Believe it or not, taking a “momcation” is now trending. And, according to experts, it’s not only good for mom, it benefits the whole family. By Xanet Scheepers
You’ve probably read a hundred articles highlighting the importance of self-care, yet you just can’t get yourself to take off for a couple of days and leave the kids behind with Dad. The guilt is probably already gnawing just thinking about it.
What if we told you experts recommend moms take time-out, as it can be beneficial for the whole family? Yes, you read that correctly. We’re not joking.
According to a 2015 Pew Research Center survey, more than half of all parents said they don’t have enough time away from the kids to spend with friends or on hobbies. “A study from Happify found that while dads get an average of 28 hours of leisure time every week, moms only get 25. And research published in the American Sociological Review found that, compared to dads, moms spend an extra 10 hours per week multitasking usually juggling housework and childcare,” reports parents.com.
Dr Nava Silton, a psychology professor from the US, told Fox News 5 NY in an interview that motherhood can be very stressful – whether it’s financial stressors, time stressors, or just trying to get a whole lot done in a short amount of time. “I think it’s important for mothers to be rejuvenated and refreshed,” she told the TV news station.
Yes, you will most likely experience mom guilt when you decide to go off with your friends for a day or two, but Silton says it’s important to remember that taking this time away from your partner and children has extended benefits for your little ones as well. “It’s very important for kids to see that balance that ideally needs to be achieved in a family situation.”
Author of Mother Matters: A Holistic Guide to Being a Happy, Healthy Mom, says a momcation is much bigger than the advice to just take an annual solo trip. “Momcations are really a necessity, not just a luxury. They should be considered an integral part of what I call ‘mothercare’ – one of a host of activities that restore and revitalise the emotional and physical energy we need to provide healthy, loving care for our children,” she told parents.com.
Spending quality time with yourself to reflect on your life decisions will help you keep track of your dreams, goals and aspirations. “We all need that break from the hustle and bustle of life to regroup and take stock of what’s happening in and around us,” says personal development coach Thembi Hamma.
If your idea of unwinding is a trip to the spa, watching a movie or sitting quietly in meditation, then go ahead. Thembi explains that when we take time out to recharge our batteries, we’re more effective.
Life coach Sharon Piel agrees it’s vitally important for women to take care of themselves. “Women wear so many different hats, so we need to take time to get in touch with who we are at the core. Remember, you can’t pour from an empty cup, so taking care of yourself is not selfish, it’s self-love.”
Here’s why I think Cape Town is the perfect momcation destination.
Where to stay
Premier Hotel Cape Town
This modern hotel is only a block away from the Sea point Promenade and 3.6km from the V&A Waterfront’s shops and restaurants. Nestled at the base of Signal Hill and Table Mountain, this is the perfect location for your momcation. The area is alive with a 24-hour cosmopolitan vibe, and is also closely located to some of the Cape’s natural wonders – and wine farms we might add! You can easily get about anywhere from here.
If you’re going away for the weekend with your other mom friends, the standard rooms are available with twin, double, king and queen beds. If your toddler has been sleeping on top of you lately, however, we would definitely recommend splurging a little and booking a Deluxe room with a sea view of the Atlantic.
Visit www.premierhotels.co.za for more information and to book your momcation.
Where to eat
The hotel offers a delicious buffet breakfast, but, if you’re only in the Mother City for a day or two, we would suggest going out for breakfast.
Ons Huisie in Bloubergstrand was one of my favourite breakfast spots during my stay in Cape Town. From the deck, enjoying a delicious cappuccino, you have spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and Robben Island when the weather permits. Did you know this restaurant is an internationally recognised heritage site in Bloubergstrand? Ons Huisie stands silent witness to many historical events, including the Battle of Blaauwberg in 1806 and overlooks Robben Island where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 28 years.
Visit onshuisie.co.za for more info on their menu.
What to do
If you’re with your mom friends, there’s only one thing to do – time for wine!
Bloemendal Wine Estate
If you prefer the low-key, smaller wine farms, Bloemendal Wine Estate in Durbanville is a must-visit. Not only is their Rosé amazing, they have spectacular views to enjoy as you wine and dine.
Visit bloemendalwines.co.za for more info.
Groot Constantia Wine Estate
If you’re a wine lover (aren’t all moms?), I would highly recommend a visit to this stunning wine farm. Did you know Groot Constantia Wine Farm is the oldest wine-producing estate in South Africa? Make a day of it and start with breakfast at Jonkershuis Restaurant with spectacular views of the vineyards followed by a wine-and-chocolate pairing and a tour of the cellar.
Visit grootconstantia.co.za for more information.
An outing to the V&A Waterfront
If you’re going out for dinner and cocktails to the V&A waterfront, there’s a shuttle available from the Premier Hotel from 7am, with the last pick-up at 10.30pm. There’s a wine bar and restaurant, called Sevruga, overlooking the harbour. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a glass of wine or bubbly with your friends and reflect on what an amazing weekend you’re having – despite the fact that you’re missing your little ones a ton.
Visit waterfront.co.za for more information.
Xanet is an award-winning journalist and Living and Loving’s digital editor. She has won numerous awards for her health and wellness articles and was a finalist for the Discovery Journalist of the Year in 2009 and again in 2011 for the Discovery Best Health Consumer Reporting and Feature Writing category. She is responsible for our online presence across social media channels and makes sure our moms have fresh and interesting articles to read every day. Learn more about Xanet Scheepers.