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Array of goodies for mum that won't leave you in the red

NOW don't say that we didn't warn you, but it is Mother's Day next Sunday and we know you all want to treat the special lady in your life.

But money's tight and Mum wouldn't want you over-stretching yourself, so this week we've come up with lots of ideas to show her how special she is without breaking the bank.

Remember, lots of mums don't necessarily want more 'stuff' clogging up the house and the days of bath salts gathering dust on a shelf are well and truly over, so many might prefer a nice lunch, breakfast in bed or simply a lovely card with a heartfelt sentiment. I know I would (hint!).

Alternatively, you could offer to tidy the garden, give the house a spring clean or tackle those odd jobs she's been making a list of but never gets round to while she "supervises" with a nice cup of tea.

Flowers never go amiss but look for interesting displays or buy a supermarket bunch and doll it up with a pretty presentation box or lots of ribbons.

Perhaps mum would prefer a plant to nurture rather than cut flowers – if it's outdoors, you could always offer to do the digging too.

J THERE'S nothing like mum's cooking, and Clodagh McKenna's gorgeous 'Love' apron range might just encourage an invite to Sunday lunch. They start from €19.99 and are available in lovely boxed packaging from www.clodaghmckenna.com or Arnotts.

JBIA Beauty is a Cork-based herbal cosmetics company which has such delicious sounding products you won't know whether to eat them or rub them in. They have products to suit every pocket too, from Lime Pie or Peppermint Chocolate lip balm costing just €4.95 while Lemon Myrtle Hand Cream is €14.95. There's free gift wrapping and shipping on all orders over €20. www.biabeauty.com or selected pharmacies nationwide.

JCHOCOLATES or flowers, flowers or chocolates? It's the age-old dilemma but there's no need with Fallon & Byrne's fabulous chocolate flowers available in a box or bouquet from just €18.75. www.fallonandbyrne.com

J WHILE we're on the subject, Lindt Lindor is a perennial favourite with a 200g box of their foil covered truffles selling for €6.29. Buy two and mum just might share.

JALDI have a handy French manicure set for €5.99 and quirky "Fabulous Facials" or "Pampering Pedicure" all-you-need boxes also for the princely sum of €5.99. If you decide to buy two, you can share a home spa treatment together. FIVE over €20

J NEXT has a range of Ugg-type indoor booties which look super comfortable. Flower print faux fur from just €24.

JARGOS has some Mother's Day products at discounted prices. We like the HoMedica foot spa for €40.39, down from €51.99.

J That venerable Dublin institution Thomas Gear has a lovely idea for preserving family photos in a special way. A silver pendant with a hologram engraving of your favourite pic is €70. Also available in key rings and paper weights. Delivery included. Tel: (01) 873 2998 or www.thomasgear.com

J ARNOTTS is offering a Mother & Daughter Neelu pedi soak, file, paint and make up session for €85 each – this is less than their normal price of €105. Mum would love your company!

J MY mum loves FitFlops. The new range is stylish and fantastic for anyone with corns or painful bunions. Yoko suede sandals with two tone blossom petals cost €105 from good shoe shops. www.fitflop.eu


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