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Help with the impossible - present for DM

(32 Posts)
RidingSixWhiteHorses Thu 19-Nov-15 17:58:00

Please help me find a Christmas present for DM. Probably up to about £35.

In some ways she is easy to buy for. She likes books and culture and nice food etc. But she has plenty of money and buys these as and when she sees or wants them so I have no idea what she has and doesn't have.

I want to get her something - not a voucher or a charity gift.

She doesn't like gardening.
She likes cooking but has every gadget imaginable and such a well stocked larder and Ocado habit that a hamper not that practical. She doesn't drink. I wouldn't dream of buying her clothes.

She has had nearly 40 years of ds and I buying her cushions and earrings and photo frames etc and five years of us buying her things with pics of the kids on. Db has taken to buying her afternoon teas in nice hotels etc so that's covered.

She had some physical issues so lots of 'experiences' are out but also not really in my budget.

She is quite into the family tree at moment so have thought about a subscription to ancestry magazine but other family tree related ideas very welcome.

Things that have gone down well in past have been:

History of the world in 100 objects book (but took a punt she didn't have it - and she didn't!)

One of those word maps made into a framed print of things the kids like doing with her eg making fairy cakes, swimming, splashing etc (well recommended for anyone looking for grandparent ideas - was from Not on the high street).

A cool board game for her but really for her to play with the kids

Nice earrings

A cake stand

Also open to getting a stocking of smaller stuff instead of a bigger present if the ideas are right.

Any ideas. Please. Or will this be impossible? The kids are giving her home made decorated boxes for her jewellery.

notenoughbottle Thu 19-Nov-15 18:04:46

I'm buying my mum a stump teapot to go with the tea selection box from the bluebird tea co. An idea maybe?

RidingSixWhiteHorses Thu 19-Nov-15 18:23:49

What is a stump teapot?

Phineyj Thu 19-Nov-15 18:33:10

www.amazon.co.uk/Germany-Memories-Dr-Neil-MacGregor/dp/0241008336/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1447957872&sr=8-1&keywords=Neil+McGregor+Germany

Or try www.museumselection.co.uk

annandale Thu 19-Nov-15 18:40:48

Would she go for a photo calendar of your kids, or perhaps all her grandchildren if any others? I've never done this as I am not organised enough to take the photos, never mind sorting out the calendar, but my sister does it for our mother and the results are fab. It's qute a pain and apparently not cheap, though snapfish do them for £20 and so does every other site I can find. I guess that's a lot for a calendar. Buy her a bottle of champagne or a hyacinth planter if you want to spend more.

We are probably going to get 'Coastlines' for my mother, I think she would enjoy the book.

annandale Thu 19-Nov-15 18:42:15

Oh I'm really sorry you've done years of stuff with photos on! Must read posts more carefully.

JenniferYellowHat1980 Thu 19-Nov-15 18:56:12

What about something to start her off on a new hobby? Art, knitting or music equipment, for example?

I'm doing my mum a box of, 'Things to Keep You Quiet in the Evenings' -

book/ colouring book/ watercolour pencils / crossword book / wine / choc / cross stitch kit

I hope this will go down well, and I figure that most of it is either useful or easily passed on if no use!

notenoughbottle Thu 19-Nov-15 19:12:20

It's a teapot for using loose leaf tea in. They're quite modern and a bit different!

defineme Thu 19-Nov-15 19:13:22

I may be off kilter here, but if she's into contemporary fiction and poetry and is reasonably intellectual then Granta magazine is fab-like a monthly novel really.
The Spicery do brilliant kits of spices with recipes if she likes exotic cooking.
my mum sounds similar and would be very happy with cashmere bedsocks or wristwarmers.
could you do a themed outing/gift eg buy her a book of an artist's work and take her a gallery with their work. Or buy her tickets to those cinema theatre/opera performances and buy her a copy of play or cd of the music.

FadedRed Thu 19-Nov-15 19:18:31

The Deluxe version of Scrabble or a local area or NT Monopoly game?

HoggleHoggle Thu 19-Nov-15 19:20:08

My mum is also impossible and has expensive tastes hmm which is a pita.

Does your dm like make up? Mine does so I bought her a Bobbi Brown eye palette which is currently 15% off on John Lewis online. They've got the same offer across a lot of the beauty brands so could look there?

Think pp suggestion of Granta mag is also great.

NeverPromisedYouARoseGarden Thu 19-Nov-15 19:38:17

I guess this counts as clothing but might she be interested in some leather gloves? A few years ago I bought some beautiful silk-lined gloves from Southcombe for my similiarly tricky-to-buy-for mum after they were recommended on a MN thread and they were a big success. So much so that she asked for another pair in a different colour the following year.

xalyssx Thu 19-Nov-15 19:38:24

What about this book? There is another similar one by the same author.
www.amazon.co.uk/Eccentric-Contraptions-Amazing-Gadgets-Thingamambobs/dp/0715318217

RidingSixWhiteHorses Thu 19-Nov-15 23:24:55

she is def not a hobbies person. But I will check out the other ideas thank you. Any others?

LovelyWeatherForDucks Fri 20-Nov-15 05:49:07

There are some book subscription clubs - Willoughby ? Or a Folio Society book?

milaforni Fri 20-Nov-15 06:16:21

My MIL loves working on family history also. I am looking for a good book about how to write stories about your family history. Every family has individuals with good/notorious stories and this would help record it for future generations. I think it will appeal to my MIL, perhaps it would your DM also.
She also wants a Ninja blender for smoothies. smile

laplumeofmyaunt Fri 20-Nov-15 06:47:43

Persephone books do a 6 or 12 month subscription - the books are things of great beauty and they have some fantastic authors in their catalogue.

Chimchar Fri 20-Nov-15 08:56:08

how about an online subscription to one of those ancestry websites. if you pay you get access to all sorts of things that you don't on the freebie sites.

I have seen lovely books that you give as a gift to be filled in by the receiver...like this sort of thing

www.amazon.co.uk/Dear-Tree-design-Journals-Lifetime/dp/1907048006

would that be an option?

1stMrsF Fri 20-Nov-15 21:27:21

Thank you to PPs for the Granta magazine subscription idea, which I have just ordered for my MIL. If you use promo code gift04 you get an annual print subscription for £24 instead of £36

f1fan2015 Fri 20-Nov-15 22:17:50

Find my past have just released the 1939 pre war census. You could prepay her access to a set number of households?

ishouldcocoa Fri 20-Nov-15 22:35:11

I'd go for stuff that she wouldn't buy for herself ordinarily... Such as scented candles (Neom or Dyptique especially), new wallet, a scarf, frivolous stuff...

FinallyHere Fri 20-Nov-15 22:38:24

Going out on a limb here, but if she has teen and above DGC, what about a set of cards against humanity to play with them?

Finally!!!!!

My 18 and 20 year olds refuse to play it with dp and I, so would be horrified at the idea of playing it with their gran! grin

traviata Fri 20-Nov-15 23:51:54

an Artfund pass

membership of a place local to her , eg I bought Kew Gardens annual membership for an aunt.

subscription to slightly foxed which is LOVELY.

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