portable tree stand. I can’t show up to Christmas with $40 worth of books knowing what’s waiting for me under the tree.
Just like I can’t go into Mother’s Day without something that will make the day special. No matter what you mothers get out there, just know it’s not easy finding the perfect gift. Hopefully you can appreciate the effort that goes into it.

Eric Morken of Alexandria is a husband, father, sports editor and outdoor enthusiast.

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