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The Best Mother’s Day Gifts: To Give and To Get

April 30, 2021
The Best Mother's Day Gifts

To me, the best Mother’s Day gifts you can give seem to be the same ones you would like to receive. This will be the 10th year since my own mother’s passing and since then, Mother’s Day has always been a great time to think about her life as well as those of the friends and relatives who help fill the void, the women who are my mentors and cheerleaders.

These are some of my favorite gifts to give or receive on Mother’s Day (or any other day that’s an excuse for gift-giving):

The Best Olive Oil: Laudemio Frescobaldi EVOO

Laudemia (Credit: Frescobaldi)

Insalata Caprese (credit: Laudemio Frescobaldi)

Tuscan olive oil is sometimes referred to as “green gold.”

Laudemio Frescobaldi extra virgin olive oil certainly fits that description. Packaged in a beautifully shaped, giftable bottle, it looks like perfume. Its fragrance has the scent of freshly mown grass and artichoke hearts with green olive notes. Its color is so vibrant that it evokes images of a field of grass in springtime.

In the Middle Ages, “Laudemio” was the name of the best part of the harvest, that was set aside for the Lord’s table. Laudemio olive oil is a real luxury to be used sparingly on salads and pasta, and/or brushed on broiled fish. It’s also great for dipping a chunk of bread. The 15.9-ounce bottle, available on Amazon.com for $38, goes a long way.

The Best Hotel E-Card: A Rosewood Gift Card

Rooftop views are another reason to love San Miguel de Allende

Rosewood San Miguel de Allende’s Luna Bar offers spectacular city views (credit: Rosewood)

Whenever your mom or daughter is ready to travel, they’ll appreciate having a Rosewood gift card to encourage (or provide an excuse for) an indulgent getaway. The cards, starting at $50, are redeemable at all Rosewood properties and can be used for accommodations, dining, spa or product purchases. 

Purchasers can order a traditional gift card that can be delivered by mail with a message. Those who wait until the very last minute can order an e-gift card for instant delivery.

Some of my favorite Rosewood memories: Rosewood Beijing, Rosewood San Miguel de Allende, Rosewood Las Ventanas, and Rosewood Washington DC. Where I want to go next: Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco.

The Best K-95 Mask – Maskc 

Comfortable with an adjustable bridge and ear loops

Comfortable with an adjustable bridge and ear loops (credit: Maskc)

My BFF Judy always used to encourage me to buy white shirts. “You can never have enough white shirts,” she said. Well these days, you can never have enough masks.

Maskc 10-pack

Maskc K-95 10-pack

This package of high-filtration, FDA-approved KN95 face masks, The Maskc Blush Tones Variety Pack, is as pretty as can be in 5 shades of pink (two of each color). They are also stylish and the colors are perfect for warm-weather outings.

These masks are NOT reusable and are intended to be disposed of after 10 hours of continuous use. This is the type of mask I like to wear to a dentist or doctor’s office, or someplace else where I might have more contact than I would want with strangers. 

You can purchase 10 of these KN95 Face Masks for $36 from Maskc.

Oh, the punch line to the Judy story is that when she helped me organize my closet, without missing a beat, she asked, “Why do you have so many white shirts?”

The Best Functional Art for Your Home – Graf Lanz

Graf Lantz coasters

Colorful Graf Lantz coasters (credit: Graf Lantz)

Graf Lantz trivets

Graf Lantz trivets (credit: Irene S. Levine)

The Graf Lantz collection of homeware and personal accessories is a fusion of German precision, Japanese perspective, and California soul. The designs, bold colors, and warm textures are inviting but what I really appreciate is how functional each of them is. I love the range of sizes, shapes and colors!

Almost all the products are handmade from soft-to-the-touch Bavarian Merino wool. One of my favorite purchases has been the set of three trivets in shades of stone, priced at $52. We keep them on the coffee table to place remotes, protecting the glass from scratches. The same table has also become a great home for our colorful, water-repellent coasters. A set of four sells for $24.

Our comfy Graf Lantz chairs pads

Our comfy Graf Lantz chairs pads (credit: Irene S. Levine)

Another great find on the site was the Zabuton seat pads. We spend a fair amount of time sitting on the kitchen stools around our island and after a while, even with ample personal padding, we begin to feel it. The seat pads are a bit pricey at $75 each but the quality is excellent. 

The soft padded memory foam cushions are sustainable, made from  German Merino wool felt. The pads are reversible, come in a variety of color combinations, in square or round shapes. They are also remarkably durable because the fabric is a stain and water-resistant, anti-microbial, non-pilling, and soft textile.




The Best Wine Glasses – Cornet Barcelona

Cornet Wineglasses

Cornet Wineglasses (credit: Cornet)

These stemless wine glasses are even more beautiful in person than in the picture.

The Sagrada Familia is the top tourist attraction in Barcelona. drawing more than 4.5 million visitors annually. Although its construction started more than 170 years ago, this monumental project still remains unfinished. Antoni Gaudi, its architect, wanted the interior space to be filled with light. Some 18 years ago, based on his plans, craftsmen began working on the stained glass windows that paint the floor in color. 

Inspired by the breathtaking Sagrada Familia, the Barcelona-based founders of Cornet have created museum-quality glasses that reflect the same joyful colors. Each glass is individually mouth-blown; no two glasses are exactly the same. The set of stemless wine tumblers (shown above) can only be purchased from the Cornet Barcelona website. They come in a beautiful gift box and can be purchased individually for $26 each or in sets of 4, 6, 12 and 24 glasses. The glasses are also available in a variety of different shapes and sizes.

The Best Way To Say ‘I Love You’ – The Lovebox

The Lovebox (credit: Lovebox)

The Lovebox (credit: Lovebox)

This unique gift is the gift that keeps on giving. It’s a modern update to leaving a love note on her pillow or writing “I Love You” on her mirror with lipstick. It is even an improvement on text messages, which are so ubiquitous that they can feel ho-hum. 

The idea for The Lovebox was born when CEO and founder Jean Gregoire moved to Boston to study for his PhD, leaving his fiancé behind in France. He wanted to develop a sentimental way for them to stay connected.

The digital wooden box connects to Wi-Fi to receive short messages (up to 264 characters), photos, or drawings sent through the free app available on iOS and Android. It comes with a power adapter and USB cable you plug into any outlet in your home or office.

When the box receives the message, a red heart spins like a pinwheel and continues to do so until the lid is lifted to reveal a message on the display.  It’s perfect for grandparents living away from their families, too. The boxes are available in black and white for $99.99 (now on sale at Amazon for $79.99) and in color for $119.99.

The Best Prosecco: Mionetto Cartizze

Mionetto Cartizze

Mionetto Cartizze

Prosecco is a bubbly, white wine that makes any occasion festive, perfect for toasting your mom on Mother’s Day. It can be enjoyed as an aperitivo (to stimulate the appetite before a meal), pairs well with many foods (especially with pasta and seafood), can even enhance the pleasure of desserts.

Less sweet and less bubbly than Asti and slightly sweeter than champagne, Mionetto Cartizze is one of my favorite DOCG Proseccos. This premium, dry sparkling wine has golden tones and delicate tiny bubbles. Its taste and aroma are seductive with notes of apple and pear alongside citrus and glazed almond.

On Mother’s Day, you may want to turn it into a rose-colored cocktail by adding a splash of cassis. It’s an easy last-minute gift, available in most wine and liquor shops.



  • Reply
    Doreen Pendgracs
    May 6, 2021 at 11:22 am

    Hi Irene. I’m not a mother, and my mother has long since passed, but I am a woman, and would truly love any of the lovely Mother’s Day gifts you’ve offered here.

    Those wine glasses look amazing, but I’d truly love a Rosewood gift card, as I’ve not yet had the pleasure of staying at any of their properties and I believe the Rosewood San Miguel de Allende’s Luna Bar is calling my name. 😁

    • Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      May 6, 2021 at 11:48 am

      The Rosewood San Miguel de Allende is damn near perfect! If you can’t get to the hotel, do grab a drink at the Luna terrace.

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