Inside you’ll find tips on the necessity of a mom vacation and how you can do one on any budget.
I like to do something every so often.
Something I like to call: getting the heck out of dodge.
You may have that feeling rising up inside you as well.
The need to escape.
You can tell that the need for a break is coming because you probably start exhibiting some of the following behaviors. You probably don’t even know you’re doing it. Motherhood is such a full-time hyper vigilant job.
- feeling personally offended when someone needs a diaper change (or a drink, or help to reach something)
- loss of patience for normal things
- the constant desire to be alone or incessant scrolling you can’t control
- cutting corners with discipline, quality time and household chores even though you dislike the results
- feeling like no one is respecting your boundaries
Basically, when I sense my normal healthy and positive daily attitude start slipping, I know it’s time for a mommy vacation. My husband is willing to watch the kids so, when budget and scheduling permits, I try to get away for a while and recharge.
When you think about the day to day resume for the stay at home mom, you know that getting some time for yourself is not a luxury but a necessity.
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If a mom vacation is something you are considering, then try these benefits on for size. Truly, time away is not selfish, but one of the best gifts you can give your family. It’s an investment in you.
Here are some things you might want to do on a mom vacation:
- Relax by the pool / beach / mountain
- Get ahead on a creative project
- Plan the year ahead
- Hang out with friends
- A lot more!
Benefits of A Mom Vacation
While most moms would agree they like time alone now and again, I’ve found surprising positive benefits to taking a weekend (and even 24 hour if that’s all you can swing) mommy vacation.
It’s not just being able to sleep in or read an entire book, but actual noticeable differences in attitude and emotional well-being result. Here are 5 unexpected benefits I’ve noticed from my times away.
1. Patience returns
As I take time away I can literally feel my patience returning. My previously intense desire to flee and be alone is replaced with a small (and growing) appreciation for normal life with the kids.
Pre-mommy vacation you may be snappy, impatient, and irritable. Post-mommy vacation you’ll feel more calm, at peace, and able to handle the daily snags of life.
It seems silly that a time period as short as a weekend can cause such an attitude turnaround, but it’s absolutely true!
When you finally have time to relax and get “off duty” the feelings that have been stuffed are able to resolve themselves. I’m not saying you’ll feel like a new person, but you’ll feel like you again.
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2. Delight returns
Mom vacations actually create space for delight in your kids to return.
Responsibilities outweigh cute moments.
The “urgent” takes priority over the spontaneous.
Getting away from responsibilities and obligations for a day or two actually forces you to just “be.” And when you are just being you, the delight with your children comes back full force.
You may find anxiously awaiting your reunion with them and delighting in the things that, two days earlier, would have been inconvenient and annoying.
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3. Gives the kids a change of scenery
It’s good for your kids to spend alone time with their dad, other family members, or care givers who love them.
The more positive influences on your children, the merrier.
With you out of the way your spouse, family member, friend or babysitter has a chance to spend some time with the kids doing things you’d probably not ordinarily do.
New games, new activities, new vocabulary and just a good old fashioned change of pace.
Sometimes, even for the kids, a change is as good as a vacation.
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4. Brings you back to your own identity
Becoming a mother is a major life change.
If other areas of your life change at the same time as becoming a mother – career, location, etc. – then the transition can really throw you for a loop.
When we’re focused on others all day and barely give our own needs or wants a thought we can begin to lose our own identity.
Of course we must need our children’s needs all day!
Of course we must sacrifice some of our previous habits by necessity!
However, it’s good to take some time and remember who you are as a person outside of being a mother. What you like to do, what you don’t like to do. Time to find remember passions and time to do the things you love that there aren’t enough hours in the day for.
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5. It’s for catching up too
When I take the time to go away, I use it for two purposes.
Relaxation and/or getting ahead on writing projects.
Sometimes you’ll be able to do both successfully which means that upon returning home you’ll actually feel ahead.
Ahead and rested!
If you have something you’ve been wanting to do for a while, scheduling time away to get it done makes all the difference. There are no distractions or other practicalities pulling away at you.
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How to do a mom vacation on any budget
Truly, you can take a break and get away on any budget. Here’s how.
1. Get out a calendar
My biggest advice to work your mommy vacations into your schedule is to plan them far in advance.
Get out your calendar or snazzy planner and start thinking about possible months/weekends that would work. You can pencil in holidays and important events to determine when you can block out time for yourself.
If you go away 24 hours at a time (as opposed to a whole weekend), you may be able to go away every other month. I’d aim for at least twice next year at a minimum.
It will be a nice treat to look forward to.
- Decide whether you want to go alone or with friends. If alone, choose a time that works best for whoever will keep the kids.
- If going with friends, start a group chat or message and choose a weekend far in advance.
2. Reach out
The most inexpensive way to take a mommy vacation is by reaching out to family and friends.
By reaching out to your small group, church community, friends and family you can determine if anyone has (or knows someone who has) a perfect getaway you can take advantage of next year.
Even if you have to pay, it will be far less expensive than paying full price elsewhere.
- Start putting the word out. Don’t be shy! Ask people if they know someone who has a second home, lake house, whatever, and say you’re looking to book something to recharge your life.
- Reach out to friends who you know have done something similar and ask how they did it.
3. Request it as a gift
If you feel uncomfortable asking family and friends outright, why not put it on your wish list?
Time away is a great gift for Mother’s Day (even if you don’t go away on Mother’s Day), birthdays, or other “just because” occasions.
If your family and friends know that your priority is time away, they’ll know exactly what to give you when the giving is good.
4. Think outside the box
While staying in a hotel may be the first thing that springs to mind, if that is out of your budget then think outside the box.
Do friends have garage apartments or granny flats (a.k.a. mother-in-law suites)? If so, they may be an ideal getaway destination for you.
And, if they aren’t being used year-round, you may find it an ongoing offer of hospitality a few times a year.
House sitting is another option.
If you put the word out soon enough you may snag a few house sitting gigs, and a house is a lot more comfortable than a hotel.
5. Scour the deals
There will always be deals, both far in advance and last minute, so be sure to keep your eye out on various websites for opportunities.
There are tons of money saving sites for booking accommodation, but a few unique ones are listed below.
While we nearly always use VRBO when traveling as a family of 7, when going alone I don’t want to pay a cleaning fee, admin fee, and security deposit, so I will try to find something without the added fees.
6. Do spend it if you’ve got it
Lastly, if you’ve got the dosh to spend then don’t feel guilty.
While it may seem indulgent and selfish to spend time away, it’s actually necessary to recharge and refresh yourself.
When you have an all-consuming and demanding job – like motherhood – taking time away only helps you return to your home better equipped to lovingly and patiently carry out your responsibilities.
It’s not stealing from your family, it’s giving back to them.
An ideal mommy vacation will look different to every woman.
You don’t have to go full on luxury to feel that you’ve been pampered.
- pinpoint an issue
- draw out how it’s affecting you
- label what you don’t like about it
- determine areas of responsibility
- figure out how it’s showing up
- say what you’d rather happen
- brainstorm solutions
In fact, the nicest hotel I’ve stayed in was 4 star and it turned out to be the last wing in the hotel not renovated.
Which meant it was basically a 2 star. And you know what?
It was fantastic!
Because I didn’t have to do the dishes, laundry, cooking, or any child minding duty. There was a bed, a bath, and room service.
And that was enough.