As I have two daughters, now aged 4 and 2, I’ve often wondered how soon we can do ‘girly stuff’ together and have a ‘girls’ night in’. I stop short of a girls’ weekend away – that would clearly be a large mistake at this point in my lifespan. I would be setting myself up for a weekend of tearing my hair out whilst husband put his feet up at home, no doubt watching Jools Holland and eating nuts in bed. Anyway, to the point.
A girls’ night in is doable even now, I’ve recently discovered. It can even be of benefit for those who struggle to get their children in bed, even upstairs.
It’s a rudimentary version of the girls’ night of course – and arguably less enjoyable for the grown up due to lack of Prosecco and meaningful gossip. But it’s good for building relationships with your daughters outside of anything organisational – relating to school, mealtimes, getting them to bed etc.
Ingredients for my girls’ night in:
– one parental bedroom, dimly lit and preferably with a TV in it (provides the ‘illicit’, enticing factor that actually makes them participate)
– something different and a ‘bit grown up’ for the children to watch on the aforementioned TV (I chose a recording of Strictly Come Dancing, or The Voice on another occasion)
– something slightly ‘naughty’ to eat that they wouldn’t usually get at bedtime (I have put together platters of ‘Mummy’s best cheese’, ‘Daddy’s sausage’ and a couple of chocolate fingers, for example).
– Maybe even new pyjamas for an extra treat – although I haven’t done this one yet (good idea though, if I do say so myself).
I’ve tended to do my girls’ nights on evenings when my husband is away. This was partly as my eldest is so attached to him and gets a bit off the wall if he’s not there to read her bedtime story. I get them upstairs and have the food ready on our bed, with something nice on the TV so that they can tuck themselves up. I sit with them and we just chat for a bit – amazingly, so far, they haven’t played up. Honestly – they’ve sat there the whole time munching their food, watching a bit of TV and actually talking to me rather than pretending I’m not there or that I’m this talking entity that’s generally to be ignored.
I start the grand event at around 6pm so this means they’re ALREADY UPSTAIRS – an added bonus for me who’s home alone and facing the prospect of getting the potential horrors in bed at a reasonable time.
It’s only lasted for around an hour or so before I do actually put them to bed. But it’s a start and we all enjoy this little bit of time together. The start of many girls’ nights to come?