The gift of travel can be so thoughtful. And does anyone deserve a vacation more than a mom? I certainly don’t think so!
Here’s the thing: as a mom myself, sometimes there is nothing more stressful than prepping for a trip. From researching places to stay, to packing for the entire family and figuring out who’s going to check on the cat, the emotional labor many moms invest in a trip is the exact kind of thing they crave a vacation from.
Whether you’re looking to treat your wife, partner, or own mother with time away this Mother’s Day, my biggest suggestions is to not necessarily focus on picking the perfect destination. It’s more about allowing the hardest working, most devoted person you know a stress-free escape where she can unplug, relax and enjoy herself. Not to set the bar low, but I know some moms who look forward to the peace and quiet of their bi-annual teeth cleaning. A simple but thoughtful weekend away might be just the thing mom doesn’t even realize she’s craving.
Here’s a few tips for making the gift of vacation a treat for mom.*
*For best results, forward a link to this article to your significant other and/or print and casually leave on their pillow. 😉
Consider what kind of mom she is.
A mother of a 10-month-old craves something different than a grandmother of eight-year-old twins. For the former, a night alone in a hotel where she can score eight hours of uninterrupted sleep will feel like winning the lottery. For a grandma, a weekend with the kiddos will make her heart swell. Does she need a break from the kids, or will the kids make the vacation that much better? Something to consider before planning a mom-approved escape.
Get in cahoots with her friends’ significant others.
There are a lot of moms who would love getting treated with a girls’ weekend. Why not call up some of her best bud’s significant others and see if you can arrange a fun night or weekend away? Maybe there’s a nearby cabin they can all escape to, or a downtown hotel known for their spa treatments (and hopefully a fun cocktail bar). The best part? If you get along with her friend’s partners, you can all get together back home. Ya know, take the kids to the zoo, on a bike ride, or to a brewery.
If you give a trip, plan the trip.
“Paying” for something isn’t really the same as giving the gift of travel. Whether it’s a weekend away or a week-long adventure with the whole family, simply saying, “Yay! Take a vacation!” isn’t really cutting the mustard. Pick the destination. Book the hotel. Take care of the details. If she’s the kind of person who craves a little more control, maybe propose a few options—like a weekend upstate, in the city or in a quaint nearby town.
Take care of the details.
Do you need to hire a pet sitter or make reservations at a kennel? Find a babysitter for the weekend? Wash the car before heading out on a road trip? Taking care of these elements might seem like a small thing, put they’ll put a big, happy smile on any mom’s face.
Prepare a care package.
This idea came to me from an Instagram follower. She was planning a road trip with her mom and wanted to create a little gift bag of essentials. I loved this idea! Who doesn’t love receiving thoughtful gifts, especially when they are centered around your comfort. Stock up on a few items, then place them in a really cute bag. Here’s some of my favorites.
- Mario Badescu Rose Water Spray
- A pretty lip stick or gloss (Mario Badescu does a lip balm/rosespray duo… linked above!)
- Travel size bag of tissues or facial wipes
- Travel size hand cream
- Fun sunglasses!
- A pretty floral scarf to tie around her neck or hair
- A good eye mask to block out light
Of course this can be anything but it absolutely needs to delight her!
Keep it clean.
Nothing is a bigger vacation buzzkill than coming home to a mess. So if your #1 Lady is out of town for a few days, keep her happy vacation vibe running strong by ensuring she comes home to a clean house. And for bonus points, stock the fridge and maybe even get her a bouquet of fresh flowers.
And while we’re on the subject, a note about Mother’s Day brunch.
Brunch with friends is a delight! Brunch with kids… let’s just say they make those bottomless mimosas less of a fun indulgence and more of a survival tactic. In my opinion, one of the big things to avoid when traveling—especially with kiddos—are buffets. Breakfast buffets appear to be so convenient and yet mom will always end up being the mule. Assembling plates, waiting for toast, pouring cereal…then serving it all as well. By the time mom gets around to eating, everyone is finished and antsy to move on, leaving her to scarf down cold eggs and toast crusts. The worst is that you still have to tip even though you’ve done 90 percent of the work.
A tip to waiters: pour mom’s coffee first and make sure you are always there for refills. And for god sakes, clear the plates!