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What on earth to buy my mother for Christmas?

(55 Posts)
hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 21:32:14

I am traditionally appalling at giving/choosing gifts.

My mother is 65. She has just bought a new car, not sure what year, so not sure whether it has satnav, but can find out from my sister. I think it might annoy her though and she might not use it. Idea #1

She has jewellery to beat Mr. T.

She is overweight and fluctuates a lot in size, her clothing choices would not be mine so I couldn't pick anything she'd like.

I thought of a voucher to have a good bra fitting with a lovely shop locally, but I think she'd be too embarrassed.

She doesn't go to hairdressers, spas, anything like that.

In the past I have have bought perfume, Elizabeth Arden face cream sets, a cake slice thingymebob, a set of 8 leather placemats (which she never uses as they're for good wear) lol. A scarf which she never wore.

She's a cleaner and has a lot of hip pain but refuses to go to a doctor.
She's quite a difficult woman.
Her house is like a trinket shop.

Oh, she goes to weekly art classes, so maybe some sort of art set might be a good idea? Maybe a professional set of paint-brushes or something? Could find out from my sister what she has or needs.

She's a good cook, but a traditional one. Slow cookers etc. would be out of the question. I did once buy her one of those multi-purpose chop/slice/whizz/kitchen thingys but she hasn't used it.

My budget would be about £50. I'm straying towards the professional paint brushes now that I think of it, but I don't know if she has them already as she's painting years.

Any inspiration, no matter how off the wall you think it might be would be much appreciated.

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 21:34:08

Oh, and only other limitation I have is weight, as I will be bringing it on a flight over.

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 21:37:27

Other option would be a good set of knives? Always useful no?

God I'm so shite at Christmas presents.

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 21:38:26

Or maybe a fancy set of silver cutlery? Might be beyond my budget though?

starzig Mon 13-Nov-17 21:40:45

A good set of knives would be well over £50 though. Ornamental giraffes appear to be 'In' lol

notheretoargue Mon 13-Nov-17 21:42:52

What about some books of artists that might inspire her? Or tickets to an art exhibition in a local town? (Where does she live?)

FadedRed Mon 13-Nov-17 21:44:26

A TENS machine, some sable paint brushes and some really good barrier hand cream.
Difficult, isn't it?

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 21:44:38

She has that many ornaments, I don't think a giraffe would fit in lol. How much are proper knives or a set of silver cutlery? Was also thinking of getting her 500 thread count fitted sheets and pillow cases. I have one pillow case of my own that I love to pieces, but she might not just appreciate the sheer luxury lol. Can you tell I was in TKMaxx today?

buckeejit Mon 13-Nov-17 21:44:47

Audiobook subscription? I love knives but they are very individual I think.

Would there be any particular class for art you could send her to? Life drawing etc?

A restaurant lesson to cook & eat something

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 21:46:30

She lives in rural Ireland, but has been known to venture to ballets and things. Hadn't thought of an art exhibition. It's really not my thing. Wouldn't know where to look. She wouldn't go on her own though, I know that much. Hmmmmm

buckeejit Mon 13-Nov-17 21:46:43

Do you know anything that she has loved in the past? Would help with clues.

I have loads of jewellery but always room for more!

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 21:48:52

I think she might be offended by a TENS machine. She eats nurofen like smarties and really carries a lot of weight and has a tough job as a cleaner in a school (a lot of heavy lifting etc.). Would it provide her with relief? She will not NOT NOT go to a doctor. (Her daughter is a doctor so she reads her medical books instead) lol.

buckeejit Mon 13-Nov-17 21:50:15

Sketchers shoes for comfort? Pain management book. 2 tickets to something nice

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 21:51:26

I don't think she'd have the patience to sit and listen to an audiobook. She's go go go go go, then sits down for an hour at night with a G&T and that's it.
She's pretty fond of this art class so I think she would feel it disloyal to try to enrol her in another one.
You've given me great food for thought.

Polyanthus Mon 13-Nov-17 21:51:55

I've bought my mum luxurious versions of everyday stuff which have gone down well. Got her some Brora cashmere socks one year and a Brora pointelle vest in a beautiful rose colour last year. Both of those are fairly fluctuating size proof - the vest is v stretchy.

Have done mag subscriptions for my mother in law - maybe an art mag would suit you?

Finally, how about tickets for something while you are there. Is there a theatre nearby? Or a trip/membership to one of those NAtional Trust or similar places that are dressed for Christmas

Hope you find something nice anyway

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 22:01:19

I think she wears echo shoes at work. I was thinking of maybe getting her Asics runners as she takes fits of walking now and then and they're the most comfortable runners I've ever found.

I wouldn't be comfortable choosing a play/exhibition as she tends to shock me with her choices. A ballet ffs?

Pain management book might be good, but she has probably read all my sisters medical books already. I once found her reading a chapter in one of my sister's medical books 'How to converse with (or deal with) an overweight patient'.

KC225 Mon 13-Nov-17 22:01:53

What about a really nice art portfolio. Amazon have hundreds of them in all sizes. Or I saw a lovely wooden foldable art.storage, 39.00 and you rest the art work on it. Most people who have hobbies k ow what they like in terms of tools but storage is always a good one

buckeejit Mon 13-Nov-17 22:03:18

Could she listen while she works? They are good for walking & listening to during cooking etc. sorry, I totally evangelical about them! Really need a smartphone though.

An art book might be good, especially if you could do something tied in with an exhibition?! There's a thread about gifts for women that isn't run of the mill. I'd also recommend an Amazon echo dot-great fun!

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 22:04:51

Can the poster who suggested the Tens machine tell me a little bit more about it? I know it's used in labour to relieve pain. Would it have any sort of extra benefit apart from pain relief? such as regressing whatever is going on in her hips?

Inthetropics Mon 13-Nov-17 22:06:26

If she paints she might apreciate paint, pencils, paper, canvases, etc.

I also love to gift a luxury version of a daily product people use.

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 22:06:32

Kc - what is an art portfolio? Excuse my absolute ignorance.

hiddley Mon 13-Nov-17 22:08:58

Ok, I'm going to have to shoot all these ideas over to my sister. I live in England so don't see her much.
All fabulous ideas. Just need to do a little research into what she has and doesn't have really.

Avebury Mon 13-Nov-17 22:10:12

Not sure if it would be on a similar theme to a Tens machine but my DSis has a massage stick type thing (definitely not a vibrator) by Homedics which she finds really helpful for her aches and pains.

singadream Mon 13-Nov-17 22:40:38

A nice plate that could be used or displayed?

KC225 Mon 13-Nov-17 23:20:28

Art portfolio is an extra large like A3 folder type bag, to carry art work. There are ones to suit various budgets, or nylon, leather etc.

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