Mother’s Day is that one day of the year where mothers endure a range of gifts chosen or made by over-enthusiastic kids or sheepish partners who left it til the last minute to hit the shops and grabbed something wildly inappropriate in their panic. Sometimes, the gifts have thought behind them but don’t exactly hit the present thrill-o-meter. Like the time my Mum complained about the iron, so Dad considerately gifted her a new one. He almost wore it in a very uncomfortable place.

It seems like a gift guide of what NOT to give might be helpful to the gift-giving-challenged among us.

A Squeegee

Tory from Minted Rogue remembers her Mum being lovingly gifted a new squeegee for Mother’s Day from her Dad. Why? An off-the-cuff comment about the streaks on the windows being hard to get rid of. Practical, yes. Enjoyable? Less so. Nobody likes cleaning windows. If you’re eyeing of the squeegee section in Bunnings, grab one, but not for the Mum in your life. Clean the damn windows yourself, why don’t you?

KFC Chocolates?

Artisan-made chocolates infused with Original Recipe or Zinger seasonings are the latest boutique, exclusive and limited-edition offerings from the fried chicken chain. Would I try one? Yes. Absolutely. My curiosity wouldn’t allow me not to if presented with one. But I don’t think it would be good. And really, does anyone want a box of chicken-flavoured chocolates?

A Giant Tennis Ball

The IGA at Rouse Hill, NSW is totally cashing in on the Mother’s Day sale idea. For the bargain price of only $9.99, you can thrill the mother in your life with a tennis ball that is bigger than her head. I am especially fond of the notation on the price tag that reads “Save $0.00”!

What mother wouldn’t be overjoyed to score one of these babies? I can answer that. Me. I would not be overjoyed. Confused, yes. Thrilled, no.

What about this screams “Mother’s Day”?!

Random kitchen stuff,  such as egg cups

Dana from Brand Meets Blog says egg cups did not make her Mother’s Day. Egg cups, in her opinion, are simply not the recognition one deserves for birthing a child. Fair call.

Artist’s interpretation of what it feels like to get an egg cup for Mother’s Day.


There are good reasons not to give grown-up women onesies. Let’s ignore the whole looking like a giant baby aspect and focus on another, as pointed out by Leanne from Deep Fried Fruit: “I often have to pee at night. Having to unzip the onesie and pretty much pee naked, at 4.00am in a Canberra winter, is not the best experience!” When Leanne shared her pic, complete with “happy” grin, one friend asked “How long do you have to pretend to like that?” I reckon a week, max.

From the Mother’s Day Stall

It’s a mixed bag, isn’t it?

  • Tegan from Musings of the Misguided remembers a mug coming home from school, complete with tea bag. A nice idea. Her son let her know that he’d told the teacher that Mummy wasn’t a tea-drinker but reassured her that the mug would get used because “she can put beer in it”. Thanks, buddy!
  • My friend, Jen, remembers buying mum a jewelry box full of chocolates at the school stall. She promptly scoffed the chocolates and presented her mum with what she describes as “a Reject shop-style pink, plastic jewelry box”. What mum wouldn’t be over the moon?
  • My friend Colleen scored this gem that her daughter picked up from the school stall. “Happy Mother’s day, Mum! Time to drop a few kilos!” Colleen’s daughter, in her defense, was just as disappointed by this gift. She was under the impression that she’s scored mum a new mobile phone! Partners and other relatives: It’s your job to vet gifts from the Mother’s Day stall!
  • Then there’s this well-endowed wine glass that Bec from The Plumbette scored- another Mother’s Day Stall stand-out. Her daughter thought they were big, sparkly eyes, bless her!

Special Mentions

  • Gotta love hand-made gifts, such as this spangly, made-with-love gem in my friend Yasmine’s bathroom. Not a bad gift at all but the very proud creator insists that it be displayed all year round. Here it is, in situ, on the bathroom wall:
  • Cate from Life Behind the Purple Door scored the same dressing gown two years in a row. She didn’t like it much the first time. Rookie error, though. Maybe take note of what the mum in your life gets each year?
  • Rebel from Families Magazine Gold Coast remembers: “My first Mother’s Day, Ruby’s dad got me a George Foreman grill. I’m a vegetarian.” Dude… No.
  • A friend of a friend was baffled to open her gifts, chosen by the kids without input from their dad: Fly spray and gardening gloves!
  • Another friend of a friend is less than impressed with her pending gift:

    You’re jealous, admit it.

  • Lydia from Where the Wild Things Were got half a Subway sandwich from her son. He’d eaten the other half. Her guess? He realised, mid-snack, that he hadn’t bought her anything. Points for trying?

The Worst Gift Ever: Nothing

There is no excuse for this. You can’t “forget” that your partner is a mum. You can’t ignore your own mum. I mean, you can do both of these things, but it makes you an asshat. An even bigger asshat than someone who gets a questionable gift for their loved one. At least they tried!

Yes, it’s a “Hallmark Holiday” probably designed to prop up the greeting card industry who are clearly in cahoots with the boxed chocolate companies and florists everywhere.

I don’t care.

It is the one day a year that mums are supposed to feel special and loved and appreciated for being mums. If someone has done you a solid and birthed your child, is raising a child with you or did the ultimate in awesome and birthed and/or raised you, get them a nice fucking present so they know that you appreciate them. Make it, bake it or buy it- at least have a go!

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  • This is the best! I was giggling all the way through. Great post! X

  • catchatcaren

    oh this was just too cute!!!!!!!!! Love it!!!!! DakotasDen

  • LydiaCLee

    Hey, I loved the half eaten Sub because (1) he thought of it himself without prompting (2) it truly did come from the heart with his own money and he went without to give it to me! And it was ‘wrapped’.

    • Bahahaha, wrapped! At least you got a tasty snack!

  • 👍🏼👍🏼👍🏼

  • Such a good post! I need to share it with my hubby to ensure I don’t get any of the above. I also don’t want the fry pan I think he is considering as HE burnt our frypan a week ago and I apparently need a new one as a result!

  • Min Write of the Middle

    LOL – oh my gosh some classic Mother’s Day gift fails shared here! I’ve had some doozies over the years but can’t think of one as an example off hand. Bring on Sunday! 🙂 #TeamLovinLife

  • I laughed at way too many of these, but chicken flavoured chocolate? Seriously? I still have a pottery heart glazed sort of pink with Mum written on it that my (now 19yo) daughter gave me when she was 5. Other handmade gifts weren’t quite so appreciated. On the whole though, hubby has done well over the years. #TeamLovinLife

  • Here here!! I snorted reading some of these. Glad I’m not alone!

  • Great post Amy! The IGA at Rouse Hill also had those same BIG balls around for “Happy Easter” …so I read in the local (it used to be a kind of local for me!) paper. I hope that I get a text or phone call on Sunday from one of my adult kids (not holding my breath) but my DIL ensured “Grandma” was not forgotten by sending me a card with the 4 lovely g’kids hand prints inside. My daughter is coming up for lunch (which I will supply as Mums need spoiling too) along with 2 teen grandkids and a much younger one. Happy Mother’s Day Amy xx

  • Oh man – I wrote a post on Monday bemoaning the fact that Mothers Day sucks sometimes – I’ve had the adult kids who forgot or couldn’t be bothered some years to buy a present. Luckily my husband always buys me something and I could never imagine not buying something for my mum and MIL – it’s the least we can do to say thank you (mind you some of the ones you list might not be such great ideas!)

  • Too funny. I must confess, I was kind of glad when we moved to Perth and the schools here don’t do the $2 Mother’s Day stall. Of course then it meant cold toast and luke warm coffee delivered 3 hours late to me in bed but hey, I got to lie in bed for the morning waiting for it.

  • sydneyshopgirl

    Thanks for the laughs and the honesty for what can be a very commercial day in Australia.

    SSG xxx

  • Ha, some hilarious shockers here.

  • LOL. So many funny stories. Glad I’m not alone (even if I am peeing naked). #teamlovinlife

  • I am waiting with great anticipation to see what I scored this year in our first ever Mothers Day Stall experience. I saw what else was in the box when I dropped off my donated gift and was tempted to deliver a bit of coaching as to avoid the WORLD’S BEST MOM mug and Arbonne sample packs.

  • Loving your post Amy! Mother’s Day gifts …hmmm! Well, I have several oversized chunky mugs at the back of the cupboard and a plastic storage bin full of lovely handmade gifts from the younger years. The gift I never saw coming was the new ironing board cover. Yes, I needed one, but NOT for Mother’s Day!!! They won’t buy me another one 🙂 #TeamLovinLife

  • Amanda

    😂😂 I’m happy to say I haven’t really had any strange gifts for Mother’s Day….but Christmas is another story. I can’t wait for the gifts my kids decide I need…purely for the memories, and maybe there will be some nice surprises in there!

  • Hahaha absolutely hilarious! It’s my first mother’s day tomorrow so we’ll see if I need to add to the list then! 😂😂

  • That wine glass had me in stitches 😂

  • Lauren Threadgate

    This all makes me so grateful for my family, who actually make an effort! I’m pretty difficult to please but they try hard!