It’s 8:00pm. After the 500th reading of Goodnight Moon (seriously, how is she not tired of this book?!), Edith has peacefully drifted off to sleep. It’s the first time my husband and I have been alone together all day. After the kitchen is cleaned from dinner, we sit on the opposite ends of the couch, lose consciousness in an endless screen-time daze, and speak only in fragments to add commentary to something we see: Trump’s latest cabinet appointment, pig in a sweater, Verizon guy works for Sprint now?… We need a date night. If this rut sounds familiar, then you need one too.
In this Post-Kid Era, date nights are few and far between. Going out as a parent can be tight, with the cost of a babysitter, any time of year, but after the holidays, it’s down right cost prohibitive. The average American spent over $900 on Christmas gifts this year, and most babysitters don’t take Visa. But if you are recovering from a hectic shopping season and a family-holiday-hangover, or just need to take a moment to reconnect with your spouse before Carnival kicks up, it’s important to make time together. Luckily, Edith goes to bed before most people under the age of 65 eat dinner. With the help of UberEATS, I’m reclaiming the 8:00pm hour in the name of my marriage and planning a date night in.
Determined to make our date night in feel like a real date, I set some basic ground rules:
After discussing the rules, we picked a restaurant we’ve never been to, ordered more barbecue than any two people could possibly consume in one sitting, and scoffed at the four sets of utensils in the bag. (Seriously? It’s barbecue. Go big or go home.) A more civilized couple may have re-plated items onto actual bowls and plates. Actually, such a couple probably wouldn’t have ordered barbecue for a date night; there were plenty of fancier options. We, however, set out a buffet of boxes, grabbed a roll of paper towels, and ate several pounds of various meats.
And it worked! We laughed and talked the way we did when we were dating—never even once discussing anything kid related. Imagine, an entire evening, in your own home nonetheless, with no mention of potties! Suddenly, we no longer felt like roommates or co-parents. We were a couple again.
Tips for UberEATS-ing your date: