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Great Gift Ideas for Mother’s Day

Stumped on what to get for mother’s day?  Here are some fabulous ideas for under $100!

Cashmere Wrap Sweater

Who doesn’t need a cashmere sweater? This one from Victoria’s Secret is a premium cashmere combined with durable cotton for a supersoft blend and for a price that won’t break the bank.  The Soft & Sexy Sweater Wrap is a wear-with-everything essential you can style a variety of ways. $39.50 at Victoria’s Secret

The Dos and Don’ts of Mother’s Day Gifts and Recipe

by Amanda Goetz

It’s almost Mother’s Day! You know what that means right? Yes, we finally get a day off!

Well, sort of. I have three kids (editor’s note: now 4!), I never get a day off, but I assume all you moms out there with kids old enough to use the bathroom alone get a bit of a break right? Right? Lie to me if you have to.

Personally I think Mother’s Day should come twice a month but then Dads would want the same and that’s just crazy-talk. I always get the same thing for Mother’s Day, breakfast made by my husband, a card and usually a gift card to somewhere. He works a lot so I’m always impressed he remembers or even has the time to pull that together. But it got me thinking about what all the other moms out there get for Mother’s Day.

I did a little informal poll over Twitter and Facebook the other day asking moms what their best and worst Mother’s Day gifts have been. By far the worst I saw was a meat slicer. A meat slicer? Really? Never get your mom/wife a kitchen appliance unless she specifially asks for one!

Maybe it’s your first year receiving or buying a Mother’s Day Gift, or perhaps past years haven’t gone so well. I’ve come up with a little list of Dos and Don’ts when it comes to Mother’s Day gifts so that this year things go better and no one ends up with a meat slicer (sheesh).

The Don’ts

Don’t get you wife/mother anything to do with cleaning or household chores! Vacuums, a new broom, a washing machine, an iron, NO NO NO! Even if she has mentioned she needs one or it would make cleaning easier for her this is not a gift that says “Hey, I appreciate you bringing me into this world, thanks Mom.”. If you’re going to get anything anywhere in the area of cleaning, a maid service is the only aceptable option. (My uncle got my aunt a weed wacker for their anniversary once, I realize that’s not a Mother’s Day gift but I just had to share that one. I’m amazed they’re still married.)

Don’t take her to Mother’s Day brunch. I know, you’re surprised by this one aren’t you? I have nothing against brunch per se, I enjoy having pasta salad with my french toast. But Mother’s Day at a restaurant for brunch is filled with other people’s screaming/crying kids, your own screaming/crying kids, people sneezing on the eggs, kids touching every piece of fruit and dessert they can before deciding they want more bacon, and servers that look like they’re about to burst out crying and scream “I Quit”!

Don’t buy her cut flowers. Another shocker huh? Cut flowers are pretty and all, but two weeks later when she’s sweeping up dried petals from all over and scrubbing a scummy, smelly vase they don’t seem so great. Better idea is to get her a plant, something with pretty flowers to keep in a pot or plant in the garden.

Don’t get her a gym membership unless she specifically said “I want a gym membership for Mother’s Day. Get me a Gym Membership.”. Her New Year’s resolution may have been to start going to the gym and lose weight, but a membership for Mother’s Day will only point out that A) She failed at keeping her resolution, and B) You think she needs to lose weight. Not cool.

Now for the Do’s

Do give her gift cards to her favourite stores. Some people don’t like gift cards cause they’re impersonal, but I’d rather get an impersonal gift card to my favourite clothing store than a sweater from that store that’s 3 sizes too big or a shirt I would NEVER pick out for myself.

Do get her jewellery. 99.99% of women like getting jewellery. Whether it’s diamonds or something that commemorates the moment she became a mom like a pendant with all you kids’ birthstones, she’s going to love it.

Do give her the gift of time (the number one response to my twitter/facebook poll for best gift). Send her out to the spa for the day. Take the kids to the park or the movies and leave her alone at home to scrapbook or read in peace. Get organized with some of her friends’ husbands and make a reservation for her and her friends for lunch at that place you never take her to cause they don’t serve a 16oz. steak.

Do make her breakfast or lunch or dinner, or all three. Cooking for her helps with Do #3, time. If you’re cooking she can be doing something else, like having a bubble bath or chatting with a friend. Just remember cleaning the kitchen after you eat is part of the deal. Do NOT leave a mess.

Speaking of cooking for mom, this is a great brunch recipe that your wife or mom would love. Serve it with hot buttery toast, fresh juice and a great cup of coffee and she’ll be mighty impressed. Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there!

Hashbrown Quiche by Paula Deen

3 cups, shredded (frozen) hash browns, thawed and drained

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, melted

3 large eggs, beaten

1 cup half-and-half

3/4 cup diced cooked ham

1/2 cup diced green onions

1 cup shredded Cheddar

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 450˚F.

2. Gently press the drained hash browns between paper towels to dry them as best as possible.

3. Lightly coat a 9″ pie plate with cooking spray. Toss the hash browns with the melted butter and press them into the bottom and up the sides of the pie plate to form a crust.

4. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown and starting to crisp.

5. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. When the hash brown crust is ready pour the egg mixture into it and return to the oven.

6. Lower the oven temperature to 350˚F and bake for about 30 minutes until the quiche is light golden brown on top and is cooked through and puffed up Allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Amanda Goetz is a WAHM to 3 kids under the age of 5. Her love of cooking was fostered when she was a preschooler helping her grandma in the kitchen. After a year long stint as a sous chef, she left the industry to continue cooking as a hobby before the stress and politics of a professional kitchen killed her love of cooking. Now she creates delicious dinners and delectable desserts for her family and friends and blogs about it at The Best Mom on the Block.

The Joy of Giving: The Joy of Getting! Getting Gifts

by Dee Brun

The holidays are all about the joy of giving, being kind and doing onto others.  But there is something to be said about the joy of “getting”.

We never talk about how nice it is to receive, because that sounds selfish and rude. But we all enjoy getting a nice gift from that special someone who took the time and cared enough to brave the crazy Christmas mall crowds. Someone who knows us so well and wants nothing more than to see the love, joy and surprise on our face when we open our treasured gift…and hear us express our deepest gratitude for the lovely, SHOWER RADIO.

Seriously…I want to know what marketing genius is filling mens’ head with the idea that a CAR EMERGENCY KIT makes a great gift for your special lady. Yes, they are handy, practical and necessary. Yes, it shows you care for my safety, but so does MACE.

I also donʼt recall ever mentioning that I wanted the DVD collectors edition of THE FIRST FIVE SEASONS OF AMERICAN IDOL – how thoughtful!

Unfortunately it only gets worse before it gets better. All bets are off when you become a mother, because then Dust Busterthe gifts become about MAKING YOUR LIFE EASIER…now doesnʼt that sound romantic.

Nothing screams I WANT YOU NOW like a new floor steamer, or how hot and steamy would you get after opening your new dust buster?

My worst gift ever was a four piece, blue quilted, Winnie The Pooh diaper bag set…I was speechless.

I know itʼs supposed to be all about the thought that counts, but seriously!  Cut the crap and buy “ME” a gift.

Not the house, or the car but “ME”, the “ME” that you couldnʼt keep your hands off of for more than a few hours not that long ago. The “ME” that you tried to talk into doing “it” in the back of the cab in New Your City. The “ME” that did that thing to you, that one time…with the thing…remember…YA…that “ME”!

So my solution to this dilemma, go out and treat yourself. We know we donʼt need big fancy things, just something a little personal. So get your hair done, or your nails all polished up and be sure to let “him” know he is picking up the tab. Just think how happy you will make him when he no longer has to go to the mall. That alone is worth a spa day!

All I Want for Christmas Collins“All I want for Christmas” Collins…with a wedge of, HOPE… itʼs not another waffle iron….

2 ounces Gin
2 ounces White Cranberry or White grape/Peach Juice
1 ounce soda water
1 stem cilantro
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice

Muddle the cilantro with the lemon juice and add to a shaker full of ice with juice and vodka. Shake well and strain into martini glass, then top with soda. Garnish with some fresh berries.

CHEERS!

 

 

 

Dee Brun aka CocktailDeeva is the author Libations of Life, A Girls Guide to Life One Cocktail at a Time, resident Cocktail’ista on CBC’s The Steven and Chris Show; home entertaining columnist at Toronto Star Yourhome.ca; Home Entertaining Guru, writer, humorist, wife, mother of 4, TV Junkie, shoe-aholic and borderline George Clooney stalker.