Mother's Day 2014: San Francisco Style

Mother's Day 2014 is almost here! Don't fret--there's still plenty of time left to create an awesome experience for the moms in your life. The abundance of options in The City to create a memorable day can be a daunting, so I put together a little guide to making the day great, San Francisco style.

What To Eat

San Francisco's abundance of restaurants make it a perfect place to celebrate, from super fancy to relaxed and casual. But with a baby (or babies) possibly tagging along with weary and frazzled parents on one of the busiest dining days of the year, some advanced planning is a must. But since you have to eat anyway, here are a bunch of options to have a great meal your way, even if you elect to stay home and cook or order in. 

Going Out

Over the last year we've eaten at a bunch of stroller friendly places in all price ranges and cuisines that would be perfect for a Mother's Day celebration. Check out some of my past reviews of places across the city like:

Once you narrow down where you want to go, scoping out reservations should be your next stop, and the best place to start is with OpenTable. The granddaddy of restaurant reservation sites has dozens of places listed across the city listed that are planning special menus for Mother's Day. Many restaurants are running specials in place of  (or in addition to) regular menus, and reservations are advised.  Mom doesn't want to starve on her special day and waiting for an hour doesn't sound fun, especially if babies are tagging along (even in line-happy SF). Some of my favorite stroller friendly picks are on their list, like Cafe Des Amis in the Marina. 

Open Table is also running a fun promotion to give away 14 $100 dining certificates. Simply send a screenshot of your funniest text message from your mom to @Opentable (make sure you follow them on Twitter as well) with the hashtag #momtexts. One person will win a certificate everyday through May 11!

Staying In

Staying in is the new going out, at least where holidays are concerned. Why battle the crowds when you can whip up a masterpiece meal in your own kitchen to rival any chef's best prix-fixe meal, right? 

Can you cook? Good for you. (If not, don't fret--the next section has you covered). If time is no issue, by all means head to Safeway/Whole Foods/Rainbow and stock up on ingredients for your beloved's favorite meal. But if you find yourself in a time crunch, here are a few ways to take the guesswork out of menu planning:


This one is so simple. Groceries ordered online and delivered to your home in as little as an hour. Place your order via the app or online, and kick back while someone else does the shopping. Who can't use that?

As an added bonus, the kind folks at Instacart are offering Mama's Guide readers a great deal on their first order: $10 off AND free delivery when you spend $35 (and who doesn't need $35 in groceries?????). Our review is coming soon, but the love these folks get in the App Store should be enough convince you to give it a try. Just enter the code MAMASGUIDE at checkout to take advantage of this great deal!


Another cook-at-home option is Plated. This service narrows down your shopping list even further by sending over everything you need to create a great meal--all you have to do is cook according to the recipes included with your ingredients! So if you're not sure what to make, check out Plated's menu options. Note they don't deliver on weekends, but any orders received on Friday are sure to still be fresh for Sunday cooking. This delicious looking spring veggie tart will impress anyone you decide to make it for, so give it a try.

What To Buy

Yes, even after arranging a great meal, a gift is a really nice touch. For most moms (me included) its absolutely the thought that counts. Think quality, not pricetag. While this site is about food, I do love to shop, so I have a few suggestions on great gifts for your moms.


One of my favorite food delivery services, Munchery is only here because they don't deliver on weekends, so getting a fresh meal on Mothers Day is out. BUT, I love their service so much I highly recommend grabbing a gift card for a future meal. There have been many nights when I was too wiped out to make dinner and yet didn't want lame take out. Munchery made me feel fancy even on days when I hadn't showered and had baby poop on my sleeve (true story).

SF Made Week

It just so happens that SF Made Week is May 5-11, so you can get your hands on all kinds of high-quality locally made products, from chocolates to bags to jewelry.  Pop-up shops are happening around town all week long, so there should be plenty of time for you to swing by and get your hands on a great gift. 


Photo Courtesy Farm Girl Flowers

Photo Courtesy Farm Girl Flowers

This year go ultra-local and get your bouquets from Farm Girl Flowers. Based in SOMA, they create one burlap-wrapped bouquet a day, and these are truly some of the most gorgeous flowers I've ever received (check out the bouquet to the left). Their sustainable model means they only create one style of bouquet every day, based on what is in season and most beautiful! For Mother's Day this year every arrangement will include a mix of California-grown peonies and a mix of tulips, Lisianthis, Veronica, Lilies, Callas, Snap Dragons, Scabios and Kale. Best of all, they don't jack up prices for Mother's Day like other floral vendors often do. The team suggests ordering early before their inventory is gone!

What To Do

Why not hire a sitter for the day and take mom out for some adult conversation and fun (Urbansitter has some great ones available, and first time users can get $10 off)!



This DIY mecca in Western Addition is hosting two really fun foodie classes on the 11th. Why not hire a sitter and take your mate to learn how to pickle your favorite veggies or make (and eat) an amazing pizza crust made by your own two hands! 

Members Day At The Presidio

Give Mom a great two for one gift--a membership to the Golden Gate National Parks Convervancy (starting at $35), and a day of fun at the Sixth Annual Conservancy Members Day on Saturday, May 10. Enjoy what is sure to be a beautiful day in one of the most quintessentially San Francisco locations ever!

49 Mile Drive

Image Courtesy 3 Fish Studios

Image Courtesy 3 Fish Studios

You've seen these iconic signs all over town, but have you ever followed them an explored the city in an entirely new way? Following the 49 Mile Drive tour is a great way to see sights you've missed over the years, and you can take it at your own pace and make (or skip) any stops you choose along the way. And if your favorite mom is a huge fan, you can finish off your trip with a replica of these signs created by local art studio 3 Fish Studios.

I hope these tips help you and yours have the best Mother's Day yet! Have a great one from Mama's Guide!