Moms are always busy doing something for someone else. Whether it’s cleaning the house for your family, cooking meals, shuttling kids to various practices and playdates, running errands while they’re in school, or putting in extra time at work to finish a project for your boss, if you’re like most moms, you don’t take enough time for yourself. I always find that I’m less stressed and a much better mom when I take the time to go out with friends, enjoying a night of laughter and girl talk. Here are a few ideas on making it happen:
- Where Are the Kids?
The most logical choice would be to have the kids’ father spend the evening with them, but sometimes that’s not possible. If you don’t have a doting grandma or other relative in town and you can’t afford a babysitter, try to arrange a sleepover at someone else’s house for your kids. You can return the favor another time. If your children are too young for that, you can always host a quiet girls’ night in at your house after you put the tots to bed. If your kids are friends with the kids of the other moms, see if one of their husbands is willing to watch yours in addition to his own; my own husband doesn’t mind doing this, because having other kids here entertains our children and tends to keep boredom and trouble at bay.
- Inexpensive Options
Since most of your friends are probably budget-aware mamas like yourself, you’ll probably want to find something to do that won’t break the bank. One of my favorite moms’ nights “out” actually consists of staying in. Everyone should bring a salty or chocolatey food item to share, and the hostess can provide drinks of the alcoholic or non-alcoholic variety. Choose a movie to watch, play board games, or just sit around and let the giggling and gossiping commence! Other low-cost options include meeting after dinner for a drink or ice cream, or going to a restaurant and sharing a few appetizers. Or, instead of meeting at night, you could meet for an early morning walk or jog, and stop at a coffeeshop to refuel before heading home. I’ve also resorted to meeting friends at a 24-hour diner late at night – there are no crowds, and the staff doesn’t mind keeping your (decaf) coffee carafe filled while you chitchat the night away.
- Making it a Regular Thing
Just as you make the effort to spend time with your partner on a regular basis, it’s a good idea to try to meet regularly with friends (sans kids) as well. This is difficult to do when you have babies and toddlers, but as the kids get older, spending time with friends helps you get out of the house, and also helps break you of the “just someone’s mom” mindset, which is so easy to fall into when you’re talking to people under four feet tall all day long. Plan to meet the first Tuesday of each month or every other Sunday night, and write it on your calendar in pen! If your husband balks, encourage him to get out with his friends regularly as well.
What are your favorite moms’ night out activities? Do you have any plans to get together soon with your girlfriends? If not, make some today!