Celebrating Mother’s Day in Chicago

In addition to breakfast in bed, homemade gifts and spending time together, these are our favorite ways to show the special lady in your life a good time.

Here in Chicago, there is so much to do on mom’s special day.

Me time ideas for Chicago moms on Mother’s Day

Some days Id like to sneak out the back door and do something for myself. You know, like relax in a bubble bath without a kid popping up saying I see you in a creepy toddler voice, take an interrupted nap or read a book for more than three pages without falling asleep and dropping the book on my face.

With Mothers Day less than a month away, Im sure most of you have obligatory brunch plans. I get it, you want to honor the women in your life that helped shape the woman you have become; whether it be your grandmas, aunts, mothers-in-law, or, of course, your own moms.

Lets face it Mothers Day wouldn’t have meaning without your kids being with you. But, a few blissful hours doing whatever the heck you pleased may be just what you need to recharge and be the best version of yourself for them. What if you could escape? What would you do? Where would you go?

I present to you a few ideas to put yourself first on a day that recognizes your awesomeness.

Sip and see

When is the last time youve been able to watch a movie all the way through without pausing, rewinding or falling asleep? Sit back, relax and watch a movie uninterrupted while you sip on cocktails. Muvico Rosemont 18 is one of my favorite places to go for drinks and dinner. Yes, they have a full menu like Pecan Crusted Mahi Mahi and The Grape Gatsby Flatbread Pizza. You wont just find popcorn on the menu here! (But, I still highly recommend if you do have some, eat the whole bag with extra butter. You dont even have to share!)

Stop and smell the roses

If Mother Nature cooperates, head to the Chicago Botanic Gardens for some fresh air. With 385 acres and six miles of lake shoreline, you can multitask by getting some exercise while taking in the gorgeous views. Dont forget a blanket and book to sprawl out on the gorgeous lawn. Admission is free, but there is a parking fee of $30 on weekends.

Cleanse, refresh, purify

This is the mantra of King Spa & Sauna. This unique Korean-inspired spa offers a complete sauna experience with nine healing sauna rooms such as charcoal and crystal rooms, salt caves and fire sudatorium, exfoliation and massages, relaxing pools and even a movie theater. With so many relaxing options, you could literally spend the entire day here. King Spa gives new meaning to the term spa day. Its open 24 hours and admission gets you all-day access.

Nap queen

The best Mother’s Day teas in Chicagoland

Celebrate Mothers Day with something equally as sweet as Momtea, scones and an abundance of treats.

Our top six apps for Mother’s Day

Here are six mobile device apps that will help you celebrate moms.

4 unique ways to celebrate Mother’s Day in the Northwest suburbs

Mothers Day is right around the corner Sunday to be exact! If youre scrambling to find something to do around the Northwest suburbs, defer to the following for some unique and fun ideas. Happy Mother’s Day!

Medieval Times, Schaumburg

Head to the castle in Schaumburg and step back in time to when gallantry and chivalry ruled and where all moms will be treated like queens. And guess what? Mothers are FREE on Mother’s Day. Get more details here.

Pinstripes, South Barrington

Have a fantastic brunch and indulge in favorites like carved prime rib and fresh shrimp, bagels with spreads and smoked salmon, flatbreads, waffles her-way topped with berries, bananas foster or Nutella, plus a chocolate fountain for dessert. Moms can sit back and relax with mimosas and bloody Marys while kids can help themselves to pizzas, chicken fingers, Mac and cheese and more at the Kids Corner station. To make every mom feel extra special, she will be given a beautiful flower. Afterwards, bust out the bowling shoes. Reservations are recommended or can be made on www.OpenTable.com.

Level 257, Schaumburg

Level 257 will offer a Buffet & Play alternative to the time-honored tradition of brunch. The buffet will feature favorites in their chef-driven restaurant, including a carving station and a composed salad & dipping station. After chowing down, challenge each other with a game of bowling or air hockey, ping pong and classic pinball and video games. Itll be a Mothers Day like no other!

Arlington Park, Arlington Heights

Feeling lucky? Place your bet on a horse while sipping on Bloody Marys and Mimosas. Red roses will be given to the first 5,000 moms. It also happens to coincide with Sunday Family Fun Day where there will be special Mothers Day crafts for the kiddos.

Mother’s Day personalized coffee mug craft

Whether you are looking for a Mothers Day project for all the mamas in your life or just a great craft, these mugs are a must. Make your own monogram, name or design for a keepsake that will last use after use.


White mugs

Oil-based paint pens

Scrapbook stickers



  1. Select a plain white mug for your creation. They are available for cheap at craft or dollar stores.
  2. Use scrapbook stickers to create your monogram or name on the mug. Make sure the sticker is firmly applied to the mug.
  3. Use oil-based paint pensmedium tip or larger work bestto dot all around the scrapbook stickers. (Sharpie makes a brand of these, just make sure they are the oil-based ones.) Fill in the entire area around the stickers and add a second or third color as desired. If you make a mistake, use rubbing alcohol on a Q-tip to correct.
  4. Once the paint is completely dried on the mugs, carefully remove the scrapbook stickers to reveal your final design.
  5. Do not preheat oven. Just turn oven on to 350 degrees and immediately put painted mugs into the oven. (Preheating can cause mugs to break because of the dramatic temperature change.) Set timer for 30 minutes and then turn the oven off. Leave mugs in the oven until both the mugs and oven return to room temperature.
  6. Enjoy mugs with your favorite beverage and feel safe cleaning them in the dishwasher because the design will remain!

How Chicago moms envision the perfect Mother’s Day

Often it seems what moms may want the most on Mothers Day is the last thing they actually receive. Whether its some alone time, a break from the household chores, or to be pampered for the day, Mothers Day can have high expectations.

Here are four moms visions of the perfect way to spend the day and some advice for husbands out there to make the day special for their wives.

Natalie Greer, Chicago, mother of two

What would the perfect Mothers Day entail for you?

I think I already have the perfect Mothers Day. Each year we go pick out our annual spring flowers and we spend part of the day planting them as a family. Usually the weather cooperates, so its nice to be outside while being productive. Add time for a workout and a good dinner, and it is a perfect Sunday. And the best presents are the ones that make me laugh. My oldest son made a card that said he loved me because I like to wear my swimming suit and I can cook chicken tenders. Its priceless.

What advice would you give to husbands on how to celebrate the holiday?

Dont wing it! This is the Super Bowl of days for moms, and your team cannot lose. Be prepared. I wish Mothers Day came more than once a year. People are generally kind to one another, and I love hearing strangers wish each other, Happy Mothers Day. I am extremely lucky to be able to celebrate with my mom, family, and friends, so my advice is to just try to make the most of the day.

April Terrien, Northbrook, mother of two with one on the way

What would the perfect Mothers Day entail for you?

The perfect Mothers Day for me would be to sleep in late without any interruptions, have brunch with my sweet little family at a nice restaurant and for my husband to take the kids for the rest of the day and tackle my entire to-do list. Being a stay-at-home mom is not a 9-to-5 gig so I think its healthy to take some time off to rejuvenate. I dont feel guilty about it! A day at the spa or just an hour away to get a massage would be heavenly. I would even be thrilled with a more economical stay-in-bed morning at home if it meant I didnt have to settle any brotherly squabbles, change diapers or do dishes or laundry.

What advice would you give to husbands on how to celebrate the holiday?

Every mom is different and every family is different, but it takes a lot of juggling to keep a household running. Much of it goes unnoticed, but we do it because we love our families. I think its important to recognize everything mothers do for their families and not only thank her, but reward her for it. My advice to husbands is to make moms feel special, get the kids involved and just take care of mom for a day. Not only will it give her a much needed break, but it will allow her the time and freedom to enjoy the little things about the family that give her joy.

Julie Walsh, La Grange, mother of three

What would the perfect Mothers Day entail for you?

The perfect Mothers Day would start with sleeping late followed by a pancake breakfast cooked by my husband. Then Id take a yoga class or go to a spa. Id spend the afternoon with our extended family. The best Mothers Day gift Ive received was homemade heart-shaped pins from my boys. They decorated the pins with glitter, sparkles and flowers. I love when they put all of their effort into a gift.

What advice would you give to husbands on how to celebrate the holiday?

My advice is to ask your wife how she would like to spend the day

The ultimate Chicago gift guide for Mothers Day

Mothers Day is quickly approaching, meaning its time to spoil mom!

Flowers are great, but this year, I urge you to think outside the box and offer her something a little different. Not sure what to get? Fear not. Ive put together a mom-approved list just for you. The best part is all of these items can be found at local stores which makes it perfect for the last minute shopper.

Ananda Chicago 122 South Michigan Ave., Chicago IL

Moms can always use an extra pair of earrings, especially ones enhanced with natural gemstones. Known for its affordable prices, Ananda Chicago offers luxury at great prices. Theyre conveniently located on South Michigan, but dont worry if you cant make it to the store, these gems can be ordered online and delivered to you right in time for Mothers Day.

Jayson Home 1885 N Clybourn Ave., Chicago, IL

Cant fly mom to a tropical destination? Bring the island to her with this gorgeous palm leaf tote from Jayson Home.

Located on North Clybourn, this unique shop stores vintage furniture and one-of-a-kind textiles, and their unparalleled style will keep you coming back for more.

Citizen Stone 1440 North Dayton Street, Chicago, IL

If mom likes to host fancy parties or simply enjoys serving chips and dip on a gold glazed platter, then this gift may be right up her alley.

Citizen Stones merchandise is simply breathtaking. With its collection of artisan crafted goods and beautiful housewares you will have a hard time picking just one gift for mom.

The golden goodness above can be purchased directly from their website.

Dose Market 2033 West North Ave., Chicago IL

If youre still undecided about what to get mom for Mothers Day, how about taking her to Dose Market?

DM is a popular food and fashion market located in Wicker Park. Attendees can find an array of jewelry designs, vintage finds and delicious treats.

Entry is free and the next market days will be held on May 11 and May 18.

Blueberry Buttermilk Cake recipe is perfect for Mother’s Day

We are invited to a Mother’s Day brunch and were asked to bringsomething sweet for breakfast. (Just what my kids need is sugar forbreakfast!). The host was very clear that she does not want dessertbut a breakfast cake — and no chocolate. With low sugar in mind, Ihave the perfect recipe — my Buttermilk Blueberry Cake!

Once again, I have substituted out some of the not-so-healthyingredients like butter and added in healthy alternatives. No onewill miss the heaping amount of butter or loads of sugar usuallyfound in buttermilk cake.

My kiddos measured and counted (using math skills), poured andstirred (strengthened their tiny muscles). They were ecstatic aboutbaking a breakfast cake, and they only asked if they could addchocolate chips 10 times.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there!

Blueberry Buttermilk Cake Recipe:


  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • ¼ cup 2% Greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp. lemon, which is zest from one lemon
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup white flour (set aside 1/4 cup of this to toss with theblueberries)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 2 Tbsp. white sugar


  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Mix butter, applesauce and yogurtwith lemon zest and 3/4 cup sugar until fluffy.
  • Add egg and vanilla.
  • Toss blueberries with ¼ cup of flour (this prevents theblueberries from sinking to the bottom), then whisk together theremaining flour, baking powder and salt.
  • Add flour mixture to batter, alternating with the buttermilk.Fold in the blueberries.
  • Grease a 9-inch baking pan with baking spray.
  • Spread batter into pan.
  • Sprinkle the top of the batter with 2 tablespoons ofsugar.
  • Bake 35-40 minutes. Allow cake to cool before serving.

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