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My Favorite Gifts 2018

I love gift giving. Can you tell? Every gift has a story with it — some are practical, some are impulsive, some are luxurious. These are some of my favorite gifts from the last few years that I have given or received. Enjoy!


Personal Gifts


Nevertheless She Persisted Necklace

2020 will mark 100 years of women’s suffrage in the United States, and as I went to the polls last month, I was wearing my newest collaboration with PureRoxinPrint: a necklace with the words “Nevertheless She Persisted.” While those words were meant to insult Senator Elizabeth Warren, they have become a rallying cry and a reminder of how far we as women have yet to go in our quest for equality in this country.

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Purple and white have traditionally been colors of the suffrage movement in the US. Each necklace includes a purple gem stone, but if you use this link, you get $2 off your order, and mention Mid Modern Mama, Roxanne will also include a white charm free.

Wear it in pride. In solidarity. And in sisterhood!

All Shall Be Well Necklace

I come from a family of worriers. We all come by it naturally. And when I was pregnant after years of infertility and frustration, I worried. A lot. But over and over during my pregnancy, I found myself repeating and singing these words:

All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.
— Julian of Norwich
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All was well! And when one of my younger sisters was pregnant and worried, as we do, I decided to give her those words, too. I found PureRoxinPrint on Etsy. Roxanne and I worked together and created a beautiful silver necklace for my sister bearing the words “All Shall Be Well” with her birthstone.

Roxanne ended up adding the necklace to her shop. You can customize the birthstone as well as the length of the chain. It’s a perfect gift for anyone prone to worry — a nice reminder that all shall be well.

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Gifts for the Cook


Soren Woods

Troy Sorensen is a Minnesota artist who turns gorgeous bowls from felled trees on his acreage near Northfield. I have given his bowls as gifts many times. Each is unique made from woods including Cherry, Pear, Paper Birch, and Black Walnut. Troy doesn’t force the wood into the shape he chooses — it is clear that he allows the wood to tell him how to turn the bowl, and what results is a functional and gorgeous work of usable art.

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Penzey’s Spices

When we got married, my college advisor gave us a box of Penzey’s vanilla sugar and baking spices with a note about the sweetness of married life. That was twenty years ago. The sugars are long gone, but I still remember my first introduction to the world of Penzey’s Spices. With spices in every variety imaginable, Penzey’s is sure to add flavor to any kitchen, and their quality and customer service are both excellent.

Penzey’s offers gift boxes in many varieties — for baking, grilling, just starting out, and more.

Butter Pats

One of my sisters chose Royal Copenhagen’s Blue Fluted Plain china pattern. This gorgeous pattern is very old and very expensive. But I found pieces I could easily afford one Christmas: butter pats. These little dishes are darling!

Butter pats are fancy little plates for holding individual servings of butter, and while most china patterns don’t produce butter pats anymore, they are readily available on Etsy and other vintage china sources. In fact, this really should be on my Gifts for Under $15 list, because sometimes butter pats in fine china patterns like Royal Copenhagen can be had for under $15 each!

If you aren’t doing fancy butter, a butter pat is fabulous by the kitchen sink to hold jewelry while you wash dishes. Or by your tea cup for a discarded tea bag. Or in the bathroom to catch earrings as you take them off. There are a million places to use these tiny little dishes! And you’ll find them in porcelain, stoneware, sterling silver, pressed glass — so many materials and patterns. They make a lovely gift!


For the Home


Address Stamp

A personalized address stamp is a particularly great gift for those who have just moved or purchased a new home! And even if someone pays all of their bills online, it is amazing how handy an address stamp can be!

Personally, I love the self-inking address stamps from Expressionery. They last a long time and can be refilled as well.


Wood Monogram

Another sweet personalized gift is the wood monogram. These are darling hung on the wall, on a door, over a bed, even on the front door or in a window. They can be purchased painted or unpainted — and I think they are cute either way!

As a gift for one person, you can do a name or initials. For a family, there are options for a last name and initials. And some sellers offer turnaround in less than a week! I have ordered from letterworld on Etsy in the past, and I’ve been very happy with their products and service.

Magnetic Windshield cover

We live in a snowy climate without a garage. But last year for Christmas my mother gave us two car covers which are amazing and have saved us hours of scraping in the morning! You simply spread the car cover over the front windshield and secure it using the magnets sewn into the seams. Shut the edges into the car’s front doors. Then, when you are ready to leave, open those doors, shake off the snow, and away you go! It works for snow, ice, or frost, and it protects the windshield wipers, too.

This is a fabulous gift for anyone who must park outside in the snow — at work, school, or at home. It even folds up and stows in the glove compartment or trunk. Easy!

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