I am still recovering from this past weekend. I have three grown daughters and they are all very stressed out right now so I came up with an insane idea; I should take the three of them away for a weekend where they can just relax and forget about their problems and reduce their stress. One weekend of total pampering (on a small budget). I filled gift bags, one for each daughter, with pampering items such as lotion, pedicure and manicure items. I put chocolate, snacks, tissues, notebooks and pens in the bags. I know, it sounds sweet, right? Let me take a moment to tell you why they are stressed. My oldest is not the warm fuzzy mother type. She likes kids but she's not very patient. She has two children that she spends 24/7 with. Her boyfriend (father to one of the children) doesn't help her with the kids or house. She never has time to herself. She wants to go back to work and he won't let her. My second child is due May 29th to have her second child. She is married to a boy (and I mean boy) who wants to act as though they are royalty even though they are broke. He thinks he is the inspiration for the "Fast and the Furious" movies. He recently started behaving in a way that makes my daughter wonder if he is being faithful. He's lying to her, coming home late, they don't talk, when he's home, he's spending time with the neighbor or watching TV. My daughter is scared that he is going to leave her with two children or try to take them from her (she's a homemaker and doesn't have an income). My third daughter (usually my sane, strong, independent, responsible and laid back daughter) is preparing for her second semester exams. This week, she finishes her first year of college. She has three big papers due this week on top of studying for her exams. On top of this, her job is at the college (work study) and they don't work over the summer so she needs to find a job in this economy. So you can see why they are stressed. I pick them up on Friday and we head to our destination (we had to stay close by because of my daughter's pregnancy ~ doctor's orders). We get to the hotel and we unload the car (so far, so good). We decide the first night, we would hang by the pool and order pizza. My second daughter started opening up at the pool about her concerns and basically trying to let go of some of the stress. My oldest (who is usually the hostile, self-righteous one) got "offended" and asked the third daughter to go outside with her. So the rest of the trip was me and my second daughter trying to relax and talk about her concerns while my oldest daughter avoided my second daughter and usually pulled my third daughter along with her. My third daughter brought her three papers with her. She didn't relax much between working on her papers and tending to my oldest. I did my best to get all three to relax. I had scented candles all over the room. I brought white roses to fill the room. I had bath salts for hot baths. Herbal tea for soothing the soul. I thought I had all of the areas covered to take care of them. I used empathy and I listened to them. So why did we come home and I feel exhausted? I know the answer to this question. I am exhausted because I spent the weekend renewing them and tending to them. I took care of them but not myself. I don't regret it for a minute but I do wish I had taken advantage of the weekend and relaxed myself some. So, how about you? Do you need to relax? Do you need a break from your stress? You don't need to go away to do this. You can ask someone to watch the children for 24 to 48 hours for you. Then turn your house into your own private spa. Light some scented candles...run a hot bath...give yourself a pedicure...give yourself a manicure...Better yet, invite a friend over and trade off. Give each other the pedi and mani. My next pampered weekend away will be with my third daughter (who still lives at home), my sister and my mom.