Uncluttered gift ideas for Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is this weekend (May 13) and although flowers and plants are usually an appreciated and safe gift, you may be thinking outside the (flower) box this year. If you’re still looking for ideas, consider giving an uncluttered gift:

  • Consumables. If you know she loves them, get her fancy chocolates, coffee beans, teas, or another treat.
  • Services. Take her car to be detailed, have the oil changed, and fill up the tank. Get her a gift certificate to a renowned spa for a pedicure or massage. Treat her to dinner at her favorite restaurant.
  • Adventures. In my opinion, spending time with someone is an amazing gift. Take a weekend vacation to a relaxing getaway. Make a date to go on a hike through a local state park. Surprise her with tickets to the opera or to hear a band she likes or to a sporting event she enjoys.
  • Wants. Listen for hints about gifts she would use. Does she want a new Chef’s knife? Has she told you five times she’s in the market for new sunglasses? Has she been talking nonstop about wanting a Kindle? Does she have a board on Pinterest called “Please Buy This for Me”? (If so, you should check there.)

What uncluttered gifts are you thinking about getting for the moms in your life this coming Mother’s Day? I bought my mom an adventure gift (we’re going to take a much needed vacation together later this year), my mother-in-law’s gift is still a secret (sorry, no spoilers here!) and I’m pretty certain my husband and son are getting me a physical gift I really want (new earphones, to wear while I run and work, as my beloved pair bit the dust last week).

Also, check out all of our previous Gift Giving Guides for even more uncluttered suggestions.

Image of the Golden Gate Bonsai from Calyx Flowers.

18 Comments for “Uncluttered gift ideas for Mother’s Day”

  1. posted by Lorii Abela on

    These are great gift ideas. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!.

  2. posted by Dede on

    One year my family got me chickens. They went to heifer international and bought a flock of chickens that was donated somewhere in the world. I got a really nice card from both my family and heifer international. So somewhere in the world there are eggs with my name on them. Too cool.

  3. posted by Amy on

    For birthdays and special holidays like Mother’s and Father’s day – I take send photos of my kids. My parents have asked for no more “stuff” and they like having updated photos for the frames that are already on display.

    Though someday I’d like to take them on an adventure like they did for us last year.

  4. posted by Francisca on

    I used to give my mum physical gifts that she said she wanted, but being the clutterer she is, never ended up using. 5 years ago I decided to change that, and since, I´ve given her gift certificates for massages, manicures, and concert tickets…now my gifts are her favourites!!!

  5. posted by Cynthia on

    Since my mom lives states away, my sisters and I bought her an airplane ticket to visit us for Mother’s Day. I know we should be the ones traveling to see her, but since my sisters both have families and traveling would be too expensive for them and their families and my Mom is still able to travel, we decided to pitch in and fly her out to us.

  6. posted by EngineerMom on

    My parents have a dog, and they’ve never found a good way to store the plastic grocery bags they use for poop pick-up while on walks. I ran across directions to make a fabric holder for plastic bags, so I’m making one for my mom out of a soothing gray print for Mother’s Day. It will help them solve an organizing problem (usually it’s just a messy-looking grocery bag full of other grocery bags hanging right in their front entry), it’s something I know they’ll appreciate and use, and it will help make their entry more welcoming and calming to come home to!

  7. posted by Henave on

    For me- a trip to the zoo w/ my family. For my mother-in-law- I had pictures taken of my boys together and framed one for her (she doesn’t know about it) and I also noticed that her Neosporin was 4 years out of date,so I got her a new tube (kind of a gag gift- I’m always giving her a hard time about things being out of date). My mother is deceased, but I make a donation to the animal shelter this time every year in honor of her birthday and Mother’s Day.

  8. posted by Christy on

    Yay, my first post! Although I’ve been stalking the forums for about a year now ;-)

    I’m getting married in October so we bought my mom and my mother-in-law-to-be matching shirts that say “Mother of the Bride/Groom today, Mother-in-Law next week”. My mom can wear hers under her uniform to work (she always needs more black t-shirts for that). And my MIL is so thrilled her son is getting married she loved the shirt when she saw it! I know she’ll wear it often for the next 5 months, and probably after.

  9. posted by Christy on

    Oh, I meant to add that I ordered them from cafepress.com. I love that site for fun t-shirts! I could spend all my money there on funny teacher/reading shirts. I swear they have something for every hobbies/interest, including many of my favorite shows/movies!

  10. posted by Alix on

    @Henave: love the Neosporin gag gift! I give my mom a hard time about the nine-year-old spices in her kitchen.

    My mother adores soaps of all kinds, so whenever I see a beautiful bar, I tuck it away and then present several in a basket or giftbag. I swear she must store them in hot water, she goes through them so fast! But she enjoys them and uses them, so they get consumed, as opposed to so many gifts that seem designed simply to collect dust on a shelf…

  11. posted by Judes on

    My mom is a big fan of donation gifts, so I often give donations in her name. Another good charity, in addition to the ones recommended above, is International Rescue Committee, which distributes money to projects in developing nations and conflict zones, and where 93% of donations go to straight to programs (a pretty high percentage!). They have some great Mother’s Day themed donation-gifts, such as maternal health care, safe delivery, and a year of school: http://gifts.rescue.org/shop/women-and-girls-charity-gifts

    P.s. Thanks for introducing me to uncluttering, Mom! (She calls it “zenning.”)

  12. posted by JC on

    On Saturday I will be helping hang pictures on the walls and checking out/repairing the leak under Mom’s kitchen sink. (She specifically asked for the above as a gift.) We’ll probably go to lunch with my sister some time during the week after Mother’s Day to stretch out the celebration.

    We always send flowers to my mother-in-law. This year I am also embroidering tea towels and sending them. I will need to finish them tonight in order to get them mailed tomorrow.

    I’ve asked DS (age 13) for a sun umbrella that attaches to a chair so I can spend more time outside in the summer. I’ll be sending a letter to DD (whose currently in psyche treatment) relating some of the good things about being her mother. She has reactive attachment disorder as a result of her first family and even after being her mom for over 11 years, we’ve not really bonded.

  13. posted by Waileia on

    For Mother’s Day I purchased a Koa Legacy Tree to be planted in Hamakua area, on Hawaii Island to help with a reforesting initiative by Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods. She passed away in 2001 but I felt like planting this tree set her free and helped me to celebrate her life. Happy Mother’s Day – Mommy!

  14. posted by NettyM on

    And for the opposite of useful, this list: http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/slideshow/2012/05/09/best-kitchen-gadget-gifts-for-mom/?intcmp=features#slide=1

    The first one isn’t terrible, and the combination grater/zester thing could be good, but the rest are all nominees for unitasker heaven.

    Favorite selling point: “Mom would never think to get a donut maker for herself…”

    There’s a reason for that.

  15. posted by Candace on

    My mother is no longer with us, so it’s just my mother-in-law, who, like myself no longer needs ‘things’. Not sure yet what we’re doing for Mother’s Day, but for Christmas, hubby called his parents’ favorite restaurant, then sent them a check to cover the cost of a meal. When in-laws went there … surprise! The bill was already paid, and a card was there waiting for them!

  16. posted by Kelekona on

    I’m a horrible daughter, but a few weeks ago I explained to my mother that since she’s in the middle of a huge sorting and home-improvement project, I decided to postpone her gift until the middle of summer so that it won’t just add to her stress.

    I do want to get her something. She is into inexpensive geegaws that can be passed to a new person once she gets bored with it.

  17. posted by Trina {Beginner Beans} on

    Great ideas! I love the gift of adventures or mommy breaks :)

  18. posted by Laetitia in Australia on

    Oh dear – I do hope your DH & DS don’t miss that hint! :-)

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