What Moms Really Want For Mother's Day

5 gifts that don't come in a box or tied with a ribbon

By Kara Murphy, Macaroni KID May 9, 2023

Let me start by saying: I always appreciate flowers and chocolates. There are, though, a few things that I'd really like for Mother's Day that don't come in a box or tied up with a ribbon.

Here are five things I'd love — and I'm betting perhaps other moms would too — on this Mother's Day:

1. A good night's sleep

This one's for all you moms of babies and toddlers. My tweens are past this age thankfully, but, boy, do I remember those nights of popping in and out of bed like I was a jack in the box. My husband is fantastic — please don't get me wrong — but it was me my nursing babies wanted in the middle of the night.

So if you're a partner to a mom whose side of the bed is often empty at 3 a.m.? Do her a favor and give her a complete night off: No interruptions, no crying babies, and no one waking her up at the crack of dawn. 

A solid eight hours of uninterrupted sleep is the ultimate luxury for a tired mama.

Macaroni KID publishers and moms with their kids.

Featured above: Macaroni KID Dallas-Hiram-Acworth, Ga., publisher Stephanie Freeman, Macaroni KID District Heights, Md., publisher Natasha Bethea Goodwin; and Macaroni KID Lafayette, La., publisher Jennifer Ercoli.

Read more: Get a Free Printable! A Special Keepsake From the Kids For Mother's Day

2. A day without demands

There was a popular movie a few years ago called "Yes Day" where the parents had to say yes to anything the kids suggested. Perhaps a comparable day for moms would be a day with no demands on our time (or patience). No soccer practice to schlep the kids to? No nagging them about doing chores? No separating fighting siblings? Just a day of quality time, whether it's a picnic in the park, a family movie night, or a game of mini-golf. 

Doesn't really matter — for most of us mamas, unworried and unhurried time together as a family is what makes us happiest and a gift we'll love and truly appreciate.

Macaroni KID publishers and moms with their kids.

Featured above: Macaroni KID McDonough-Stockbridge, Ga., publisher Jennifer Sheran; Macaroni KID Gardner-Spring Hill-Paola, Kans., publisher Brittany Marsh; and Macaroni KID Decatur, Ill., publisher Chelsea Irwin

Read more: When Mother's Day Isn't Easy

3. A homemade gift

I mean I love gifts. I love alllll the gifts. But the ones I have displayed on my nightstand and bookshelf? Gifts made by my kids, whether it's an adorable card, a coaster with their picture, or that clay pot they made at school. Those simple gestures of love, that your child is so proud to present to you, mean an incredible amount. When it comes to gifts from your kids, it truly is the thought and effort that counts, not the price tag.

Macaroni KID publishers and moms with their kids.

Featured above: Macaroni KID Lynchburg, Va., publisher Sandy Wallace; Macaroni KID Greater Port Jefferson, N.Y., publisher Helen Partlow; and Macaroni KID Buckhead - Midtown - Brookhaven, Ga., publisher Cookie Suarez.

Read more: 5 Easy Kid Crafts For Mother's Day

4. More pictures

I have 32,347 photos on my phone, and about a dozen of those have me in them. Moms are notorious for taking the pictures and not being in them ... and I'm totally guilty of that. I don't like my shirt, I don't have any makeup on ... I can come up with any number of excuses. On Mother's Day, take pictures of her with the kids all day long. They don't have to be perfectly lit or everyone smiling at the camera. Just the in-between moments or the silly moments are sometimes the best photos and the ones you'll cherish the most in the years to come. 

And moms: Just say yes to the pictures! No hiding allowed. Your kids will love having them one day too.

Macaroni KID publishers and moms with their kids.

Featured above:  Macaroni KID Daytona, Fla., Beach publisher Savannah Kater; Macaroni KID Pasadena-Severna Park-Glen Burnie, Md., publisher Laura Colquhoun; and Macaroni KID Enfield, Conn., Macaroni KID publisher Nicole Torretti.

5. Kids that are 'good people'

I want my kids to be kind, compassionate, and empathetic, to treat others with respect and dignity, and to make a positive impact on the world. Any time I see evidence of them displaying those qualities and values — on Mother's Day or any day — well, that is the best gift of all.

Macaroni KID publishers and moms with their kids.

Featured above: Macaroni KID Hunterdon, N.J., publisher Julianna Gilleo; Gulfport Biloxi, Miss., publisher Ariel Chamberlain; and Macaroni KID Kennewick-Richland Wash., publisher Brittany Joyner.

Read more: The Challenges and Rewards of Being a Single Parent

Happy Mother's Day to all the amazing moms out there!