True, moms don’t mind jewelry or other trinkets each second Sunday in May (aka Mother’s Day) … but then again, that’s what husbands are for. All mom wants from you, her little angel, is the gift of “quality time.” Grant her wish this May 10 by planning an activity that gets you two together, talking and having fun. Here are a few no-to-low-cost, easy-to-plan ideas that will help you bond with the woman who embraced you when you came out.

Offer to help with a small project around the house. There are probably a million little things that mom needs someone to do around the house (Dad’s not gettin’ any younger, after all). On Mother’s Day, ring mom to ask what projects she’d like help with. She’ll probably tell you not to worry about it, but let her know that this is your gift to her and it’s something you’d like to do. Bring your supplies and tools and get started.

Invite her over for a one-on-one brunch. Family brunches are fun, but they can get chaotic. This year, take mom out for a one-on-one brunch so you can connect with one another without interruption. If you have a large family that prohibits this on Mother’s Day because they’re planning on celebrating together, schedule another date and time so you and mom have the best of both worlds.

Pick up a pair of tickets for a free show around town. Free shows are hard to come by, but you might find something that mom will enjoy with stealthy Internet research. If you can’t lock down a show that’s free, dig a little deeper for venues that may be running a Mother’s Day special where mom gets in gratis. Those are fairly common in lieu of a totally free event.

Get in the kitchen and bake! My best collection of memories including my mom and my grandmothers are baking goodies around the holidays or for special occasions. If you two like spending time in the kitchen, spend the day baking a few of your favorite cakes, pies and pastries that you can either eat yourself or give away to a few of your favorite people. Baking with mom is a great way to hark back to your childhood, recall favorite memories of your own, and act like you’re a kid again as you lick the spoon … so long as it doesn’t spoil your dinner.

Dish the gossip over a board game. Just like you have a busy social life that keeps your quality time to a minimum, mom likely has a social life, too. And what do people with active social lives like to do? Gossip, of course! So let’s dish. Set up a board game, brew a pot of tea and put out a plate of cookies for you two gab pals to nibble while you blab everybody’s deepest, darkest secrets — in the strictest of confidence, of course.

Polish your green thumb and get in the garden. If your mom is the kind of lady who likes to put on those cute little hats, aprons and gloves while she gets down and dirty in the garden, offer to lend a hand. She’ll probably want you to pull weeds (because nobody wants to pull weeds if they don’t have to) while she plants the pretty flowers, but this outdoor activity is an ideal way to catch up on each other’s lives while giving back to nature. As a special treat, bring over a pitcher of homemade lemonade to quench your thirsts after a few hours of manual labor.

Grab a bottle of wine for a picnic in the park. When was the last time you enjoyed a picnic in the park … with your mom? Twenty years ago? Ever? Close that gap by planning a picnic in a shady spot within your favorite green space (Klyde Warren, Reverchon, Lee). Pack mom’s favorite foods along with a bottle of wine, then kick back, nosh and chat while enjoying the flora and fauna.

Reminisce over home movies or photos. Give the movie marathon idea a twist by screening your own home movies, or pulling out those old-school photo albums. They’ve probably been hidden away for a decent amount of time at this point, so it’ll be a treat for you both to look back on happy times. Just make sure you bring the tissues; there’s no way you’re getting out there with dry eyes on mom.

— Mike Rox