Raise It Up!

Every hardworking parent deserves a little extra love to help balance the all-encompassing task of raising children.  I’m sure for most of us the idea of finding time for pampering is easier imagined than done.  But how sweet it is when it actually happens!  And it really is incredibly important – for ourselves, our relationships, even our kids (a balanced parent is a better parent).  Jenelle started calling her daughter, Auburn, her “boss” right after she was born.  There is a lot of truth in that cute little nickname, though!  The needs of our sweet little bosses are nonstop and can be tasking.  So lets commit to giving ourselves the glowing self-assessments we deserve and the occasional “raise” of glorious time for us! Raise.com, a marketplace to buy and sell gift cards, asked our M+M bloggers how they like to raise it up.



My husband and I both work full time and our 4-year-old is in pre-school all day. Like so many other working families, our day is often just beginning at 5pm. With all of the after-school and evening commitments that we have it’s hard to have a moment to just be together, enjoying each other’s company. If it isn’t piano lessons, gymnastics, homework, after-school functions, or a social event we’re running errands or catching up on the never-ending list of to-dos at home. Dinner, unfortunately, is often consumed on the go. If we do have dinner at home, it’s squeezed in-between homework, chores or lessons. It just isn’t realistic to take the time needed to have a decent family dinner during the week. So when Friday rolls around, we make it a point to treat ourselves to a dinner out, just the three of us. dining outThere are no chores staring at us from the kitchen or laundry room, no commitments to run off to, and there won’t be any dishes! It’s such a precious time to enjoy each other and laugh together: free of distractions and free of the stress of what is next on the schedule. It’s amazing what a little 2-hour “pause” in the schedule will do to reset our energy and prepare us to conquer the following week. As a working mom and wife, my favorite reward is that precious dinner out on Friday nights, when I can completely focus on my two favorite people.

~ Jennie


When mommy needs some reward time, there are two types of gold stars I like to receive: hubby time and me time.

The Table in San Jose
The Table in San Jose

If we are able to get away, my husband and I give ourselves a “raise” by dinner or drinks followed by a stop at our favorite foot spa!  We live in San Jose and keep our radius close to home but super fun: Dinner at The Table or drinks at Single Barrel.  The foot spa (which has not found a home online!) is open until 11pm and doesn’t require reservations. So after we’ve caught up over dinner or drinks we enjoy some quiet time and stress relief. If it’s just me enjoying a day date, I hit up a yoga class (yoga teachers CRAVE getting to be the student) and then a swanky coffee spot.  My favorite combo for this is in Palo Alto at Yoga Source and Fraiche.  Yoga with Jill, coffee and yogurt with a book or a blog post. BLISS.

 ~ Amy


JenelleOnce a month I get together with my cousins, my sister, my mom and a few friends for a girls night out. We usually opt for a new or upscale restaurant and order several different dishes to share. This is a great way to try most of the menu! We get dressed up, we drink and we laugh.

GNOWhat I love most about my family is their dry, sarcastic (and sometimes raunchy) sense of humor. Going out with them raises my spirit – reconnecting with family and friends outside of my role as a mom or wife reminds me of who I am. Even the act of dressing up for GNO after a week of playdate friendly outfits or boring work attire can raise my mood.

~ Jenelle


After a hard day and once everyone is in bed I reward myself by watching my favorite TV shows. I sit back with a little dessert (sometimes healthy, sometimes not!) and indulge myself in TV dramas like Scandal, The Vampire Diaries and Dance Moms. Watching alone at night when everything is quiet and peaceful is a treat!

Vampire Diaries
~ Sara