05/06/2013 12:38 EDT | Updated 07/06/2013 05:12 EDT

While My Kids Are Young, Mother's Day is More Like Family Day

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Daughters giving mother Mother's Day card

Mother's Day is, by far, my favourite Hallmark holiday. Though no one will dare acknowledge that's what it is, let's call a spade a spade here: It's totally a Hallmark holiday. Oddly, I'm totally OK with that.

I don't need any grand gestures on Mother's Day. Maybe when my kids are older (they're four and two now) they'll help daddy cook me terrible tasting pancakes and make freshly squeezed orange juice with way too much pulp in it. And that will be awesome. But for now, while they're so young, my expectations are similar but different. I don't expect flowers and jewelry. In fact, by far my favourite gifts every year from my daughter have been whatever craft she made for me at daycare.

I won't lie, the Tiffany necklace my husband got for me two years ago that had my kids' initials, when my son was a newborn and my daughter was two, was the perfect gift at the time. I treasure it as we had just completed our family the month before. But my kids were really too young to do anything, and that was more a gift from my husband than my kids.

Related: Mother's Day Gift Guide

But my kids are both old enough now to contribute to some handmade-with-love art work, and so my husband is divested of the role of gift purchaser. I look forward to seeing what they come up with this year.

For my family, Mother's Day is more like Family Day. We have been going to my brother and sister-in-law's for a big family brunch every year to celebrate our moms and, four years ago, I got to be celebrated there too. I look forward to that brunch every year, because it's nice to be with my mom, and my children, and the mom of my niece, and her mom too. It's special to me to be surrounded by the moms of some of the best ladies I know. I enjoy being celebrated among them. It makes the day special for me, which is really what Mother's Day should be about.

I distinctly remember the first Mother's Day gift I ever went out and bought my mother independently with my allowance money. It was a cheesy picture frame that says "I love my mommy" in a messy crayon-looking text, that I put a pretty bad picture of myself as a baby being held by my mom. I remember feeling such pride in giving her that gift. Oddly, it's the one she remembers getting the most, and still has it displayed in her house, original-chosen picture included, 25 years later.

Written by Leslie Kennedy for

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