Issue 2016/05

You do not have to burn a hole in your pocket in order to show your love and care.

Mother’s day is coming up on 8 May 2016! Every year, many filial children think of ways to pamper their mums, spending money on flowers, gifts and lavish meals. However, showing someone your love does not require you to burn a hole in your pocket.

Do you know that most people communicate their love differently? According to the famous book by Gary Chapman, there are 5 ways in which everyone expresses and experiences love called the “love languages”. Your chosen love language is the way that you would most prefer to receive love. So for instance, you may think that showing your mother love by buying her a branded bag would make her happy. But perhaps she would have preferred a simple outing at the Gardens by the Bay.

So instead of focusing on spending money to make her happy, here are 5 other ways to express your love to the women in your life without having to splurge unnecessarily:

Express Your Love Verbally & Physically

If you grew up in a rather conservative family where a show of affection is not common, make a change today. Tell your mother you love her either verbally or via a written card/letter. Even if both of you may not feel comfortable, we are sure this gesture will melt any mother’s heart. Take it further by giving her a hug as well!

Plant Seeds Of Love

If your mother has green fingers, buy her a plant that she can take care of everyday. She’ll have to water the plants daily and tend to it with care, reminding her of the days you were young where she had to tend to you. When kids grow up, parents tend to be a little sad about their kids having their own lives and eventually leaving the “nest”. Having this plant will remind her that you will always be her child and will always need a mother’s affection, making her feel needed and wanted.

DIY Presents

Nothing says it best when you make a present out of your own efforts. It reflects the physical effort the person has put in and the thoughts behind. It is very easy to walk into a shop and buy something off the shelf! But making a present from scratch takes planning and time, and mothers would definitely appreciate that. Some ideas include knitting, making costume jewellery or baking her a cake.

Give Her An Off-Day

We all know how difficult it is to be a mum. In Singapore’s dual income families, mothers are often the ones who have to work both within and outside the house. On this day, give her have an off day – no doing of dishes, cleaning of the house or cooking. Assure her that everything will still be alright the next day and that you will help her with the tasks.

Reminisce The Good Old Days

One thing that many parents remain nostalgic about is the days when their kids were still young. Some even complain that kids grow up too fast and that they could have missed the chance of enjoying every little moment they have had with them. You can let her reminisce these moments using modern technology – make a simple slideshow or montage of past pictures and videos of you and your parents that you can find, as well as the good times you have spent together. This will be a touching present for mother; remember to get ready the tissue!

The bottom line is that instead of splurging unnecessarily on expensive presents, the expression of love can take on many forms which can be even more meaningful. Consider these options this Mother’s day and share with us how she had reacted!

Written by Lynette Tan. Used by permission. Lynette has more than 6 years of experience in financial analysis and writing, having worked previously as a commodities analyst. With passion in financial literacy, she hopes to help others gain personal finance and investment knowledge through her writing.

Graphics by Justin Yeo, School of Digital Media and Infocomm Technology, Singapore Polytechnic.