10 Ways to Celebrate Mom

Photo courtesy of Kim and Kale

Mother’s Day is so much more than simply the second Sunday in May, it is an opportunity to appreciate and celebrate the remarkable women who we call, “mom.”   Whether you are celebrating as a mom yourself, looking to do something heartfelt to make this day special for your mom or facing Mother’s Day without your mom, finding ways to make this day truly special and memorable to honor these cherished women in our lives is an annual challenge. 

I asked for some thoughts and ideas worthy of honoring the special women in your life from women with a passion for health and wellness.  Here’s what they had to say to help inspire your own meaningful way to celebrate the hardest and most rewarding job there is.

Aylssa Smolen, MS RDN, CDN, @arugalyssa: 

Photo courtesy of: Alyssa Smolen

My mom has been such a wonderful support in my life. This past year was extremely challenging for me, and she was always there to encourage me. She is always there for me when I need it. I couldn’t ask for a better mom. My mother always knows how to calm me down and even tell me hard truths. I wouldn’t be the woman I am today without her spirit, support, and sense of humor.  

I plan to celebrate her by taking her out to eat because we love cooking and sharing meals together. She was the person who inspired my love of cooking and taught me everything I know. I also want to spend time with her by getting our nails done. This is something we like to do together to treat ourselves. 

Kristin Draayer, MS, RDN, NASM-CPT of NutritionbyKristin.com @kristin.draayer.dietician:  For Mother’s Day, my mom and I skip the typical brunch rush and lace up our hiking boots. It’s our yearly tradition to hike along the picturesque dunes of Lake Michigan. It’s our way of celebrating together, enjoying nature, and getting in some movement! Fresh air and a scenic hike are a great reminder that staying active can be a fun way to connect with family and friends.

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom! Thanks for being my adventure buddy and teaching us the importance of staying active and having fun. Here’s to many more hikes together!

Photo courtesy of Kristin Draayer
Photo courtesy of Kristin Draayer

Katie Schimmelpfenning, RD and Founder of Eat Swim Win @eastswimwin:  My mom and I love to connect outdoors! Last Mother’s Day I bought a Groupon for YogaAqua for stand-up paddle board (SUP) yoga in Marina Del Rey, CA. It was fun to try something new with my mom, create memories, and relax outside on the water. I’m so grateful to have been raised by an active and outdoorsy mom! She’s been my guide, teaching me bravery, encouraging body confidence, and igniting my love for fitness. Strong moms like her are shaping our future female leaders.

Photo courtesy of Katie Schimmelpfenning
Photo courtesy of Katie Schimmelpfenning

Heidi McIndoo, MS, RD, FoodieMomRD @heidimcindoo_foodiemomrd:

Photo courtesy of Heidi McIndoo

My Mom has been going through chemo (for the third time) for the past several months. It has caused neuropathy making it difficult for her to do the hobbies she loves. She’s very creative and makes beautiful, beaded jewelry and sculptures for herself and friends and family, but with the loss of sensation in her fingers, that has become increasingly challenging. It is hard because I know beading is something that brings her so much joy–both the creating and the giving. Fortunately, her side effects don’t stop her from something else she loves—watching the birds (especially hummingbirds!) on the feeders outside her kitchen window. I recently saw hummingbird perches for them to sit on when not eating. I’m so excited to give it to her so she can enjoy those cute little birds a little longer.  

As far as my kids go, we always spend Mother’s Day with lunch at a favorite Mexican restaurant and then going to the nursery to get my plants for the year!

Nkechi Ajaeroh, MPH of nkechiajaeroh.com @nkechiajaeroh: 

Photo courtesy of Nkechi Ajaeroh

Celebrating Mother’s Day in a typical African family starts and ends with the quote, “It takes a village to raise a child,” because most African communities see childbearing and raising as a duty of every mother. Most mothers in the same community count on each other to watch the kids, train them, and even discipline them as needed. So, when it comes to celebrating Mother’s Day within the African community, all mothers are honored and showered with love and gifts. Mother’s Day feels like a mini party in most African households. There is lots of food, music, and dancing while songs dedicated to mothers are played, such as “Sweet Mother, Oh Mama, etc.” 

I plan to carry on the African tradition of celebrating every mom for this year’s Mother’s Day. I have just moved to a new neighborhood, and this will be my first Mother’s Day in this area. So, I hope to get to know some of my mom-neighbors by baking and gifting them my delicious “beet red velvet cookies.” 

Photo courtesy of Nkechi Ajaeroh

Qianzhi Jiang, PhD, RDN, LDN, Owner of The Nutrition Changer  @nutritionchanger:

Photo courtesy of Qianzhi Jiang

My 7-year-old son spilled the secret months ago of what his plan was for this year’s Mother’s Day. According to him, he was going to cook breakfast while I stayed in bed, so I could enjoy a relaxing morning with delicious food. His breakfast menu included pancakes, scrambled eggs, and a cup of “good old” orange juice. Cooking is one of the many ways my family uses to express our love to each other. Seeing my son grow stronger each day and put love into the food he cooks highlights the most rewarding moments in my life as a mother. 

Lisa Andrews, Med, RD, LD, owner of www.soundbitesnutrition.com:  

Photo courtesy of Lisa Andrews

I lost my mother this past fall, so Mother’s Day will be really difficult this year. She loved to cook, which started my passion for nutrition. Her birthday is also in May.  I used to send my mother a plant or a box of Russell Stover Chocolates, as these were her favorites! My daughter works in a local candy shop, so I started sending her Aglamesis’s chocolate instead. It will feel so strange not to send her anything this year. 

For Mother’s Day, I’m going to make my daughters some of my mother’s famous recipes that my daughters also love. This includes Italian wedding soup, homemade pizza, and chocolate chip cookies.  As I am close to my mother-in-law, she will be included to enjoy the meal with us!  We’ll feast and celebrate her life!

Kalee Sorey Dillard – Co-Founder of KimandKalee.com   @thekimandkaleeshow:

Photo courtesy of Kim and Kale

Whether it’s a special dinner to celebrate or just a quick phone call or text, there is nothing like the reassurance a mom can give her child. Even at 35, sometimes the best medicine is just to talk with my mom.  We love to do a brunch or picnic for Mother’s Day! It’s a great way to slow down and catch up, and it’s also usually pretty weather here in Tennessee!  If you want to get closer to your mom this year, why not ask her about her life before you. She has more wisdom and perspective than you may realize!

Brooke Baird, RDN, LD of http://simplydivine-nutrition.com  @simply.divine.nutrition:

Photo courtesy of Brook Baird

Nothing compares to the bond between a mother and her daughter. I think we can all agree that moms deserve way more than one day of celebration, but I look forward to Mother’s Day every year as I think of creative ways to show my mom how much I love her. My mom’s favorite thing in the world is when all her kids are together, so this year I am traveling back home to surprise her by celebrating with her in person with her favorite flowers in hand! My dad will grill steaks for dinner, extended family, and my siblings will come over, and we will all spend our evening on the patio together around the fire pit enjoying each other’s company and reminiscing on past memories.

Julie Pace, RDN and founder of Core Nutrition Health and Wellness @plantfeddietitian:

Photo courtesy of Julie Pace

This Mother’s Day, I’m surprising my mom by cooking her a five-course meal. It’s my way of showing appreciation for the countless meals she’s made for me and for teaching me one of the most valuable skills in life: how to cook.

So, this Mother’s Day, think beyond the robe or gift certificate, and remember, when it comes to mom, it truly is the thought that counts!