“I love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as your living, my baby you’ll be.” The words from the beloved book Love You Forever by Robert Munsch follows the life of a mother from the moment she gives birth to a son. In between she must deal with the insanity of raising a toddler to the headache of an unruly teenager. As he grows into an adult, she continues to sing the same sweet song until he is able to finally sing it to a daughter of his own. It’s a story that gets to the heart of motherhood, throughout all the good times and the bad.

This Mother’s Day we will hear slogans and sales asking us to give “something special for mom.” Traditionally, we answer the call with the occasional bouquets of flowers and Hallmark cards that somehow cause our mamas to look at us and smile. One would hope that our tokens of appreciation are enough for the one person who seems to put up with all of our bullshit, and still manages to loves us anyway.

However, flowers wither and the cards are eventually placed aside. One has to wonder if we took the easy way out. After all, what is left after the presents are opened, and how does one ponder upon words written by a stranger? The origin of Mother’s Day was actually a day advocating for peace between both sides of the Civil War. Yet, it was the efforts of Anna Jarvis, who wished to continue her mother’s legacy, that the celebration of mothers became a nationally recognized holiday. Ironically, Jarvis spent the later part of her life criticizing the holiday she started for losing its initial meaning.

“I wanted it to be a day of sentiment, not profit,” says Jarvis, who called greeting cards “a poor excuse for the letter you are too lazy to write.”

So how do we make for a more meaningful Mother’s Day for 2010? First, Jarvis does have a point about greeting cards. Our mothers deserve to hear it straight from our hearts how we truly appreciate them. Take some time out of your day and try it. If you do it right, it is probably be the hardest letter you will ever write, but the most valuable letter she will ever read.

Another important and meaningful Mother’s Day moment is probably the most common form of celebration in which you take mom out for the classic combination of breakfast and lunch. Remember those times when your mom couldn’t eat or sleep because you wouldn’t stop crying and pooping in her arms? Well, you probably should repay her for all that time lost with a relaxing brunch or dinner. Cooking for mom is a great gesture, and probably recommended by Jarvis, but totally unnecessary if your mother hasn’t already tried your cooking and personally requested you as master chef.

Restaurants know that Mother’s Day is the busiest time of the year, and so all across Los Angeles restaurants have already pre-approved a menu serving traditional and custom-made dishes at discount prices, with most venues offering complimentary champagne for your mom’s Mimosa. Two great sites to check out are Opentable.com and DowntownLA.com for their Mother’s Day deals where some restaurants are offering “mothers eat free” options or special parting gifts.

There are also other great events in the city that promise to make for memorable experiences. The Mother’s Day Festival on historical Olvera Street in downtown is a spirited cultural celebration that includes live music, carnival rides and aisles of Olvera’s famous Mexican crafts and tasty food. For a more mellow vibe, the outdoor Ford Amphitheatre located in the Hollywood Hills is having their 7th Annual Mother’s Day Jazz & Blues Extravaganza featuring a laid-back outdoor atmosphere of smooth and soulful jazz and blues. The theater boasts that no patron is more than 96 feet away from the stage. And Madame Tussauds Hollywood hosts "Moms-Go-Free."

Even with all these events, it seems rather contrary for our appreciation to last only one day. Unfortunately, this is the sad truth, but at least if all else fails there is one gift that trumps them all: just plain old being there with mom.