12 No-Brainer Mother's Day Gifts for Every Traveler and Dog Mom
Hi there!! For anyone who is new to my blog, let me introduce the whole crew here. I’m Carson Presley, and I write the content behind Girls & Dogs, Oh My. I’m graduating college this May (err--sort-of, just not traditionally because of the Coronavirus).
The luckiest person in the world, I have two adorable Labradoodles! Scout, who is two-years-old, and Ryder, who is just 15-weeks-old. My better half, Spencer, is the most amazing dog mom who helps me keep a handle on our two wild fur babies.
Together, we love traveling. We love packing up our Jeep and exploring new places. We’re also (until recently) first-time dog owners. In other words, we’re young and make a lot of mistakes--which is where the inspiration for this blog came from!
I want to be able to share all of our journeys and dog mom lessons with you all--especially our mistakes--so that you all can have the best possible experiences.
Every Monday I post new content with our latest adventure, traveling advice, and dog mom tips and tricks. Sometimes I post more than just Mondays, so make sure to look out for the bonus content ;)
My feed is always live on Pinterest, so feel free to follow along there and never miss another Monday with Carson again!
Mother's Day is a special day dedicated to giving our moms extra love. It only comes around once a year, so we usually try to do something super duper nice!
This amazing day actually originated in the beautiful state of West ~ By God ~ Virginia in 1908, thanks to Anna Jarvis!
She wanted to hold a memorial for her mother at St. Andrews Methodist Church...so she did! And now, here we are, celebrating our mothers every year!
If you want to read more about the holiday, Nat Geo put out a great article with some surprising facts.
Let me start by saying that this list is ENDLESS! Seriously, no traveler has everything that they need. If they do, they certainly don’t have everything they want.
1. Checked Luggage
Quick sidenote: I normally don’t fly, so I don’t have any great personal recommendations. When I have flown, I take an old suitcase my parents gave me before I left for college. It works well but it’s old so I couldn’t find it anywhere online! That aside, let’s dig in.
I personally love the look of the hardshell cases. They generally have the four wheels on the bottom and are great at protecting your belongings. When I end up buying a new suitcase, I will definitely be getting one of these.
When you're buying luggage for someone else (or yourself), you want to consider a couple of factors.
Is it big enough, but not too big? In other words, will this suitcase be able to hold everything you need for your average trip while also not allowing you to overpack?
A lot of us (myself included!) are over packers. Having a large suitcase that enables us is not beneficial to our travels. Another upside to having a smaller suitcase is that it is easier to manage.
A couple of years ago, I studied abroad in Jamaica and we had to carry our suitcases from time to time. I had a light enough suitcase to where this didn't bother me too much. Consider potential situations like this and make sure you will be able to manage your own luggage.
If you want a “best of” list, it exists! Business Insider has compiled a list of the “best of” checked bags. It includes the best versatile, duffel, and high-end luggage.
2. Carry-on Luggage
The most common bag people carry in the airport is a backpack, so if your mom flies a lot, help her be fly…
see what I did there?
Thankfully, carry-on luggage has upgraded significantly in the last couple of years! Now, they have clasps that help your carry-on attach to your checked bag.
We’ve all been that person that has their carry-on bag falling all over the place and you look like it’s your first time traveling……
If you aren’t sure what to look for or need a starting place, start here!
3. Packing Cubes
I want these. SO. BADLY. Everyone raves about these and how amazingly useful they are.
If you don’t know, packing cubes are a way to organize your suitcase while also saving space. You can group your clothes together in cubes by type (shirts, socks, etc.) and put them in the cubes.
In the photo below, you can see the packing cubes before and after they have been packed!
When packing cubes first came out, I didn't even consider getting them. I thought they were just a scam to get inexperienced travelers to spend their money. After doing some research and struggling to pack as little as possible for a 10-day trip, I have finally succumbed to the hype.
Packing cubes help to limit any traveler from overpacking. It is recommended to use one cube for one type of article of clothing. For example, use one cube for pants and pants only. When that cube is full, you can't pack any more pants.
These are literally a blessing to every traveler.
This set is so adorable and has 6 whole packing cubes, including a laundry bag...for less than $20!
4. Battery Pack
We've all been here before: you charged your phone before you left, but by the time you're getting on the flight or you need GPS because you're driving around downtown Austin and don't know where you're going.....
...and your phone dies.
Thankfully, I have just the thing for all of you angels!
My dad (thanks, daddio, if you read this) bought this for me last summer before I went to Texas for some training.
It went out in the great Texas desert with me, survived the heat and sandstorms, and has zero damage.
It is a tad pricey, but it's worth it. It has come in handy and saved me countless times. It lasts for 4-5 full charges, which is awesome.
I also use this for more than traveling and emergencies as well. I like to keep it either in the Jeep or in my backpack on day trips because you really never know when you will need it and, as you all know, "It's better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it."
5. Travel Map
I love these for so many reasons!
They are automatically personalized because they show everywhere you’ve been and there are a ton of varieties. I'd try to explain it, but this video does a much, much better job than I could.
If you don’t want to do a DIY version, there are sellers who will make equally beautiful ones for you!
Shelbie made me one for my birthday this past year and I love it. It's such a sweet and thoughtful gift for every traveler. They also make a great addition to any home, regardless of your style.
Not sure how to incorporate the map into your style? No worries, I've got you covered with my guide to home decor.
Personalized travel gifts are usually special and will be guaranteed to be a success. Which brings me to my next point:
6. Travel Coasters
These are similar to the travel map, except they are more practical for everyday use.
Simply take a couple of maps, tiles, mod podge, and create these beauties.
These are super cute and super simple!
If bright, colored maps don't fit in with their style, that's perfectly okay. There are a ton of different styles of maps that will fit in with their style!
7. Adapter for hotels!
If your mom is an international traveler, one of these is a really good idea. I'm not going to expand too much on this one because it is self-explanatory.
If you're unsure of what this is or why someone might need it, let me explain!
Different countries use different types of plugins. So the pattern that you plug your appliances into looks different depending on where you live! If your mom or anyone else you know is an international traveler, they will need one of these.
If you want to know more about which countries use which outlets, here's a complete list!
8. Traveling Scarf
Honestly these are amazing. I didn't know they existed until I was doing some research, but my life is now changed. These are seriously genius!!
I guarantee any traveler or road tripper will love one of these. I might just have to grab one to throw in our Jeep for our next trip...
You can absolutely go for a regular neck pillow, but I would do some research beforehand!
We bought the Amazon recommended one before our 10-day road trip over the winter... and it was horrible. I do not recommend it. It was so firm and uncomfortable and honestly barely even helped us sleep.
The infinity scarf is very compatible, squeezing down to a mere 7" x 7" x 5.5". This should fit in just about any carry-on or under any car seat! An overwhelming majority of the reviews (70%) are positive, with a lot of them saying that this is the "best sleep ever."
What do you angels think? Would you rather stay with the classic neck pillow or try out one of these? Let me know in the comments below!
9. Tide-To-Go Pens
Just a little item to toss into any gift! I can't tell you how many times we spill when we're on a trip. While this might not seem like an important item, it is and every traveler will appreciate it!!
The Dog Mom
You knew this was going to be on here, didn’t you.
This is every dog mom’s dream present. If you don’t know what a Furbo is and don’t understand why I’m getting so excited about it, let me educate you.
A Furbo is a camera very similar to a baby monitor. It allows you to watch your pup, give snacks, and even take pictures when you aren’t home!
If you have a dog sitter or a frequent dog walker, you might want to invest in one of these. As sad as it is, sometimes we trust the wrong people. You won’t know if there is any inappropriate behavior unless you can catch it on the camera.
Almost whatever you want!
You don't like the matching collar? No problem. You can get matching shirts, sunscreen, pillows, and so many other things. Fidoseofreality made an awesome list of matching gift ideas.
12. Literally anything customized!!
I actually bought my dog-mom friend this one and she loved it! You can choose the color for the hat and the wording. You can also choose what you want written on the hat.
If your dog mom still has all of these, then I've got you covered!
Dog moms will love toys for their fur babies and I've already made a complete list of toys that every pup needs.
Literally so many options that are customizable and personal. Etsy is my personal go-to because it offers a ton of options and most of them are customizable.
So there we have it, the top 12 gift ideas for travelers and dog moms! Treat your loved one, your neighbor, or any other amazing angel in your world to some amazing and thoughtful gifts!
There are plenty of options and a little something for everyone. You still have time to get something for your mom, wife, girlfriend, or anyone else you want to be kind too.
Thank you for tuning in to another Monday with Carson! Don't forget to subscribe and get that insane discount for Buddy Bandana. Look at that--a bonus gift idea.