Mother/daughter and mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationships can run the gamut from warm and loving to hot and cold (think Marie and Debra in Everybody Loves Raymond) to basically non-existent. But when Mother’s Day rolls around each year, it seems most people choose to celebrate the moms (and grandmas!) in their lives in some way. Even if your relationship with your mother or mother-in-law is complicated, deciding on a gift doesn’t have to be.

So, instead of the cliché vase of flowers, why not try one of these unique ideas?

Great gifts for mom

  • Audiobooks if visually impaired (
  • Digital frame (Amazon, Best Buy)
  • Large print magazine subscription (
  • Google Nest—get the time, reminders, music, recipes
  • Electric eye massager—relieve tired, strained, and dry eyes 
  • Gift certificates—for groceries, restaurants, spa service 
  • At-home massage 
  • Bath & Body Gifts 
  • Gift of the Month Club ( has fruit, flowers, snacks and many other types of products. has monthly gifts starting at $19.95!)

Activities you can do together

  • Cook a family meal together with shared recipes.
  • Read the "Things I Love About Mom" together—after you fill in the blanks with information and memories about your mom. 
  • Take mom and a friend to Afternoon Tea (check local listings or create your own if Mom is unable to leave home
  • Complete a Life Bio Memory Journey (200 questions designed to help someone with sharing their life story) 
  • Take her to lunch or for a mani-pedi—or both!
  • Go on a shopping outing to Mom’s favorite store
  • Make a video of Mom sharing her favorite highlights of life or a message to grandchildren about the joy they bring.

Give the gift of time!

Of course, you know that for most mothers (and yes, mothers-in-law) the best gift of all is spending time with you and your family members. If that’s not possible because of schedules, distance, or, well, desire…there’s always the classic Mother’s Day gift: flowers!

For more gift ideas take a look at our list of perfect gifts for seniors.

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