You’ve been buying gifts for your mom for a long time. There have been a lot of birthdays, anniversaries, Mothers Days, Christmases, Hanukkahs, and other parties over the years and you’ve been ready for them all with poignant, stellar gift ideas.
But your mother is a bit older now. Some of her interests have changed, some are no longer possible to indulge… Finding the perfect gift that says you still know and understand her wants and needs can be tricky! Luckily, you have lists like this to help point you in the right direction. Think about the aspect of mom’s life that you’d like to enhance and voila! We have a gift option for that!
To Help Her Write Things Down
1. DIY Memoir
Seniors and grandparents always have such interesting stories to tell! Even when they don’t think that their life or their stories are particularly special, their family members often disagree. This book was created by a grandson who wanted to preserve his grandfather’s life story, but it can be used by anyone at any stage of life. It’s made up of HOW MANY prompts to help the writer get going, including “This is how people described me as a child and how I saw myself,” and “My profession and the companies or institutions I worked for were…” It’s the perfect way for anyone to preserve their memories.
2. Personalized Address Stamp
For the senior who loves snail mail, this is the perfect gift! Whether they’re writing letters, sending invitations, mailing holiday cards, or simply paying bills, this sweet customized address stamp gives any envelope a delightful touch of personality and style. It’s a self-inking stamp, which means it doesn’t have to be stamped on an inkpad before using it on paper, and the cartridge is easily replaced. The impression it leaves is only 1.5” x 1.5” and fits well on any and all envelopes. You can also choose the color of ink you prefer, including black, blue, red, green, pink, purple orange, or brown.
3. Lap Desk
Making life as comfortable and easy as possible is the best way to keep mom happy. Whether she spends most of her time on the couch or in bed, this cozy lap desk is exactly what she needs! It’s dual-bolster cushion is uber cool and super comfy (don’t use the term “uber” when describing it to mom!), and it has so many different uses. There’s an integrated mouse pad so scrolling through Facebook or sending emails on the laptop can all be done while she watches her soaps. If she’s not the techy type, she can always use it for doing crossword puzzles or writing letters. Either way, she’ll love the functionality!
4. Keepsake Cookbook
For some elderly moms, their best stories are told through their baking and cooking. This book is specially made for those moms whose lives and loves have been spent in the kitchen. There is room for 150 recipes, all sorted into six sections: Starters, Soups and Salads, Main Courses, Side Dishes, Desserts, and Miscellaneous. Each recipe page is accompanied by a “Memories” page where either mom can write her own trials and memories of the food, or whoever she gives the finished book to can write their own. A treasured family recipe can often generate as many stories as a photo or written memoir!
To Give Her a Better Rest
5. Back and Neck Massager
What mom, of any age, doesn’t love having her neck massaged? With this handy device, mom will never have to wait for you to finish whatever you’re doing – she’ll be able to help herself relax! Its ergonomic design fits perfectly behind your neck and upper back, plus it can be used on the tummy, calf, or thighs if needed. This beauty is made from vegan leather, changes the direction of the massage every minute, shuts itself off after 20 minutes, AND has a car adapter. Therapeutic relaxation has never been so convenient! You might want to two of these because you’ll probably want to steal mom’s – and she’s definitely not going to want to give it up.
6. Memory Foam Pillow
There are few home essentials more important than a good quality pillow, no matter what your age. Your mama deserves to sleep soundly and comfortably, without any concern about waking up the following morning with neck or back pain. This memory foam pillow is firmer than most down alternatives, it’s infused with a specialized gel that regulates the temperature, and it’s designed for optimal ventilation – all of which means less tossing and turning, flipping and flopping! The cover comes off so it’s easy to wash and keep clean. Dreamland, here comes mom.
7. Weighted Blanket
Weighted blankets are super popular right now, and there’s a reason for that: they feel like a hug! This particular model is quilted with small squares that are filled with glass beads, a design that allows the beads to have better distribution. The internal fabric is made of two layers of microfiber – which prevents the beads from moving around too much – and the outer shell has two layers of 100% cotton. Mom can use this blanket to help her sleep better, relieve anxiety, and even to calm any restless leg issues. When particularly down, she can wrap this cozy blanket around her shoulders for a true hug!
8. Personalized Throw Blanket
What’s the one topic that moms and grandmoms around the globe love to discuss at any time of day? Their kids and grandkids, of course. And you know what else they love? Throw blankets. It’s a proven fact. This particular throw blanket combines two loves into one: it’s an uber soft and comfy throw (made from the softest fleece ever) AND has all of her favorite people’s names lovingly displayed. Up to 23 names can be included in this heart-shaped design and each can be written in a different font. It’s a gift that will wrap her with the warmth of a blanket and the love of her family.
To Introduce Her Helpful Technology
9. Amazon Echo Dot
Yes, even your elderly mother can handle technology as simple as the Amazon Echo Dot. It’s as simple as saying “Alexa” and telling the device what to do: play music, report the weather, set a timer, recite a recipe, or even broadcast to other devices like an intercom. Convenience has never been more… convenient! Your mom will love all the different functions that Alexa brings to her life. The Echo Dot is nice and petite, so it fits seamlessly into any room, large or small. And with six fabric colors and designs to choose from, it can even be customized to match mama’s decor and/or personality.
Yes, she needs an iPad. Yes, she will probably become addicted, just like the rest of us. Really, though, how could she not? Being able to check Facebook, play solitaire (or chess, or bridge, or backgammon, or Chinese checkers, or Yahtzee, or…), read newspapers and magazines (and books!), send emails, and FaceTime with family members – how could she not be obsessed with this kind of fun and convenience? Really, it’s a gift for the whole family since it means mama/grandma will have so many more methods of communication at her fingertips. No more heavy, bulky, bulging family photo albums: nana has Facebook!
11. Therapy Lamp
Especially for those senior moms who are housebound, Seasonal Affective Disorder can be a truly depressing, debilitating malady. Even more so for housebound seniors who live in northerly areas where there are very few hours of daylight during the winter months. Enter this fantastic therapy lamp! This UV-free lighting device simulates natural sunlight, giving off a 1000 lux brightness to help minimize the effects of SAD, insomnia, jet lag, and depression. And it’s so easy to use! It’s small enough to be portable, has uber convenient touch controls, and a built-in timer. And it’s a heck of a lot cheaper than a trip to Mexico.
12. Fitbit Inspire
Trying to encourage your elderly mom to be more active? The Fitbit Inspire is the perfect tool – er, fashion accessory – to get her started. They’re not just for yoga-loving 20-somethings and jocks! Nope, even a senior can appreciate the simple features on this device: the heart rate monitor, step counter, distance calculator, activity timer, and calorie tracker are all super useful for seniors. Plus, it monitors sleep patterns, so she’ll be able to see when she gets her best and worst periods of rest. It comes in three cool colors, so she can match it to her arm weights and track coat. You go girl!
To Keep Her Mind Sharp
13. Brain Puzzles
Keeping mom’s mind in peak condition is a priority! A trivia and puzzles workbook is a great way to accomplish this while also having some fun. This book has a whopping 399 different word games, geography tricks, historical trivia, topical lexicons, picture puzzles, anagrams, riddles, crosswords, and a host of other brainteasers you’ve never even heard of. All of the included activities focus on using six types of cognitive functions: long-term memory, working memory, executive functioning, attention to detail, multitasking, and processing speed. Be careful because you just might cut your finger – mom’s mind is as sharp as a tack!
14. Jigsaw Puzzle
Everyone loves doing a good puzzle, right? Okay, not everyone. But your mom sure does! Puzzles are recommended for people of all ages, but particularly for seniors as they can improve short-term memory and visual-spatial reasoning, relieve stress, achieve a sense of accomplishment, and offer opportunities to connect with others. Puzzle making can also be a form of medication, allowing mom to enjoy some quality alone time for reflection and contemplation. This particular jigsaw showcases a picturesque terrace with vibrant flowers and a lovely cityscape in the background. She’ll love it.
15. Coloring Book
Many adults have eagerly joined the coloring craze that’s swept the nation over the past few years, and the kids are saying, “I told you so.” Let them tell your mom too! Coloring is a great activity for elderly mothers as it practices precision and boosts creativity. Plus, the vibrant colors can be just the thing to lift a senior’s spirits. This particular coloring book is designed especially for the older generations and feature clean, simply designed pictures including a vase of flowers on a windowsill, a collection of kitchen canisters, and a doorway set in a brick wall. Be vigilant – mom will probably steal your colored pencils.
Just as a book full of brainteasers, riddles, and crossword puzzles are fun ways to exercise the mind and enjoy some quality downtime, so is playing more tactile, physical word games. Bananagrams is a sort of “speed Scrabble” where each player must create a crossword for him/herself with the selection of letter tiles he/she is given. Playing this with your elderly mom will help you both (but we’re thinking of her, not you!) practice spelling, encourage quick thinking, and hone hand-eye coordination. Up to four players can participate, so try including the little ones too. The kiddos will love competing against grandma!
To Encourage Her Love of Nature
17. Window Bird Feeder
As much as your sweet elderly mom enjoys her birdwatching, sometimes there just isn’t any yard space for a traditional bird feeder. And her eyesight may not be in tip-top shape anyway, so a feeder way out up in a tree wouldn’t be helpful anyway. However, this ingenious design means that mom can get up close and personal with her feathered friends without even leaving the comfort of her own room! The extra strong suction cups will stick to any window (without a screen), and its clear sides allow for viewing from all angles. It has an easily removable tray for quick refills too. Quick, find the bird book! Mom sees a bluebird!
18. Folding Garden Tool Set
Does your mom have a green thumb? Does she spend hours out in the yard, digging, pruning, poking, planting, shearing, pulling, and/or watering? Does she also spend significant amounts of time sitting on her derriere, knees, wet patches of earth, old logs, or maybe broken kids’ toys? Are her joints achy, her back sore, her shoulders paining, and/or her neck cracking? We thought so. But no longer! This little folding stool offers both support and convenience! It holds a trowel, transplanter, cultivator, weeding fork, and weeder as well as a pair of gloves, a sprayer, and some line. Plus, it comes in a compact zippered tote! She can now work her green thumb while sitting comfortably.
19. Digital Weather Station
Ooooooh! Check out this fancy little piece of yard technology! If your mom is a weather buff, this is definitely the gadget for her. The display on this weather station includes outdoor and indoor temperatures, outdoor and indoor humidity levels, daily forecasts, date and time, and a comfort level color bar. The display is colorful and vivid, has adjustable backlighting, customizable alarms (with snooze feature!), and many other features. Give mom the tool she needs to live out her dreams of being the local weatherwoman!
20. Insect House
Your mom probably has a whole collection of cutesy birdhouses all over her yard – right? There is absolutely no more room for birdhouses. Ooooh! But what about an insect house? It’s so cute! And practical! Certain insects prey on other insects and pests that can do serious damage to mom’s home and gardens. Offering a home to bees, ladybugs, moths, spiders, and many other creatures can offer assistance for the garden and also provide entertainment for kids and adults alike. And butterflies! Who doesn’t want to encourage the presence of beautiful butterflies around their yard?
To Supply Her Reading Material
21. A Man Called Ove
You might want to give mom a box of tissues along with this book. It’s a tear-jerker! Curmudgeonly Ove is a widower who has been dubbed “the bitter neighbor from hell.” Somehow, though, the new neighbors across the street – including their nosy, talkative young daughters – make their way into his heart and home, changing old Ove’s perspective on many things. Maybe mom will relate to this cranky old senior, or maybe he’ll be someone she’s never met before. Either way, he’ll make an impact. And mom will no doubt insist that you read about him too.
22. The Help
Maybe your mom has already seen the brilliant movie adaptation of this New York Times bestselling novel. Or maybe she hasn’t. Either way, she’ll love reading about loyal and loveable Aibileen, outspoken and hilarious Minny, awkward and ambitious Skeeter, and stuck-up society queen Hilly. Maybe your elderly mom will remember her own experiences during this era, or perhaps she can relate to the precarious situations the characters find themselves in. Or maybe she’ll simply enjoy the author’s ability to weave a tale that is both hilarious and heartbreaking. It’s a must-read!
23. I Am Malala
If your mom is a lover of biographies, enjoys learning about people and cultures around the world, or a fierce feminist – she needs to read this incredible book. Malala Yousafzai grew up in Pakistan and as a child was told she couldn’t go to school or listen to music. When she took a stand and fought for her right to education, she received a bullet to the head, compliments of an angry member of the Taliban. Despite all of this, she became history’s youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. All women can learn so much from this book! That includes you AND your mom.
There. If these specific gift ideas aren’t exactly what you’re looking for, you probably have still gleaned tidbits and ideas for related presents that’ll knock her socks off. Oh! Socks! Cute, fuzzy ones featuring characters from her favorite retro television shows! Why didn’t’ we think of that?