Sometimes the hardest part of writing is knowing where to begin. So
here are some simple ideas to help get you started. No matter which
idea—or combination of ideas—you choose to use in writing your letter,
just know that the most meaningful part about it is the effort you make
and the memories it’ll let Mom relive.
Compliment Mom on something specific
One of the best parts of writing an appreciation letter is having the
opportunity to get really detailed. It helps the person you’re writing
to feel seen and loved for who they are. So whatever you love about Mom,
tell her—but be sure to also tell her why!
For example, maybe Mom makes the BEST mac and cheese. But when you
think about it, you realize her mac and cheese is the best because:
- You were always taken care of when she cooked for you.
- You loved the casual conversations you had over meals at the kitchen table.
- Comfort food was part of how she helped you through tough times.
Whatever the compliment you’re paying her, don’t be afraid to go into
detail about why that trait or ability sticks out in your memory and
means so much to you. She’ll love the opportunity to see herself through
your eyes, and it’ll bring up great memories for her, too.
Thank Mom for something specific
Another way to get detailed and show Mom how much you were paying
attention to all her caring actions is to thank her for specific things
she’s done for you. You can talk about what it meant in that moment or
how it impacted your life down the road. Some thought-starters for this
- Thank Mom for a skill she’s taught you. It could be something
big like how to read and how she fostered a lifelong love of books. Or
it could be something small like how to load the dishwasher…and without
her, you’d be THAT roommate.
- Thank Mom for a lesson she’s taught you. Maybe she taught you
the importance of being honest, and it’s made a huge impact in your
relationships. Or maybe it was the importance of changing your
underwear—which can definitely also have an impact on relationships.
- Thank Mom for something she’s done recently. Maybe she got
you a thoughtful gift or suggested something fun to do together. Think
about times this year that Mom has gone out of her way to show that
she’s thinking of you, and tell her how much that means.
- Thank Mom for something major. Maybe she supported you when
you came out. Maybe she was there for you through struggles with mental
or physical health. Maybe she helped you achieve one of your proudest
accomplishments. Tell her that knowing she was in your corner through it
all made all the difference in the world.
The power of storytelling
This article gives lots of general suggestions for reasons to thank
Mom—but it’s up to you to make your thank-you letter unique. Let’s say
Mom helped you through a tough time this year. Close your eyes and
imagine yourself back there in that moment with her.
- Can you think of specific words she said that meant a lot?
- A specific place where you spent quality time together?
- What do you remember about that place—any sights or sounds or smells?
Details like that can help your letter tell the story of exactly why
Mom is so special. They also make your letter one-of-a-kind—something
specific to Mom that couldn’t be sent by anybody else. They show that
you have truly noticed and appreciated the unique ways Mom has been
there for you.
Make a top-ten list
Everyone loves a good “Top Ten” list, and moms are no exception.
Plus, there are SO many possibilities—you can go funny or sweet,
memory-based or make it about the future. Here are some “Top Ten” ideas
you might consider including in your appreciation letter to Mom.
- Top 10 Reasons I’m Glad You’re My Mom: Fill it with a mix of compliments and things you’re grateful for.
- Top 10 Mom Moments of 2022: If you spent a lot of time with
your mom, list your best memories with her from the past 12 months. It’s
like a heartfelt highlight reel.
- Top 10 Greatest Mom Quotes: Make a list of the funny or
memorable things she has said over the years…or the nonsense words she
says. Like when she can’t think of the word “screwdriver” so she asks
you to hand her the “hoobie-doobie.”
- Top 10 Best Mom Memories: Share everything from the first memory you can remember with her to your most recent memory made together.
- Top 10 Wonderful Ways I’m Like Mom: This can be fun, because
she may not know all the ways you’re like her. And she’ll love knowing
she shares those traits with you.
- Top 10 Things I Can’t Wait to Do with Mom: From sharing time
with her future grandkids to finally taking that trip to see Scottish
castles, she’ll love knowing you’re thinking about your future plans
No matter what kind of list you choose to make, don’t stress about
making it exactly ten items long—there’s nothing wrong with making it
shorter or longer.
Feel like writing just isn’t your thing? As much as we love
handwritten letters, we think video messages are a great way to go, too!
With Hallmark Video Greeting Cards you can record a video message
telling Mom all the wonderful things you would have otherwise written
down. And she can actually download the video to keep or even share it
on social to brag to everyone about what a thoughtful kid she has.
Write a letter from your former self
This idea takes a little more imagination and creativity, but don’t
let that scare you away! It’s really fun and she’ll love having the
opportunity to relive her time with you. To make this idea come to life,
write each paragraph of your letter from a different stage in your
- Start as a baby. You can include funny things that you’ve
heard stories about (“Sorry about that colic!”) and more earnest
thoughts like, “Nothing makes me cozier than snuggling with you in the
big green chair.”
- Move on to early childhood. Include the little song she used
to help you learn to tie your shoes. Or your most memorable Christmas
morning. Or that time you learned that you really, really should not cut
the dog’s hair.
- Include a paragraph from when you were a teenager. This is a
good way not only to reminisce but also to say what might have gone
unsaid. Like, “Remember that party you didn’t let me go to? I know now
you were looking out for my safety. And I’m glad.”
- Wrap it up with wherever you’re at now. Tell her how much her
love and support means, how her hard work has influenced your own
personal success. Whatever you feel will be meaningful to her, share it.
Tips on writing materials
There are a LOT of proud stationery nerds at Hallmark. (“OMG, where’d
you get that pen?” is a question often heard in meetings.) So of
course, our tips for making your appreciation letter the best it can be
will include paper and writing utensil suggestions.
- Use good, sturdy paper. This is a letter Mom is going to want
to keep. So writing it on something that can withstand folding and
unfolding—and saving through the years—is a great idea.
- Use a good pen! There’s nothing more frustrating than when
you’ve really tapped into your emotions and the words are flowing, but
the ink is not. (*shudders*) We love gel pens for their smooth writing
- Type it out first. If you’re worried about making mistakes,
feel free to type up your letter, make any edits you need and then copy
it by hand. Or, if you feel like the quality of your handwriting will
make the letter hard to read (chicken-scratchers unite!), just print it
out and sign your name in ink for a personal touch.
Finish with a warm closing
Right before you sign your name, add a warm closing. You can write
your own, or you can pick one from this list, which comes from our
article on what to write in a Mother’s Day card.
- With love,
- Lots of love,
- Love always,
- Love, always and forever,
- Much love to you,
- All my/our love,
- Love you,
- Love and cuddles,
- Hugs and kisses,
- With much love and admiration,
- Wishing you happiness,
- Warmest wishes,
- With heartfelt thanks,
- God bless,
- Con Mucho Cariño,