Despite its bad rep as a Hallmark Holiday, Mother's Day has historic significance that pre-dates the sappy greeting cards, flowers, and candy: During the American Civil War, social activist Julia Ward Howe organized it as a way to unify women against war and promote nonviolence. To honor the day's original mission and say "Thanks Mom!" we've compiled a list of treats that will leave every type of mama—including Mama Earth—feeling peaceful and proud.
Call for climate action by hosting or finding a Mommy Meetup on Mother's Day weekend. Greenpeace is commemorating the powerful voice that mothers have by organizing gatherings across the country where families can voice phone messages calling for positive change. The messages will be turned into an online audio collage for Congress, the press, and the public to hear.
Paperless Greeting Cards
You could pick up a card days in advance go to the Post Office...stand in line and mail it for a nice big carbon footprint or for just $1, you can send mom unlimited VIDiGREETs in support of the video e-card's Million Moms For Mother Earth Program. All of the proceeds will go to ClimateChallenge.org, a project by the Energy Action Coalition which unites 46 organizations, over 700 local groups, and tens of thousands of young people across the U.S. and Canada to build a clean and just energy future.
Treating mom for dinner? We aren't surprised: According to the National Restaurant Association, Mother's Day is the most popular day for Americans to dine out. That's a lot of energy expended on restaurant equipment, food preparation, and non-renewable materials. If you can't whip up a homemade brunch for mom, use the Eat Well Guide to locate a local, sustainable restaurant. You'll both feel good chowing down on fresh, seasonal ingredients that are low-impact on your waistlines and the earth.
Flowers never go out of style. Make mom glow with a fresh bouquet of roses from Organic Style that arrive on her front step. The flowers are grown with minimal environmental impact using sustainable crop and ecosystem production and fair labor practices. Though mail order shipping isn't the greenest way to show you care, the blooms are packaged in a biodegradable corn-based sleeve. Bouquets range from $39.95-$79.95.
Liz Lovely's Mother's Day Cookie Sampler
They might not be as good as her own, but any sweet-toothed matriarch would enjoy hanging up her baking cap to indulge in Liz Lovely's certified organic, fair trade and vegan cookie sampler. For $22, a bakery box—touting a 100% post-consumer recycled "Happy Mother's Day" label and a biodegradable ribbon—comes with 2 Cowboy Cookies, 2 Cowgirl Cookies, 2 Peanut Butter Classics, 2 Ginger Snapdragons, and 2 Mochadamia Mountains. Maybe she'll share
Aveda Spa Services
She spent her whole life pampering you—here's your chance to return the favor. Locate Ma's nearest Aveda salon to book her an afternoon at the spa. A gift card in the amount of your choice can go towards a massage, facial, or haircut that utilizes organic, plant-based products in post-consumer recycled packaging. Mom will feel beautiful inside and out knowing that she's patronizing the first beauty company manufacturing with 100% certified wind power.
With all the debate about Bisphenol A, help keep the queen bee healthy and hydrated with this stylish, reusable and safe water bottle from Sigg. Its water-based, non-toxic lining prevents leaching and keeps water tasting like water—not plastic. With 50+ designs to choose from, all around $20, there's sure to be a bottle that matches mom's kitchen tile and your budget.
Organic Heirloom Tomato Garden
Both expert and budding gardener ladies will appreciate this easy, garden-ready eco-friendly container which grows a harvest of juicy heirloom tomatoes. The indoor/outdoor pot is made with rice hulls and organic pigments making it 100% biodegradable. And for only $20 a pop, it'll fit any budget.
VivaTerra's Soft As Silk Bamboo Pajamas
Mom is a green goddess in the bedroom with these silky pajamas made from one of the world's most renewable fabrics—bamboo. For a sexier look, the form fitting rouched top can be worn without the bottoms, which can also double as yoga or lounge pants. The versatility will have mom thinking she's scored two gifts in one! For $98 a set, the PJs come in powder pink or turquoise.
Electra's Amsterdam Classic Bicycle
This simple 3-speed European-style bike is fun for joy rides but also makes a perfect lift for multitasking mommies on the go. With 41% of car trips in the U.S. at less than two miles, mom will feel car(e)-free and stylish running errands or commuting. At $610, the price may seem steep, but the alluring, earth-heroine feeling mama will get riding this bad girl will be priceless.