Date night goals

Kyle and I went out for a date!!


This was basically my (only) New Year’s Resolution.  Hopefully it will become a regular thing (making it a regular thing is my actual resolution).  I know it’s important, but it’s hard for a variety of reasons (some of which are valid and some of which are in my head).

We still have never had a non-family member watch the kids, which may seem weird but…I don’t know…we just haven’t.

And although I could say a lot right now – about my anxieties and personal road blocks as they relate to accepting help from outside sources – I will skip ahead to the restaurant review because this is a food blog, not a therapy session.


We asked a friend for recs in Sac because we have zero clue on the local food scene.  The bummer was it was Valentine’s Day so there were a lot of places we ruled out due to a prix fixe sitch.  How cliche to go out on Valentine’s Day.  So not me.  In the end, Magpie was the winner. They weren’t taking reservations so we were on the same level as everyone else.  And because we are 30 going on 80, we eat at 6, which worked out nicely for us.  After putting V down, we left P with my parents at our house and zipped over to Sac.  After a few minutes of circling for parking we finally made it to the restaurant and were seated in no time at all.  Score.


To start we shared the winter seafood salad which had baby kale, roasted roots, fennel, oregon bay shrimp, grilled baby octopuse, six-minute egg and mustard vinaigrette.


This sounded good so we went for it.  Octopus?  Why not!?!  Also, I recently discovered that I like fennel so that’s fun.  My thought process about dining out is to be adventurous and order things I couldn’t make at home. There’s nothing worse than paying big bucks for a lame salad that I could throw together with my eyes closed.  This was exceptional and I was really glad to step outside my comfort zone.

In the same vein, my entree was very not me.


On the left is my corned pork and cabbage with roasted root veggies and a tart apple mostarda.  On the right is Kyle’s gnocchi with duck confit and organic yukon golds and bloomsdale spinach.  We both loved our mains.  I found the pork delightfully salty and yet, they were totally in balance with the apple and veggies.  The roasted brussels were perfection in every way.  Had I not ordered this, I would have gone with the vegetable plate, but that just seemed like a silly thing to get when we so rarely have the opportunity to treat ourselves to food that is not made by yours truly.  I can roast a vegetable like nobody’s business.  I can’t (and don’t want to) corn pork though.  Therefore, it was a worthwhile splurge.


And since we are on the topic of splurges.  Why end the night after dinner?  Strolling through downtown Davis seemed a way more fun option.

CREAM!  It’s a thing here.  Much like Diddy Riese is in Westwood.  This was my first time going!!  I got two gluten free chocolate chip cookies with soy ice cream.  Kyle got double chocolate chip cookies with cookie dough ice cream.


Mmmmmmm…mega thanks to my parents for letting us go out.

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Comments (9)

  1. Stephanie Hartley

    I think it makes a lot of sense to only have family members babysitting! You need to feel secure when you go out and know that your kids are in the hands of people who genuinely love them. Your mains looks amazing as well!

    Steph –

  2. Amy

    So happy to see that the two of you were able to go out on Valentine’s Day. As a mom with 2 kids under the age of 4, I haven’t left my kids with anyone except for family members either, and I don’t think that I ever will, and I’m pretty sure that a lot of other parents feel the same way. Just wanted to let you know you’re not alone in feeling that way.

  3. Tracey carmichael

    My son will be 8 next month and has never had a sitter other than family. We are lucky to have them close(ish) and willing. Funny enough HE has always wanted a “real” babysitter. Good luck with your resolution, looks like you’re off to a great start.

  4. Elise (Post author)

    Thanks so much Amy. It’s weird how much pressure (real or perceived) I feel as a parent. I’m very confident I’m giving them both the best of me, but I definitely becoming more aware that I’m shortchanging myself in terms of “me” time. Those two things and a bunch of others intertwine and intersect in complex ways that complicate certain decisions about childcare. Next fall we are planning to enroll P in a few days of preschool a week and that is seen as “late” here in our community. Thanks for the comment letting me know I’m not alone.

  5. Lee

    We’ve never had a non-family member babysitter either. Alex does go to daycare but in terms of an actual babysitter – nope.

  6. Ashley

    You are not alone! My oldest is 7, and I’ve only had family members watch my three boys. And this includes allowing me to chaperone field trips and volunteer. Doing what makes you comfortable is what’s best! You can’t enjoy your time away if you’re focused on what’s going on at home.

  7. Ttrockwood

    Date night is very important! Hopefully this can become a regular thing-or date lunch if that works better 😉
    Looks like you had a great valentines dinner all around – and i’m sure there were other young parents eating that early too.

  8. Courtney

    I have already told my husband that I am not leaving our baby with anyone other than my mom or sister. And since both of them live 6+ hours away, that basically means we are not going out any time soon, lol. I left her with my husband for an hour for the first time a few weeks ago and I cried! If you won’t be able to enjoy yourself because you are worrying so much while you are away, what is the point? I know no one will love her like my family does, and that is enough of a reason for me to only leave her with them. I am glad you have family close by so that you can get out every once in awhile–it sounds like a fun date night!

  9. Elise (Post author)

    I hear you on all of that. It was a huge perk of moving back up to Northern CA…having family nearby is invaluable. P absolutely ADORES my parents and sister (and their fiancés) to the point of obsession. It’s the sweetest thing you could hope for as a parent. V is still questionable when I’m not present and is in the thick of a separation anxiety phase. It’s hard because I can’t even leave the room without her crying – even though I’m not leaving the house! It’s a good thing she has an early bedtime because she never has to know that we leave her once she is down by 6!!

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