How do you choose a Mother’s Day gift for a mom who is notoriously impossible to shop for, like my own mom? Three times a year (her birthday, Mother’s Day and Christmas), my brother calls and asks “what should I get mom?” She lives with me, after all, I should have some idea! The problem? I don’t even know what I want, let alone what to get her. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of things that I want. A house, a car that isn’t constantly on the verge of breaking down, a fridge that doesn’t sound like a rocket getting ready for takeoff. Things that really aren’t in the average Mother’s Day gift giver’s price range.
These Mother’s Day gift ideas, on the other hand, fit into just about every budget. I’m pretty positive that you’ll find something affordable that your mom will love, even if she is crazy hard to shop for! I loved every one of them after all, and I’m not exactly the easiest person to buy for! I don’t like to use the word “unique” because it’s just so overused (and misused) on the internet, but all of these gifts are original in their own way. Check them out!
Original Mother’s Day Gift Ideas
*I received or am receiving most of the products below in exchange for sharing them. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. One more thing: I did write a lot more about some gifts than others. That in no way means that I liked them better or recommend them over the others on the list. It’s just that some of the gift ideas needed a bit more explanation than others to really explain what I loved about them.
Aera Smart Home Fragrance System
If mom loves filling her home with scent, the Aera Home Fragrance System is pretty much the coolest gift you could ever give her. I am insanely crazy about this thing. It’s unlike any fragrance system I’ve ever used.
Aera is an unassuming device that fits into any decor scheme. We have ours on top of a bookshelf. It doesn’t take up a ton of space, yet it manages to scent our entire home. Seriously, our entire home. You can smell the amazing fragrance from the upstairs hallway, the bedrooms (if the doors are left open, which alas they rarely are because Freya steals things), the kitchen…everywhere. One device can scent up to 2,000 square feet.
It’s hard to explain Aera because I think a lot of its mechanics are technical, something I’m not good at putting into words. Basically, you pop in a scent capsule (follow the directions carefully). The machine sucks it down, then you pick one of ten settings based on how large your space is. If you have it in a closed room, you’ll want to choose a lower setting. For whole-house fragrance, go with a higher setting. If the scent is too strong, just turn it down a bit. Too light, turn it up. Once you figure out the ideal setting, you don’t have to do much. I can even control my Aera through an app on my phone!
Aera is incredibly eco-friendly because it doesn’t use propellants to distribute the scent. This is where the tech stuff comes into play. Basically, it converts the liquid inside the capsule into droplets that turn into fragrance molecules that just explode into the air. I suggest reading their FAQs for more details. The starter set comes with a fragrance capsule of your choice. When it arrives, you’ll receive a scratch-n-sniff leaflet so you can check out the other scents. My favorite so far is Moondance, with notes of Bergamot, Iris & Amber. My husband likes the Poetry scent, with notes of Eucalyptus, Vetiver & Guaiac Wood. We just received two new scents that were just released in honor of Mother’s Day & Father’s Day: Mosaic and Indigo. Since the starter kit comes with extra plugs, I can switch out scents whenever I want (I also saved the plugs that came with them).
One teeny bit of advice: read the directions. I didn’t read carefully and left the red plug in (see above). Then I couldn’t figure out why it wasn’t working. My mom said “don’t you need to take that out?” I said “oh no, I think that’s just there for when you have to pull it out!” No. You DO have to remove that! It’s right there, in the instructions. I am notorious for either not reading directions or just reading half and assuming I know how to do the rest on my own.
Head to the Aera website to check out more details about the fragrance system and learn about all the different fragrances. Aera offers free shipping on all orders, no code required. Follow area on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with news.
Consol Solar Jar Sunshine in a Bottle
Give your mom a bit of sunshine in a bottle with a Consol Solar Jar! High-tech green energy solar power meets the traditional mason jar in this beautiful jar made in South Africa. I love a Mother’s Day gift idea with a good story, and the Solar Jar definitely has one. It was developed in South Africa in 2011 as a source of light for people living in areas without electricity. Made from recycled glass, 70% of the materials used actually come from South Africa. Even more important, the company that designs and manufactures them trains unskilled workers and has created jobs for men and women in the region.
The beautiful thing about the Solar Jar, aside from its back story, is that it’s incredibly versatile. As is, it’s kind of a metaphorical and uplifting statement piece. Even during the darkest hours, you’ll always have a little bit of sunshine by your side. You can also fill it with just about anything. I added some river rocks (full disclosure, they’re fake dollar store river rocks, because rivers and I are not a good mix) for now. I am thinking of putting a tiny succulent in it. Can I do that? Can they grow in jars? I’m not really good with plants.
Solar Jar is easy to use. Just place it in a sunny spot during the day to charge the solar cells. Then at night, push the lever-like thing down on the handle to connect the dots. The inside will light up! It’s not an incredibly bright light. You can’t really sit and read a novel by it. It is, however, a beautifil ambient light. It’s also bright enough to guide you through a campsite (or through a dark house, if your power goes out). I took it into my windowless bathroom and it’s brighter than most of the flashlights that I have on hand for emergencies, and most definitely brighter than the candles we use. Plus, it’s a whole lot safer!
Other ideas include glittery beads (I think they’d look pretty as the light catches them), potpourri, and even coffee beans! The Consol Solar Jar Instagram page is full of inspiration. Visit their website to buy or order one from Amazon.
Nixplay Iris WiFi Digital Frame
Digital frames have come a long way over the years. I had one around a decade ago that was neat but, quite honestly, not user-friendly and most certainly not stylish. It looked like more like a tablet than a frame. Nixplay Iris, on the other hand, looks like a beautiful framed photograph. It just so happens that the photo changes at regular intervals (which you can set).
With Nixplay Iris, you can easily send your favorite photos to your frame anytime and from anywhere through a user-friendly mobile app. Just select the pictures you want and upload them to your phone. Invite friends and family to send photos to your frame by becoming Nixplay friends. Don’t worry, you can control your playlist and which pictures you include through the app. You can also use the desktop app for even more control. Shuffle pictures, add captions, display a clock and more with the push of a button. While the frame comes with its own remote, if you happen to lose it, you can use the app as a remote, too.
Pictures are taken in so many different places, under different lighting and with different levels of photography skill. Nixplay adjusts the lighting to make sure that every picture looks its absolute best. I’m not saying it can take that grainy, dark picture and turn it into a masterpiece, but it does show off your favorite shots in the most beautiful way possible. It also brightens and dims based on your ambient lighting AND has sound sensors so it turns itself on and off depending on whether or not the room is occupied. That way, it’s not wasting energy and bandwidth if no one is around. You can also set a sleep timer so it goes off automatically at a certain time.
Got so many pictures that you can’t decide which you want to share to the frame? No worries! Nixplay doesn’t rely on an itty bitty built-in memory card. Instead, you get 10GB of secure cloud storage. Yes, that means that you do need to connect it to your WiFi to get your pictures, but it’s totally secure. The frame itself comes in three beautiful silk-metal finishes. I chose the Peach Copper because it goes well with my living room colors, but it also comes in Silver and Burnished Bronze. Setup took less than five minutes. While photo upload time depends on your internet connection, it went fairly fast for me. My internet connection has been horrific lately, so that’s definitely saying something. Things must have been pretty quick on their end to make up for the lag on my side!
COUPON ALERT: Right now, the Nixplay store is running a great Mother’s Day special. Buy one frame, get 25% off. Buy 2, get 35% off, buy 3 and get 40% off! Promotion ends on May 14th. Follow Nixplay on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with news and other deals throughout the year.
Planted with Love Gift Basket
There’s a reason gift baskets are a go-to idea for just about everyone that is hard to shop for: they’re easy to customize and hard to go wrong with. If your mom loves gardening, she’ll adore the Planted with Love Gift Basket from 1-800-Baskets.com. It comes stocked full of tasty treats, like an incredibly rich and delicious nutty dark chocolate bar and sweet & creamy strawberry yogurt covered pretzels.
The thing that really takes it to whole new levels of perfection, though, is the Too Good Gourmet® Chocolate Cake Mix in a Flower Pot. I haven’t had a chance to make mine yet (saving it for Mother’s Day weekend), so check out the picture courtesy of 1-800-Baskets.com for a better look.
Insanely cute, right? When you’re done devouring that darling cake, you can reuse the pot for planting flowers (I totally just typed “flours,” in what was probably my most appropriate typo ever). Grab mom a few more planters and she can put them all in the Scroll Metal Wire Metal Basket when she’s done eating her goodies! It will look adorable on a windowsill or deck railing. Visit 1-800-Baskets.com to order!
Cheryl’s Cookie Flower Pot
Cookies are always a good idea. Well, unless your mom doesn’t like them, but honestly, I think it’s impossible not to like Cheryl’s Cookies! We first tried them back around Halloween and fell in love with the soft cookie texture and the sweet buttercream frosting.
The Happy Mother’s Day Cheryl’s Cookie Flower Pot comes with a dozen delicious cookies shaped like flowers and butterflies and slathered in Cheryl’s signature buttercream frosting. Some of the cookies have a little something extra, like a sweet candy button or butterfly. They are all bundled together in a reusable metal bucket. The beautiful Mother’s Day banner across the is made of thick cardstock. After Mother’s Day, mom can either leave it on as a reminder of the holiday or remove it and use the pail for just about anything she wants. I plan to use it either in my bathroom to organize beauty supplies or in my kitchen to wrangle odds and ends.
Visit Cheryl’s Cookies to order this cute Cookie Flower Pot and check out other great Mother’s Day gift ideas. Cheryl’s and 1-800-GiftBaskets, along with a few others, are all part of the same company, so you can order both in one order if you want.
Earth Wax and Fire Artisanal Creations
My Earth Wax and Fire Creation is currently on its way to me, traveling across the ocean as fast as it can. As soon as it arrives, I’ll update this post with a few pictures. For now, all pictures below are courtesy of their Instagram page.
Another fabulous Mother’s Day gift idea with a great story, Earth Wax and Fire artisanal ceramics and candles come all the way from Isreal, where each piece is handcrafted by an incredible artist, Vered Bloom. Bloom’s gorgeous ceramic designs are inspired by the natural world around her. She couples her bowls with stunning candles and other decorative accents sourced from other local artisans to create a perfectly unique gift for every occasion.
I love Earth Wax and Fire for several reasons. First, it’s a family-owned business that supports other family-owned businesses. Everything is either made by the Blooms or by other members of their artisan community. Second, it’s like getting two gifts in one: an amazing candle and a gorgeous, one-of-a-kind handmade and hand signed ceramic piece. Plus, every set comes with a little something extra, like a design accent or another surprise.
The dishes are designed to be used! They’re even microwave and dishwasher safe. Third, the prices are insanely reasonable for such a unique gift. The most expensive item (as of now) is $39, and the average gift set is $34. You can sign up for a monthly subscription for $27 a month for a single month. Sign up for longer subscriptions and save even more.
While you don’t have to be religious to enjoy gifts from Isreal (these gifts are completely non-denominational and I’m not religious at all), my grandmother was very Catholic. She and my grandfather took multiple trips to Isreal. She would have loved these.
23andMe DNA Profile
You can’t get more unique than the gift of your mom’s DNA profile, now can you? I got to try out 23andMe a few months ago, back when I did a review of a health and beauty box from BabbleBoxx. I found it incredibly enlightening! Before getting my results, I knew I was Irish, Italian, French, German, English and Lithuanian. I kind of assumed it was in that order.
After the test, I found out that French and German are my strongest ancestry, at 33.9%. British and Irish make up 21.1%. Broadly Northwest European makes up 25.1%. That basically encompasses the UK, Norway, Sweden, Iceland, France, Germany, etc. So basically, I am 79% Northwestern European when you add in the parts that are already German, French, English and Irish. I am only 7.5% Southern European, and there is no mention of Italy at all. Sardinia, but not Italy specifically. I’m 3% Eastern European, which includes Russia.
The report that I received also gave me great insight into my carrier status, genetic traits, and overall health. I am genetically prone to drinking more coffee than the average person! See! There’s a reason I drink 6 cups of coffee a day! I’m also genetically prone to not being a great sleeper. Ha! See! It has nothing to do with the coffee!! Okay, so they don’t actually say that, I’m just making my own leaps, here. That’s the thing, they’ll give you the reports and the definitions, but they don’t give you medical advice. It’s up to you (and your doctor) to decide how to interpret it.
Phew, that was a pretty long post, right? Turns out, I had a lot to say! These are all amazingly original and perfect Mother’s Day gift ideas for moms who pretty much have it all or can never decide what they want. You really can’t go wrong with any of them! Pick out something fabulous for mom, then grab something for yourself, too! You deserve it!
What are your go-to gift ideas for moms who are notoriously hard to shop for? Share below!