6 Thrifty Gift Ideas to Delight Your Mom

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6 Thrifty Gift Ideas to Delight Your Mom


Mother's Day is a wonderful opportunity to spoil your mom with gifts and appreciation - and this is something that Americans have embraced wholeheartedly. In 2015, Americans spent an average of $173 on their moms, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF).

But what if you're strapped for cash and still want to show your mom just how fantastic she is? After all, love and appreciation aren't tied to a dollar sign.

To help give you ideas, we asked Credit Karma employees to share the best gifts that they got for their moms - or received as a mom - that were high on the thoughtfulness scale but easy on the wallet.

1. More Than Just Thanks

"The best 'gift' I ever gave my mom was an incredibly heartfelt 'thank you' note. I don't express my emotions very often, but in this note I thanked her for her unwavering support and talked about how lucky I am. It made her cry. It's so easy to take moms for granted, and I think expressing true appreciation (not just 'thanks for being awesome') can mean a lot."

- Jessica, copy manager

2. Love, Customized

"I use Photoshop every year to make my mom custom 'cards' that put her in situations she would enjoy. She's visited outer space, been stranded on a raft in the middle of the ocean with Jon Bon Jovi, and been hit on at a bar by Joe Namath in the past few years.

We share a sense of humor, and I've always made her gifts accordingly."

- Chris, senior marketplace insights manager

3. Simplicity At Its Finest

"We packed some sandwiches and went on a hike. That's what she cared about - spending time together."

- Ezra, creative lead

4. Memories Unleashed

"When I was a child, I used a tape recorder to record everything, and pretended I had my own "show" - I'd walk around interviewing family members, the mail carrier, everyone.

For Mother's Day one year, I strung together some edits from all of those tapes, and made my mom a CD. The CD was a mix of music and edits from the childhood tapes. It had clips of her singing to me, me singing to her, and family member interviews that I conducted when I was very young.

I gave her this gift 15 years ago. She still plays this CD in her car."

- Corey, senior community manager

5. Longview Love

"I created a new Gmail account for my mom and gave the email address to family and her friends to write her emails throughout the year - favorite memories, things that make us think of her, what we're grateful for, what she taught us. So we're all writing her messages throughout the year when the inspiration strikes.

I am going to give her the email address and password soon, and she'll have a treasure-trove of memories from the people she loves the most."

- Christina, director of public relations

6. DIY Craftiness

"One birthday, my daughter asked for a machine that cut and polished wine bottles - and then she gave me a custom scented candle in half of a sparkling wine bottle for the next holiday. I love it and and think of her every time I use it."

- JT, public relations data and content manager

About the Author: Korrena Bailie is Credit Karma's Managing Editor. She's been writing and editing personal finance content since 2012. When she's not scanning personal finance-related Google Alerts, she's climbing, traveling to countries where it rains all the time (ahem, Ireland) or talking to her cats as if they're people.

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