When I was pregnant with my oldest, I was encouraged by several new Moms to join a PEPS group. It’s a support group for Seattle-area parents. I joined and my group bonded so strongly that we still see each other regularly 3 years later. They are the people I share my parenting highs and lows with first and they have continued to support me through the birth of my second child.

Last year, we decided that we needed a Moms weekend and we drove to Central Washington and had a blast! So this year for our Moms weekend, we decided to cross the border and head to Portland, Oregon. Most of us had been there before and we knew it’s a laid-back city with lots of good food and quirky fun. It’s a 3 hour drive from the Seattle area, which is a comfortable distance away from our families.

Most of the women in my group took Friday off from work and they were able to head to Portland in time for lunch. They ate at Pok Pok Thai restaurant and then checked into the Sentinel Hotel. We picked this hotel because one of the Moms in our group is 8 months pregnant and not only was it centrally located in Portland, but they also featured a restaurant and a Starbucks (in case we didn’t leave the property.)

Comma in Portland
Getting pedicures while sipping wine and eating cupcakes was a highlight of our trip!
Comma in Portland
They had a extensive wine list and even offered mimosas!
Comma in Portland
The birthday cupcakes were secretly ordered during the day and the staff at Comma presented them while we sang Happy Birthday!

They had a lazy morning of sleeping in and then headed to breakfast. I joined them on Saturday at 1pm. They were just finishing up their naps (a MUST for a Moms weekend getaway) and we decided to do some shopping. Nordstrom was just a few blocks away, so we did some shoe shopping. Then, we headed a few more blocks to Nordstrom Rack where we did more shoe shopping! I was so impressed with myself that I didn’t head directly to the children’s department and actually shopped for myself. This hasn’t happened in years!

We had 3:30pm reservations at Comma for pedicures. This place is seriously amazing. Not only were were able to get wine and mimosas, but they offered chair massages and delivered cupcakes to us while we got our pedicures! The staff were so friendly and we were able to truly relax. In fact, they had some large chairs available for napping while waiting for everyone to finish up. Next time I’m in Portland, I’m definitely making an appointment here!

Sentinel Hotel
I found my room at Sentinel Hotel to be decorated beautifully!

At this point, I needed to pump. Thankfully, my room at Sentinel was ready so we headed back to the hotel, just half a block down the street. I was really impressed with how spacious the room was. And I loved the whole vibe of the hotel and it was perfect for our Moms weekend.

After I finished, I met everyone at Starbucks downstairs. It was supposed to be a Starbucks Reserve that offered wine and nibbles, but they told us they no longer were doing that. That was a bummer. But, we got some caffeine and headed to Powell’s Used Books, just a few blocks away.

Powell's in Portland
Every time I visit Portland, I always stop at Powell’s Books to check out their travel-themed children’s books.
If you’ve ever been to Portland, chances are you’ve passed by Powell’s. It’s one of the most famous used books store ever. It’s an adventure in itself as there are many levels and staircases and it’s easy to get lost in the different sections. I spent most of my time in the children’s section looking at their books about different states and countries and the rest of the time in the travel section. Had I been alone, I could have easily spent another hour perusing the books. Thankfully for my wallet, it was 8pm and time for us to search for food.
Zaatar in Portland
The Lebanese food at Zaatar was so flavorful and easy to share!

We tried to go to Mediterranean Exploration, but it was a 2 hour wait (they didn’t accept reservations.) We were too hungry to wait, so we tried a few other places, but they also had long wait times. I forgot that Portland restaurants don’t usually accept restaurants. I think it’s part of their hipster vibe. We ended up at Hamlet, a bar that specializes in pork products and cocktails. Our drinks were amazing and the small plates was surprisingly good. My favorite item was their butter. It tasted homemade with a bit of salt. The staff wasn’t the friendliest, but the snacks and drinks were great.

But, we were still hungry. We found a Lebanese restaurant called Zaatar and it was the perfect place for our group! There was no wait and the staff was super friendly and helpful! We ordered a ton of food and were able to try a bit of everything. It was incredibly tasty! We even ordered baklava to go so we’d all have a midnight snack. We headed back to the hotel about 10pm and crashed.
Blue Star in Portland
Blue Star donuts in Portland offers unique flavor combinations for a variety of palettes.
It was another morning of sleeping in and taking our time getting ready and packing up. I did a quick pumping session and then headed to Starbucks downstairs to fuel up for our day. When we had all gathered, we walked a few blocks to Blue Star donuts. They consider their products donuts for adults. I had tried them last year with friends and was impressed with their flavor combinations. Their line is consistently out the door. My friends and I made lists on our phones of every donut we wanted to order. We all were planning to share with our spouses and kids but we were surprised just how many we ended up ordering!
Pine State Biscuits
We waited 45 minutes in line, something we never would have attempted with our 3-year-olds!
Our final stop of our Moms weekend was Pine State Biscuits. We thought the line wasn’t too bad, until we realized that the entrance was around the corner! But, it gave us plenty of time to chat and think about what we wanted to eat. It was lunch time, so I thought I better get something with protein in it, so I ordered the McIsley that was a biscuit sandwich that featured fried chicken, pickles, mustard and honey. I also got a fried green tomato on the side. I tried ordering biscuits and gravy to go (so I’d have family dinner ready to go) but was informed that they can’t sell biscuits to go on weekends because they have a hard time keeping up with making enough biscuits for those in line.
Pine State Biscuits
This was the sole biscuit baker and one of the hardest working employees anywhere!
McIsley at Pine State Biscuits
Here is the McIsley in all its glory!
The food came out surprisingly fast. We had enough time to lurk the dining area and grab a table. The McIsley was a great mix of salty, sour and sweet and it was quite filling. I loved the crust on the fried green tomato and would definitely order both again. I’m hoping to come back here on a weekday next time in hopes that I could score biscuits and gravy to take home.
Pine State Biscuits in Portland
The biscuit with jam looked so yummy and comforting!
After lunch, we figured we should probably start the 3 hour drive back home to the Seattle-area. We had such a memorable Moms weekend in Portland that was both fun and relaxing. I remembered how important it is to take time out to nurture friendships and take care of ourselves. I came home feeling energized and more focused.
Comma in Portland
Enjoying girl time at the Comma was definitely a favorite for us!

6 Ways to Create Your Ultimate Moms Weekend

  1. Pick a hotel that offers late checkout. That way you can take your time getting ready in the morning and can just relax in bed.
  2. Do an activity you love. For us, we all enjoy shopping. And we love it even more with the freedom of not having strollers or lugging around snacks for kids.
  3. Make an appointment at a salon or spa. Getting massages and nails done at Comma was definitely a highlight of our trip.
  4. Try new food. My friends and I are so used to mealtimes with 3-year-olds that it was so relaxing to be able to sit back and truly enjoy tasting an array of foods many of us hadn’t tried before.
  5. Bring earplugs. Sleep is a priority, so wear earplugs to ensure you won’t get woken up by loud neighbors or garbage trucks.
  6. Plan your next getaway. To ensure that it actually happens again, start talking about when/where your next weekend will be while you are relaxed and remember how important it is to recharge.

6 Ways to Create the Ultimate Moms' Weekend

 

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