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More Sleep!

When we asked moms on our Facebook page what they’d love for a Valentine’s Day gift, one mama said right away, “8 hours of blissfully uninterrupted sleep!” She wasn’t alone either. Ask any mama what she wants for Valentine’s Day (or any day) and I guarantee that “sleep” will be somewhere near the top of the list. Most moms I know feel like they just don’t ever get enough sleep. There’s work, kids, housework, meals and more to figure out and it can zap all your time as a mom, even your sleep hours. This Valentine’s Day let your partner sleep in while you get the kids up or let mom go chill out in bed with a book in the evening while you handle all the baths, stories and other bedtime shenanigans. Bonus – research shows that more sleep actually makes for a healthier mama.

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Time Off – From You and the Kids

Your partner loves time with you and the kids, but she also really loves girls nights (or days) out, free from kids asking for snacks and kid arguments and all that jazz. Don’t underestimate the power of girl-time for your partner. As a busy mom it can really feel like all you ever do is talk to young humans and co-workers, which is nice and all, but moms need to unwind with their friends too. A night out sans her partner and kids allows your favorite mom time to vent to her girlfriends, discuss good and bad times, relax and most importantly, have fun. Your partner will feel way more refreshed after some free time and that benefits the entire household! Make sure to set aside a day each week (or at least a couple of days a month) where you handle the kids and send your partner packing to hang with her pals.

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A Unique Surprise

Anything that your partner loves, but will rarely buy herself makes an excellent gift! Moms can get a little preoccupied with buying stuff for others. Plus, as a mom, there’s always something practical to spend money on: groceries, kids clothing, doctors appointments, etc. Some moms feel guilty or find it difficult to spend money on themselves. The best way to spoil your favorite mom with goodies is to get her a gift certificate to somewhere she loves. Somewhere like LUSH, a local record or book store, her favorite kid-free clothing store or an online eco-cosmetic shop where she can splurge on that shiny lip gloss she loves.

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Help Around the House

This tip is especially for all the male partners out there. You may think you help out plenty around the house, but practically every mom I’ve ever talked to feels like she does most of the household chores and child care tasks. This isn’t just a feeling moms have either – actual research shows that moms, including moms who work full-time outside the home, do WAY more around the house and with the kiddos than male partners do (on average, we know there are exceptions to this rule!). This can create some real (though sometimes hidden) frustrations in moms. The more you do at home to help out, year-round, not just on special occasions the more you’ll be adored – seriously. Everyone benefits big time when dads help out around the house – moms and kids who get to learn that both parents should be involved in everyday tasks.

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Take Charge Already!

One mom told me, “I get offers for “date night” all the time, but no one ever organizes, and finding the babysitter is tough and getting my husband to go on a date is like pulling teeth.”  This specific idea popped up over and over with the moms I talked to. Most moms feel like they do all the date planning, which stinks, because we feel like our partners DO have the ability to find a sitter, plan a date and take their partner out on the town – it’s just that most partners leave it up to the moms. One mom said,  “I would like more time with my husband. We are really bad about “date night”. Anytime I want one, I have to plan it anyways. If my husband planned one and organized the babysitter and logistics, I would LOVE it.” While another mom chimed in with,  “I think the partner planning the date and booking a sitter would be a great idea… but it doesn’t have to be ON Valentine’s Day… just anytime!” Hear that guys?! Get planning. Ask your partner out on a date, plan where you’re going, find the sitter, then go have a ball. Who knows; I bet you get some significant hugs and kisses (maybe more) out of this deal.

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Advice From Real Moms!

The above mama gift ideas are wants I’ve gleaned over the years from my mom pals. Still, if you’re looking for some ideas that come directly from the mouths of moms today, below are some ideas we gathered from some helpful moms on Facebook. When we asked, “What do real moms want for Valentine’s Day?” Moms posted the following thoughts…

  • Date-night: “Just a night out with my partner for dinner and a movie. Not the most unique answer but a date is always a nice break.” Even date night at home is awesome, as one mom said, “I just want a quiet night at home with a movie, some sweets, and cuddles.”
  • Free time: “I would give anything for someone to watch my children while I catch up on their baby books and organizing videos of them. This task has been on my to do list for years and always gets bumped.” Another mom noted, “I’m always wishing for time to explore my interests, find new hobbies, learn new skills and so on. I sometimes feel like it is a struggle to learn a new language, craft, or hobby with little ones because of the time and attention that they require (both the kids and the new skill!)”
  • More cuddling: “Many moms would love more touch that is free from expectations. Love on me without wanting anything in return. A shoulder rub. A foot rub. A belly rub. Anything that feels delicious and I can just melt into and fully receive, no questions asked. No hints about wanting something in return.” Another mom responded with, “I’m with that. I don’t mind if it turns into something more, but being cuddled, touched, and just made to feel adored would be nice.”
  • Focused attention: “A little time spent with my husband focused on me, connecting, getting to know me even better. A foot rub. Some laughter. A good drink with good company.”
  • A real splurge: “What I’d really like is a professional massage! I think a membership to a yoga studio would be cool too. ” Another mom says, “A spa day away from the kids would be awesome. “