This year, I’m finding myself more aware than ever of the many emotions Mother’s Day can bring. I have a friend who will be celebrating the holiday as the first-time mother of a beautiful baby girl. Another friend of the family, however, will go through the day having lost her mother less than ten days before.
In this ever-changing world, what do we do with all of those beautiful and painful emotions? We savor the moment and find a way to turn those emotions into lasting, meaningful memories. Here are five ways to capture memories of your mom this Mother’s Day.
#5: Ask Her Advice.
If your mother is still alive, this Mother’s Day may be the perfect opportunity to ask her those questions you have always wondered about but weren’t brave enough to ask. What was your secret to raising five kids without going crazy? How did you make it through when Dad died? If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently?
If your mother has already passed on, try interviewing someone who knew her well: an aunt or uncle, your father, an older sibling. See what new bits of information they can give you and write their answers down to save for future generations. Or try interviewing one of the other maternal figures in your life—a mentor, mother-in-law, or neighbor. Chances are they’ll be honored you thought to ask.
#4: Write a Letter.
Regardless of your relationship with your mother, writing a letter can be a great way either to mend fences or to let her know how much you care. You don’t have to be a great writer to do this one—just be sincere. That’s all she really wants.
#3: Take a Picture.
Facebook and Instagram are great ways to share photos, but a hastily snapped pic on your smart phone isn’t the kind of picture I’m talking about here. That kind of photo will likely just get lost among the thousands you take and post to social media every year. Instead, this year, try putting a little extra thought into your photographs.
Capture the ordinary moments of the day—conversation around the dinner table, a hug, a spontaneous laugh.
Find a way to make your photos tell a story about the day, about your mom, about your family.
Hire a professional photographer to do a family photo shoot. Your mom will love it!
Arrange your pictures into a digital photo book or scrapbook that your mom can treasure forever.
#2: Tell a Story.
If your mom is getting older, now may be the perfect time to begin gathering your memories of her, as well as memories from the rest of your family. Or if you’re celebrating the holiday as a new mother, this is a great opportunity to capture all of those precious first moments with your child.
Start with something simple and then move deeper. What are some of your favorite childhood memories of your mother? What were some of her favorite sayings? What lessons did she teach you? Write those memories down, and combine them with photos for an engaging story that will last forever. If you would like a little extra help capturing and writing those memories down, one of our personal historians would be happy to chat with you about putting together a biography package for your family.
#1: Say ‘I love you.’
It may seem sappy, but do we really say it enough? Sometimes saying it feels too uncomfortable; sometimes we assume she already knows. But I guarantee she wants to hear it again. So say it.
If you want to get more creative, consider grabbing a video camera and asking your family members to tell what they love most about your mom. Then you can put the clips together into a video that will probably bring your mom to tears and can also be saved for future generations to remember the impact your mother has had on your family.
Have other ideas about making Mother’s Day meaningful? Share them in the comment section below—we would love to hear them! And let us know if we can help you archive any memories of your Mother’s Day, whether that is through filming a family gathering, taking photographs, or writing family stories.