Easy, Free & Inexpensive Last Minute Mother’s Day Ideas

Last Minute MOTHERS DAYHey, I know planning and executing a perfect Mother’s day can be a challenge. That’s why so many Dads end up rushing to the store at the last minute. So, I’ve compiled these ideas to aide in your family’s mission to celebrate & honor your mom in her own special unique way. Of course, if your mom prefers to receive some random expensive gift – this list isn’t for you. However, if you’re working with a budget and your mom wants quality family time & an experience that really represents her – you’ve come to the right place.

Don’t forget to enter the Dick’s Sporting Goods #strongmom giveaway for your chance to win a $250 gift card for your mom! 

I’ve broken down moms into seven categories: Artsy, Foodie, Gardener, Movie Buff, Musical, Natural & Sporty. But, don’t get hung up on labeling your mom – pick and choose ideas from different categories to build your own fantastic itinerary for Mother’s Day! I’m a Georgia mom, so I’ve handpicked some corresponding destinations in Georgia – But, do a quick search in your own local area and I’m sure you’ll turn up something similar nearby!

Artsy/DIY Mom
This type of mom can often be found creating stuff. Drawing, painting, handcrafting creations is what she loves to do. She probably draws ideas & inspiration from others’ creations, as well and especially loves to see her family getting creative.

Artistic Moms

  1. Break out mom’s art supplies & create, together. It’s ok if you don’t think of yourself as artsy. It’s about mom! Draw, paint, sculpt, and craft your little heart out for her. Build a birdhouse for mom at Mistletoe State Park or a flower delivery truck at Lowe’s just in time for Mom’s big day!
  2. Visit a special family location or new-to-you destination and give your photographer mom plenty of photo ops by posing and smiling for the camera!
  3. Take Mom to a Mother’s Day Arts & Crafts Show. There are several free arts & crafts festivals to attend, in Georgia, on Mother’s Day Weekend. Dunwoody Arts Festival, Barefoot in the Park (Duluth), Buckhead Arts & Crafts Festival, Colors Festival of Arts in Roswell, & and down on the coast we have St Simons Island Arts & Crafts Show to name a few.
  4. Find an art museum among this list of 125 Free Museums Around the South!

Foodie Mom

You know you have a foodie mom when she’s experimenting with a new recipe every couple days and always wanting to try new restaurants. If you have this type of mom, you can’t go wrong with food.

Foodie Mom

  1.  Make breakfast in bed for your mom. If you have a combination “Musical,” or “Movie Buff,” mom this is the perfect time to pop in the first DVD of your movie marathon or play some relaxing background music while you chat.
  2.  Does your foodie mom have a favorite restaurant meal? Do a search and try your hand at a copycat recipe!
  3.  If you know enough about your mom’s tastes, and have a little extra money to spend, pick up a cookbook by her favorite chef or a foodie magazine and spend the day trying a couple of the recipes. You can make the shopping list with mom or have everything already purchased and ready to prep.

Gardening Mom
These moms spend a lot of time caring for their other babies.. which are green & come from seeds. They maybe flowers.. they may be fruits & vegetables. But, they all grow in a garden. Your mom’s garden.

Garden Mom

  1.  Check out this Pinterest Board for Gardening with Kids activities and try some of the ideas for Mother’s Day!
  2.  Instead of cut flowers, pick up a potted plant.. It could be flowers, tomatoes or herbs, that she can transplant to her garden. Then, of course, help her do it!
  3.  Visit the Botanical Gardens. In Georgia, our State Botanical Gardens are free.
  4.  Weed & Read! Write some special love notes for your mom. It doesn’t have to be fancy. It could just be a simple list of things you love about her. Help her weed & maintain her garden, then sit for a spell and read your special note to her. If that makes you uncomfortable.. present a book by her favorite author (you can find LOADS of cheap books at the thrift store or the discount rack of a book store) and join her for a reading session in the garden.
  5.  Plan a picnic in Mom’s garden.


Movie Mom
This could be movie mom or TV mom. Either way, this mom likes visual entertainment… maybe it’s comedy, romance, drama, action or all of it!!

  1. Search your family DVD collection, or netflix, or your local used movie shop for your mom’s fave TV series and/or movies. Grab some popcorn & your mom’s favorite movie snacks and have a marathon. For extra bonus mom points, darken the room by covering windows (so it’s more like a movie theater) and have lots of pillows and snuggle time.
  2. If you can’t find any good DVDs (I dunno how that would be possible with a movie mom) hit the redbox and grab several movies for a few bucks.

Musical Mom
Your mom knows the words to every song! Maybe she even sings in the car and the shower and dances while she cleans the house and folds the laundry!


  1. Take mom to a free concert. Here in Georgia, there are a couple free concerts happening on Mother’s Day. Red Top Mountain State Park is jamming bluegrass Saturday evening (May 10)! In Sandy Springs, you can attend Concert by the Springs. You could also take her to Historic Fourth Ward Park for the Neighborhood Jazz Series.
  2. If you play an instrument or sing, you could make your mom’s day by playing a concert just for her. Learn a song she likes or just serenade her with something you already know. Either way, mom will love it.
  3. Make a playlist of mom’s favorite artists and jam out while you spend the day together.
  4. If your mom is a true music lover, you won’t go wrong introducing her to some new tunes you’ve heard or using YouTube to surf some search terms that will return interesting results like, “Beatbox Harmonica,” or ” Heavy Metal Bluegrass.”

Natural Mom
Moms who love nature also love the simple life. They just want to spend some quality time with Mother Nature and the ones they love. If your mom is always exploring the great outdoors, try some of these ideas for inspiration.

Nature Mom

  1. Visit a State or National Park near you. Some Georgia State Parks have programs happening on Mother’s Day! Cloudland Canyon State Park is hosting a special Mother’s Day hike on Saturday & another on Sunday!
  2. Take your mom on a free hike. Don’t forget to bring a pair of binoculars to watch birds and wildlife and some mom-friendly snacks or a picnic. If you’re in the Atlanta area, you’d do good to check out this list of 52 Hikes less than 2 miles long. You might find a hidden gem she’s never before hiked.
  3. If the weather turns ugly, have a backup plan to watch a few nature documentaries with your mom. You can search Netflix or check out this Free Documentaries website!
  4. Go on a day trip tour of a special natural wonder near you. Living so close to the North Georgia mountains, I’d pick waterfalls. You could visit Amicalola Falls, Vogel Falls, Dukes Creek Falls or check out this list of falls near Dahlonega. Stop by the visitor center in Helen for driving directions to more spectacular waterfalls.
  5. Go camping. If your mom likes camping, visit the Georgia Outdoor Map to locate a campground near you. Hint: Many of the WMA Campgrounds, on the list, are primitive but free.

Playful Mom
This mom is a kid at heart and just wants to goof and play around. Make this mom feel like a kid again! First things first, absolve her from any mom duties like laundry or floor mopping.

Playful Mom

  1. Break out the board games. Every family has a couple board games or a deck of cards lying around. If you don’t, a deck of cards or a game of checkers can be found at the dollar store.
  2. Do you have a gamer mom who doesn’t get much time to play her favorite video games? Have a video game party and play mom’s favorite games for change! Even if it is Tetris or old school mario.
  3. Spend some time outdoors drawing on the sidewalks with chalk & playing hopscotch. Play some childhood games sure to bring back moms memories.. hide n seek, jump rope, and even Mother May I.
  4. Get a free round of mini-golf at an Boomers!, Malibu or Mountasia on May 10. Just fill out this form and one coupon is good for a free round of mini-golf for up to 4 people.

Sporty Mom
Your mom plays hard! She’s an active mom with lots of energy. Maybe she has a favorite sport or just loves adventure.

Sporty Mom

  1.  Break out the equipment for playing your mom’s favorite sports…. do you have one of those family kits for badminton, croquet, or horseshoes? Or take your ball & bat, tennis rackets or basketball to the nearest court/field!
  2.  Visit JAKES Day (May 10) at Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center in Georgia to get your family outdoors & try your hand at a variety of different outdoor recreational opportunities for FREE!
  3.  Pull out the bikes and go for a ride. Mountain biking rekindled my love for riding bikes with the family. Check it out. If you’re in Georgia, you can hit the State Parks to join the Muddy Spokes Club, try mountain biking at Blankets Creek, ride the Silver Comet Trail or visit Atlanta Beltline (look in the upper left corner of the site for a link to the map).
  4. Enter the Dick’s Sporting Goods Pin it to Win it Giveaway for a $250 gift card.

However you decide to celebrate Mother’s Day with your family, I hope it’s a blast and your mom feels honored and loved! 




4 thoughts on “Easy, Free & Inexpensive Last Minute Mother’s Day Ideas

  1. What a great list of Mother’s Day gift ideas! Place in Georgia you’ve listed I have never visited so I’ll check them out. Thanks!

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