Heads up, dads: Mother's Day is on March 15, which means that not only do you have to send your own mother a quick text, but you're also expected to get something for the mother of your children, even though she's not technically your own mum. It's just one of those quirky facts of life.
Of course, you knew Mother's Day was approaching, but it's only now that you've realised just how close it is, and just how unprepared you are. But fear not! Here are five meaningful yet simple gifts that you can knock together with love (and a bit of mess- clear up afterwards!) in no time.
Salt dough footprint heart
Even the most useless man in the kitchen can make salt dough, and that means that you have no excuse to avoid this great gift. All you need is a cup of water, one cup of salt and two cups of flour. Once you've mixed these all together (carefully, mind) to make a smooth dough you can roll it out and cut it into a heart shape. Press your child's footprint into the dough to leave an imprint, and then let them run off to leave little flecks of dough on the carpet.
Then simply leave the heart to air-dry, or put it in the oven at 90 C for 2-3 hours if you're short on time. Once your child has painted the finished product you'll have a great personalised gift which will last for years.
If the idea of making salt dough is just too frightening, then do an online search for the nearest pottery studio. They'll have loads of products your children can get stuck into (and messy with), and whether it's a plate, an animal or a coaster, the personal touch will mean your gift is loved from the second the paintbrush touches the pottery.
Fingerprint family tree
I did this one last year, and it went down a treat. Simply print an image of a bare tree, or paint the trunk and branches yourself. Buy a few shades of green paint and let your children press fingerprints as leaves on the tree. When you're finished, you'll have a beautiful picture of a tree which has a personal touch.
Homemade bath salts
After a stressful day at work, or an even more stressful day at home with the kids, every mum loves a long, hot bath. Make it even better by mixing up some homemade bath salts with your children.
Buy some sea salts or bath salts (they're available online, or from places such as Holland and Barrett) and pick up some lemon and orange essential oils. Mix the salts and two drops of each oil in a bowl along with a tablespoon of orange and lemon zest until the salts are yellow and everything is thoroughly mixed. Put the citrus salts in a jar and add a nice label to finish off the perfect gift.
Emergency gift box
Sometimes a bath just isn't enough, and a frazzled mum needs a bit of extra pampering. This is where a homemade emergency gift box comes in handy! A shallow cardboard box is all you need to get started, and whilst this is being painted and decorated by sticky child fingers you can get cracking on the contents.
Wine is a good start, as well as bars of chocolate, bath salts, sleep masks, etc. etc. Think carefully about what your partner would love to make the contents extra special, and throw in a handwritten note from your children to top it off.
Not only is it a great gift, but it keeps on giving...well, until the wine runs out.
Mums, what do you want for Mother's Day?
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