The other Sunday, J's parents came in for the day to watch the kids and give us a little, much-needed break.
We'd had a stretch of multiple night wakings by one or both kids, and a couple of night court shifts between the two of us, and patience was wearing thin. After I'd lost my temper a few too many times, J called for back-up. His parents showed up with tons of food and goodies for the kids, and we booked it out of our tiny apartment, with no concrete plans other than getting to spend a few hours by ourselves and talk about something besides whose turn is it to change P2's diaper or did anyone feed the cats yet and also we really need to vacuum.
First up: a ferry ride to Williamsburg. I didn't realize the ferry picked up so close to our house, and dragged J for a walk through Brooklyn Bridge Park, but it was nice to take the walk without pushing a stroller or wearing a baby or hear anyone complain when we passed a playground or ice cream stand. Then, we just missed the ferry so we ran over to grab some coffee while we waited for the next one.
The ferry ride was great! It was nice to be out on the water, and to get a different perspective on the city. We passed by the new Domino Factory park - it looks like so much fun! We'll have to check it out next summer.
Once we made land again, we wandered around looking for brunch. We found our spot when we heard live music from the street and we found ourselves outside a beer hall I used to frequent in my wayward youth (they also have really yummy pancakes). There were several other families with babies eating there too. It was fun to check out other babies without having our hands full with our own.
After, we wandered through Williamsburg. So much has changed since I lived there nearly a decade ago. We browsed through the new Muji store (and got some 100% organic cotton sheets - I also love that they're sold separately instead of as a set). We also stopped in at the new Le Labo store, where I sampled all the fancy lotions. We wandered through a neighborhood bookstore and I picked up a couple new books I'm excited to read. And we walked around the new Whole Foods, where J's brother was working (and gave us some yummy cheese samples too).
After several hours to ourselves - several hours of grown-up conversation where we only brought up the kids and work a little bit, several hours with no agenda, no checklist of tasks to get through or worry about having to be anywhere at a set time - we came home in a much brighter frame of mind than we'd been the previous day.
Day dates are great! You don't have all the pressure of a night time date. Meals are cheaper (and if you've got your eye on a really popular spot, it can be easier to get a reservation for lunch or brunch than for dinner), and you don't have to worry that you'll get too sleepy to finish the date on a high note (or is that just me). Plus, we didn't have to worry about getting home so late that J's parents would be on the road late at night - the sun was still up when they left our apartment. Plus, because we went during the day, all these shops were open that might be closed later, and browsing was a fun and inexpensive way to spend some time.
Other fun day date ideas: visit a museum (here's a list of NYC's "quirkiest" museums), go for a bike ride (we've enjoyed doing this solo on Governor's Island), or take in a matinee.
Readers, what do you think? Do you prefer to go on dates during the day or in the evening?