This Mother’s Day, think outside the brunch

Wood Lily-Lilium philadelphicum
© Tom Haxby - Wood Lily-Lilium philadelphicum taken in a Michigan State Forest, certified to SF

There are more ways to celebrate Mother’s Day than fighting for reservations and battling crowds. Check out these ideas for taking Mom out for what she may need most—a little peace, quiet, and quality time with her family.

Take a Walk in the Woods, and Get an Education While You’re at it

Whether your mom prefers to walk, hike, or simply relax, many studies have linked visiting forests to improved mental health. Such “forest bathing” has become a popular stress-buster in Japan.

When you visit a forest, you support Mother Earth, too. Forests clean the air we breathe, filter the water we drink, and help control our climate. When forests are managed responsibly, they give us what we need today and remain sustainable for the future. Today, 285 million acres of forests are certified to the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) Standard, and 98 percent is open to the public for recreation.
Kenauk Nature, certified to SFI, Quebec Canada.© SFI - Kenauk Nature, certified to SFI, Quebec Canada.

And, remember all those historical sites Mom made you visit as a child? That might not have been your idea of a vacation, but she’s obviously into it. Public forests in the United States alone are home to 338,000 heritage sites.

Use these examples for inspiration for finding a good place to hike near you:

  • The Great Smoky Mountains National Park: more than 90 historic structures, including log cabins, barns, mills, churches, and schools
  • Fort Verde in Arizona: ancient cliff dwellings, monuments, and an artifact museum
  • Minnesota State Forests: geocaching, with tasks such as identifying and gathering different types of wildflowers
  • Kenauk Nature near Ottawa and Montreal: hike, fish or picnic in one of North America’s largest reserves
Many aboriginal communities across North America also offer arts, crafts and cultural activities related to their home forests.
certified greeting card© SFI - Greeting card certified to SFI standards

Send a Card That Keeps on Giving

Mother’s Day is the biggest greeting card holiday of the year. This year, look for a card with the SFI label to send your love to Mom and Mother Nature.

Plan a Picnic

Pick a stream, any stream. With 57,000 miles of streams in public parks throughout the United States, a babbling brook is likely just a stone’s throw away from you. In Canada, nearly all forests are on publicly owned land making them an easy spot to take Mom.

Keep your outing eco-friendly by looking for paper products with the SFI label. The SFI label means that the wood fiber used to make the product or packaging was legally sourced from responsibly managed forests, meets rigorous requirements of the SFI Standards and has undergone an independent third party audit.

You’ll find the SFI label on paper plates, paper cups, tissue, and hundreds of other products, so you can choose from plenty of options with the SFI label.

To get more ideas for fun to be had in the forest and more information on buying SFI certified, visit

This Mother’s Day, think outside the brunch
There are more ways to celebrate Mother’s Day than fighting for reservations and battling crowds.

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