The tomato sauce bubbled on the stove. The kids had both napped and were about as happy as they get. The husband was home early. All was well.
Let's go for a walk I said. Okay said the husband.
We started getting the kids dressed. Snowsuits. Boots. Hats.
I thought about the tomato sauce now cooling in the pot. Suddenly, I felt adventurous.
Let's go out to a restaurant I said. What? exclaimed the husband.
Neither of us could remember the last time we had eaten in a restaurant with the kids. All four of us. It had been that long.
Someone told me once that I seemed frazzled during those first few months after the boy was born. I was. I think I am still slightly frazzled. When I am tired everything frazzles me, especially new situations.
The husband agreed to dinner at a restaurant. I waffled. I agreed. He waffled. We went.
We walked two blocks to a Mexican restaurant we have eaten at before. Prior to having kids we found the food bland and pedestrian; not challenging enough for our sophisticated palliates. It is now my new favorite restaurant. The food was fast, the server was great with the kids and the tortilla chips deposited on our table soon after we arrived kept everyone happy and occupied.
During dinner the boy sat in a highchair munching everything that was put before him and swaying away to the music. He played with the straw in his glass. He watched the people.
The girl sat on her booster seat and systematically proceeded to inhale three-quarters of the nacho platter. She did not talk or make eye contact except to ask for more. She picked chip after chip off her plate, sometimes eating the olives off it first, and ate.
The husband and I talked. We ate slowly and tasted our food. It bordered on relaxing.
I don't know if I can attribute it to the large quantity of restaurant food she ate, but the girl slept beautifully last night. She went to sleep easily and stayed asleep for eleven hours. The last time she slept that well was when the husband picked up sushi on his way home from work one night last week. She ate more than I did that night and slept like a log.
Maybe the good night's sleep was actually due to the new alarm clock the husband picked up for her yesterday. A red alarm clock with blinking red numbers that she can see in the dark. We talked and talked with her about that clock and how she could get up once the clock said six. She did.
Maybe the girl's sleep doesn't correspond to the consumption of restaurant food. But can we pretend it does and then I can stop cooking?