My Mother’s Day Gift to My Mom Was an Epic Fail — And Here’s Why I Couldn’t Be Happier

published May 4, 2023
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Mother and daughter enjoying coffee at home.
Credit: Morsa Images / Getty Images

If there were a comedy sketch about my mom, it would feature her relationship with coffee. If it isn’t scalding her mouth, it’s undrinkable. At restaurants, she requests that the server only fill her coffee cup a quarter of the way full. She has even been known to ask them to pour out her coffee and start again. (She does tip well, for the record.) Her morning coffee chats with my dad were peppered with trips back and forth from couch to microwave. In the years I didn’t own a microwave, I reheated many a cup for her in a saucepan. 

So when I discovered the Ember Mug, I knew I’d finally found the perfect Mother’s Day splurge for her. The sleek ceramic mug sits on a saucer-shaped charger, and can keep liquids at the temperature of your choosing for over an hour. My mom would simply enter a piping hot 145 degrees Fahrenheit into the Ember app, and her microwave would be out of a job. Best daughter ever, right?

Imagine my shock when she regifted her Ember Mug to me, mere days after Mother’s Day. I was bewildered, but I accepted it. My mother is a woman who knows what she likes, and I certainly wasn’t going to change her mind. 

On my first morning with the Ember Mug I accidentally gifted myself, I had low expectations. If my mom rejected it, it must not keep the coffee hot for long, or hand-washing it must be a pain. Maybe it makes the coffee taste burnt? I was going to sleuth it out so I could blame someone else for this epic gifting fail. 

To my surprise, the mug exceeded all expectations. I love the weightiness of it, the extra heft coming from the heating element in the base. I lingered over a crossword with my husband and then scrolled TikTok, and my coffee stayed hot the entire time. I’m not shocked at all that it’s been dubbed a work-from-home essential.

The only pertinent negative is that the coffee in the mug stays hot so long, and I can drink it so slowly, that by the time I’m ready for a second cup, the coffee in my Chemex is at room temperature. Then, I have to microwave coffee in a measuring cup and pour it into my mug, which is less than ideal but really only a weekend problem. Ember, if you’re reading this, the public needs a venti Ember mug for slow Sunday mornings. I would buy it for myself, and not accidentally. Thank you, Ember, and thank you, Mom! 

What are your epic Mother’s Day fails and wins?