A friend told me proudly how her lovely son had taken her to London on Mother’s Day, with tea in a posh hotel, followed by some sightseeing and a meal in the evening. He is clearly a kind and generous son who loves his Mum, but it must have cost a fortune!
As I said in yesterday’s post, I had the loveliest Mother’s Day but I am sure it cost a fraction of the price of my friend’s day. It got me thinking. It is easy to have fun and show somebody that you love them without breaking the budget. With a bit of planning and creativity you can help friends and family celebrate any event without them thinking you are a cheapskate!
Bake a cake: give a home made cake, cookies or sweets. This works for birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas, house warmings – even weddings if you are an ace baker and offer to make the wedding cake as your present, as my friend did for me.
Make your own gift: if you knit, sew, paint, make soap or candles or even if you grow stuff, many people appreciate a thoughtful home spun present. How about a hamper of home grown produce, a couple of pots of delicious home made jam or some potted plants grown from seeds or cuttings?
Keep a present box: It is also useful to buy gifts on offer and keep a present box so you always have a present to give. The January sales are great for this when retailers are keen to shift excess stock after Christmas.
If you are seriously skint, offer a service: gardening, babysitting, grass cutting, car cleaning. Design a voucher and put it in a card,then make sure you keep your promise! This works well if your child wants to offer a present for a relative.
Host a meal: have your loved one round for a special meal. Get out the best tablecloth and china, put flowers or candles on the table and don’t let them wash up!
Take a tour: have a look in the tourist information centre for the free attractions locally and take your loved one on a guided tour . Pack a flask and a posh picnic for a midday break: salmon and cucumber sandwiches, scones and cream, hummus and crudités, etc, and perhaps even a bottle of fizz.
Have a date night: if the celebration is for your other half, cook a meal and add a massage and/or a film.
There are so many ways to show you care that don’t involve spending much money and won’t break the bank. For me, the thought really does count!