Life Before Kids & Reinstating the Pre-Party

Last evening, a good friend and I were talking about LBK (life before kids.) Remembering wistfully the days when we had the energy to go out – and stay out – beyond 9.30pm. The days before a rushed slap of mascara and lip balm, and tussling your hair as you run out the door, were sufficient for looking and feeling presentable. These days, the reality is that the babysitter usually arrives just as the kids are eating the dinner you hastily prepared while your husband is looking at his watch reminding you that “we have to be there in 15 mins” – which leaves you precisely minus two minutes to get ready.

Think back to LBK. Remember the pre-party? Those languorous 60-90 minutes spent getting ready were almost as much fun as the night out itself.

Moms, I say let’s re-instate the pre-party!! And here’s how:

Option 1: Have the babysitter arrive an hour earlier than you usually do. Surely the extra $10-15 bucks will be worth the indulgence of your me-time in the tub, perusing your closet, picking your accessories, checking yourself out in the mirror, detailed application of make-up, and yes – a large cocktail or glass (or two) of wine throughout.

Option 2: Get your partner/spouse to cover the kids while you spend the time getting ready, before the babysitter arrives. It’s a cheaper, though not always as serene, option. It’ll be important to lay down some rules for the family and for you i.e. they must not disturb you, and you must let the mayhem – I mean dinner time –  happen without your intervening.

I’ve decided to give it a go. Not only will I be in a decent frame of mind for a fun night out with my husband and/or friends, but maybe I’ll even look better for it!

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  1. LBK affects us dads too. I had the week off from work. Today, Friday, is the first day I was in bed past 7 a.m. I got grief over it but that was my version of the pre-party. Pretty wild – I know.

  2. Gwen Ardinger

     /  February 24, 2012

    LOVE it! Definitely have to implement that strategy soon! I am lucky if I remember the lip gloss!

  3. Anita

     /  February 24, 2012

    I don’t even think I own any makeup anymore…what is mascara?? 😉 If and when we actually book a babysitter, we usually do have them arrive an hour before we must leave the house (if they are available). It’s def worth the $$ but the trick for me is getting the kids (esp. the little one) to NOT be looking for us when she knows we are in the house and when we succeed, to remain uninterested in us when we do actually LEAVE the house! 😉

  4. Anu Ghosh-Holloman

     /  February 24, 2012

    I love your blog, Sam!

  5. Gale

     /  February 24, 2012

    I might suggest locking the bedroom/bathroom door and putting on some nice (loud!) pre-party music, to drown out whatever whining,crying, fighting could be happening! As a girl, I knew when I smelled my mother’s perfume wafting from her room, it meant she was going out. I loved to go watch her get dressed up in makeup and accessories. I think if my daughter heard my “pre-party song”, she might someday have the same image. It reminded me my mother was a graceful, glamorous woman, and not just the cranky person in a bathrobe, hurriedly packing lunches in the morning.

    • Love that memory Gale. I also remember my mother sitting at her dressing table – as she still does – taking her time getting ready, selecting which lipstick, earrings …etc. But she wasn’t rocking out to any pre-party music. During my college years, my room mate and I used to pre-party to the Pretenders’ “Brass in Pockets”. (Seems like a lifetime ago…)

  6. Anita

     /  February 24, 2012

    LOL Gale!! That’s a great point…the kids probably only have the cranky bathrobe version of me! 🙂

  7. I need to try this! Thanks for the idea Sam!

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