The Unexpected Thing That Improved Our Dates

Sometimes no plans are the best plans.
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Before we became parents, someone told me that the simplest things, when done on your own, feel indulgent. The idea that a solo trip to the grocery store could feel comparable to a vacation scared me, but I now understand the sentiment. Because my alone time with G is precious, whenever we do have time away from Sloan, we make very detailed plans and spontaneous dates are few and far between. It wasn't until we were in Northern California a few weeks back that we made a small tweak to our approach that's changed everything: we didn't make plans.

On that Sunday afternoon, after Sloan went down for her nap, my parents suggested we go out for the rest of the day. G and I happily took them up on their offer and headed into San Francisco (where we had a dinner reservation later that evening). But we realized we had five hours to kill with absolutely no idea what to do. I hadn't spent that much time in San Francisco since I was a teenager, and traipsing around an Abercrombie & Fitch just doesn't hold the same appeal. We decided to pick an area and just walk around without having a set plan.

We settled on Hayes Valley and as soon as we got out of the car and took each other's hand, things just felt different. It was like we were transported back when things were a lot less regimented and routine... and it was so exciting. We're such planners that we found the unknown a welcomed surprise. We grabbed coffees, perused cute shops, and eventually settled into an outdoor patio bar for cocktails. It was such a simple, leisurely afternoon (that ended in a stellar meal) that we've decided to try and replicate it more regularly back home.

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