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From Trendy to Kid Friendly

Before my husband and I had our first child, we enjoyed a lot of perks that we totally took for granted. Our routine during the week consisted of going to work, meeting up at the gym for a workout, and eating a late dinner around 8:00pm. And on the weekends? Well, on Fridays, we went out. We drank lots of alcohol. We slept in late. And then we did it again on Saturday. Just living the dream.

At some point, we got a puppy, which totally threw off our lackadaisical lifestyle. We couldn’t go to the gym together after work because someone had to get home to let the dog out. We had to get up in the middle of the night and early in the morning to let him out to pee. And we thought that was rough. (We were naïve sons of bitches, by the way).

Anyways, besides hitting up happy hours and having drinks with friends, our favorite “date night” thing to do was to spend our evenings trying the latest trendy restaurants downtown. Our favorite restaurant offers homemade pastas and decadent cheesecakes for dessert. We spent every special occasional at this awesome wine bar that serves the best steak and most delicious variety of wine a girl could ask for – and even features a few semi-circle round booths so that you can sit close to your hubby (which sounds super cheesy, but it was cozy). One of the newer restaurants we checked out a few times describes itself as “South Carolina Lowcountry cuisine & craft cocktails in a rustic-chic setting with chandeliers.” Sounds awesome, right? From what I remember, it is; sadly, it’s been a while since we’ve had the opportunity to stop in some of these places. Not exactly toddler friendly, if you know what I mean.

When our son was born, we didn’t go out to eat nearly as often as we had in the past. Even though a newborn is pretty portable, I felt weird breastfeeding in public and often found myself sitting in the backseat of the car feeding my baby while my husband was inside waiting for our dinner to arrive. And as he got older, I was terrified of taking him to restaurants for the sheer fact that he might throw a shit fit or blow out a diaper while waiting for our check to be delivered. But I eventually got over that new mommy fear and surprisingly, our kid is pretty well-behaved in public. He turned three recently and just like his mommy and daddy, one of his favorite things to do on the weekends is to eat out, which is awesome. The only difference these days is the type of place we find ourselves having dinner. You know, “rustic-chic with chandeliers” is not really his style…. Nevertheless, I think it’s important for him to learn how to sit through dinner (not to mention eating out means I don’t have to cook), so we’ve been taking him to restaurants a few times a month.

Last Friday, my husband and I planned to pick him up from daycare together after work and grab a bite to eat before heading home. We were trying to figure out where to go when I got this awesome text from Matt.

restaurant post 1

That’s right. He asked me if I wanted to go to Macaroni Grill BECAUSE THEY GIVE YOU CRAYONS TO DRAW ON THE TABLE.

We used to pick restaurants based on the level of trendiness and the whether or not they served cool cocktails. And now?? We choose where to go based on whether or not you can draw on the damn table (since our child will most likely draw on the table whether or not it’s allowed).

Some nights, I miss the freedom of pre-parenthood life when we were able to do whatever we wanted on the weekends. But the honest truth is I’d choose eating at TGI Fridays, Applebee’s – and yes, even Macaroni Grill – any day. As long as it means I get to spend the evening with two (soon to be three!) of the cutest boys I know.

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