Spend some special time together while adjusting to your new normal
I will never forget those first few weeks of being a brand-new mother with my first. Our lives had DRASTICALLY changed in a way that we had never conceptualized. It was glorious and overwhelming all in one. I was new to nursing and that made venturing out (at first) very unfamiliar territory for me. The prospect of having a date night seemed foreign, or at least a blurry memory from long ago. My husband and I knew that we needed that to help us adjust to this new journey that we were embarking on together.
How do new parents possible have a date night?
We had to get a bit creative to have some “us” time. Here are some ideas to help you plan some time with your partner after a new baby enters your life:
“Rip the band-aid” and venture out
It can be VERY intimidating for a new parent to venture out with a newborn. What if they cry? What if they get hungry? What if they have a blow-out diaper? Spoiler alert: they probably will.
For me, I didn’t get comfortable until I actually mustered up the courage to do it.
Head to a favorite restaurant or café: a place where the staff might be familiar to you; a place that is comfortable. Take the interruptions in stride. It is not as if the other diners have NEVER seen or heard a baby before. Nurse or feed baby how you feel comfortable.
Focus on enjoying the meal and then congratulate yourself on your first outing as a family!
Order-In a Meal
Order from a favorite place, or order something “fancy” and shower and prepare like it is date (a shower and clean clothes feel absolutely amazing after being spit up on all day).
Even better if you can catch your little one sleeping and you can enjoy your whole meal. If not, switch off baby holding duty so each of you have some time with two free hands to enjoy your meal.
Movie Night In
Yes, it’s been done, but make it extra special with popcorn and delicious movie theatre snacks.
To keep it lighthearted, I might suggest watching a movie you've already seen a bunch of times, or one of those cheesy comedies from the 1980s (Naked Gun anyone?)
Choose something you both can laugh at and that doesn't require your undivided attention, just in case baby creates some unplanned intermissions, which they will!
Play a Board Game!
The competitive fun that pits brother against brother, and mother against daughter, in houses across the county each Thanksgiving does not have to wait for those family holidays. It will be fun to do something interactive, and strategic together, and will give you a nice change of pace from the piles of never-ending diapers.
Here are some highly rated two-player games to try:
Reveal the secret agents— without revealing either assassin or too many innocent bystanders — before time runs out in order to win the game.
Santorini is an accessible strategy game, which features variable player powers layered over an otherwise abstract game, with 40 thematic God and hero powers that fundamentally change the way the game is played.
Archaeology: The New Expedition
has players adopt the role of an archaeologist excavating historical sites for relics and treasures to sell to the highest bidder.
7 Wonders: Duel
This two-player adaption of the popular 7 Wonders board game has “players navigate three rounds, gaining buildings to accrue resources, gold, technologies, and military might,”
Watch a sports game
Make your favorite game day snacks—think chili, nachos, or wings—and cuddle up on the couch to root for your team.
Invest in an electric fondue pot, or pull that one that you received as a wedding gift out of the closet.
Cut up bite-size veggies and bread to dip in cheese, and do not forget to finish off the meal with a chocolate fondue with fruit and marshmallows.
Picnic in the park, or backyard
One of my absolute favorites! Bring baby on the blanket with you, or bring the monitor out to the backyard and enjoy the sunshine and fresh air. Eating outside is always a welcome change of scenery.