Did you Ditch the Clichés this Mother's Day?

By Britni Berg on May 13, 2013

Jill and Polly in the Bathroom, 1987 (Courtesy of Tina Barney)

Mother’s Day can be one of the most stressful days of the year.

Why, you might ask? Mothers everywhere have a trick up their sleeve. Not to say they’re purposefully being sneaky or conniving but, realistically, mothers give up so much for their children. They say they don’t want anything: No, please do not get me anything for Mother’s Day. I don’t need it. I don’t want you spending money on me.

Let’s just say my mother did not move from her new foot massager for a good two hours after opening it. I didn’t hear any complaints.

Alongside the gift situation and the cards smeared with wet ink from being written in a dangerously close proximity to the time the card was delivered, how do you spice up Mother’s Day? Our mothers do so much for us—sometimes too much for us. They deserve at least a day of fun!

Ditch the clichés—How many years in a row can you go out for a Mother’s Day brunch before you eventually regurgitate the same brunch you’ve been having for the last 19 years?

Hit the Road—This year, my family hopped in the car after Mother was forcibly removed from the foot massager, and headed up to Wisconsin. No, we had no direct plans or directions for the matter. Yes, we were lost and wandering in a farm town for a good two hours. But we had nowhere to be and we eventually made an adventure out of it. When we eventually found a lake and a city, we watched the waves as we ate lunch. By that time, my father’s lack of direction had far surpassed the acceptable brunch-eating time.

Break up the Big Group—Coming from a big family, I know this may sound like a “family suicide.” But even when you spent time with your extended family in the morning and just with your immediate family at night, make sure your mother can have her diva moment, the moment where it’s truly all about her, not all your aunts, grandmothers, or cousins. Spending time with the entire family is always a treat. But your mother did not give a birth to your grandmother or your aunts. So make sure she is getting that one-on-one time that the diva may desire.

Go in on a Big Gift—No matter how many different last minute necklaces my brother buys Mom from Walgreens every year, she’s really never going to be able to pull off that butterfly in public. Instead of small presents that Mother may or may not get the use out of–although she will pretend to love it—splurge on a big item with the rest of your family. This year’s was a foot massager from Brookstone. And I saw zero fake smiles.

Cliche, I know, but I've always had a passion for writing and voicing my opinion. Throughout high school, I teamed up with Patch.com to create a bi-weekly opinion column on the site, tackling controversial teen issues. With the positive feedback and personal messages from the column, and the way it spread across my town and neighboring communities, I saw first hand how my writing could truly impact others. I was accepted to the Northwestern University Cherub Program for Journalism, spending the summer of 2011 studying at the Medill School of Journalism and learning from magnificent writers and professors in the field. From there, I began working as a student reporter for The Chicago Tribune's teen publication, The Mash, spreading my voice even further as I began to get published in their issues, along with online publications such as The Huffington Post. While working as the News Editor for my school newspaper taught me the logistics of hard hitting journalism, it's the more sarcastic, humorous tones in my writing that fuel the passion. So now I'm here, studying at the University of Michigan, hoping to spread the impact. And if I'm lucky, snag a few laughs along the way.

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