Don't make her say, 'You shouldn't have'

Published May 11, 2007

Behind all the mushy ads for flower arrangements for Mother's Day there are plenty of vacuum cleaners with ribbons on them. The worst Mother's Day gifts can wipe out all the well-intentioned ones that preceded them faster than that top-of-the-line toilet brush can wipe away stains.

By the way, guys, if your wife gave birth to your child do not -- if you care to avoid sleeping on the couch -- ever say to her, "But you're not my mother." Get her a gift and thank her for mothering your child.

So consider this your warning flare, kids, and your life preserver as you consider Mother's Day gifts.

A set of pots and pansPretty pottery or earthen jugs at the Florida Craftsmen Gallery, 501 Central Ave. in downtown St. Petersburg, or something from the Tampa Museum of Art's gift shop, 600 N Ashley Drive.
Breakfast in bed way too early when the kids get upLetting her sleep in and taking the kids out of the house for the day. Check out the Jurassic sharks at MOSI's "Monsters of the Deep" exhibit or the brand new "I Can Construct" play area at Great Explorations: The Children's Museum in St. Petersburg, where they can play in a two-story tree house.
Any kind of cleaning gadget A spa day or splurge-worthy beauty supplies like the Mini Heated Lash Curler ($16) sold at beauty authority Sephora at International Plaza in Tampa.
An apronA shirt with the kids' (or grandkids') hand or footprints on them. You can get the fabric paint at craft stores, T-shirts from Wal-Mart and handprints from your offspring.