Almost every year my children are part of the 58% of grandchildren who don’t get to see their grandmother in person. For years we’ve relied on Skype to stay in touch and create meaningful moments across the miles and this year we’ll be doing it again because for the first time in a long time, I’ll be spending Mother’s Day with my mom and away from my kids! Just like we use Skype to stay in regular contact with my parents throughout the year, I know we’ll be using it to say hi and connect on Mother’s Day too.
If you’re like us and can’t spend Mother’s Day with the special women in your life due to distance, my good friend, Jeannette Kaplun of Hispana Global, has some great advice on how you can still make their day special. Jeannette is an award-winning journalist, internationally recognized parenting expert, and fantastic friend who I first got to know through our first trip to Haiti. Her thoughtful tips tips makes it easy for families to honor the women they love on Mother’s Day and throughout the year in practical ways that don’t require a lot of time but yet make important people in your life feel special. Here are Jeannette’s six tips that I hope your family can use this Mother’s Day.
Send a video message instead of a traditional greeting card.
Skype makes it super easy to personalize your feelings. The best part is that mom doesn’t have to be online at that moment, and it’s a gift that can be played over and over again. It’s also super practical with young children – you can record a video message when they are full of energy, rather than hoping they’ cooperate when you finally reach your mom.
Enlist your kids to help out and plan a group video surprise.
Since younger kids don’t always like to speak, have them sing a song. Use the Skype app on your Smart TV to do a video call, and have your kids do a special dance routine to their favorite music for grandma. If you don’t own a Smart TV, simply use your tablet, smartphone or computer.
If you have a large family, surprise grandma by planning a group video call with your siblings and cousins at a specific time. This way, she gets to see all the people she loves.
Take a virtual walk down memory lane with a shared online photo album.
Create a photo album of special moments you’ve spent with your mom, grandma, stepmom, etc. Upload and share it on OneDrive, then reminisce together on a voice or video call.
Don’t forget stepmoms!
Call early in the day so your stepmom knows she’s a priority, too. Share a special memory you have of the time you have spent with her and tell her how much she means to you. We often forget to tell them.
And a few tips for dads.
Mother’s Day can be challenging if you need to split time between your mom and the mother of your children. Rather than a store-bought greeting card, create a personalized one just for mom with special photos of you together. Share the file with her via IM while you are video chatting, and watch her surprise. You can also send a Skype gift card so it’s easy for mom connect with you on Mother’s Day, and any day.
Huge thanks to Jeannette Kaplun and Skype for these great tips. No compensation was received for this post. I’m just so proud to be sharing such fantastic ideas from a wonderful friend! Images courtesy of Skype.