This DIY project is a variation on the classic 1950s card shower, updated and modernized for the 21st century. The idea—a slideshow and video tribute—is simple, but it has the ability to bring the warmest of smiles to your mother's face as she basks in the nostalgia of old photos and the kind words from loved ones. This project does take some pre-planning, so get the word out soon and give yourself some time to make Mother's Day 2020 really incredible!
Step 1: Get the Word Out Early
To make this process go as smoothly as possible, getting a jump on the planning stage is key. Notify friends, family, co-workers, distant relatives, and even high-school classmates that you're planning a video tribute and give a deadline to receive photos and videos. These can be in color, black-and-white, new or old. Dig out your baby photos (and your siblings' baby photos) and dad and mom's wedding album. Ask Grandma to send photos of mom as a little girl. Scan her senior photo from her high school yearbook.
Step 2: Request Photos and Videos
Friends and family can also send tributes. A script can be helpful, as well as a time limit and suggestions for the background (plenty of light, no clutter). The invitation might look something like this: "We're honoring HELEN this Mother's Day with a video tribute. If you'd like to participate, email photos of HELEN and/or a video by May 5. Your video should be 60 to 90 seconds, and you can use your phone or laptop camera. Please upload the video to YouTube and send me the link. In the video, tell us your full name, then tell a personal story, wonderful childhood memory, or why you're grateful to have HELEN in your life. Wrap it up by wishing HELEN a Happy Mother's Day 2020. Feel free to dance, use props or signs, make decorations, or do anything else to make HELEN feel special."
Step 3: Create the Tribute to Mom
Using the electronic photo and video files, create a tribute for Mother's Day. There are lots of programs online with templates based on holidays and occasions; two easy-to-use ones are Shutterfly and Smilebox. Consider using a combination of photos with captions and then pop in videos that are especially entertaining, funny or heartwarming. Don't worry if you don't use all the photos and videos—people can see all of them on Mom's new YouTube Channel, including a slideshow of all the photos and all the individual videos. Post to Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, and add a Spotify playlist of all Mom's favorite songs, and you've got a remarkable bespoke gift that will let Mom know just how amazing you know she is. Happy Mother's Day!
Michele D. Baker is a freelance travel writer and photographer. To learn more, visit MicheleDBaker.com.