We've covered the best Mother's Day gift ideas for every budget, but there's nothing quite like quality time with Mom. If you are on lockdown to protect yourself and those around you, you may be at a loss for how to celebrate Mother's Day this year, without being able to see your mom in person. We've researched the best ways to celebrate Mother's Day virtually, with options for free and paid-for experiences which you can share with Mom and the whole family over video call. For more ideas of free things to try from home, check out our roundup for fun things to do online right now.
First things first: most virtual Mother's Day hangouts will require a video call. We love the Facebook Portal for simple hangouts where you can move about and stay in frame, and it's now on sale for Mother's Day for that reason. You can set it up from WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, or use the best laptops for built-in webcams.
1. Throw an online surprise party
How do you throw an online surprise party? Get your mom on an impromptu one-to-one video call, and share the link with friends and family. After a casual chat with Mom, get your loved ones to dial in for a surprise party for Mother's Day, complete with confetti, bubbly and some fun activities prepared.
If timed well, adding a constant stream of new faces to the video call can be a sweet touch to show Mom how much you all care, so stagger your attendees' entrances and collaborate with your whole family.
2. Airbnb online experience
Airbnb is running a great range of virtual experiences in the absence of their IRL options! What makes this such a great idea is the ability to meet experts and interesting people from around the world. Some of our favorite experiences include lessons in cooking regional and international food, such as Japanese Mochi and real Italian pasta.
There are also lessons in yoga and crafts, not to mention live musical performances from professionals also stuck under lockdown! Check out Airbnb's full range of options here.
3. Family trivia night
Who says you can't learn while in lockdown? Get each person in the call to prepare a trivia round on a given topic and test your general knowledge over a drink! Here's some ideas for topics to get you started:
- Pop culture
- Who said it?
- TV shows
- Mom trivia
That's right, to commemorate the big day, why not have a round to see how well you really know Mom? It's a good way to learn and reflect on your family history, and hopefully earn some extra credit!
4. Indulge in a wine tasting
If making your own cocktails at home is too labor-intensive, or you don't have the right ingredients, sending Mom a box of wine for an at-home wine tasting is a great way to indulge in some (responsible) drinking fun.
We like Winc for its gifting options, and right now you can get $20 off a box - send one to Mom, or order one for yourself and send her a gift card, and share a bottle over video call.
Alternatively, check out the best gift baskets for some boozy options which you can pair with food!
5. Go to the theater and see a Broadway show
Loads of theater companies are streaming their plays online, which means you can see hit shows with the best view in the house, while sat on your couch wearing sweats. It pretty much doesn't get better than that for a Mom who's cultured and loves comfort.
One of the best free offerings comes from the musicals of Andrew Lloyd Webber, which stream live each Friday at 2pm EDT, and usually remains viewable for 48 hours afterward. He's already done Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and The Phantom of the Opera on The Shows Must Go On YouTube channel, so tune in before Mother's Day to see what's available to stream for free.
6. Play a virtual game
Many have been turning to online games as a way to keep in touch with friends and have fun while doing it. It may be the case that Mom has access to one of the best video game consoles, but if not you can still engage in some online gaming with apps on the best smartphones such as QuizUp(a trivia app which pits you against each-other on hundreds of general knowledge topics), Scrabble, online chess, and virtual bingo.
7. Have a cocktail making evening
In the absence of being able to take Mom out for a mojito, there are dozens of online workshops which can teach you how to make your own from home. This can save you money in the long run, and it's a great way to use up spirits and experiment with new flavors and cocktails. And if you don't have the gear? This cocktail shaker set is 30% off.
8. Have a spa evening
You can still pamper Mom when you're not together. Some skincare sets feature face masks, wine and skin treatments to help you both unwind and indulge. We like this Mother's Day spa gift basket, which features skincare essentials, rosé and reusable wooden spa accessories. Another option is this Estée Lauder regenerating skin set, which features six regenerating products. Order one for Mom (and yourself) and enjoy your spa night together, even if you're apart.
9. Have a pizza party with Netflix and a takeout
In the time of lockdown and self-isolation, ordering takeout and having a movie night is the ultimate indulgence (or for some of us, just a regular Tuesday night!). The Chrome extension Netflix Party will let you sync up on Netflix videos and watch movies, shows, and documentaries. Order Mom her favorite takeout and settle in for a movie night, just be sure to let her pick!
Netflix is our pick of the best TV streaming services, with loads of original content you can't find anywhere else. If you don't have a subscription, you can now watch these 10 educational Netflix documentaries for free.
10. Visit a museum
One of the few perks of lockdown is the ability to tour some of the world's most prestigious museums, for free (and without the crowds!). People queue for hours to see the Sistine Chapel (and when they get there, they can't take pictures), so the ability to do a virtual tour of The Vatican is a great way to indulge with Mom in some classic architecture.
For some amazing Feminist history, there are also online tours of the National Women's History Museum, which has exhibits on women in STEM, fashion, and the women of NASA.