January 26, 2016
I swore up and down that we would never be “those people”. You know, the ones who can’t commit to a single plan or timeline because of their precious schedule. Baby can’t go to bed one second past 7:00pm or they will obviously just totally combust and turn into a toad.
For the first 4 months that oath was an easy one to adhere to. Solution: take you everywhere. Since you cried often and slept often it was pretty hard to tell when you were tired, per say so we got away with running around on our schedule.
We ate when we wanted, went out for late dinners with you and the bucket in tow and basically felt like the most chill parents around accepting invitations to any ge together with a smug grin thinking “we got this”.
Well, 4 months in and tonight we are having dinner with friends at 5pm. 5pm. I think I have to repeat that again for full effect. 5PM. Dinner.
The truth is, the older you get, the more you need some kind of schedule. We can fight it all we want and be as chill as we can be about it but a tired baby is a terror and the only single way to avoid a tired baby is to bow down and pray to the sleep gods.
Those gods demand sacrifices and one of them is your old social life.
But Baby, I’m here to assure you that this is no big deal. In fact, dare I say- I like our new routine. I’ve always been one for a good nights sleep and a sensible bed time so this suits me just fine.
So when you one day have a baby (or just start getting old- because age makes you super tired too- win/win) here are some tips to stay hip when you are feeling square.
1. Find friends on your timeline- nothing makes you feel lamer than eating dinner alone at 530. Nothing. Sure, you may have a baby as company but let’s face it- babies can’t provide you with enough stimulating conversation to make this early mealtime palatable every night. Find some other parents and eat together when you can.
2. Get creative in the kitchen- try a new recipe, make an old recipe, DONT FOLLOW ANY RECIPE AND LIVE LIFE DANGEROUSLY. So what you gotta do to make mealtime an experience. Bonus: early meals really do yield to more excuses for evening snacks. Hello popcorn.
3. Embrace your time- ya, ya. You used to be so cool. Guess what? No none cares but you so time to jump on the early bird bandwagon. Remember waiting in line for hours to try a sexy new restaurant? You can go to any resto you want. No one lines up for sexy places at 5. Remember going to bed stuffed because you couldn’t stop shovelling your face at your 930pm dinner? Promise you that no matter what you eat you will have digested it by dinner when you eat early. Oh, and no time to clean up the lichen after dinner because it got too late? Haha. Your kitchen can be clean (ish).
4. Eating with your babies (if you have babies) is awesome- it is never too early to show your baby that eating is fun and being together as a family is even better. I’m super into showing you a huge variety of food that you will one day eat. I am a huge believer that kids learn good eating from their parents. Plus, we talk (right now we talk at you. One day to you) and enjoy time together as a family.
5. Deviate from the schedule- ain’t nothing wrong with eating a late meal or going out sans baby. I think that while it’s great to be on your little ones schedule, it’s also great for them to know that you have a life outside of them and that food and eating it are a fun part of your social experience in and out of the house.
6. Feed baby- we haven’t fed you food yet but having you actually eat at mealtime is sure to make it more fun, messy and chaotic. You’all fit in perfectly with our meals.
So embrace your new timelines- whatever they turn out to be. If you are having fun and enjoying it, who cares if it is still light out???
Remember this when you scoff at early dinners when you are young and think you’ll be eating at 9pm for ever. And enjoy those dinners just the same.