Dressed for Date NightI realize the whole idea behind date night once you become a parent is to get the heck out of the house without those needy parasites beautiful babies. However, some recent experiences where my kids entertained me more than any paid performer could made me realize how much fun a family date night could be with kids in tow.
We've been testing out the idea of Friday night family date night and found the sweet spot for success without a sitter.
Here are four things to keep in mind to make your date night plus two (or eight, depending on your brood) successful:
Find the Balance
You don't want to spend your date night at Chuck E. Cheese, unless you're a hipster and you're doing it ironically. I am not, so we always find a spot that is kid-friendly with flexible seating for our wiggly 1-year-old. The requirements are delicious adult food options, booze, and a wait staff that will serve the little ones kid-friendly fare and fast, before they freak out.
Obviously this works best in a warmer climate, or in the proper season. But if you're dining, make sure you aren't trapped indoors in case someone (not naming names ... Judah) needs to suddenly run a few laps while laughing joyously at the top of his lungs. People in restaurants with those fancy low, tin ceilings don't really appreciate that kind of mirth.
We discovered this magic elixir on two occasions: Cinco de Mayo (kids do love the mariachi) and classic rock cover band night at an outdoor restaurant. If you can find a spot, again, that's not Chuck E. Cheese, that offers some major distraction that you aren't required to participate in, you will be golden.
Let 'em Stay Up Past Their Bedtime
If you're willing to let go of the rules, whether it's in what they're eating or sticking to a schedule, you'll all enjoy a night out on the town where you can relax, eat well, have a cocktail, and (ideally) a dance party.
Do you do family date night? Or is it adults-only?