These days, we usually give our moms a shout out on Facebook or Instagram for Mother's Day. Our picture collages are always well-designed and our photos are always precious, but our moms deserve a little more, don't you think?

Since you're in college and probably spending every penny you have on textbooks and microwavable meals, you can only do so much. You want to show your mom you care, but it just isn't reasonable to pick up a diamond necklace or plan an expensive professional family photo session. In order to give you adequate preparation for the big day on May 14 of this year, I've compiled a few of my favorite Mother's Day DIY gifts that your mom will actually love. 

1. The Legendary Photo Recreation

We're a photo-driven culture, and chances are, your mom has had some kind of Nikon around her neck since the late '90s, so this is perfect for anyone. And you can double dip for Father's Day, too! Take a handful of your favorite childhood photographs and recreate them to the best of your ability in your new grown-up face and body. My sister and I did this a couple years back, so I'm not as "adulty" as I am now, but you get the point.

Kamrin Baker
Kamrin Baker

2. A Car Wash

Hear me out on this one. I know it feels lame to do one of those coupon book-esque chores for your mom on her special day, but if she's anything like my momma, she will appreciate it so much. Clean out the inside of her car and vacuum that baby up. Then, get out your Shamwow and a bucket of soapy water and make the outside shine, as well. It saves everyone money, and if you're even more well-versed in auto work, you can tune-up other parts of her car and give her a sweet oil change while you're at it. 

3. An Ode to Motherhood

Ever since I was a wee little thing, I wrote my family poems on odd holidays. For example, my sister just uncovered an Easter poem from my third grade days, and my favorite and most notable rhyme was, "today is about religion / but the Easter bunny only believes in that a smidgen." Mother's Day is no exception. Since not everyone has the gift of poetry, I've included one you can use yourself. If this isn't your style, you can always stick with a pretty acrostic or simple haiku. Snaps and bongo drums appreciated. 

Kami Baker

4. Bake a Cake

This would mean a lot to my mom because I can't do anything successfully in the kitchen. Even if I partnered with Betty Crocker, she would be proud that I worked my tail off making something just for her. However, I believe you all have more skills and can do a better job than I can. Of course, you could search through Pinterest for some cake (or other dessert) recipes, but I'll attach one for you below. Top off your cake with sprinkles, flower piping or a kind message and I'm sure she'll be awed by your attention to detail. See below for the ingredients to a Strawberry Sparkle Cake and click its name for a full break-down of what to do!

Angel food cake:

-15 whole egg whites, at room temperature

-1 teaspoon cream of tartar

-1-1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, sifted three times

-1 cup cake flour

-1/4 teaspoon salt

-1 teaspoon vanilla


-1 package (3 oz.) strawberry jello

-2-1/2 cups boiling water

-1 package (1 pound) frozen sliced strawberries


-1-1/2 cup heavy cream

-2 tablespoons sugar

5. Plant Some Love

Plants are trendy among millennials, but they can also be extremely meaningful to our mommas. First, you'll want to find a pot or container for your plant that can be decorated and painted in a variety of ways. I usually stick with a classic terra-cotta pot, but you could also get a big ol' mason jar or a small tin bucket to paint or decorate as you please. My mom's favorite flower is a tiger lily, so I would get a packet of those seeds for her and some Miracle Grow. Snoop around until you find out what her favorite plant might be, or even surprise her with something new and exciting. You can either plant your new little buddy yourself or make it an activity with your mom to do the day of Mother's Day, or perhaps make a tradition out of it.

6. A Playlist

You know all those embarrassing middle school days when you would beg your mom to turn off the oldies? Give that back to her. Let her turn the music up and jam out like she's young again. You could even throw in a couple sounds that are your personal favorites to show her how things compare nowadays. You can easily make one of these using 8tracks or Spotify, or if you're trying to go the extra mile, burn a CD!

Whichever DIY idea sparks your interest, your mom loves you and you love her, so it's definitely the thought that counts. Make sure you still write out a card for her, even if you have to make it out of printer paper and mechanical pencils running low on lead. Make sure she knows she's loved and make it one to remember.

Lead Image Credit: Pexels