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It’s that time of year again, and everyone is scrambling for the Perfect gifts for everyone on their list. I’m not for Black Friday or all the madness that comes along with excessive shopping, but I do think there’s something nice about a thoughtful gift for those close to you. I think we all intend to put a little Extra love and care into what we give the moms in our lives, but do you really know how to Wow a mom? Do you know how to nail it on the head, no matter what your budget? Well, you’re in luck. I just happen to be a mama and I love gifts. I also love to see other mamas happy, so I’m gonna give you some insider tips.
The 10 Secrets to giving a gift mom will love.
Pretty and Personal
The first go to for many of us is Jewelry, but what if diamonds and pearls are a little above your price point? Or maybe, you’re a husband that’s tired of watching the pricey pieces of Holidays past Resting all too comfortable inside a jewelry box. While I’m sure we all have a weakness for things that glitter, they’re not always Practical for our day to day. Many of us don’t have a nanny and don’t have enough time away from dirty diapers and toddler tantrums to get all fancy and enjoy a Glitzy glam night on the town, but even on our most casual of days a simple statement piece of precious stones never seems out of place. Wire wrapped pieces are all the rage right now. They’re beautiful and they’re just about Everywhere. It’s really easy to make them extra thoughtful too. You could go with her favorite color or, if you’re buying for a new mama who’s mourning her pre-baby self a little bit, a bright gemstone like Citrine will boost her confidence. There’s a perfect stone for everyone, and they can be very inexpensive. Pair it with a beautiful chain, I’m telling you, it’s gonna be a hit!
Make Her Life Easier
Coupons are great. You give me a booklet full of useful things like laundry duty for a day or a week of school drop offs, I’m going to cash those babies in I promise. Let’s leave the coupon book as a stocking-stuffer, though, and think a little bit bigger. The key is that it should Make our lives easier in some way. For example, through each upstate winter, I have to manage the task of not only taking the kids to school but all the errands and appointments of my day as well. As we’re preparing to open gifts if you reach into your pocket and start my car, Watch out! I am really going to be “happy” to see you! “Meet me upstairs, It’s going down!” A little Disclosure with this one though, be careful. You’re not gonna turn a mama on by giving her the new ultra-function vacuum, unless that’s her favorite thing to do. If the idea of a huge fail scares you a bit, this might not be the option for you, because it can be Risky. There’s a super fine line between lightening her load and Highlighting the chores she despises; this is Not the time to send hints! Do not get a woman who hates baking a rolling pin or she very well may Hit you with it!
Dip it in Chocolate
Do I really have to explain? Give.Her.Chocolate! Not the assorted boxed kind either. I’m talking some Deluxe drinking chocolate, or Gourmet chocolate covered salted caramel. With chocolate, I’m always going to advocate for Fair Trade, and I am absolutely giddy that Bark Thins are ethical. I don’t have much self control, so I don’t buy them often but OMG the toasted coconut with almonds, Insert ecstasy eye roll. Don’t worry, if she’s not a coconut kind of gal, there are other Flavors. You can find them much cheaper at your local supermarket, but if you’re one of those, “I’m not setting foot in a store until the holiday stampede is over” kind of people, they are also available Online. On a local note, no one has ever said a foul word about the Ultimate chocolate cake from Wegmans either; I’m just saying. No matter which kind you go with, as a rule, Add chocolate to the gift!
Give it some attitude
The image of a mama as June Cleaver has got to Change. I think it’s the main reason I never even felt like a mom until I had my 4th kid. I most definitely Don’t fit that mold, but who really does. Even if we look all fancy and proper and perfectly pressed, somewhere deep down we all have at least a little Attitude. A great way to show us that you still see us as something other than “Just a Mom” is to give our sass a little shout out. Give a gift that matches a mama’s spunk. Whether it’s vulgar and crass or cheeky and sarcastic, it will be a refreshing departure from the ooey gooey mushy stuff we get All the time. Coffee mugs are a great go to for this one. It somehow seems totally appropriate to have all the things you’d like to say, but don’t, Visible as you sip your morning Joe. Another place to wear your words is right across your chest, and slouchy sweatshirts are perfect for any mom. Unlike a regular sweatshirt, it’s snug in just the right places so you don’t look 2 times bigger than your size; it’s actually quite flattering and forgiving. It’s just casual enough that it’easy to wear and it bumps you up a few notches from hot mess. I know I’m no fancy mom in super cute booties and a perfectly layered ensemble, but I feel pretty good when I walk in to pick my kids up in a skinny jean and slouchy sweatshirt, Fresh day 1 curls; provided there’s no oatmeal on my pants. Since my obsession began, I find myself always cyber stalking Dentz Denim! They have lots of attitude options to choose from, but as someone who is particularly attached to the term, their “Mama Bear” shirt is my absolute favorite! You’ll find one in my Holiday Giveaway, so be sure to enter!
Pamper, pamper, pamper
Spa days are cliche for a reason, They work! If your pockets are built for a good time, then forgo all the creative thoughtful stuff (or better yet just use it as a little Add on) and send her for a day of pampering! One of the hardest thing for most moms is to spend money on themselves. We try, we do, but when we go shopping for a new bra, because our old one is past it’s last leg, we always spot Something for Someone else and the struggle begins. We end up finding Some reason to buy that Thing instead. Our need gets bumped down the to-do, and we wear that sad little bra a few more months. Unless she’s reading my guide, Mess to Messiful in 30 Days, and learning the importance of putting herself first, the chances of her treating herself to a Massage, or a quality Haircut are slim to none. These services really shouldn’t be seen as luxuries because how much physical, emotional, and mental benefit they can provide to a mama who’s running on E. I don’t give my recommendation easily, and I’ve easily seen close to 10 massage therapists over the years. When I tell you that Gail, at The Retreat House, has Hands from heaven, I’m not exaggerating in the least! I’ve never ever been a repeat massage customer until I found her. Her pressure is Perfect, and her intuition and insight into what your body needs during each visit is spot on. The only downside to getting the mom on your list a gift certificate to The Retreat House, is that it will easily become a regular must have, and you may have to indulge her more than once. If you’ve already got a masseuse you love, I encourage you to Cheat, but if you just simply can’t, send her for a day at the salon instead. Jordan over at Mint Salon is Ahhhmazing. I’m also extremely picky when it comes to my hair and I truly don’t think she’s met a curl she can’t Bouncify! Don’t worry, you definitely don’t have to have curly hair to love her, or her amazing team. If the mama on your list isn’t a Deva Curl girl, you need to Make her one A.S.A.P! I’ve gone to hairdressers in the past, and I’ve wanted to leave as soon as my hair was done. That’s not Mint. This place is so cute and the staff is so talented. In the salon world I’d usually use words like snoody, and pretentious to describe most of them. Not friendly, warm, and Down to Earth, but that’s exactly what you’ll find. Jordan has crafted such an irresistibly Charming atmosphere, trust me, your mama won’t want to leave. So, make a day of it and be sure to buy a certificate to cover her nails as well. 😉 And, if you love it when they call you Big Papa, spring for tip money as well. Make sure she doesn’t have to worry about anything!
Let her know you’re listening
Our lifelong goal as mamas is that someone will Actually listen to something we say; it’s that rare. I’d even go as far to say that only about 5% of our mothering actually makes it to the part of the brain that converts it into actual meaning. The other 95% I’m pretty sure sounds like a bunch of “whamp, whamp” and that’s if it’s even heard at all. Maybe we’re kind of like a dog whistle and they just can’t pick up on the frequency. If you gift a mama with something that shows you Really pay attention, trust me you’ll be the star of the holiday season. This one takes actual thought, so take your time. If you’ve been around her a while, hopefully it won’t be too difficult, but if you pull it off it’s well worth it. Maybe she’s a fan of The Walking Dead and would appreciate each season on DVD. Maybe there are a Pair of Boots she’s been admiring. Or perhaps she loves Yoga pants, cuz who doesn’t, and is due for a new pair. Is she a wine enthusiast, loves all things owl, or does the thrill of a scratch off excite her? You know her better than I do, and if you really focus I’m sure you’ll come up with the something meaningful.
Keep her warm
Women hate to be cold! If you didn’t know, now you do. There may be a few polar mama bear exceptions to the rule, but for the most part, if you want to keep a mama happy, Keep her warm! This one is fairly easy. You could go indoor cozy with Slippers or a Sweatsuit, or work with outdoor layers like cute Vests and Scarves. Another great way, is to give her some heat from the inside out with a hot beverage. Almost every mom absolutely loves Coffee. Personally I’m a Hot chocolate girl, but even if Tea is her thing, they all make for a great heat source, so it’s a Win/Win. Splurge a little on the good stuff and she will be ever so grateful.
Help her escape
We love Momming, but it is really nice when we get a Little break. An escape from our duties can Recharge our batteries in a way that makes the difference between Mom-zilla and, “wow, mom’s folding and putting away the laundry same day.” Don’t get too excited, we’re rarely that happy, but you get the idea. A good salt bath is relaxing, but it also has Tangible benefits that really help us restore. Keep in mind, though, that the cheap sets you find around the holidays can actually be more irritating than soothing. Take care to buy salts that are as natural as possible, Without artificial dyes and fragrances. Couple the Salts with a Good read, and you’ll really help her get away; she’ll come back, I promise. 😉 If you’re going to give her a gift geared toward self-care, then “Single Mom Chic” by Tonya Parker is the perfect book. If the mom on your list has lost herself in the world of motherhood, then this is the go to guide to help her get back on the track to achieving all the goals and dreams she had pre-baby. Tonya’s story is relate-able and inspiring, and her 7 step strategy is easy to follow and effective. Every mom needs a confidence booster now and then, and this book will definitely have her ready to take on the world. Take a peek at her blog, Single Mom Chic, and see why so many moms are singing her praise.
Go With Smell Goods
I think of all our senses, women are most driven by Scent. I’m not sure what functional purpose it serves, but I really don’t care. Just find me a man that smells like Irish Spring and let me Inhale. From laundry detergent, and candles, to scented oils and lotions, we Love to smell smell-goods! If you know the mom you’re shopping for prefers nature scents to sweet fruits and baked goods, this is a great go to. Candles are great, warming oils works well too. I really love the uplifting citrus scent of Joy from Young Living. I’m really crazy about the whole Young Living line, but tend to go through Joy & Peace and Calming the quickest. Lavender is another excellent choice and it’s probably the best one to keep on hand because it smells amazing, it’s instantly relaxing and it has several other benefits that make it the universal staple of essential oils. Elisa from Brave Kind Wellness knows much more about each individual oil and all the holiday gift sets available. I’m sure she’d be happy to help you pick out the perfect match for mom. With candles I always gravitate toward berry scents. The Black Cherry from Yankee smells incredible. If you’re not sure what she likes, Vanilla is a fairly safe choice, but you might want to stick to a safer gift category. The goal here is to give something that Won’t be returned the following day. Save us the trip. 😉
Even if a women doesn’t like to eat she Loves to eat. That may only make sense to another woman, but you don’t need to understand to make her happy. This is another way we’re not likely to treat ourselves, unless of course she’s a Pro at self-care. We might be able to justify a cup of coffee, but it’s probably been a while since we’ve Enjoyed a meal at a place that doesn’t have a stash of crayons next to the hostess station. A gift card for more of an Adult dining experience would be greatly appreciated.
Let her sleep, let her sleep, let her sleep
Of course it shouldn’t be thought of as a Stand alone, but never underestimate the power of the nap. After gifts have been opened and breakfast is finished, offer to do the clean up and Send her back to bed. It may burst a few bubbles but sleep is the #1 thing we fantasize about. # 2 is the man that smells like Irish Spring. Give us the space, freedom, and quiet to take a nap, and you’ll give us All the feels! Now that you’re armed with all my knowledge, get to gifting. We all know a happy mom means that everyone around her can enjoy a good time too. So, remember these secrets when you shop, and keep the holidays jolly by making sure mama’s at the top of your list.