Life is full of occasions when you're supposed to buy a gift for someone you may or may not feel like buying a gift for, to be honest. To be even more honest, sometimes that someone is somebody you really can't *not* buy a gift for when the time comes, like your mother-in-law, on Mother's Day. Now, maybe you and your MIL have a great relationship (in which case, congrats!). But if not, don't worry... there are still plenty of appropriate Mother's Day gifts for your mother-in-law, even though she's kind of the worst, in some ways. Not in all the ways, of course. Just in some of them.
Luckily, the gifts on this list will help you to connect with your mother-in-law in all the ways in which she is *not* the worst. Because everybody has their good points, right? Your mother-in-law might be a great cook, or have a unique sense of style. She might have a knack for home design or a sharp political mind. She's fine most of the time really, is the thing! Except when she's the worst, you know?
Omg, she's not even the worst. You know people have mothers-in-law who are legitimately the worst, like all the time. Compared to so many of the people you know, you have nothing to complain about. And that's why you're trying to come up with a good idea for a present in the first place, right? Like you've explained to your husband at least a thousand times, if you really didn't like your MIL you wouldn't even give her gift a second thought. (Got that, buddy? Not that it's a threat, but... still.)
Anyway, these gifts won't give your MIL anything to complain about, and that could be the most important thing of all.
1. A bracelet that speaks volumes
While going through treatments for her second round of cancer, One Tough B founder Shelly Fischer went to a jeweler and had them make her a necklace with the words "One Tough Bitch" (which she wore the necklace with the message facing in, so "only she knew the words"). Likewise, you can wear this bracelet with the charm triangle facing up *or* with the One Tough Bitch facing up, depending on your mood. Available in silver or gold; on black, copper, or pink adjustable cord.
If this happens to describe your MIL, go ahead and embrace it! After all, it's actually a complement of the highest caliber.
2. A box of chill
Like a trip to a super zen, magical spa... in a box. In addition to their subscription boxes, Moonbox offers single box experiences: This one has an emphasis on relaxation and includes a lilac-and-willow-scented smudge candle, a bath bomb, shower steamer, a crystal ring, and an energy cleansing Selenite Wand, plus a surprise tea mix and essential oil rollerball.
Instead of letting your MIL's inability to calm down interfere with your own zen, allow this box to act as a silent suggestion.
3. For the always chilly
Big enough for two people to cuddle under, this 100 percent cotton blanket makes a perfect throw for any bed or couch, and you can even use it as a towel in a pinch. Made in Turkey, this inverted diamond pattern is also available in Sangria and Black.
Perhaps she's always complaining about your house being too cold when she comes to visit? Give the gift of warmth with this irresistible throw, and maybe she'll stop asking you to turn up the thermostat for her "freezing" grandchildren.
4. How to go with the flow
Made from 100 percent recycled and natural materials Yellow Willow yoga mats have an extra layer of non-slip surface and an eco-rubber underlay, so poses are as solid as possible. Plus, they're actually machine-washable, which is quite frankly an amazing quality in a yoga mat.
Another subtle way to suggest that your MIL make time for some anxiety-reducing habits, these top-of-the-line mats add another level of comfort to anyone's yoga practice, whether they're beginners or pros.
5. Because some thumbs are more beige than green
Carved from solid maple and lined with aluminum, these high-quality, hand-sanded planters are perfect for small succulents. An elegant addition to any workspace.
Maybe your MIL is a bit more skilled than the likes of you when it comes to horticulture. This gift will show her that even the un-green of thumb can make adorable plants and planters part of their personal design scheme (and hopefully she'll get the hint and only get you easy-to-raise succulents from now on).
6. That's a Gins-burn, baby
Not only is this Ruth Bader Ginsberg swimsuit an instant political statement, but your purchase benefits seven organizations "that work to uplift women" including Planned Parenthood, Girls Who Code, and the Dr. Maya Angelou Foundation.
They say you can't talk about politics with family, but if your MIL is fan of The Notorious RBG then this versatile one-piece is even better than a discussion.
7. For all the moon magic mamas
Each candle represents a different phase of the month, with essential oils and crystals aligned with the intention for that phase; for example, the New Moon candle is scented with eucalyptus and mint, with Aventurine crystals for renewal. Hand-poured, vegan, and small batch (only 50 sets made in the series).
If an interest in astrology is the only thing you and your MIL have in common, she'll be so happy with this candle set she might even burn one on your behalf (in a good way).
8. The ears have it
There's no question that statement earrings continue to be a zillion percent where it's at, and this pair is particularly gorgeous. Plus, Akola's jewelry is all handcrafted by women in Eastern Africa and the U.S. from sustainable materials like upcycled horn, Karatasi beads, natural raffia and more.
If your mother-in-law has style for miles, a pair of bold earrings like these will show her that you appreciate her look... assuming that you do, of course.
9. For the roses (and everyone who loves them)
The signature kai*rose scent (made with rose absolute, geranium, bergamot and other key elements) is actual heaven for anyone who loves roses, and this hand cream also happens to work really well (thanks to shea butter, aloe vera and apple extracts).
If rose is your MIL's signature scent (or just one of her favorites), this hand cream will remind her of your every time she pulls it out of her bag.
10. Eco-minded moms love these shoes
All you need to know about Rothy's is that they're a favorite of Meghan Markle's, but they're also adorable, available in several styles and various colors, made from recycled plastic bottles, and — and! — they're machine-washable. (Except, of course, they don't look like they would be machine-washable at all.)
If your MIL is of the practical variety, she'll be super impressed with the fact that these shoes are recycled, machine-washable, and super comfy.
11. Fancy kitchens need this box
For the foodie with rustic taste, this farmhouse-inspired box features a variety of handmade and locally-sourced treats, including a eucalyptus watercolor kitchen towel, Pacific Ocean sea salt, a hand-poured candle, a tin of peppermints and a basil mint lip balm.
This curated and color-coordinated box is full of things that are sure to become favorites in her kitchen. And she'll always have to be thankful to *you* for introducing her to them.
12. Candy has never been so handy
Make homemade gummies, chocolates, and other types of confections with this super easy-to-use candy maker, which takes up just the tiniest amount of counter space, wipes clean in a snap, and comes with its own cookbook.
She'll be everybody's fave grandma in no time flat once she has this thing... especially if she's open to letting the grandkids help. (Or, "help.")
13. Thank her for being a friend
Choose your fave Golden Girl to be patron saint of your kitchen (Ruth, Blanche, Dorothy & Sophia are all options), or go with the whole gang... in which case you should really make cheesecake part of your repertoire, if it's not already.
If she doesn't like the Golden Girls, then... well, of course she likes the Golden Girls. Right?!