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7 things your mom secretly wants in Bend


Today we’re going to talk about 7 things your mom secretly wants you to do for her in Bend.

Get Mom’s car spiffed up at Empire Car Wash while you buy her a growler fill at Gorilla Growlers.

By “your mom” I might mean “me.”

And by “you” I might mean “my family.”

But since it’s almost Mother’s Day Weekend 2018, I figure this list might hold true for lots of other moms spending time in Bend for the holiday or any old time of the year. Here are 7 things your mom might secretly want.


Wash my car

My car is filthy after a long winter, but I keep putting off washing it because it’s just going to rain, right? But it pains me to look at my filth-mobile, and your mom isn’t loving hers, either.

If you’ve arrived for your Bend vacation and Mom’s ride is looking dusty after that long drive, make her smile by spiffing it up at one of Bend’s car washes.

Bonus: Gorilla Growlers is right next to Empire Car wash on the NE end of Bend, so you can get Mom’s car looking spiffy and also bring her a gallon of her favorite craft brew.


A hike with the whole family is a fun way to celebrate Mother’s Day.

Take me hiking

I can think of few bonding experiences that rival the family hike. Waterfalls are a special treat for my family, but the biggest thrill is just experiencing something new together.

Stop by the Bend Visitor Center to pick up a hiking guide and give it to Mom with flags on pages featuring hikes you think she’ll like. You can also peruse this blog post for ideas on family-friendly hiking around Central Oregon.

Hook me up with a spa treatment

Mom deserves a spa treatment, doesn’t she?

There are things most moms hesitate to buy for themselves because there’s always some pressing home repair or equipment to purchase for a sport we know the kids will lose interest in by the time the next season rolls around.


Treat Mom to the thing she won’t buy for herself. It can be a simple $25 pedicure, or a whole day of body treatments like a wrap and a full body massage. Check out our spa page for ideas, then snag a gift card for your mom and write a heartfelt card telling her why she deserves it.


Make me something

The self-portrait (complete with handmade frame) that my stepdaughter made for me when she was seven. The hand-crocheted necklace my stepson gave me when he was ten. These are among my favorite treasures, and I guarantee you every mom in your life has a similar collection.

There’s nothing quite as meaningful as a handmade gift from the people Mom loves most. From hand-painted pottery to jewelry you’ve made yourself, there are tons of do-it-yourself gifts you can create just for mom. Check out this blog post on 10 DIY experiences in Bend for ideas.


Give the gift of music

Bend’s music scene is on par with cities more than twice its size, and plenty of top bands choose Bend as their lone Oregon stop over bigger towns like Portland and Eugene. Why not give Mom tickets to a concert you can enjoy together?

Your mom called. She said she wants tickets to see a concert at the Les Schwab Amphitheater.

The Les Schwab Amphitheater has a killer lineup for this summer season, with more shows than they’ve ever had in the history of the venue. You can also scope out the schedule for the Tower Theatre or concerts through Bend Chamber Music.

Don’t have much to spend? Give Mom a handmade IOU for a date to one of the season’s free Munch and Music concerts and a promise to pack a picnic basket with all her favorite things.

Make the dinner decision

Not every family operates under stereotypical gender roles, and if you’re a family where Dad does most of the cooking, rock on with your awesome selves.

Kids making their own dinner at Flatbread? Sign Mom up for that!

But statistically speaking, moms still do more of the grocery shopping, food prep, and cooking in American households, so why not give her a break from that? In fact, give her a break from all decision-making related to dinner by surprising her with a visit to a Bend restaurant.

Take her to Flatbread where the kids can assemble their own pizzas while the parents enjoy a glass of wine and some appetizers. If you’re feeling fancy, many high-end Bend restaurants like 900 Wall and Zydeco have awesome kids’ menus. For more adventurous eaters, hit the sushi train at Sora Sushi and let everyone pluck their faves off the conveyor belt.

Many breweries along the Bend Ale Trail are also pretty kid-friendly, with Bend Brewing Company and Deschutes Brewery offering some of my favorite kids’ menus (not to mention awesome sample trays).


Don’t worry, dog moms—we’ve got you covered

Plenty of moms have kids who walk on four legs and lick their backsides, and some of them are even dogs.

There are plenty of ways to celebrate the dog mom in your life. Stop by Bendy Dog in Downtown Bend and snag a special gift for the pooch-loving lady in your life. They carry handmade wooden signs and etched metal leash hooks that say “dog mom,” and both are made by local artists. They also have totes that say “dogs can change the way you see the world,” as well as car magnets bearing the “dog mom” moniker.

After that, consult the DogPac page for ideas on great hiking spots for dogs, or visit one of Bend’s eight off-leash dog parks.

You’ll also find many Bend restaurants have dog-friendly outdoor patios, so dog moms can enjoy a special meal with waggy-tailed kids.


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