Ah, date night, the one night we all look forward to. A little break from all the baby talk and a chance to enjoy some good grown up conversation. If you have a breastfed baby it can sometimes feel impossible, especially if your baby is not ready to go to a grandparent or baby sitter for a couple of hours. But don’t despair! It is possible to have regular date nights, here are a few tips on how we do it.
Change your idea of what date nights should be
So, before we had our baby, our perfect date night would usually involve going to see a movie this was usually followed by a long dinner in our favourite restaurant. We very quickly saw that this wasn’t going to work for us. Movies are totally out of the question for us at the moment. We do still go to restaurants but in case you haven’t been to a restaurant with a baby in the last while let me ruin the surprise for you; it’s not super relaxing. My baby never sleeps well in a noisy restaurant and she goes to sleep early so they aren’t really a date option. So now instead of going to the movie theatre we cuddle up and watch a movie at home. We also have switched to having romantic meals at home that are so lovely.
Have everything ready
I like having everything prepared way in advance. If you plan ahead you can just enjoy your evening instead of frantically getting everything ready when the baby is asleep. Trust me, I’ve done it before, by the time you have everything ready the baby will need another feed and you won’t have had any quality time with your husband yet.
I will usually set the table as soon as I wake up in the morning and prepare a meal that I keep in the fridge or pop in the crock pot. Then as soon as I put Papaya to bed for the night I can just reheat our meal and have a couple of uninterrupted hours to enjoy myself.
Plan a busy day ahead
This I suppose is the biggest secret of them all. One way I can be absolutely sure that Papaya is going to go to sleep at a reasonable time and actually sleep through the night is by not spending the day at home. So we usually arrange to go out to see one of Maia’s grannies, go to the mall or really anywhere that involves loads of walking. Papaya is a very curious monkey and the sleepy dust in my structured carrier has unfortunately worn out, so if we walk anywhere with her she really loves looking around and interacting with us. When planning your busy day, just make sure it is the kind of busy that only makes the baby tired.
Relax, things don’t always go to plan
Babies can be unpredictable. Sometimes you think you know exactly what to do to get your baby to sleep early and it just doesn’t work. Or you might be in the middle of dinner when your baby starts crying. It’s okay! I just see it as an opportunity to plan another date night. I know it’s easier said than done, I have been reduced to tears when things don’t work out. Just focus on your baby and remember that they are only little once.
So those are just a few things that I do to make date nights happen on a regular basis. What are your secrets to having a great date night? Let me know in the comments and if you enjoyed this post please feel free to share!