de Young Museum, Golden Gate Park (credit: Laurie Jo Miller Farr)

A spring floral bouquet, a luxurious spa day and a restaurant meal to save mom from the kitchen are all good ideas for Mother’s Day treats. Escorting mother out to enjoy the city is perhaps her fondest wish for the day, so we’ve included a list of great places for all ages to enjoy together on the second Sunday in May. Adventuresome moms might even be game to look down on the city by the bay from above, taking a helicopter ride that is bound to turn Mother’s Day into a memorable day.

de Young Museum
Golden Gate Park
50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive
San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 750-3600

Did you know that a membership to the de Young is valid at the Legion of Honor also? Free admission for a member plus one guest to the permanent collections of both fine art museums is guaranteed, plus free entry for two or more to most special exhibitions. Members enjoy invitations to private openings, an unlimited number of return visits and a discount in the museum shops. Visiting shows in 2014 include Impressionism and Modernism highlights from the National Gallery of Art and Matisse from SFMoMA. If you go, don’t miss the outdoor sculpture garden and the observation tower. Keep your receipt; membership is fully tax deductible.

Ferry Building (credit: Laurie Jo Miller Farr)

Ferry Building Marketplace
The Embarcadero
1 Sausalito – San Francisco Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111
(415) 983-8030

From assorted artisan cheeses to lemon zesters, there’s something for everyone at the food stalls and culinary shops at the Ferry Building. Saturday is the big market day, so plan on a day out in advance of Mother’s Day. Sip an excellent cup of tea at the Imperial Tea Court. Afterwards, you can surprise mom with her favorite bottle from the Wine Merchant, a cappuccino maker from Sur La Table, a gift certificate from Cowgirl Creamery or gluten-free goodies from Mariposa. Add fresh-cut flowers or a bundle of lavender from the farmers market.

Bath Sense (credit: Laurie Jo Miller Farr)

Bath Sense
412 Presidio Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 795-3459

Tucked away just off Sacramento Street, step into a small world of little indulgences…which is what Mother’s Day is for. Beautifully arranged on pretty shelves are scented candles, soaps, body lotions, oils and bath salts to choose from. Or surprise mom with a cozy pashmina or comfy BedHead pajamas, slippers and a robe. If you’re stumped on selection, just describe your mother’s style or color preferences to Margaret, go with a gift basket of assorted goodies or a gift certificate. Either way, you are assured to have a hit on your hands.

The Ribbonerie on Sacramento Street (credit: Laurie Jo Miller Farr)

The Ribbonerie
3695 Sacramento St.
San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 626-6184

It’s one of a kind, a haberdashery heaven stocked with hundreds of ribbons and trimmings, perhaps the most impressive collection in America. Even if your mother doesn’t sew, Paulette and her associates conduct instruction classes on making collages, origami, sachets, wreaths, cartonnage and the art of ribbon trimmings. This treasure trove of faux flowers, grosgrain, satin, velvet, French wired, lace and taffeta lined up on antique display shelves like penny candy is a blast from the past to inspire mom’s creative side.

Tiffany lamp at The Antique Traders (credit: Laurie Jo Miller Farr)

The Antique Traders
4300 California St.
San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 668-4444

Is it a museum that’s a store or a store that’s a museum? It’s not Madison Avenue and it’s not Place du Palais Royal, but it is an unlikely corner of Inner Richmond. This is the West Coast’s largest and finest curated collection of Tiffany lamps, Handel, Pairpoint, Daum Nancy, Emile Gallé, turn-of-the-century (you know which century) antique glass, vases, chandeliers and leaded stained-glass windows. If it’s far too splendid, ask Alan to see the sweetest little teacups and such.

Laurie Joe Miller Farr is a freelance writer covering all things in her adopted San Francisco. A dedicated urbanite, she’s a transplanted New Yorker by way of a couple of decades in London as a hotel sales and marketing manager. Follow her work on @ReferencePlease, USA Today, Yahoo! and on