Tea-towels with little children's handprints on them (including my darling daughter's) - a nice Christmas present for the family, no?
Except I'm worried that there's some Chinese superstition which regards children's handprints on tea-towels as bad luck.
It's not as silly as it sounds, you know. I once had to ruin a perfectly good painting of my nephew gazing at a toy truck, because my mum was terribly offended by a picture which included both a child and a truck. Another time, when I was a kid, she was offended by my present of a set of pretty candles and candlesticks. And then there was the time we couldn't order duck for my mum's eightieth birthday - something to do with the duck's bill - I never did figure out the reasoning behind that one.
I had a quick Google, and though I found some very interesting superstitions that I didn't find last time I looked, I wasn't able to find out whether the tea-towel gift would be a bad idea.
Perhaps this is why she prefers cash.