it is so important to carve out time to date your other half. especially, once you have kids! as entertaining + fun as our toddler is to be around, the husband + I realize we need to make our “just us” time more of a priority. (I say this now, as we’re less than 8 weeks from welcoming baby two – I’ve never been excellent at “timing”). it’s easy to get wrapped up in the crazy + bliss of becoming parents. we adore jackson. in a blink of an eye, he went from being a tiny baby to a non-stop talking, super busy toddler. watching him grow up a little every single day has been incredible. it goes by so fast + you don’t want to miss anything. BUT you also don’t want to miss allllll the fun you have dating your significant other. we’re not just talking movie nights when the baby goes to bed. MAKE REAL PLANS! leave the little with a loved one or babysitter and GO ON A DATE!
the other weekend, we asked my mom if she’d come to town + hang out with jackson. confession: the true reason wasn’t so we could go on a date. we needed to go car shopping (LAME!). it’s just one of those adult activities that is much easier without a tiny human in tow, especially in the winter. thankfully, we’d narrowed our car search + were pretty sure we could make a quick decision (assuming the test drive went well). IT DID! we made a decision in record time + decided we should celebrate with a lunch date. we headed downtown des moines to a new(ish) spot we’d been wanting to try: dumpling darling.
a lunch date at dumpling darling.
we nearly ordered one of everything – actually, we did! we ordered one of every meat-free dumpling they had on the menu. we got the kimchi mandu (korean-style with local tofu, kimchi, scallions) steamed dumplings and FOUR orders of fried dumplings: potato pierogies, avocado rangoon, chipotle tofu, and mac + cheese. our favorite was the avocado rangoon. but there wasn’t a bad one in the bunch. every bite was scrumptious and the five small orders left us both feeling perfectly satisfied as we walked out the door. (- said the couple who made a detour on the way home to hurts donuts …)
looking for some casual date spots in des moines? the husband + I thoroughly enjoy the local breweries + wineries, like firetrucker, exile or jasper. creme cupcake + dessert, a local bakery, has a happy hour that is great for a cocktail + dessert. YUM! even a night at the iowa state fair .. go for a concert + satisfy all your fried food cravings!
• little lesson: your relationship with your other half is so incredibly important! every day life can be fun and a home-cooked meal + clean home should never be taken for granted. never. that is 100% true love. but you’ve committed to a life with that person because they’re fun + bring out the best in you (ideally). so, make a plan + go on a date! even if all you end up talking about is your kids or your brand new minivan, I guarantee you’ll share laughs + have a really great time.