Adult Swim

glamour MaliaA couple weeks ago I asked, on Facebook, for some writing topic suggestions. That’s how I ended up with the Neglected Conversations post. There was another suggestion that I have been intending to write about, it came from my friend “C” and was phrased like so:

We have celebrated our 15th anniversary and Mother’s Day and {my husband}’s 41st birthday over the last week. How do YOU, Ms. Malia juggle family time and hubby time? As our kids get older I find myself craving more time alone with {my husband}. Finding the time to do so is frustrating.

Dude, I hear ya! So, here I’ve come to save the day! Or…not. But I’ll give it a shot.

When the kids are younger, fatigue is our biggest nemesis. Most nights, once the kids are in bed, all I want to do is veg out. Sometimes vegging out together (i.e. hanging out in the same room on our respective computers) is sufficient, sometimes it’s not.  When it’s not, I have to be proactive and suggest something other than vegging out. And I don’t just mean, you know, relations, though that certainly can be part of it! Cuddling on the couch together to watch a movie or television program or actually having a face to face conversation are good things, too.

Now, that’s all fine and good and not exactly a creative solution to alone time but I just had to throw it out there. There are, of course, date nights. Again, a bit of a no brainer but you can get creative with them.

First you need is a sitter. We are fortunate to have family nearby and we use (and abuse) their free babysitting as often as we can! Yet, there are times when family members are either not available or we’ve abused used them too often in a short period of time to venture begging asking them again. This is when we call in the reinforcements – friends with children similar in age to ours! We have some friends with whom we have taken to swapping sitting responsibilities. This has worked out fabulously for all involved. Our kids like each other and like being together. We parents get the opportunity to get out without having to pay a sitter. With these particular friends, we usually have the kids spend the night. Double bonus! Now, if you have younger children, you’ll want to limit  your sitting swapping to a few hours at a time. But once they get older, can entertain themselves, and don’t require copious amount of personal care (i.e. bathroom duty) spending the night is a wonderful option.

Next you need a plan. Sometimes you truly have a reason to get out of the house but if you can finagle taking your kids to family or friends houses to be watched over, then consider heading back home yourselves. We do this quite often on the nights when our singles ministry at church hosts Parent’s Night Out.  Our favorite thing to do is drop the kiddos off, grab some take-out and head back home for uninterrupted movie watching (and….) If your budget prohibits take-out, consider cooking something that the two of you like to eat but your kids turn their noses up at.

If you’re really itching to get out of the house, find something that you both enjoy. For DB and I, it’s live music. Specifically we both very much enjoy going to the symphony. For the past couple of years, we’ve been season ticket holders for the Pops Symphony series here in Nashville. For a few reasons we did not renew our membership for next season but living in “Music City, U.S.A.” has it’s perks! On any given night you can find live music being played somewhere! And personally, I’m itching to get down to Arrington Vineyards in Triune. They have free wine tastings and live music on the weekends!

There’s one other thing I can suggest, this will not work for everyone but if it can work for you, I really think that you should try it! Of course with it being summertime and kids out of school it may not even be possible but come fall…  I’m talking about “nooners”, “afternoon delight” if you will. If you can finagle taking lunch breaks together, it can be as simple has meeting at Subway to share a sandwich or it can mean meeting at home to….  Ever since DB has been working from home, we’ve taken advantage of that arrangement. Daytime “dates” are great because you’re not as tired as you are in the evenings, the kids are under the care of guidance of their teachers and the limited time period ensures that you don’t waste precious time with other tasks, instead you focus on each other.

Does anyone else have creative ways of finding time to spend with your spouse, especially if you have children in your home?

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2 Comments

Filed under by Malia, love & marriage

2 responses to “Adult Swim

  1. I’ve heard Arrington is a fun night out!

    We live in a neighborhood with no teens (1 but her house is for sale and they are moving) and we don’t know anyone well enough to swap babysitting services yet and the baby won’t allow anyone but mommy and daddy near her right now. But we’ve come to accept that for this short period in our lives, we only get out when family comes to visit (which is usually a couple times a year). We work hard to spend quality time together after the kids are in bed and we enjoyed our child-less time before the kids arrived. Knowing it is a short period in our lives doesn’t always make it easier to accept that we can’t get out to a movie now and then but it is our reality and we know they won’t be so little forever.

  2. Jill Young

    Hi guys! It’s been a while. :)

    Sammie and I give each other a small cash-budget on the 1st of the month (i.e. $25). We are each responsible for planning a date with the other at some point during the month. So, we have a date at least twice a month and I only have to plan one of them.

    Jill Young

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