Gifts for the First Anniversary of a Mother's Death

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It's been a year since your friend or loved one's mother passed away and it's time to let the bereaved know you're still thinking of him and his loss. No matter how much time has passed, it can still be difficult to know what to say. In many cases, it's better to simply give a meaningful gift and a sympathetic hug.

The pain of her mother's death is just as real now as it was the day she died.
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Although the bereaved may have come to terms with his loss a year after his mother's death, you can be sure he still wants to feel her presence. Find photos of him and his mother and make a photo lampshade for him. He'll remember happy times whenever he sees it. Or, ask a friend for one of her mother's sweaters. Take it to a toy maker and have a teddy bear made from it. You could also make a quilt for the bereaved using squares from his mother's clothing and bed linens.

Help her to feel again wrapped in her mother's love.
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Sometimes gestures can be more effective than gifts. Work with the other friends of the bereaved to set up a small scholarship in honor of her mother. Use the money to help needy kids pay for whatever her mother most valued; for example, language lessons, new clothing or participation in sports. You could also plant a memorial tree for the bereaved's mother. Place a marker in front that says "In loving memory of (mother's name) on the first anniversary of our loss."

Purchase and decorate a small cemetery memorial.
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The bereaved may be dreading the anniversary of her mother's death and the prospect of reliving the terrible pain. Help take her mind off of it by reminding her that she still has friends and people who love her. Throw a small memorial party. Make it a happy occasion by inviting guests to prepare funny stories about the deceased and how she touched them. You could also organize the bereaved's friends into a rotation of helpers during the anniversary month. Arrange to have a friend drop in every couple of days to offer dinner out, going to a funny movie, going shopping or getting a manicure.

Being there when the bereaved needs company is a wonderful gift.
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A pretty bouquet is a fail-safe sympathy gift that shows you care and are thinking about the bereaved. You could also find a picture of the bereaved's mother and present it to her in a photo locket with a chain, or buy her a small bracelet and have a memorial message engraved on the back. Or, browse a bookstore for an inspirational book on grieving and loss. Bake some homemade treats and take them to the bereaved's home. Write a letter to the bereaved expressing your sympathy and shared grief.

Tempt the bereaved with a sweet treat.
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