This is a guest post by Jennifer Jolly from the Good Idea Gal, who’s all about finding, testing and sharing just plain good advice. From simple ways to save money, get happy and stay healthy, Jennifer will help you discover one thing you can do right now to make your life better.
Brunch is nice, but a mother’s enduring love deserves a longer-lasting (and hipper) gift than eggs Benedict and a corsage. Why not give her the gift of gadgets? A little tech can help her work, play, and keep in touch. So I’ve rounded up digital frames, cell phones, kitchen gadgets, and other really cool and fun “out of the box” ideas to enhance her life – year ‘round.
Movie Mom: Flip Mino HD F260
- Cost: $190 @ theflip.com or amazon.com
- Hot little camcorder that is smaller than some cell phones. Has great battery life, easy to use and plug into your computer or TV.
- For an added bonus, you can get a customized cover – put a picture of your family or something that your kids drew on it.
- For a generic cover, you can get them for around $130 with 4% cash back from Bing Shopping
- I also found them used from $100 on Amazon
Mobile Mom: Sprint EVO Smart Phone
- Cost: TBD @ sprint.com
- Every busy mom on the planet should have the very best smart phone available. Why? Because this one gadgets replaces GPS, electronic day planner, cellphone, web browser, digital camera music and video player. Not to mention, she can use the apps to babysit the kids in a busy restaurant.
- I recommend preordering a Sprint Evo – due out this summer. I was able to check it out at CTIA the big wireless industry convention in Las Vegas in March and it’s AWESOME.
- It has all the bells and whistles of the coolest touch screen android phones, plus better apps, video camera and digital camera than an iPhone.
- For an added bonus, with the new Sprint Free Guarantee, mom can try it for 30-days, if she doesn’t like it, she can take it back to Sprint for a full refund, she doesn’t pay for the calls she made, no taxes/re-stocking fees, nothing.
- For another added bonus, hook her up with the Sprint Everything Data plan for $70 a month.
- Don’t want to be tethered to a cell phone contract? You can get a Boost Mobile Blackberry for $60 per month – no strings attached.
Clutter-Free Mom: Powermat
- Cost: starts at $99.99 at amazon.com
- What it does: This is a one-stop charger for your mobile phones, music players, handheld games, laptops, etc.
- This is a really fast and efficient way to charge up all your gadgets and help de-clutter your space by getting rid of several power charger cords.
- It also automatically stops charging when your devices are fully charged – which saves on energy use.
- Plus, it just looks really cool.
Bookworm Mom: Amazon Kindle
- Cost: starts at $250 at amazon.com
- This handy little eReader allows mom to download and read thousands of books.
- She can now take her entire library of favorite books and other reading materials in digital format without worrying about their bulk and their weight.
- Bonus: if Mom decides Kindle isn’t her thing, you or she can simply return it within 30 days for a full refund. It’s easy and they don’t charge fees.
Neat-Freak Mom: Neato Robotics XV-11
- Cost: $400/ www.neatorobotics.com
- What it does: This is a “set-it-and-forget-it” vacuum cleaner that uses sensors to “intelligently map the entire floor space.”
- Aside from the cost, which is as much as double the iRobot vacuum cleaner, this little sucker is better than anything I’ve ever seen or used.
- It sucks up dirt and dust from floors and carpets quickly and efficiently. Also, it doesn’t get stuck when it goes from hardwood to carpet.
- If you got some extra money to make your life a little easier and don’t want to (or can’t) hire a house-cleaner– this is a great alternative.
Proud Mom: Digital Picture Frame
- Cost: $100 @ www.dsicentral.com
- The Digital Spectrum Memory Frame MF-801 can store an incredible 5,000 pictures.
- You can display all 5,000 if you want, as well as audio and video clips for a stylish multimedia experience for your home or office.
- It also comes with an additional frame and matte plus the ability to use ready-made frames.
- The low price makes this frame a good value, and picture quality is very good.
- A wide range of convenient features makes it easy to use.
Busy Chef Mom: Hamilton Beach Set ‘n Forget 6-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker
- Cost: $35-$50 on amazon.com or Bing Shopping
- This crock-pot has two outstanding features that most others don’t – the snap-on lid and the “keep warm” feature.
- the Crockpot has made a HUGE comeback in the past year and while people have talked about it a little bit… it really is a HUGE time saver.
- You can literally throw 2 to 10 items in it, turn it on, go to work, and when you get home, dinner is ready.
Fit Mom (or want-to-be-fit): Fitbit
- Cost: $99 @ www.fitbit.com
- Clip the little tiny Fitbit onto your shirt, belt, or armband, and this thumb-sized gadget tracks all your movement during the day then report back on your activity.
- The motion-detecting sensor will digitally record the distance you’ve walked or run; the number of calories you’ve burned; the number of steps you’ve taken; and even your sleep patterns.
DIY Mom: MiBook
- Cost: $90 for the player plus two cooking titles @ Bing Shopping
- The miBook is what would happen if a cookbook, home decorator and uber-helpful (true MacGyver’s’) parents like mine were made into an eBook.
- This personalized how-to e-book reader shows (not just tells) you how to bake an amazing dessert, properly swaddle your baby, wallpaper a room and much, much more.
- CNET calls it an “e-book reader on steroids.”
Move on the Move: Computer A-Go-Go Laptop Sling
- Cost: $50 at uncommongoods.com
- Retro style meets modern design in this handy and colorful laptop sling.
- It’s made from extra thick, protective neoprene so that the unique hourglass shape holds your laptop securely in place, while stretching to accommodate a variety of laptop sizes (14″-15″ monitors).
- Each laptop sling sports one of Alexander Girard’s candy-bright, retro textile designs, with an exclusive Girard “love” charm.
Like always, I had to leave an awful lot off of this list. What are some of your ideas. Please share them now! And yes dear, any one of these gifts would make me a happy-mom!