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At the end of the day when your head hits the pillow, are you burdened, exhausted, and overwhelmed?

You’re not alone.

My tear-stained pillow is evidence of the long days of being a mom. Day after day I’m breaking up fights, cleaning, cooking, teaching, plunging a toilet, washing the dishes, and dragging a 100 lb 3-legged dog outside so that he pukes in the yard instead of on the floor.

There are days that the bathroom is my place of solitude and the toilet seat, my pew. I shed tears for all the challenges, for my frustrations, and for my feelings of inadequacy. I plead with God to give me patience and strength to get through the day. I hope that in my five minutes alone my children will forget the twelve things they demanded of me all at once just a few minutes previously.

“Can we got to the park? Where’s my purple shirt? What’s for lunch? Can you fix my doll’s arm? She took my magazine! When’s Daddy coming home? What are we doing tomorrow? Can I take a bath? Can I play on the iPad? When are we going to dig up the potatoes? Can you play with me?”

On and on, the demands go and at the end of the day I feel I can barely breathe….

So if you’re feeling overwhelmed, I can tell you with complete confidence that you are not alone.

One thing I’ve learned is that I regularly need time to myself. In order for this time to be meaningful and healing, some deliberate planning goes into it.

Here are a few things I do to plan the perfect “Mom Retreat”.

Tired? Burnt out? Check out these tips to plan a perfect mom retreat! #parenting #mom Click To Tweet


1- Enlist someone’s help.

Get the help of a friend, grandparent, auntie, or spouse and ask them to watch the children for a few hours. I’ve done some experimenting with this and I find that I need at least 4 hours to myself before I feel rejuvenated. Once arranged, write this date and time on the calendar and stick to it!

2- Brainstorm.

Get out a piece of paper and pen. Brainstorm all the things that rejuvenate you. List all of them (even if they seem impractical). Here are a few that are on my list:

  • prayer / reading the Bible
  • coffee
  • writing
  • reading
  • a nap
  • a vacation
  • going for a nature walk
  • delicious food
  • quiet
  • yoga

I have many more items on my list, but this sampling may help you start your own list.

3- Choose something that will inspire your mom journey.

Every retreat should have a focus. Since this is your mom retreat, select something to do that will inspire your continued mom journey. Perhaps you could read a chapter or two from a high quality parenting book?

Maybe you struggle with mom frustration and anger? You could read a few chapters from Count to Nine: 9 Liberating Steps for Mom Frustration and Anger by Ruthie Gray.

Or maybe you want to become more intentional with your parenting practices? My parenting workbook, Becoming a Deliberate Mom is the perfect tool to include in your mom retreat!

Choose something that will inspire and encourage you… then pencil it in!

4- Make a mom retreat plan.

Look over your brainstorm list and your mom inspiration ideas. Make a plan for the date you have set. I encourage you to write an itinerary.

Here’s an example to inspire you….

9:00 – Coffee, fresh fruit salad, and a muffin

  • Listen to a Biblical meditation to get ready for Bible study
  • Bible study, prayer, and journaling

10:00 – Gentle stretching exercises

  • Warm candlelit bubble bath
  • Paint toenails

11:00 – Do an online art lesson (You are a Masterpiece: Mixed Media Workshop)

12:00 – Enjoy lunch (premade salad kit and sushi) and a ginger tea

  • Read a chapter from Count to Nine
  • Read Bible and pray
  • Take a short nap

5- Prepare and do.

The night before your retreat prepare everything you can for your “mom event”. This may mean chopping fruits and vegetables for your snacks, ensuring your aromatherapy diffuser is full and ready to go, and collecting any “supplies” you may need (i.e. a basket with your Bible, an adult colouring book, candles, etc.).

On the day of your retreat, set your phones to go directly to voicemail and follow through with your plans.

Enjoy! Have fun with it! Most importantly, recharge and rejuvenate.

Have you ever had a mom retreat? What do you like to do to recharge your energy reserves?


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Jennifer Bly
Jennifer Bly
Author of My Kitchen, My Classroom: An Introduction to Homeschool, creator of The Deliberate Mom, and Deliberate Homeschooling. Jennifer writes about parenting, her faith, and life with her husband and two girls. Jennifer has a Bachelor of Applied Human Service Administration Degree with a specialization in Early Learning in Child Care.

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