Mother’s Day: What Women Really Want From Their Adult Kids

Mother’s Day brings a spending spree as Americans dole out a record $21 billion this year for cards, flowers, jewelry, gift certificates, electronics and gardening tools, as well as creating a crush at restaurants for brunch and dinner on Sunday. While the typical expenditure is $175, our 25- to 34-year-old children will spend the most of any age group, averaging almost $250. Of course, that doesn’t mean they are splurging only on moms; many will buy gifts for their wives …

The Mother Lode

My daughters, Alexandra and Jennifer (right), sure hit the gene jackpot: As heirs to my beauty and fashion sense, my steely self-confidence, my quick wit and collection of Chanel bags, these are two lucky babes, let me tell you. Along with those desirable traits, though, I worry that I’ve passed along some questionable ones: We share an addiction to eye makeup, over-the-top bling and I-could-smell-you-coming-a-mile-away perfumes. Look up “subtle” in the dictionary and there’s not a Johnson family photo in …

Be Generous, but Give What You Can Afford

African Americans/blacks have a history of giving. More than two-thirds give to churches and organized charities. We also give to family members who need help paying bills, college students who need tuition assistance and others. We are responsive to our churches and Greek-letter organizations that make appeals. >> AARP Financial Freedom: News, Tips, and Resources for Your Financial Health I applaud the giving tradition and am, indeed, part of it. Yet it is important that our gifts are part of …

4 Valentine’s Scams to Avoid

Libelula Roja was looking for love… She thought she found it on Match.com, which quickly moved to Instant Messenger. “He said he was an engineer living in Florida, with his own business, and the father of a son. He wrote perfectly — no ‘scammer grammar.’ He seemed ideal.” Within two weeks, “Robert Miller” had hooked Roja, a hospice worker in California, with declarations of love, promises of a life together and a request for money to help secure a job contract in Cairo. …

Scents for Your Dollars

Sorry, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry, but your name on a perfume bottle is not enough to entice a choosy sniffer like me. That’s because the fragrances we wear aren’t confined to our bodies: They live in our clothes, waft through our closets and linger in the imaginations of those we hold closest. For me, one whiff of Noir by Tom Ford says my husband is around, while a hint of Joy by Jean Patou announces my mom’s in …

Are Your Kids Too Old for Gifts?

Between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it’s impossible to get away from the message that we should be making a list and checking it twice. We wondered if adult children ever age out of the gift list. Not really, according to a very random survey among boomer women, both online and at a local gym. “You’re never too old for gifts from parents,” said a 25-year-old trainer who overheard the discussion. “At least I hope not!” Most moms surveyed, however, …