A word on buying gifts for anyone, not just mothers: The key to great gift-giving is to think of what they love, what they love to do, what would make their life easier, or what would give them the warm fuzzy feeling.
Example: Does your mom love to bake? Does she have the most awesome KitchenAid mixer on the market? No?
Go get her a 6-Quart in a color that matches her kitchen. See how that works?
Some of us find office supplies intoxicating, and not just because we left the lid off the rubber cement. A collection of new supplies can be a great gift if your mom is the sort that loves organization, labels, and a new pen.
Fine-point colored Sharpies? Hello, my reasonably priced lovelies.
Is the mother in question a lover of internal processors? Clearly, she needs an iPad.
“But I don’t even have an iPad,” you say. Oh yeah? You wouldn’t even have a life without her. Get some perspective, Jones. And then get her a carrying case for that iPad from her favorite designer...or my favorite designer:
Looking for a less expensive techy gift? I'm throwing this out there:
A USB flash drive shaped like a tampon. Oh, I went there. And you can get it here.
Stuff to Wear
If your mom is of the practical sort she might enjoy this adorable turquoise flat for only $40 from Nordstrom.
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And if your mother is of the not practical sort (am I your mother?) she might forgive you for 36 hours of back labor if you announce you bought her these $835 Fendi genuine snakeskin pumps.
I absolutely love these earrings from Darlybird.com. I have a similar pair in same coral color and they make any outfit adorable. And at $14, you can afford a matching pair for yourself.
Does your mom have a piece of jewelry that is sentimental but that she doesn’t ever wear? What about having that jewel reset? Did she lose one pearl earring but kept the other? Have a jeweler turn it into a pendant. Warning, get on that ASAP if you want to make it happen since your friendly local jeweler gets awfully busy this time of year.
Really Good Chocolates
If you buy your mom a Whitman Sampler I’m coming to your house to beat it out of you. What do I recommend? Leonidas Chocolates. They are not cheap at $40 a pound, but not outrageous either. I had a friend call me after I suggested she snag a box and tell me that she started crying when she tasted them. BAM. That’s chocolate. Get some that makes your mom cry.
My favorite gifts are the sentimental/warm-fuzzy “They really get me” gifts. I’ve gone to some lengths, I tell you what. Went in with my siblings and bought my mom a $200 ham imported from her native Spain, hoof still attached.
She couldn’t believe her eyes when she found it on her pillow. Now, a ham with a hoof probably isn’t your mom’s idea of “they really get me,” but my mom shed a tear and sliced into that thing with abandon.
Want to make a sentimental present? How about the PostCup?
Write a message for your mom that she can keep forever.
Is there something else from your mom's childhood? Yoohoo Soda, birch beer, a snack cake she mentioned once in passing? You can track down anything on the Internet, just put some thought into it.