Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Gifts for Mother's Day Under Twenty Five Dollars

Okay, so I got this email in my inbox inviting me to contribute to a competition hosted by Nerdwallet for ideas for a gift for Mother’s Day for $25.00 or less. This is not something I normally do but I thought what the heck I might as well give it a shot. My ideas don't fall into any of the judged categories. But who cares? I don't. I've got three sons. I've got my enough problems without worrying about judging categories.

Obviously, my first thought was to ask my mother:  she’d be sure to know for sure. Unfortunately, then I remembered she was dead.  So, screwed at the first hurdle, I’d knew I’d have to come up with some original ideas of my own.

Firstly, as I’m British and this is an American competition I had to convert the $25.00 gift scenario to pounds: it’s £16.08. My initial response to this was: what kind of joker is proposing that men only spend $25.00 dollars for Mother’s Day? Answer: only a true nerd. Yep, you can bet Sly Stallone doesn't spend only $25.00 dollars on his mum and whilst he is a nerd he probably isn't your true geeky nerd. Sly is an action hero nerd - which is slightly different to a nerd who collects action heroes.

Secondly, I tried to put myself in the position of a mother who knows her son is a nerd and therefore expects a nerdish present. (This may help to alleviate the disappointment of not getting a Porsche Carrera, a whopping ten carat diamond or a blind date with the hunky best friend who is slightly less nerdy and attends a gym.) Now, as a mother of three young males of whom one is a true geeky nerd (he’s twenty one and plays Warhammer), I know that you must always, always, lower your expectations when it comes to Mother’s Day gifts or, indeed, any kind of gift. In fact, you should just be grateful if he remembers who you are and where you live. Then, if you actually have the good fortune to receive a present, you will be able to act with genuine spontaneous glee when you unwrap your gift - even if turns out to a tube of superglue, a 1996 “collectible” Sega Mega Drive game or a piece of wire mesh which can be moulded into either a kitchen sieve or, more conveniently, a piece of railway landscape.
Ladies - if you have a nerd for a son your life may not be worth living.
Okay, so let’s get down to business. As a mother whose nerdy son forgot both Mother’s Day  (it’s a different day here in the UK) and her birthday this year here are my top ten gifts under $25.00 that I wouldn’t have minded receiving (bearing in mind my expectations are really, really low.)

1.       A Mother’s Day card. Well, I suppose that counts at a gift. It’s not exactly a present but on the plus side you could have it framed so that you can remember for all eternity the year your nerdish son actually remembered Mother’s Day.

2.       A bottle of bath salts. I never thought I’d say this but there might be a day my son gives them to me and I will be truly grateful to receive them. In the meantime, I shall continue to give away any I receive to the local church fair to be sold on the White Elephant Stall.

3.       A kitchen sieve which is actually a kitchen sieve.

4.       A bottle of red wine (or preferably two) to drown out the sorrows of knowing your nerdy son will probably forget to attend your funeral.

5.       A bottle of red wine (or preferably two) and a box of chocolates to celebrate the fact you will have written your nerdy son out of your will.

6.       A hammer. This is very useful for all sorts of DIY, especially if you feel the need to vent your anger on model railways.

7.       A selection of paracetamol, aspirin and anti-depressants.

8.       A line of coke (a cola).

9.       A copy of Fifty Shades of Grey and a packet of matches.

10   A tea towel. Because they’re useful and you can wear them on your head and tell your son you’ve converted to Islam.

So that’s my top ten suggestions. If none of these appeals to you nerds out there just give your Mum £25 voucher and let her chose her own present. Then you’ll both be happy.


  1. This is such a hillarious post..Brought a smile on my face..This is my first year as a mother :)..
    - Laks

  2. Welcome Laks:) You are in a very fortunate place at the moment. For approximately the first nine years of your child's life your partner will assume responsibility for your Mother's Day gift. At about age nine your partner will abdicate all responsibility believing your son/daughter can save up their pocket money and buy you a present that will make you go "Ahhhhhh he/she's so thoughtful!". This, of course, means you will either receive a tube of toothpaste, a dog-eared copy of Thomas the Engine/ Sleeping Beauty purchased from the school fayre - or a bottle of bath salts.

    Good luck with all future Mother Days, Laks:) I sincerely hope they will be more successful than mine have been!

  3. Looking forward for Sunday..Lets see how it goes..
    Your blogs are awesome. Glad that i bumped into it,will be a regular reader from now on..

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Laks, and I hope to see you around:)

      Let me know if you get interesting for Mother's Day!

  4. Too funny Jane! I LOVE your suggestions, they are utterly practical, especially the hammer, which has no end of likely victims er, um, I meant possibilities.

    By the way, don't be in too much of a hurry to unload your bath salts. Apparently they can induce a powerful high. On the downside, users have been known to do things like strip off and devour the face of a hapless homeless person. But, hey, just like in life, you have to take the good with the bad.

    Sending you virtual (if belated) Mother's Day and birthday love and hugs. xoxo

    1. You can get high on bath salts, Marie? Cripes, whatever next! There are so many other things to get high on that are far more seductive - like the aroma of chocolate for example....:)

      Thanks for the mother's day/b- day wishes. They were in March over here.No 1 son has still not remembered:)) Next year I am going to text him in advance.

  5. I don't know how the bath salts can make you high, mind you, but it was a huge story here last year when a naked man out of his mind on bath salts literally chewed the face off of a homeless man. Gruesome.

    1. I recall that incident now -big spread in the Daily Mail but I didn't read it all as it was too gruesome and I definitely didn't know it was a result of bath salts. It seems a bit odd, really: I must go to the bathroom and expect the small print on the packaging...otherwise I might fall out of favour with the school PTA for passing on dangerous substances!

  6. Personally, I ADORE dangerous substances. And I usually despised the women on the PTA. ;) We would have made a wicked team of PTA rebels. lol

    1. Sure would have, Marie:)) There's definitely a rebel in me that doesn't get on well with small minded authoritarian committees.

  7. Wonderful job with the post Jane. I guess a tea towel tip is going to be a better deal. It actually made me go crazy after reading it. LOL!

    1. Glad you enjoyed the post, James. I am hoping to get at least three teatowels for Christmas. At christmas though instead of converting to Islam I'll be able to perform my own nativity!


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