The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Community News Network

April 29, 2013

Ditch the flowers, go with these cool Mother's Day gifts

Instead of buying your mom a generic gift for Mother’s Day like flowers or a day at the spa, here are some cool gadgets that won’t only surprise her, but perhaps perfectly match one of her hobbies or current needs.

The fitness mom

For the mom who likes to exercise and stay fit, there’s the Griffin Adidas MiCoach armband that’s selling on Amazon for under $20.

Mom will be able to place her smartphone in the armband for listening to music while exercising or jogging, and it’ll keep her device dry if it rains.

The armband also has tiny compartments for holding extra little things like keys or gym passes and ports for attaching plugs and headphones.

Of course there are more expensive brands, but the Griffin Adidas MiCoach does what most of them do and with the very low price, you just can’t go wrong.

The cooking mom

For just $32.99 on Amazon, mom can turn just about any vegetable into spaghetti with the GEFU Spirelli Spiral Cutter, especially if she wants to replace starchy pastas with a less-fattening and lighter substitute.

And the best part about this cutter is that it’s super easy to use.

All she has to do is stick her veggie of choice in, give it a turn and out comes evenly-sized spaghetti or angel hair strands.

The device has a finger guard as well, so mom won’t cut her thumb by accident. When she's done she can just stick the cutter in the dishwasher, as it's dishwasher safe.

The "newish" mom

This next item isn’t really a gadget, but it’s pretty cool just the same.

It’s called the Piggyback Rider Standing Child Carrier Backpack and it costs between $89.99 and $149.99 on the company’s website, depending on which kind you choose and what accessories you’ll add.

In short, the Piggyback Rider is a standing carrier for kids up to 60 pounds, who are too big to fit into those flimsy front carriers.

The concept of having carriers for bigger children isn’t new, but the makers of this particular brand say it’s lightweight and was designed to distribute the child’s weight to one’s core, so parents can walk erect and be comfortable along with the child.

The carrier has safety handles for the child too, so they can grab on and feel secure. Using the Piggyback rider might be preferable compared to lugging around a cumbersome stroller or taking the child by the hand and forcing her to keep up with you.

Is it safe? According to our research, yes, although it might not be recommended for people with back pains or certain back issues.

Here’s what a mommy blogger “Jenna” had to say about it on her site.

“Having the chance to test and review the Piggyback Rider, I would definitely recommend families with children ages 2½-7 to check it out,” she wrote. “It’s extremely well-made and best of all, the high quality material and integrated safety features make it very safe and enjoyable for both parent and child.”

Grandmothers

If grandma is still opening cans by hand, this item will make it a lot easier. The West Bend Electric Can Opener is considered to be one of the best of its kind, according to many reviews.

According to reviews for this product, it’s supposed to open cans of any size easily -- even the tall and heavy kinds, and it’s supposed to remove tops smoothly and evenly.

The design of the West Bend Electric Can Opener is made to take up a small amount of counter space, as it’s tall not wide, and includes a bottle opener plus a knife sharpener. In addition, the opener has an automatic shutoff and is billed as dishwasher safe.

Before you go out and buy the same item that you usually buy for mom, try something that will match who she is and where she is in her life -- whether she’s a fitness mom, a cooking mom, a new mom or a grandmother.

Not only will this approach bring her a well-deserved smile on Mother’s Day, it’ll make her happy that you actually saw her as an individual and not just as your mom.

Story provided by ConsumerAffairs.

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