Last-Minute Mother's Day Ideas

Psst! Mother's Day is Sunday. Stop hyperventilating. The holiday sneaks up on all of us, even us mothers. While flowers seem like a safe bet, you might want to put a little more creativity into honoring the woman who raised you or your children. Here are a few ideas for us last-minute shoppers:

It's all about the experience. At least that's according to Excitations, a local company that sells experience packages such as hot air balloon rides, whitewater rafting trips and forest treks on a llama. The Website has tons of options from hot stone massages for $135 or working as a sous chef at a luxury resort for the day for $625. The site even has some packages for under $100, including a tennis lesson from a pro for $50 or a picnic lunch for two at a local vineyard for $100. Some of the most popular packages this Mother's Day season have included a sailboat ride around D.C. and then a Nationals baseball game for $90, a half-day spa rejuvenation for $245 and the glass art experience for $295. Whatever package is chosen, mom will receive a keepsake box in the mail with details of the experience and contact information for how to set up the adventure. Or, if you're not sure whether to choose from the Segway tour of D.C. or the schooner sailing adventure, you can buy a gift card in your choice of amounts.

One massage is great but why not three or six or better yet, 12? Get mom a membership to Massage Envy, a franchise of massage clinics that has opened up nearly 10 shops in the Washington region. A Massage Envy membership allows you a certain number of massages in a certain period of time. Any extra massages in your membership period cost a mere $49. The company has a Mother's Day package for $177, which includes a three-month membership of three massages. If mom decides that she needs a few extra massages in that three-month period, she can shell out $49 for any extras. You won't get the frills of a day spa but you can get in and out in an hour and feel a little less stressed.

And if you're really a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants offspring, then give Mom a fun day out on Sunday. The Kennedy Center's Millennium Stage is having a free high-energy performance by Anja Bukovec, a Slovenian classical violinist. No tickets are required for the 6 p.m. performance on Sunday. And there's still time to book an early morning cruise and brunch or a dinner ride on the Odyssey, which takes you around the sights of D.C. I've done the Odyssey trip at least once, and aside from a little cheesiness -- like getting your picture taken as you walk in, the experience was a lot of fun.

And finally, if you're a mom reading this and you have little confidence that your crew will plan anything to celebrate your selfless work, you can swing by Let's Dish, a company that prepares full meals, for a free dish that serves four to six people. The company is handing out complete meals between now and May 11 to women who have given birth in 2008. Stop by one of the seven local shops participating in the promotion with some proof of your child's birth, like a birth announcement or a birth certificate. I've never had one of these meals but a friend told me they're pretty good. How can you beat not having to cook?

So how are you honoring the mothers in your life? Have any other last-minute ideas? Post a comment below.

On another note, where do you buy your meat and fish? If you dare not touch the steaks and salmon fillets at your local grocer, where do you go? Some people swear by the local butcher or the fish market. Are you one of them? I'd love to hear about your meat and fish buying experiences. Please e-mail me at shoptoit@washingtonpost.com.

By Tania Anderson |  May 8, 2008; 3:00 AM ET Holidays and Special Occasions
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Excitations is a very cool website. I didn't know a site like this was available online. Thanks Tania!

Posted by: Bethany | May 8, 2008 6:57 PM

I was shopping for mother's day flowers online and found this great deal on 1800flowers.com. When you buy 2 flower arrangements, you save $15. Considering that their flowers are very reasonably priced and that you can buy two, one for your mom and one for your grandma or mother-in-law, that's a steal!

Happy Mother's Day! :)

Posted by: Kevin | May 8, 2008 10:11 PM

In honor of my Mom's passing, my father, sister and I always eat at her favorite restuarant, ask for a 4th table setting and proceed to order her her favorite meal.

We each take a part of that meal home with us so we can have a little memory of my Mom.

Posted by: chuck | May 10, 2008 2:48 AM

I light a candle in my Mom's memory, and others such as my Grandma's and other women that were an influence on me. I tend to Mom's grave and place flowers there as well. I try to put a memoriam in the paper but sometimes am unsuccessful, because every year, my poem has to be original or it dosen't work.

Posted by: Frankie | May 11, 2008 7:37 AM

Chuck and Frankie - Those are beautiful ways of honoring the moms who have passed away. Thanks for sharing your ideas.

Posted by: Tania Anderson | May 12, 2008 1:24 PM

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