You can celebrate your mom even on a tight budget. 

This Mother’s Day, there are plenty of opportunities to wow your mom, wife or grandmother without breaking the bank. The point isn’t how much you spend, but how much thought you put into making her feel special.

In case you need a few ideas, here are 11 activities that don’t cost much (or cost nothing at all!) to consider:

Breakfast in Bed

This classic idea has spanned the decades for good reason. It’s a thoughtful way to wake up Mom and let her know how much she means to you. Plus, it’s impossible not to feel pampered when someone brings you breakfast in bed, even if it’s just cereal or toast. The fact that she didn’t have to make it is the best part!

Cook Together

If you’re sharing brunch, lunch or dinner at home on Mother’s Day, cooking it together is a fun way to spend the holiday. Or, you can bake a special dessert together. Let her pick the menu! As long as you plan everything, then she will love the gesture.


Plants and flowers are a traditional gift to give on Mother’s Day. This year, take it a step further by spending the day with her in the garden. You can help her with some of the more grueling tasks like weeding or spreading mulch. Another frugal idea is to give her seeds instead of flowers and then plant them together. It’s much cheaper and can be a more meaningful gesture because it’s a shared experience.

Spa Day for Her, Cleaning for You

If the mom in your life is in desperate need of some rest and relaxation, search on a daily deals website like Groupon or Living Social for a discounted spa package. Send her off to get pampered, and then while she’s out of the house spend a few hours helping out. Maybe it’s just watching the kids while doing a few loads of laundry or the dishes, but to have those items checked off her list when she gets back from the spa will make her day even more restful.

Learn Together

Daily deals websites also frequently have coupons for classes and they might even have specials for Mother’s Day. Check out cooking classes or paint nights for fun, low-cost activities that will make for a memorable holiday together.

Visit a Museum

Museums often have free admission or require only a donation of your choosing. Spend the day exploring and learning together, or checking out an exhibit she has been eyeing. For pricier institutions, check their online calendar for “free admission” days and nights.


If the weather is in your favor, pack your mom a surprise picnic and spend the day outdoors enjoying the spring weather. Check to see what you have in your kitchen already, and then splurge on her favorite beverage. Don’t forget a large blanket that is outdoor-friendly. Handling all of the logistics is a gift in itself.


Make sure your mom has the most recent photos of you and your family, especially if you have young children who are growing quickly. Whether it’s framing a nice photo for her house or helping her print photos and put together an album, this is a gift that can keep on giving all year long. It’s even nicer if she’s in the shots, too!

Game Night

Host a game night on Mother’s Day weekend with your family. Gather plenty of games and her favorite snacks and beverages. You could even create your own trivia game with fun facts about mom!

Volunteer for Her Favorite Cause

Does your mom have an organization that means the world to her? Organize a day to volunteer and help the cause. It won’t cost anything at all, and giving back is a great way to bring families together.

Take a Walk

Lastly, the simple act of taking a walk or a hike together is a completely free option for you to spend time with the mother figure in your life. Make sure to put your phones away and focus on talking to each other for a few hours. For $10 or less, treat yourselves to ice cream afterwards!

Spend time with your special lady, today!

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