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Feliz Día de las Madres (Happy Mother's Day)!

What holiday falls on el segundo domingo de mayo (the second Sunday in May) in the United States?

 

Es el Día de las Madres.

It's Mother's Day.

Caption 3, Cleer y Lía El día de la madre

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Although the day on which se festeja (it is celebrated) varies from country to country in the Spanish-speaking world, many of las costumbres  (the customs) overlap. That said, let's talk about some ideas for celebrating your mother while learning some pertinent vocabulary in Spanish! 

 

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Ways to Say "Mother" in Spanish

Just like in English, there are many ways to refer to one's mother in Spanish! Let's take a look: 

 

madre: mother 

 

Tenía que comprar un regalo para mi madre

I had to buy a gift for my mother.

Caption 9, El Aula Azul La Doctora Consejos: Por y para

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mamá: mom 

 

Es que eran unas flores muy bonitas, y se las quería regalar a mi mamá.

It's just that they were some very beautiful flowers, and I wanted to give them to my mom.

Captions 12-13, Guillermina y Candelario El Rey de la Selva

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ma: ma/mom/mommy

 

Aquí estoy, ma.

Here I am, Mom.

Caption 45, X6 1 - La banda - Part 11

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mami: mommy

 

Ah. -Tú le diste el teléfono, ¿no, mami?

Oh. -You gave him the phone number, right, Mommy?

Caption 26, Yago 11 Prisión - Part 8

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However, note that in certain contexts, "mami" is a slang term for "baby":

 

Mami, te prometo que esto se va a arreglar

Baby, I promise you that this is going to get fixed

Caption 19, DJ Bitman El Diablo

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Another word that could be used to say either "mommy" or "baby" in Spanish is mamita (whereas mamacita would always refer to an attractive female rather than an actual mom).

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Mother's Day Gifts 

You may have noticed in the examples above the Mother's Day-appropriate vocabulary words regalar (to give, as in a gift), el regalo (the present), and las flores (the flowers). What might be another typical item to give to your mother on Mother's Day?

 

Estoy leyendo mi tarjeta de felicitación.

I am reading my greeting card.

Caption 9, Marta Vocabulario de Cumpleaños

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While the speaker in this caption is referring to a birthday card, la tarjeta de felicitación could refer to any type of "greeting card" (if you'd like to brush up on your birthday vocabulary, check out this lesson on Todo sobre los cumpleaños (All About Birthdays) in Spanish). Other typical Mother's Day gifts, like una caja de chocolates (a box of chocolates) might overlap with your Spanish vocabulary for Valentine's Day

 

Additional Gift Ideas 

What might be another way to  sorprender (surprise) your mom (the noun for "a surprise" in Spanish is una sorpresa)?

 

Mi mamá es muy buena conmigo siempre y por eso decidí sorprenderla con una torta de chocolate

My mom is always very good to me, and that's why I decided to surprise her with a chocolate cake

Captions 5-6, Cleer y Lía El día de la madre

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As Cleer mentions, cocinar (cooking) or hornear (baking) something for her could be nice, as would servirle un desayuno en la cama (serving her breakfast in bed). And, if you want to include a scrumptious beverage in the equation, we recommend this tutorial on how to make mimosas

 

Alternatively, you could invite your mom to salir a... (go out to...) desauynar (breakfast/brunch), almorzar (lunch/brunch), or the anglicism, brunchear (brunch).

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How About a Spa Day?

A day at the spa or un tratamiento de belleza (beauty treatment) might be just what mom needs to relajarse (relax) and sentirse valorada (feel appreciated). Let's take a look at the names for some services she might enjoy: 

 

Tenemos, eh... la facial de una hora que es la clásica

We have, um... the one-hour facial, which is the classic one,

Caption 10, Cleer y Lida Conversación telefónica - Part 2

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un largo y tierno masaje,

a long and tender massage,

Caption 23, Aprendiendo con Silvia Pequeños grandes placeres - Part 2

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También ofrecemos manicure y pedicure.

We also offer manicures and pedicures.

Caption 13, Cleer y Lida Conversación telefónica - Part 2

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Manicures and pedicures might also be referred to as la manicura/la pedicura in Spanish. 

 

Spending Time with Mom

In addition to the aforementioned suggestions, pasar tiempo (spending time) with your mom in any capacity is bound to go over well. You could opt for the previously suggested meal together, or perhaps some outing to hacer senderismo (go hiking), ir al cine (go to the movies), or in the best of cases, ir de vacaciones (go on vacation). And, if you don't live near your mother, llamarla (calling her) would certainly make her day. 

 

Sweet Things to Say to Mom

We'll conclude this lesson with a few nice things you might say to your mom on el Día de la Madre (another way to say "Mother's Day" in Spanish), or any day! 

 

Te quiero/Te amo: I love you (Note that in some countries, the verb amar (to love) refers to only romantic love, while in others, it is appropriate for family members).

 

Eres la mejor mamá del mundo: You're the best mom in the world. 

 

Gracias por todo lo que has hecho por mí: Thank you for everything you've done for me. 

 

Estoy muy agradecido/a: I'm very grateful. 

 

Another way to direct some kind words to your mother might be reciting a poem, such as this suitable one entitled A mamá (To Mom).

 

For more Mother's Day vocabulary (and a great chocolate cake recipe!), watch Cleer y Lía- El día de la madre, and don't forget to recognize your mom, grandma, or any other great mom you know on el Día de las Madres... and to leave us your suggestions and comments!

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Vocabulary

Abbreviated Expressions in Spanish

Let's learn a few abbreviated expressions and words in Spanish. They are really useful to make your Spanish sound more natural:

Entre nos comes from entre nosotros (between us). It's used to indicate that what you are about to say should not be shared with anyone else, it's between you and your interlocutor:

Aquí entre nos, quien sí me importa es Leo.
Between you and me, the one that does matter to me is Leo.

 Instead of por favor, you can simply say porfa:

 

Tranquilo, tranquilo.

Calm down, calm down.

-Tranquilo, pibe, tranquilo. -Gardel, porfa... -Pero...

-Calm down, boy, calm down. -Gardel, please... -But...

Caption 55, Yago - 11 Prisión

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Some people prefer to use porfis for a more playful or silly tone:

 

Porfis, porfis, reporfis.

Pretty please, pretty please, extra pretty please.

Caption 58, NPS No puede ser - 1 - El concurso

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As in English, there are many words that are usually abbreviated in Spanish. For example most people say bici instead of bicicleta (bicycle), moto instead of motocicleta (motorcycle), refri instead of refrigerador (fridge), conge instead of congelador (freezer), compa instead of compadre (buddy), depa instead of departamento (apartment), or peli instead of película (movie). 

 

A mí que ni me busquen, compa

For me, don't even look, buddy

Caption 51, DJ Bitman - El Diablo

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y ahí nos mo'... nos movíamos en bici,

and from there we mo'... we would move around by bike,

Caption 4, Blanca y Mariona - Proyectos para el verano

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Another classic example of an abbreviated expression in Spanish is the use of buenas as a greeting instead of buenas tardes, buenas noches, or buenos días:

 

¡Muy buenas, Mar! -Encantada. -Soy de 75 Minutos.

Very good afternoon, Mar! -Delighted. -I'm from 75 Minutes.

Caption 5, 75 minutos - Gangas para ricos

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It's also common to use abbreviated versions of names and titles. For example you can use abue instead of abuela (grandmother), ma or pa instead of mamá (mother) and papá (father), poli instead of policía (police, cop), profe instead of profesor (teacher), secre instead of secretaria (secretary), dire instead of director (principal), ñor and ñora instead of señor (sir) and señora (madam) [or seño instead of both], peques instead of pequeños (the little ones, kids), etc. 

 

Felipe López. -Yo lo planché ahorita. -Acá, profe.

Felipe Lopez. -I'll iron it right now. -Here, Teach.

Caption 43, Misión Chef - 2 - Pruebas

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