Mothers Day Treasures – Showing Love to My Adult Kiddos

With Mothers Day approaching, I reached out to Julie Lavender. Besides being a wonderful model for mothers and grandmothers, Julie has two books I know you’ll want to check out. Following Julie’s inspiring ideas are some resources for parents of prodigals. Now Julie…

With Mothers Day around the corner, my thoughts wander to my four, now-adult children who’ve flown the coup to parts unknown. Well, that’s not completely true – one child lives upstairs temporarily until he finds an apartment close to his new job and, well, the location of the other three are known to me … just farther from my doorstep than I’d like.

Yet, they are all living the exact lives I prayed for them from the time they were born – walking with the Lord, accomplished the education goals they set for themselves, established in jobs they love, healthy, and full of joy. I’m grateful God gifted me with these four kiddos to raise and treasure.

Just last week, my sweet three-year-old grandson, a bundle of energy, hung out with me for ten days. I offered the visit with Benaiah as a gift to my daughter and her husband for her birthday. She turned thirty this year, and I wanted to make it a special time for her.

Actually – I let her husband do the birthday planning to make it special – I just supplied the caregiving for my grandtreasure!

Benaiah and I picked strawberries, trekked to every park in the county, toured the Wildlife Center on the University campus, colored on long strips of freezer paper, put together and played with train tracks, bopped balloons in the den, played soccer, caught toads, touched a turtle, called an owl, scooped sand, watched a National Geographic kids’ show about scuba divers because that’s his passion right now, and much more.

His parents rented a camper-converted-from-a-van and camped at two local, yet never-experienced parks in Chattanooga, got a couple’s massage, visited the zoo, worked around the home without a three-year-old’s assistance, and dined out frequently.

In other words, a good time was had by all! I would argue I had the most fun, but I hope my sweet grandson’s pleasure rated at the top of the scale, too.

I enjoy showing love to my children, even if those kiddos are adults now. Babysitting – though I’d much prefer to call it Camp Grandmommy – is one way I like to show love to my daughter and her husband.

Here are a few other ways I’ve found to express love to my adult kids.

  • Sprucing up my bachelor son’s apartment when I visit.
  • Baking their favorite childhood goodies to take when I go for a visit.
  • Preparing and freezing casseroles to deliver when I visit.
  • Mailing giftcards for their favorite restaurant to say, “I love you – take a break from cooking and treat yourself to dinner.”
  • Sending greeting cards for no particular reason or occasion.
  • Texting silly memes or messages in a family text.
  • Boasting about them on social media.
  • Buying inexpensive treats for random holidays or occasions, like Thanksgiving or Fourth of July or fall or last-day-of-school or new puppy or promotion at work.
  • Helping with home or work projects, at their requests, like organizing the garage or reading over an important newsletter and offering suggestions or helping make classroom decorations for a new school year.
  • Taking care of the bill when we go out to eat during visits.
  • Making a point of attending church with them when we’re together.
  • Prioritizing a phone call from them, if possible, by putting aside whatever I’m doing and truly listening to their conversation.
  • Reminding them often that I love them!
  • Praying DAILY for them (and letting them know that!).

With Mothers Day around the corner, the best “gift” I could ask for is just being mommy to my four amazing kids and two bonus sons-in-love.

What about you? What tips can you add to my list? I’d love some new suggestions for showing love to my adult kiddos!

What about you? What tips can you add to my list? I’d love some new suggestions for showing love to my adult kiddos! @JLavenderwrites #MothersDay Share on X


Julie Lavender loves showing love to her family with words and actions (especially if there’s cooking or baking involved) and special treats. She is the author of 365 Ways to Love Your Child: Turning Little Moments into Lasting Memories and Children’s Bible Stories for Bedtime. Her interview with Focus on the Family about showing love to children aired in January, and she’d be honored if you’d click to watch the video.

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Resources for Parents of Prodigals

How to Help Your Prodigal Youtube of Larry Wilson speaking with Knowing God Ministries.

Mothers of Prodigals  and How to Rescue Your Prodigal posts

For individual and family help go to

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  1. Michele Morin

    These are great! Greedily shared the tweet hoping for even more ideas from the twitterverse!

    • Debbie Wilson

      I agree, Michele. I love her ideas and hope to get more.

    • Julie Lavender

      Thank you for sharing, Michele!!! I hope to get more ideas, too! I like to keep them in my mental filing cabinet, and I could use some new ones!!!

  2. J.D. Wininger

    Have enjoyed all these mentioned, including several of yours Ms. Debbie. All make great gifts to friends and family.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Thank you, J.D.! You are a great encourager.

    • Julie Lavender

      Thank you, J.D.!! Always the encourager!! I appreciate the read and the share and the comment!! You are a blessing to me! I hope life on the ranch is going well for you and the Mrs.!!!

  3. DiAnn Mills

    Lots of great tips here! Thanks.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Thank you, DiAnn. Julie is amazing.

    • Julie Lavender

      Thanks for taking a look, DiAnn! I appreciate the sweet words!

  4. Ann J Musico

    I absolutely love this and try to do many of these things for my children who now have children of their own. I adore my grandchildren but I also love and adore my kids and I love finding practical ways of showing them. Happy Mother’s Day!!

    • Debbie Wilson

      Thank you, Ann. I hope you have a wonderful Mother’s Day!

    • Julie Lavender

      You sound just like me, Ann! I absolutely adore my grandson, and love doing fun things with him, but I still love doing thigs for my adult kids. I’m thinking I will always feel that way! Thanks for reading and commenting!

  5. Jeanne Takenaka

    Deb, these are fabulous ideas! As a mom who will be launching two boy-men into the world in the next few years, I am collecting ideas for the future. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

    • Debbie Wilson

      Jeanne, you’re so wise to be thinking ahead. Happy Mother’s Day!

    • Julie Lavender

      Jeanne, I think you’re wise to be collecting in advance, too! For me, it was hard to “launch” my kiddos, because I just loved having them in the house with us, raising them, homeschooling them … but I had to remind myself that the goal is to raise godly young men and women and send them “out into the world.” But it was hard! Collecting ideas now to stay close to them and continue showing love is a wonderful idea!!

  6. Joanne Viola

    I loved this and am always looking for new ways to bless my adult children and their spouses. It is such fun to discover a new way to bring them an unexpected joy. May you both have a very Happy Mother’s Day!

    • Debbie Wilson

      You too, Joanne!

    • Julie Lavender

      Thank you so much for reading and commenting, and Happy Mother’s Day to YOU as well! I’m glad you included spouses in your comment, because I should’ve clarified that I like doing that now, too! I have two sons-in-love and hope to have daughters-in-love one day, too. I love including the “bonus adult kiddos” in with my treats, too! Thanks for that reminder!!

  7. Annie Yorty

    What wonderful and heartfelt tips you offer for loving your grown children. I feel richer!

    • Debbie Wilson

      Thank you, Annie. I really enjoyed Julie’s tips.

    • Julie Lavender

      Thank you so much for your very kind words!! That really warms my heart and touches me this morning!!! Blessings, and thanks so much for reading!!

  8. Nancy E. Head

    What wonderful ways to maintain the connections between generations. From the time they’re little until we go home, it’s all about making memories. For our family, it’s very often food across the table. Since we’re a big family, all the birthdays and holidays mean we don’t often go too long without getting together. And as you say, texting is a great way to share pictures, news, and fun. Fabulous. God bless!

    • Debbie Wilson

      Nancy, what a gift to be able to celebrate together in person!

    • Julie Lavender

      I agree with Debbie – what a treasure to be able to share festivities in person with your kids. “Food” (baking or cooking or eating) is my love language, so I love the idea that food across the table provides such great memories for your family. And YES! I couldn’t agree more that it’s all about making memories!!! Material possessions are worthless without the love of family and making those memories!!! Thanks so much for reading and sharing!

  9. Yvonne Morgan

    Those are wonderful ideas. My kids are all grown now too so I made some notes from your ideas. Thanks for sharing these lovely ideas.

    • Julie Lavender

      Thank you so much for reading and commenting. I’m glad you enjoyed the ideas. As someone said above, it’s “all about making memories.” Memories with my kids and now, grandson, are so invaluable to me, and I love anything that contributes to my wealth of memories with my family. Blessings!

  10. Katherine Pasour

    Wonderful suggestions, Julie! One things mothers continue to do forever, I guess, is to find ways to show their love for their children. I’m so glad you and your grandson has a wonderful time together while his parents enjoyed some special time together. A great gift!

    • Julie Lavender

      Thank you for reading and commenting, Katherine! I’m convinced I had the most fun of all of us, but it was special to me to be able to hang with my grandson, knowing that our time together meant his parents had special time together!!! Blessings!

  11. Barbara Latta

    What a beautiful Mother’s Day gift you gave to your daughter. As the older generation, we know what stresses and issues young mother’s can face. We all need to rest our bodies and explore recreation for mind relaxation. I love both of Julie’s books and they provide a great idea for a Mother’s Day gift. Thanks for sharing, Debbie!

    • Julie Lavender

      Thank you SO much for your kind comments, Barbara!!! I appreciate you and your never-ending encouragement and support!! Yes, we “older generation” moms can still remember those stresses from our mothering days of little ones. And it gives me great pleasure to give my daughter a much-need break, especially around her birthday and Mother’s Day in order for her to relax and celebrate!!! Many blessings, my friend!

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