Monday, February 10, 2020

Not Just a Mom... Date Nights

Good morning and welcome to our second installment of "Not Just a Mom"! I'm so happy you've stopped by to read today and if you're a blogger, I hope you've linked up with us. 

Today's theme is "Date Nights" and I figured the best way to give you a realistic look at date nights around here would be to document our actual "dates" over the past few weeks. Now, I say "dates" with quotations because not all of these are nights out on the town... in fact most of them are date nights at home. But with two young kids, that seems to be what works best for our family right now. 

Here is a look at what "dates" we've had over the past few weeks:
For Christmas Devin's parents got us an 800 piece jigsaw puzzle. At the risk of sounding like major dorks, Devin and I LOVE to do puzzles together. Mid-January we decided to have a "puzzle date night" where we lit a fire in the fireplace, opened up a bottle of wine, and worked on our puzzle. The kids were sleeping peacefully and we got some time to just hang out and chat while we puzzled. A date night where I get to wear leggings and slippers? Sounds perfect to me 😀.

That weekend we had a "real" date. My sister came over and babysat the kids. We usually have family watch the kids because A.) our kids are super familiar with them and are comfortable around them B.) WE are comfortable having our family watch them and C.) it doesn't hurt that they refuse to let us pay them and insist on watching the kids for free (we usually bring them home a dessert or something to show our appreciation). Our only non-family babysitter is currently studying abroad in Spain (WE MISS YOU TAYLOR!). 

Anyway, we went to Optimist Hall in the NoDa neighborhood of Charlotte which is a SUPER fun date place if any of ya'll are local! The best way to describe Optimist Hall is that it's like a "Fancy Food Court". Basically it is an old mill building that stopped being used as a mill in 2015. A company came in and renovated it to hold several different restaurant booths and it is now kind of a fun/hip/trendy food court.
 One of the tenants is this cute little coffee shop.
 Devin's favorite is the ramen and steam bun shop.

We love it because we can split a variety of different foods without it being too much. We got some of the pork belly buns above, then went to a taco shop and split some tacos, then went to a brewery for a beer, the grilled cheese booth and split a fancy grilled cheese, and then finished at the gelato booth. It was so fun!

Two weeks later we had friends invite us over for a dinner party. This wasn't your traditional "date night out", but we had to get a babysitter so we considered it a date!
 Our friends went all out for this and even had little place cards made. It was so sweet!
Here are a few of us around the table. You can see me all the way in the back!

After that date, we had a "vacation planning date" at home. I mentioned this a week or two ago, but Devin has a work trip to Spain and Portugal coming up that I get to join him for (woohoo!). 
We made some chicken paella (Devin's allergic to shellfish), some sangria, and got to work planning our trip. This was another low-key, at home date night but we were able to differentiate between this and a regular night by giving it a theme and an activity. The kids were with us for the dinner portion, but we had sangria and planning after bedtime. 

So as you can see, most of our date nights are laid back and low key. We love to go out once in awhile but also know that we can have just as much fun staying home and making it "fun". 

I can't wait to see what you all post for your date nights!! Remember to link up below!

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  1. I definitely found us having a lot more date nights at home when the kids were little and a dinner party at a friends house totally counts as a date night (heck, we count trips to the grocery store and Lowe's as a date if we get to go without any kids!).

  2. I just love your home decor, I must say, it looks so nice! Puzzles are so fun but totally not my fiances thing, which is a bummer. I think it's cute (not nerdy) that you found a simple joy together! xo

  3. That "food court" type place looks awesome. There is something like that in Lisbon called Time Out Market, so check that out when you're there.
    We like puzzles too!