Friday, May 30, 2014

Table for Two

Sometimes mommies are extremely kind and share precious information such as a recommendation for a reliable babysitter. I cherish this kindness, as I know that a good babysitter can often feel like an murban legend (mom-urban...get it?) as those mornings when children sleep in past 7 a.m.

We are blessed with family and friends who are more than willing to spend an evening with Ari, but having a trusted and reliable sitter nearby helps relieve some of the guilt we feel at calling in favors, especially when those favors involve driving in rush hour traffic...

After an initially successful park meet-up with our potential new babysitter, we entrusted her with little man for a weeknight date, no bedtime required.

We left early in the evening, early enough to find a Downtown Napa happy hour and enjoy some tasty delights at a reasonable price.  We like to try someplace new when we get the opportunity - or at least someplace new to us.  This time around, we tried 1313 Main.

Since we got there so early, we had a choice of seating. Mostly we were excited to be somewhere decidedly not family friendly and to sit at a table without a high chair, but we went ahead and chose the "speakeasy" lounge area and settled in on smooth wooden benches and leaned against velvety pillows.  The service was pleasant, and a just-right-for-the-weather amuse bouche of cucumber soup arrived before our wine.

1313 Main offered specials on wine, bubbles, and small bites.  The small bites were nicely crafted and assembled - we sampled the lobster roll, the pan fried mac & cheese - mac & cheese is kind of my thing, and if it's on the menu, I need to order it - a beef hand pie (the beefeater), and a lovely artichoke with truffled ricotta as the dip.  All were delicious, and the hand pie reminded me of a Christmas I spent with my parents near Cornwall, England - good memories triggered + good food = one happy customer.  At $3 per small bite, it was entirely reasonable to sample all four as well as the sparkling wine and the Riesling.

We relaxed and enjoyed the first stop on our date and never felt rushed to head out - of course it helps to be in a place like this on a Wednesday evening.  We checked the time and realized we needed to move on if we wanted to get a full meal - 1313 offers a full dinner menu, and the options looked delicious, but as I may have mentioned, I have a very short attention span. Also, we don't get out of the house on our own much, and when we do, I like to try all the things.

After dinner, we returned home to find our house still intact, the toys still contained to the living room, and our child happy, clean, healthy, and thrilled to see us.  Our babysitter - we will call her Stacy, because she reminds me of a character from The Babysitter's Club , and I like to reference books I read in middle school whenever I get a chance...which isn't often -  said that they read lots of books (way to score points with the English teacher), went outside to look at all the shovels, road the (toy) tractor ...the list goes on.  They had a great time, and after she went home, little dude said, "More Stacy!"

So, let me get this straight. My child had a fun evening. No parents or friends were harmed in the arranging of this date. And I got to wear a pretty dress and go out in public with my husband. Win. Win. Win. Let's do this again, shall we?

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