Parenting has redefined many things in our lives, one of which is the whole concept of dating. Here’s how we’re getting by when our days begin at sunrise and our nights end before dark.
Parenthood: Redefining the Dating Concept
Nearly fifteen months after the birth of our first daughter, we’ve realized it’s more important than ever to keep our relationship as exciting as it was when we first met – give or take a few adjustments. Here’s what we’re doing with the little time that we have to stay connected (and sane).
The Mid-Week Lunch – While it’s far from what I used to consider romance, a mid-week lunch date just ahead of the lunch crowd with chain-restaurant brand wine is no longer anything to scoff at in my book. The fact that we’re able to enjoy a meal at the same time without having to switch off with the baby so we can both use proper utensils is a miracle in itself. I don’t care if we’re at Applebee’s. I will put on some Chanel lipstick and wear my good heels.
The Saturday/Sunday Morning Brunch – Yeah, we’re pretty much early-rising, daytime- drinking kind of people now. But not because we’re indecent. It’s mainly because by the time brunch rolls around, we’ve been up for a good five hours and deserve a cocktail or two. The great thing about brunch is that everyone is pretty much in a festive mood and quite encouraging of early-day drinking. We may not be nursing a hangover, but we’re happy to join the rest of you with those unlimited mimosas.
The Friday Night In w/ Frozen Pizza and Good Wine – Sometimes the best we can do is Publix-brand frozen pizza accompanied by a decent bottle of wine. And it’s just fine with me. Never underestimate the simple things. If this is all there is on a Friday night, count your blessings and enjoy the good company.
The Cooking Date – We’ve realized there are hidden pockets of time every now and then when the little one will nap long enough (on a Saturday or Sunday) to make us feel a little restless and idle, something that rarely happens. But when it does, it allows for creative bursts of freedom to do certain things we used to enjoy before our minutes and hours were accounted for. So we’ll raid the kitchen for any available ingredients and cook meals only adults will enjoy, while listening to music (very quietly) on our iPhones – music that doesn’t involve any sort of animatronic sing-songy dinosaur.
The Tourist Date – We recently had the chance to be “hometown tourists” for the day thanks to Miami Film Month and the GMCVB, which put us on a double-decker bus and drove us around town. It kind of brought me back to all those hokey dates everybody rolls their eyes at in romantic comedies (or maybe that’s just me). Sometimes, when your days consist of mostly diaper changes and messy feedings, hokey can be a good thing. Rediscover your city on a date; chances are it’s changed quite a bit from the last time you were able to get out and explore without a baby in tow.
The Lazy Day Date (With Babysitters) – Admittedly, one of the things I miss most about our pre-kid relationship was the ability to have a lazy Saturday/Sunday consisting of truly nothing other than binge-watching Homeland and picking up the phone to order a pie large enough to last us throughout the day. Which is why we have happily taken advantage of babysitting-days (read: days when generous in-laws volunteer their time to entertain our toddler), donned our rattiest sweat pants, and guiltily enjoyed lofting around for hours of American Gypsy Wedding while munching on Buffalo wings. (Don’t judge; everyone has their vice.)
Got any of your own new-parent date ideas? I’d really love to hear them – seriously. How do you guys handle it?