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Solo Vacations

The last few years Paul and I have started giving each other solo vacations. I’m not talking about sending one person off to a conference or a guys’ trip. It’s where we take the kids and leave the other person at home for five days or so. There is something so luxurious about living my regular routine but I only have to think about one person (moi!) I can roll out of bed right before my meeting, I can go to movies without even thinking about trying to coordinate a sitter, I can go running at any hour of the day and don’t have to worry about who is gonna do pick-up. It is really fun! This week Paul packed up the kids and took them for a visit to his family’s house. I’m stoked for some alone time. It is funny but one of the things I’m most excited about is cleaning out my closets. I’m going to have uninterrupted time to put things in piles and take things to Goodwill. I’m stoked! The picture below is when I took the kids and left Paul home for his time off. Have you ever had a solo vacation away from family responsibilities? Of course I can’t wait for them all to get back at the end of the week, but in the mean time I’m gonna walk around the house in my underwear and eat peanut butter straight from the jar.

Mom Vacation

  1. CM

    August 7, 2013

    This is such a good idea! I think a weekend away is enough for me. Might have to implement this sooner rather than later 🙂

  2. Jana @ 333 Days of Hand Lettering

    August 7, 2013

    Great idea-wish we had done this when our guys were little.

  3. Lexi

    August 7, 2013

    I LOVE this idea! I can’t even imagine that many days home alone– what a luxury!! Definitely going on my to-do list 🙂

  4. Alli

    August 7, 2013

    Love this! I don’t know about you, but I have such high expectations of myself when I’m home, like my closet or my desk, and then I end up liking the peanut butter in my undies more than actual cleaning. Oh well, my time right?

  5. kristi

    August 7, 2013

    Great idea! I tried this once and, like you, I was so excited to have a weekend alone to clean & organize. I don’t think my husband had been gone more than a couple of hours when I was hit with the stomach flu. I spent the entire weekend sick – ugh. On the bright side, at least no one else was exposed to the virus. You’ve inspired me to try this again – thanks and enjoy your time!

  6. greta

    August 7, 2013

    I just sent my husband to Spain for 10 days.
    He hiked a famous trail there, the Camino de St. James, with my dad.
    They did over 80 miles.
    I wanted him to have the chance to do something he’d never ask for, but something I knew would fill his soul.
    We go on a family vacation once a year and smallish trips here and there.
    But we have 4 kids, and those trips while fun, are not super relaxing.
    I longed to give him the opportunity to walk alone for miles in silence, to soak in the natural beauty of the Camino, to stop for lunch at a cafe and not worry if the kids would like the food.
    I wanted him to have a time of refreshment.
    It was a wonderful time for him.
    I’m so glad we went for it.
    And now, I think these kinds of trips–maybe not Spain every time–will become a new part of our routine.
    Love from,

  7. Christine | Life in a Dress

    August 7, 2013

    This is such a good idea. I totally believe having some alone time makes you a better parent.

  8. Michelle @ Full Belly, Worn Soles

    August 7, 2013

    I don’t have kids, but my partner and I frequently take solo trips. He’s actually away with friends right now seeing a concert in Minneapolis. You’re right, you’re glad to have them when they’re back, but it’s nice to do your own thing at home for a few days at a time.

  9. Anne

    August 7, 2013

    Yay for making-piles time! And more outings with the kiddoes! Great idea! We’re working towards getting more flexible work time…

  10. Caroletta

    August 7, 2013

    This is a great idea. We have never done it (yet) for a week but like Christine said it I agree that it makes you a better parent. It helps also to not forget that before being parents, we are individual. It is a wonderful proof of trust and respect.

  11. Julia

    August 7, 2013

    Yep we do this. is amazing to have more than one lay in in a row. ..also it just keeps things fresh. I usually go stay with family or go on vacation with another solo Mum

  12. Julia

    August 7, 2013

    I just went to NY for 2 1/2 days to visit my sister while my husband stayed at home with our two little kids. I like that idea of sending someone away on vacation rather than leaving them at home. I know I’d spend much of the time feeling like I need to be “productive” but either way it’s such a gift.

  13. Jenna

    August 7, 2013

    such a brilliant idea!! We don’t have kids yet, but our first is going to arrive in January…. I can just imagine how nice that would be to have the house to yourself for a week! Going to file this idea away mentally for when the time comes.

  14. Kirsten

    August 7, 2013

    My yearly Mother’s Day gift is a night in a local hotel, with the day before and after to do whatever I want by myself. It is definitely worth waiting 365 days for 🙂 Also, when I work the occasional night shift, my husband sometimes leaves with the kids to his parents’ so I can sleep before and after my shift. Even though I’m not conscious during much of it, the quiet house is SOOOOOOOO luxurious.

  15. Erin

    August 7, 2013

    Yes! We love solo time at home, uninterrupted by the frenetic energy two toddlers can bring into the mix on an hourly basis. My parents frequently have the kids come spend a couple nights so we can tackle tasks with greater efficiency; have you ever tried to clean out your kids toys with them actually in the house?! My husband also sent me to Spain for 10 days with family and friends and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to explore, linger and reflect on myself. It makes me a better parent.

  16. maggie

    August 7, 2013

    This seems like such a good idea. I live by myself right now, so I am spoiled with the amount of freedom I have.

  17. jen

    August 7, 2013

    such a great idea! i also have come to love that alone time at home… something about cleaning and tackling projects uninterrupted feels so great! not to mention watching whatever i want on tv 😉

  18. Kelli

    August 7, 2013

    To those of us divorced, this is what we single parents call normal. I take my kids once during the summer and/or spring break then their Dad takes them on a vacation as well. Given the divorce rate I am sure that this is not an uncommon type of vacation.

  19. hollee thornton

    August 7, 2013

    I think this is absolutely brilliant!!!! I am so glad you did this post! I remember my husband did this a few years back and I got so much done! I redecorated 2 rooms (including built-ins and paint) it was a solo trading places (only not trading). I learned how to use a drill. I loved every minute and felt such a great since of accomplishment. I remember hardly speaking to anyone- loving the silence! I need to get one of these again soon. THANKS for reminding me!

  20. Raluca | WhatWouldGwynethDo

    August 7, 2013

    We try to do this on a micro level day-to-day. You go surf for two hours today and I will go to the bookstore tomorrow solo. But I love the idea of extending it for a few days for a REAL break. Enjoy yours!

  21. Damaris @Kitchen Corners

    August 7, 2013

    My dream vacation. My husbands nightmare. He hates being alone. I love it.

    I did send my husband to Japan for 2 weeks this summer to hike with his brother. Next year he’s planning on sending me to Europe. Maybe I should send him and the kids to Europe and I just stay home.

    Good luck with your closet.

  22. Cash

    August 7, 2013


  23. Jennifer

    August 7, 2013

    Oh my goodness, I love this idea. My husband is good about me getting a weekend away now and then, but it’s almost always for someone or something else. I love the idea of being home and being free to just indulge me, even if it’s something so mundane as clearing out my closets at whatever pace and level of mess I deem worthwhile (I’d be excited too!). I’m going to plant the seed for these solo vacations in our future. Enjoy!

  24. Kelley Anne

    August 7, 2013

    Oh my goodness, a few hours to myself is such a treat, I can’t imagine a whole week! That’s a good idea.

  25. Christina Lacourte

    August 7, 2013

    My husband has never taken the kids away on his own, but next week I’m going, solo, to New York to take a floral design course that I’ve been wanting to take for some time (woo hoo!). I’ll have a couple of extra days there, and can’t wait to just cruise around the city, browse museums, etc., without anywhere to be or anyone who needs anything from me. I really think this time on our own is so important to hang on to who we were pre-motherhood/wifehood. Have a great week!

  26. Jamie G

    August 7, 2013

    I love this idea! I haven’t slept in in SEVEN years so that would be high on my list. I actually dream of having the house to myself for a few days so I can go through everyone’s closest/drawers/and toy boxes and streamline my house. I live with a bunch of hoarders.

  27. erin

    August 7, 2013

    I need one of these right now…ha!

  28. kate

    August 7, 2013

    A vacation from laundry?! Right on!

  29. Amanda

    August 7, 2013

    Telling my husband about this as I type!

  30. Lauren

    August 7, 2013

    I love this idea!!

  31. Jennifer

    August 7, 2013

    On a related, but slightly different note, my good friend Ben just wrote this article for Slate on vacationing solo:

  32. Shon

    August 7, 2013

    Woo hoo, what are you waiting for?? Go and enjoy that peanut butter.
    Happy Solo time to you!!

  33. Sarah W

    August 8, 2013

    We totally do this! A couple of years ago my husband went to help his brother for a week and took our daughter with him so I had the week to myself and it was glorious! And on Friday, The girls and I (we have two daughters now), are going to visit my family for a whole month! My introverted husband is so excited for that much time by himself at home!

  34. Marta - LittleMars

    August 8, 2013

    What a great idea Jordan!! You should have also a duo vacation and leave the kids with grandpas 😉

  35. Anita

    August 8, 2013

    If I have to comment on this, my husband is on a solo vacation almost everyday. I am the one who stays at home and be around the kids. Lol!

    I would love to go on a duo vacation.

  36. Anita

    August 8, 2013

    I truly envy you. If I get a solo vacation like you the one best thing I would do is just “Eat and sleep”.

  37. Marianna

    August 8, 2013

    That’s so cool! We are planning to have kids with my boyfriend and this is definitely something I would like to adopt. Let’s see.

  38. Annie G

    August 8, 2013

    Yes , yes and yes. When my children were small I regularly (from six weeks old..) took them away with me or I would never have visited family and old friends. And my husband used to team up with a friend who had children the same age and they would take them away camping and exploring northern England and Scotland. It was bliss. I could do exactly as I pleased – tidying and sitting silently in an immaculate house for an evening… – and often teamed up with friends to go shopping, eating out, drinking. The children have brilliant memories and I managed not to go mad. Result.

  39. Laura

    August 8, 2013

    best. idea. ever. Well done and enjoy each moment. It is so great to have the personal time to refresh and restore! Enjoy!

  40. tammy

    August 8, 2013

    I love days at home alone… it’s always a mini vacation of doing exactly what I want 🙂

  41. Great idea! I’m no parent YET as I’m just twenty but I’d love to be one someday. Probably in eight or ten years time. 🙂 I love this idea so much as I often observe how my parents get all too busy with my sister and I when we were younger. Sometimes they forego their “ME” time which is really so selfless but looking back I hope they got to do stuff like this. Also you get to spend time with your kids doing stuff the two of you love. It’s like sharing something really special and personal. It helps a parent and his/her child connect uniquely. Great parenting tip!

  42. Erica

    August 8, 2013

    Hooray for Zion’s. It’s the only thing I miss about SG…..well besides my parents 😉

  43. Karen

    August 8, 2013

    That is so generous of you two to give each other that time. I’ve been thinking about doing the same, but I want to wait until the kid(s) (one is 3.5 years old, the other is 34 weeks along in utero) are a little older to attempt the same. I remember seeing Sharon from NYC Taught Me write about the same thing a few years ago, and I thought it was a great idea!

  44. Anni

    August 8, 2013

    YES! My 3 year old and I are in Iowa for the next 3 weeks while hubby is at home working on some furniture for our company. He needed some uninterrupted time to work!

  45. Chelsea

    August 8, 2013

    I love this idea! Will have to remember this for Someday Motherhood. The thing that stresses me out most about being a mama is the idea that I will never, ever get to take my time getting out of bed or to go to an afternoon matinee. If I had a staycation/solo vacation once a year, I think that would help me a great deal…

    Am I the only childless one who feels this way…?

  46. Lily

    August 8, 2013

    My husband took our 3 kids to his family cabin for six days last month and it was pure BLISS! I made sure to clean my house the day they left so that I didn’t have to think about everyday chores while they were gone…it was heaven having the house actually stay clean the entire time they were gone 🙂 Enjoy your time alone!

  47. samantha hahn

    August 9, 2013

    A sweet idea! Adorable pic. I have a thumb sucker as well.

  48. Sadie

    August 10, 2013

    Thinking about your clothes being at a goodwill makes me want to find the one you’ll be doing a drop off at. 🙂

  49. Yvonne Cornell

    August 12, 2013

    I knew you were smart! The couple that gifts one other solo time is the couple that stays together. Bravo!!

  50. Rebecca Lately

    August 13, 2013

    That’s such a wonderful idea!

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