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Katy England Katy England
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Big kids things

March 3, 2015
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We do a lot of kids' stuff. Our living room looks like a bomb laced with brightly colored plastic shrapnel went off. We know intimate trivia about Thomas the Tank Engine (did you know that the mythical island of Sodor was situated between England and the Isle of Man? No? Why would you?).

We play with toys, read books, sing songs, have silly fun times, make charts for poop and so on. You don't realize what an impact that can have until you start slinging around some of that lingo with your significant other.

Our whole lives are geared around them rightfully so. I mean, they're 3 for goodness' sake. But still it can get repetitive. And it does a number on your social skills.

So we started planning nights with friends. Arranging childcare for three kids is well-neigh impossible. We live too far out of town to get a baby-sitter, and though we have wonderful family who are gracious enough to volunteer (and we take them up on it), it's hard to always synchronize schedules.

So, we've been having people come to us which has been a little crazy with the snow and our driveway. And when people can't make it (or take a look at our driveway and just keep going), we decided that instead of scrapping our night, we'd make it stay-home date night. Since a particular social gathering had been an effort to chat about creative writing, we kept with the theme, exchanged our work and had an honest-to-God adult conversation about metaphors and symbolism and crap.

It. Was. Awesome.

So we penciled in another one for the next month. And the month after that. Sometimes it was just the fancy cheese and wine, other times it included fancy steaks and fixin's. It was cheaper than going out, but with all the trappings of a fancy night.

We'd chill out in the study one room that we keep pretty kid-free. They can go in (and boy don't they love going in), but they have to observe the rules. And they can't leave their toys in there. That way, once they go to bed, we have a nice adult zone to chill out in, without all the plastic, blocks and fake food.

But we wanted some basic level fun as well. So we added game night, in which we bust out some of our old board or card games and play them (this was mostly prompted from purchasing 'Firefly: The Board Game' at SnowCon).

And now we've added a weekly movie night, because though we'd been getting healthy doses of sitcoms and dramas from Netflix, we hadn't been watching movies. And the silly thing is, I own some movies that we never watched either as gifts, impulse purchases from the Time Before Children, or whatever. We trade off who picks the movie each week.

Before I know it, I may start feeling like an actual together person. Which means I am probably due for some sort of colossal humbling really soon.

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