Make my mom's day!
May 6, 2008 4:38 PM   Subscribe

So what are you getting for your mom on mothers day?

Mothers day is just around the corner and i once again am stuck. My mom is young, in good health, and currently at the beach with my dad. She has pretty much everything she wants...

Other the lunch out or a Starbucks gift card, I am stuck with no ideas!

Help me hive!
posted by keep it tight to Human Relations (32 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
My mom (in her late 50s) always talked about this picture book she had when she was about 7 or 8. It was her favorite book and misplaced over 40 years ago. It is long out of print, but I found a copy of it on AbeBooks and bought it for her. It was the one and only time I have made her cry out of happiness.
posted by meerkatty at 4:45 PM on May 6, 2008 [3 favorites]

my mother has everything she could ever want and more. i give her a card and, if i'm in town, spend the afternoon with her doing nothing special. we might go out to eat as a family. we're not terribly sentimental, though.
posted by thinkingwoman at 4:47 PM on May 6, 2008

I sent her strawberries and fudge dipping sauce, because I remembered fun times we had eating chocolate-dipped strawberries when I was young, and I hope she does too.
posted by Countess Elena at 4:48 PM on May 6, 2008

I like to give gifts that can eventually be used up (e.g. food, a favorite perfume, gift certificates, etc.) This year I'm getting these potted lavender plants for both my mom and my grandmother, because they both keep houseplants. In the past, another good gift I've gotten her is a gift certificate to her favorite nail place, which would keep her in manicures for several months. Is there anything like that that your mother likes to do on a regular basis? Favorite restaurants or shops? Something you know she likes that's a little hard for her to get? I get my grandmother her favorite perfume for holidays (you can only get it online, and grandma doesn't do computers).
posted by LolaGeek at 4:49 PM on May 6, 2008

meerkatty that's so sweet!

keep it tight, consider giving your mom tickets to something going on in her town. Over the years I've given my mom symphony tickets, minor-league baseball tickets, tickets to Bill Cosby (she liked that one a lot).
posted by headnsouth at 4:53 PM on May 6, 2008

i have live lobster delivered. iit's her favorite and a rare treat. t's a fairly heavy amount of food for $100 or so. only recommended if your mom knows how to cook it... but there's some great other stuff there too!
posted by eatdonuts at 4:56 PM on May 6, 2008 [2 favorites]

Depending on how sentimental your mom is, she might like an audiotape of you (and if possible, any siblings you might have) reminiscing over the 'good old days' of your childhood, talking about family vacations, things you guys used to do/discuss at dinnertimes, maybe little things you remember that she might have forgotten ... maybe you could talk a little about stuff that meant a lot to you even though maybe she didn't realize it, or whatever else you think might mean a lot to her.

Tapes like that can make for a great keepsake for years down the line. And moreover, I'm not sure anybody ever really "gets" how much they've impacted anybody else's life, or how much what they did was really appreciated; something where you could just let her in on a little of that might make for a memorable gift ...
posted by zeph at 4:57 PM on May 6, 2008 [1 favorite]

I'm a mum, and I have pretty much everything I want. I don't want my kids adding to the clutter in my house - I'm trying to get rid of a lot of things in order to travel.

However, I enjoy fresh flowers but don't buy them because it's an extravagance, so cliched as it is, I'd enjoy that. Extra music (in my taste) in a digital format would be good. Experiences - hot air balloon ride, a day out with bikies (yeah, you can buy that here), yummy food (bonus points if you make it yourself), these would be very good things. An offer to clean out my fridge, or weed my garden - that would be divine. Time with my kids not squabbling with each other, doing something we all enjoy, building memories, that I didn't have to organise or cook for - that's priceless.
posted by b33j at 5:10 PM on May 6, 2008

My mom's pretty progressive and didn't want me to send anything - carbon footprint and all. So I got her a Kiva gift certificate and I'll be sending a video (via a weblink) of us all saying hi.

I also bought her the URL for her small business as well (and hosting it at Dreamhost which is carbon offset), so I'm going to send all her mother's day presents to her new email address - forwarded to her Yahoo account.
posted by Gucky at 5:13 PM on May 6, 2008

Fresh flowers.
posted by frobozz at 5:31 PM on May 6, 2008

My mother and I exchange plants and vodka tonics. YMMV.
posted by mygothlaundry at 5:36 PM on May 6, 2008

It's cliche, but I got some flowers sent to her from ProFlowers. She likes having fresh flowers around the house, and I don't live nearby. If I did, I would take her out for brunch and maybe schedule a hair appointment or a manicure for the both of us.
posted by k8lin at 5:38 PM on May 6, 2008

I'm getting my mom an umbrella for outside by the pool
posted by AsRuinsAreToRome at 5:41 PM on May 6, 2008

I'm a mom, a letter from my kids would be perfect! (NO! not an e-mail!)
posted by 6:1 at 5:58 PM on May 6, 2008

My mother lives way across the country, and won't be home during mother's day, but from my last Christmastime visit I remembered that she was casually looking for something to put up on the living room wall.

So, voila!. She was a little surprised, but after putting it up she loved it, people are constantly asking her where she got it (which is great for me, because then she has to talk about how awesome my taste is)

If she was in a larger city - tickets for myself & her (or dad & her, depending) to a play/concert/etc. In a heartbeat.
posted by Lemurrhea at 6:09 PM on May 6, 2008

I got tickets for the two of us to go see a play together. I think I'll also present her with flowers when we meet up for that.
posted by arianell at 6:15 PM on May 6, 2008

If you can't think of anything, I'd definitely say flowers. Every mom loves flowers. Pink roses are a safe bet.

Personally, I got my mom a Berkshire Serasoft quilted throw. My mom is a blanket fiend. I got one of these earlier this year with the intent of using it in the guest room, until I tried it one day and now can't sleep/watch tv/read without it. I mention this not because you necessarily need to get your mom a blanket, but because you might think of something awesome that you like that you think your mom would appreciate.
posted by radioamy at 6:23 PM on May 6, 2008

I try to remember her voice and her sense of humor and what a generous person she was. Because she deserves to be remembered by her kids.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 6:26 PM on May 6, 2008 [1 favorite]

My Mom likes Crabtree and Evelyn, so I am sending her a little something from their online store.
posted by misha at 8:01 PM on May 6, 2008

In addition to the standard flowers I'm getting my mom a full-on HTPC and all the necessary ancillary equipment. What would've cost her $1,000 for hardware and labor I was able to do for a net of $28 (and a lot of time).
posted by aerotive at 9:16 PM on May 6, 2008

Last year, my sister and I (who live in a different city than my mom) arranged to have an anchovy pizza delivered to her house when we knew she'd be home. As kids, we would flip out whenever she got anchovies on a pizza because, to us, it tainted the whole thing. She loved that we remembered that little detail from when we all used to share meals - is there something like that that you remember from growing up? It's the little thoughtful bits that she'll remember.
posted by troika at 9:49 PM on May 6, 2008

So what are you getting for your mom on mothers day?

Nothing. My mother is a psychologically abusive manipulative narcissist, and it took me years to escape from her emotional clutches.

The best gift you can give your mother is to tell her how grateful you are to have a mother who is worth honoring on Mothers' Day.
posted by amyms at 9:59 PM on May 6, 2008

Write her a poem of your love for her and what she means to you.
posted by rmmcclay at 5:56 AM on May 7, 2008

My mom likes a big potted outdoor plant to hang on her porch all summer - petunias, million bells, something like that. We've made this a tradition. This also gives Mr. Kyoto and me a chance to go to the plant nursery when we visit her, as we will spend the weekend starting up the vegetable garden at her place. I may even make a Mother's Day dinner. I don't think moms like a whole lot of clutter - spending some time is just nice for everybody.
posted by Wylie Kyoto at 7:01 AM on May 7, 2008

Well, my mom is 90 and lives independently in a retirement apartment complex. I'm giving her cash. It took me a while to get over feeling this was crass. Instead I came to realize it gives her dignity. We have her finances set up for rent and food and all. But she can't get to a bank to cash a check and having pocket money means a lot. So I stuff a bunch of bills in an envelope and she has a stash of money to do everything from tipping her hairdresser to slipping money in cards to the grandkids.

Also, I gave her a gift one year of a wooden box filled with a year's supply of greeting cards for every occasion, writing paper, stamps and pens. She was overjoyed with that as well.
posted by lpsguy at 7:53 AM on May 7, 2008 [1 favorite]

Last year I pulled together a pretty good present for my mom - she loves healthy snacks but that stuff can be kind of expensive piece by piece, so i bought this huge basket, went to a nice Co-op I frequent, and filled the basket with every kind of trail mix, snack bar, dried fruits, nuts, etc I could find. I think I stuck a CD and a work-out-type shirt in there too. she really liked it! I find people (in my family at least) like homemade "baskets-of-stuff" when you find a cute theme and really make an effort to fill it with cool stuff.

she's also liked subscription/membership stuff we've gotten her too, like a membership to a yoga studio or a gym or a book club.
posted by silverstatue at 8:37 AM on May 7, 2008

My mother's SO hard to buy for. Like most women past middle age she has everything she needs and doesn't want more stuff around. She has no real hobbies that require perpetual purchasing. She has very exacting tastes so it's hard to select something she really likes. She doesn't read much anymore because it tires her eyes. She has to work to keep trim and wouldn't thank anyone for giving her treats. And yet three times a year (Mother's Day, her birthday, and Christmas) I have to come up with something.

But I always manage. Here are some guidelines I follow:

- Things that can be used up are ideal. Gift certificates to restaurants, tickets to events, magazine subscriptions, gift certificates for massages or manicures and the like, bottles of wine.

- Cater to whatever interests she has. Mum's very into her garden, so for Mother's Day she usually gets a potted plant and some other little thing. She is also a crossword puzzle fiend, so books of puzzles are welcome.

- If you must get her stuff, think small trinkets that don't take up a lot of room. CDs, jewellery. I can pick out the kind of simple yet distinctive jewellery my mother really loves (though I can't seem to please her with clothes!) so a piece of jewellery once in a while is welcome.

- Ask the people closest to her for ideas. My sister still lives at home so I periodically ask her if Mum has expressed a wish for anything or if she sees some kind of need. Also keep alert yourself for gift ideas in your interactions with your mother. My mother mentioned that she has a thing for owls not long ago ("Because they're wise and they have big eyes"), so I'm on the look out for a cute owl-themed gift. This year for Mother's Day, besides some potted plant for her garden, I am giving my mother a pair of kneepads. I'm doing renos at my house and love my pair because they really take the misery out of working on the floor. I said as much to my mother, and she mentioned how she has a square of carpet for when she scrubs the floor but that she usually has thrown it aside by the time she's done because it's so much of a nuisance to have to keep adjusting it. So I thought, ah ha! She'll like a pair of kneepads because she can strap them on and forget about them.
posted by orange swan at 10:00 AM on May 7, 2008 [1 favorite]

I usually get flowers as I know she loves them, but this year I had a hibiscus plant sent to her. She has a nice patio out back where I think it would look nice. Otherwise, she really never wants anything. She'd love it if the whole family went home, but as she is visiting us next week, that didn't make much sense.
posted by genefinder at 10:15 AM on May 7, 2008

My mother is a hoarder - so getting her any"thing" is against my ethos. I usually try for tickets to a show.
posted by Sophie1 at 12:29 PM on May 7, 2008

I sent my mom a cookie bouquet, beyond that I made her a scarf and bought jewelry.

Pity me, though- my mom's birthday is either around or on Mother's Day, so I have double the gifts, double the pressure, and she "doesn't want anything." :P Oh well, at least having stuff sent to her office makes her happy.
posted by jenfullmoon at 4:17 PM on May 7, 2008

This year my sister and I are sharing a gift certificate to the spa last named best of Boston, and we're taking her out to her favorite place for brunch. Oh, and I'm coming home for Mother's Day.

I don't like giving "thing" gifts, but my mother likes to receive them, so I've given her special (distinctive) jewelry, stuff with our photos on it (she loves that shit), we've taken her out to several brunches, shared manicure/pedicure type things, we've given her tickets to concerts, etc.

The tickets have been the biggest hits with the exception of one particular broach that was handmade and silver and featured a mother and a small child and an older child and that she hinted for ages that she wanted. (She's generally good with hints.) (By Jill O'Reilly, but the broach was from ages ago and I can't find it on her website.)

I'd love to hear from more moms as to what they like to receive.
posted by n'muakolo at 5:38 PM on May 7, 2008

I'm embroidering my mom a reusable shopping bag - rather, I am embroidering ON a reusable shopping bag! She's a sucker for anything I make myself - she acts like I'm a 5 year old bringing home a macaroni picture.
posted by tristeza at 1:50 PM on May 8, 2008

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