Design

Gift Guide #4: Your Mom (or Mother Figure) Who Took You as Seriously at Age 5 as She Does at Age 40.

11 Best Gifts for Moms

Turtleneck sweater to keep her cozy. (You could always pair it with the ultimate red lipstick!)

11 Best Gifts for Moms

The book of Modern Love essays, because she loves a good love story.

11 Best Gifts for Moms

An olive wreath to make her house smell amazing. (Or a beautiful bunch of flowers.)

11 Best Gifts for Moms

A box of Levain cookies, arguably the best in New York City — or a batch of homemade treats.

11 Best Gifts for Moms

Essential Ottolenghi, a set of the Israeli-English chef’s two iconic cookbooks, featuring more than 280 recipes. (YUM.)

11 Best Gifts for Moms

A lip mask with a cult following. You wake up with the smoothest, softest lips.

11 Best Gifts for Moms

A floral calendar she can enjoy all year. (This one is pretty, too.)

11 Best Gifts for Moms

A mug with faces she loves.

11 Best Gifts for Moms

A smattering of bath goodies, including a beautiful soap, a roll bath pillow and a gossip magazine.

11 Best Gifts for Moms

A donation in her name to the ACLU to support all the amazing work they do.

11 Best Gifts for Moms

A note saying how much you love her, since that’s all she really wants anyway.

P.S. The 2017 gift guide for moms, the 2018 gift guide for moms, and the 2019 gift guide so far.

  1. sam says...

    LANEIGE LIP SLEEPING MASK IS THE BEST!!!!!! So glad you guys featured it :) :) :)

    • Dena says...

      Secret weird use: I put a little on the backs of my hands every night and it magically makes my hands soft and not-cracking by morning. Love it!

  2. Terri says...

    My Mom’s 72nd birthday would be tomorrow. Sadly, she passed away 9 months ago. Last year I bought her a soft pink sweater for Christmas, and one of the last text messages I received from her was a photo of her wearing it and saying how good I was at choosing clothes. If I could give her one more gift it would have been to tell her all of the things I hope she heard me say the last day she was with us, though she wasn’t responding, which was mostly that I loved her, that our whole family loved her. I hope that somewhere she sees me doing my best to make it through my second year of law school at age 41, while cheering on my daughter through her first year of college, and helping my son through a difficult year for him health-wise, sharing life with my wonderful husband. I hope she knows that I love her very much, despite the differences we had and the complications in our relationship. I hope she sees me seeking spiritually and trying to be the kindest human being I can be. Hug your mama if you still have her! That’s the gift she probably really wants.

    • M says...

      Terri – I’m so sorry for your loss. I can only imagine how proud your mom must be of you! You sound like the loveliest person. 💗

    • Allison says...

      Thank you for sharing, Terri. Sending you a big hug!

    • SB says...

      I also lost my mum unexpectedly about 9.5 months ago and I fully endorse this comment. Don’t just give her a Christmas card, fill it with all the wonderful and lovely thoughts you have about her, tell her what you love about her, thank you for what she’s taught and shown you, and yes A BIG BIG HUG.

      I would also add, my mum loved it when I could be home a few days before Christmas and help with the “prep” – cookie baking, decorating, last minute shopping and organizing. It was a special time to spend together and made her feel like the mum of a little girl again (in all the best ways!). So if you have time, give her the gift of time <3

    • Kristina says...

      Hi Terri, I lost my Mom 10 years ago (am 37 now) and miss her every day.
      I hear you on wanting nothing more than to tell her that you love her!
      I am sure she knows and sees you every day.
      Big hugs and enjoy a wonderful holiday season with your lovely-sounding family! xx

    • agnes says...

      Oh she heard you, she felts you and she felt your love, beyond words.
      I lost my mother 5 years ago, I think about her every day and I wish she were here today to give me a hand with so many things. I’m 46, I still need my mum.
      And terri, you will feel her on christmas day, for sure.

    • NN says...

      Lost my mama, too, and reading your comment made my heart ache with love. You’re beautiful and strong.

    • Terri says...

      Thank you so much to each person who responded to my comment. Your lovely, kind words mean a great deal to me today. My heart goes out to all of you who have also lost your mom.

    • I teared up a little.
      I lost my Mom 14 months ago to breast cancer. Our relationship was bumpy, but I miss her so much. I even once left a comment on CoJ regarding our relationship and received so many kind replies about needing to protect myself first.
      I wanted to tell her I loved her while she was in the terminal phase, but somehow it never seemed like the right moment. She left without me having uttered the words, but I do hope that she knew.
      I don’t know if I want to have kids myself (I am 31, and in a homosexual relationship atm), but I do love reading and hearing about other moms. Mine left too soon, but she basically built a foundation for the character, behavior, education and reasoning of me and my sister. Despite our differences that had risen in my twenties, I think she did a great job, and she’ll be forever missed.
      Terri and all the women that experienced the same loss, I’m sending you all hugs.

    • amyK says...

      I lost my mom 5 years ago and I think often if she heard things I said in those final days of her life. If she didn’t hear the words I feel she knew through my presence and my touch. Sending you love, light, and strength.

  3. Kelsey says...

    I have bought products from another good cause this year: https://thistlefarms.org/; they are based in Nashville and every scent I ordered smells so good! I am hoping my mom, MIL, sister and SIL likes these as much as I do!

  4. Megan says...

    Already bought my mom AND my mother in law that lip mask in the vanilla flavor! It it THE BEST.

  5. Cynthia says...

    I would suggest a donation to an organization your mother supports. One year a colleague made donations to our local Christmas Mother in our honor, which was a great idea, because we all have plenty of stuff any way. If your mom has a birdfeeder (I do), a gift of bird seed or suet is a great idea. A subscription to a magazine related to her hobby. A gift certificate for a pedicure or manicure or massage. Ask your mom for some ideas for gifts. As I get older, I need fewer and fewer things.

    • Kelly says...

      Yes. My siblings and I began a tradition several years back, where instead of buying each other ‘stuff’, we pool the money we would have spent on each other and choose an organization to donate the money to or use the money to purchase things that local organizations need, which we then donate. Better than stuff!!

    • Ann says...

      Thank you for sharing this article. It’s a sick, sick story and disgusting how Amazon, Indiana and Federal OSHA acted. All they care about is the almighty dollar.

  6. Pauline says...

    Why aren’t prices shown as in the previous gift guides? I don’t want to have to click on the link so as to see how much the items cost.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      we noticed that prices were fluctuating a lot with all the sales going on, so we decided to leave them out this year. i hope that makes sense!

  7. Jennifer says...

    I own the JCrew turtleneck sweater in, maybe 6 different colors? It’s a keeper. They sell it every year. It’s basically the one thing I wear all winter. It’s the only sweater I haven’t gotten holes in the elbows, is warm enough for cold Chicago winters, is light enough to tuck into skirts and pants, and always looks chic. Full endorsement!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      so glad to hear!

  8. Sasha L says...

    As a mom of adult daughters, I endorse this list! I especially love the soft grey turtleneck and the idea of soap and cookies ♥️

  9. Emily Hope says...

    I picked my mom up a copy of the Modern Love essays at The Strand while in NYC last week. She called me the week before in tears after finishing the Amazon series saying that it helped her believe in love again. This fall was the 10th anniversary of my parents’ divorce and I hope that the book continues to revive her faith that there is someone out there for her.

    • Adri says...

      oh, my heart, this is so sweet!! also how about Our souls at night by Kent Haruf?

      and I really hope she finds someone:)

  10. agnes says...

    My favorite part of your gifts guide is always the last sentence: “…since that’s all she/he really wants anyway”. Love it.

  11. Marie says...

    As a mother of two girls in their twenties, I have to admit that a batch of homemade treats always tastes better when made by them :)

    • Cait says...

      I was a little sad to see that the flower link didn’t go to Farmgirl Flowers; you should def check them out for the future, great smaller, woman-owned company and my mom RAVED about her Mother’s Day peonies :)

    • Sasha L says...

      Same here Marie! My girls bake with love and you can taste it.

  12. Lynn says...

    Just a quick warning about buying beauty products like that lip product on Amazon – counterfeits galore! Read reviews and try to buy elsewhere if you can.

  13. Heather says...

    Which shade of that mac lipstick is the “ultimate red” ??

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Ruby woo!

  14. Nicole says...

    Love these ideas, as always! My mom asked for a new vegetable peeler (moms!), so it’s nice to get some more indulgent ideas.

    Just a note about buying beauty products on Amazon (since the lip mask is linked to Amazon)- a lot of the beauty products are allegedly fake- this lip mask has reviews attesting to such. I totally get that you need to have some affiliate links, but for beauty products, you may want to consider linking directly to someplace like Sephora or the manufacturer’s website. It is so hard to tell what is suspect on Amazon. Thanks!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      I’ll change the link! Thank you!

  15. Liz says...

    So glad you shared the last link. One of my favorite ways to share love is by sending greeting cards – can’t wait to send some of these to my favorite ladies.

  16. witloof says...

    Re: the note saying how much you love her, since that’s all she really wants anyway.
    AMEN. I’m an occupational therapist and I work with kids. Skip the cheap cologne and write down everything you have noticed about how much happier, confident, resilient, and capable your child has become since starting sensory integration therapy. I have enough stuff! Those cards from happy grateful parents are what I keep and treasure.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      I love hearing that! Thank you for all the great work you do.

  17. Marnie says...

    ahh, just ordered two copies of the Modern Love essays! One as a birthday gift for a friend, and the other as an early Christmas gift to myself! LOVELY roundup!