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Remember when your mother told you to clean your room — over and over again? Remember when all she wanted was an hour of peace so she could soak in a nice, warm bath? Or maybe you remember the way she stood at the coffee maker and watched it drip, as though she had to have a dose of strong brew before she could face the day?

Mother and daughter outdoors

The older we get, the more we remember the little things about our mothers. And when we become parents ourselves, or as we become older and feel those little aches and pains, we definitely remember the things that she longed for back then that made no sense — but they sure do now!

So this year, give your mother the things she really wants for Mother’s Day. Flowers are nice, chocolates are always great, but it’s renovations she could really use. From the very simple and inexpensive to the more complex with a bigger price tag, these are the things that are sure to light up a smile on her special day.

A potting stand

Does Mom love her flowers and vegetables? Does she have containers all over the place, bursting with color and delicious goodies? As she gets older, so do her bones, and stooping to reach all those wonderful things can get tougher. A potting bench keeps all she needs right at the level she needs it, so that she can do her gardening without the popping knees and aching back.

Anchor it on the deck or against a wall for added security. If she has a garden in the backyard, you can go for something that works for that space, such as a stool on wheels that allows her to sit while she works, or a long-reach watering nozzle that means she doesn’t have to stretch to get water to her squash.

Relaxation on the porch

A living space outside could be just the thing she needs to make her life complete. Installing a pergola with a retractable canvas top allows her to either adorn it with plants or use the top to provide shade while she sits on her new lounge furniture. Ask her what her favorite colors are for the backyard, and then plan accordingly.

Does she love to entertain outside? Go all out with a new outdoor kitchen. Take care of the financing, then present her with a variety of plans and options and allow her to make the final choices.

The spa tub of her dreams

When you were little, your mother wanted nothing more than a hot bath without a little person knocking on the door, demanding to be let in. Now that you’re older, you can make good on all those times she gave up that bath in order to read you a bedtime story. Choose a spa tub that suits her fancy, and make it complete with all the bells and whistles.

Be sure to opt for wide, sturdy grab bars and other amenities in the tub that will make it something she can enjoy for many years, even after her mobility isn’t what it used to be. Can’t handle the price? No problem — give her a day at the spa, a new showerhead that does everything but ask about her day, or a foot bath massage basin that might make her want to stay in her chair all day long.

An appliance garage with bells and whistles

Remember that cup of coffee she had to have? Or that tea that kept her going? How about the toast or English muffin she absolutely had to have in the morning? Make sure she has all those things with new appliances, all in her favorite and most trusted brand. Wrap it all up with an appliance garage that matches her existing cabinets and hides all her new toys. She will have less clutter on the counter, and she will love playing with her new toys!

A helping hand

If you can’t spring for something expensive, no worries — your mother will understand. But you can still give her a great Mother’s Day by helping out with those things that she usually tackles on her own. Does she need some landscaping around the house, or help planting the flowers? Put on your gardening gloves and get to work! Does that rickety old mailbox seem like it might fall over with the next strong wind? Get your tools and make it sturdy again. The same goes for the porch railing.

In the end, it really is the little things that count. So no matter what present you offer this year, remember that your time and attention is what she will always cherish most. Sit down for a long cup of coffee or bring a sweet dessert, and share some time and stories. Carve out an entire day, just for her. You will be so glad you did.

Your own ideas?

What kinds of renovations would your own mother most appreciate?

Are they the same things you’d appreciate yourself?

Tell us all about it in the comments section of this post.

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BuildDirect has launched a Pin It To Win It Mother’s Day Shopping Spree contest that runs to May 8th, 2014. Get a chance to win $2000 in outdoor living products. Learn more.

 

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Shannon Dauphin Lee

Shannon Dauphin Lee is a journalist and occasional novelist with a serious weakness for real estate. When she's not writing, she and her husband are taking road trips to explore covered bridges, little wineries and quaint bed-and-breakfast inns in their beloved Pennsylvania.