Wednesday, March 7, 2012

..but I still don't like "play dates."

I truly think I may be the only mom on the planet that doesn't like the "play date."

You know, the "fun" time where (in a perfect world) your kids play happily with your friends' kids so that you can have uninterrupted mommy talk time?

Exactly. In a perfect world. Or maybe with kids who are compliant and don't try to use the equipment as a way to cause heart palpitations to their dear old mom.

((Now before you go all, "well if they were trained..", on me. That applies to your family. Not to mine)).

Back to what I was saying. What was I saying? Oh, yes. Play dates. I remember the first time I went on a playdate when I had two small kids. Thankfully back then it consisted of destroying my friends house (because it was indoors) but we all pitched in to clean everything up. Granted, I was clued in pretty early that while we (mommy's) could speak as we pleased, we couldn't hear a daggum thing over all the shrills.

Fast forward to four kids and, while two are older, I still have two smaller ones that I have to chase around the park. And generally we end up at some darn park without a fence. You know, prison containment for my kids that are not compliant. But most of all it's the fact that I will have 50% that want to wander and explore (again, perfectly fine) except that the other 50% want to stay and do death defying stunts on the playground. So hmmm... which one do I oversee? All the while, the other mom is standing there probably wondering why I'm not talking to her very much.

I can't handle it. Oh I can handle my children at a park. I just can't handle the idea that somehow I am supposed to carry on a conversation beyond: "Eva, you fell of the merry go round because you were dangling your, eh hem, booty out in the air," "Isaac, stop trying to eat the bark. BLAH" "Jorge and Alex, stop climbing on the outside of the tube slide. Seriously."

So when it's just us. I enjoy it. I know, it makes me anti-social. But I've been told I will enjoy play dates again one day, but that seems absurd to me because by the time that happens I've also heard it's hard to get teenagers to go hop on the playground equipment.

Here are some pics of our park day today. (yes, it was not a play date. Even though I invited other mommies to go. No one could come on such late notice).

Exploring for cool sticks.

My favorite "equipment" for them to climb on.

Their faces seem a bit upset that we aren't eating with friends.

What are your thoughts on Play dates? And is it one word or two?


Allison said...

Don't know if it's one word or two, but I will say they are not my favorite. I have 3 little girls and can't seem to keep my eye on all 3 at one time and it makes me a nervous wreck while the other moms are just talking up a storm while I'm searching for my kids. It's more anxiety than fun for me, but it's not about me I guess!

Emily said...

I'm not much of a play date mom myself. Mainly because my kids are wacky and hyper. Most parents look at them like they're from another planet. Then I start to feel very insecure. Though I do have to say, my boys get extra excited about having friends to play with. I think I might give the park play date another try this summer before baby #4 arrives ;-)

Amy Q said...

Wow, I just thought I was a freak anti-social mom that was depriving my kids of the joy of being sweet little social butterflies with a calendar full of playdates and lunch dates. I tried it a couple of times, but I'm always the mom that has a kid that either has a melt down, a blow out or throws up! LOL Can't take the stress! I'm more of a "Come on over and hang out with us" kind of mom and we may or may not all still be in pajamas. ;-)

Livingtoglorify said...

Guess I am the odd ball that actually LIKES play dates. Of course i don't see adults a whole lot so I take every chance. Though my favorite play dates (I think it's two words) were when we still lived in TX. Four of us moms got together every Friday morning. At the time there were 17 kids involved, now there would be 19 soon to be 20! :) The kids were there enough to kinda know the routine at that house and the oldest was named "the Pied Piper" because she was so good at entertaining little ones. (from the time she was around 7!!) Miss those days something terrible!

Greta said...

Oy, I don't always love playdates either. Between the choppy conversation where I always find myself saying, "like i was saying earlier" or "so back to blah blah blah" AND breaking up fights between my kids and the others....I can usually pass.

Now, if it's a playdate (and i'm obviously going with one word here) with another mom who is like-minded and really is just interested in getting the kids together and if you JUST SO HAPPEN to hit that sweet spot where you can talk, I like 'em!

Greta said...

OR, if I just really want to get out of the house or mix up the toys...I'm all for them.

How's that for a not answer?