No-Tell Motel to the Rescue

Photoxpress 1937657 No Tell Motel to the Rescue

Midnight bottle and diaper changes killing your mood?
Non-sound proofed doors making it hard to”live in the moment”?
No where to unwind without teens arguing or toddlers pounding their baby sisters?

I know. Boy, do I know. With 4 kids it’s hard to find the time to not-be-mom and not-be-dad. To just be a woman and her man spending quality time together.

After Damian, my third child, my husband’s first, was born, we went weeks without “communing with nature”.  Not that we physically couldn’t. We were just too tired. And when we weren’t tired, there was a bottle to make, a diaper to change, a colicky baby to soothe. Not to mention there were two tweens who also needed quality time with us in the face of new “competition” in the house.

But at some point, everyone gets tucked away, right? Time for that communing business, right? wrong. Time to take shifts. Hubby would stand guard the first half of the night, listening for Damian, while I tried to grab what sleep I could before my shift started at 2am. At which time, I would be the one to get up for Damian and hubby would sleep.

After 3 months of this, the crankiness started. Not Damian being cranky. Hubby and I being cranky, with each other. But fear for me not, it was only crankiness. Hubby and I have only had one major argument since we’ve been married and it ended in tears, each of us crying for the other. We’re not the loud fighting type. When he’s pissed he doesn’t talk to me until it’s built up and then he says in very few curt sentences what his issue is and tells me to stop. *snort* When I’m pissed, I tell him as it is and wait for him to apologize. Eh, it works for us. And it only happens occasionally. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that we’re the perfect couple, I just know when to pick my battles and when to let stuff slide. He knows when to let me have my way and when to put his foot down.

Anyway, after 3 months the crankiness kicked in. We barely spoke to each other for two weeks. We were just frustrated and feeling like one was neglecting the other. Then one night, Damian went to spent his first night with Grandma. The girls were in bed by ten and hubby and I sat on the couch with my glass of wine and his stout. At first, we had this awkward silence going and then I realized how far I was sitting from him. This wasn’t our habit. I usually cuddled up to him. I also realized I was afraid to take that first step and do so. It was like I didn’t know how to anymore. Thankfully he remembered and dragged me over and that’s when the tears started. Actually the bawling. We found that night that we were both frustrated for the same things and we were both to blame. It’s not the new baby’s fault or the tweens fault, it was our fault. We weren’t taking the time to be alone. We weren’t taking the time to be us. So we started making the time.

We’d send Damian to hubby’s mom and my mom would come by and stay with the tweens. At first we would just go out for dinner, maybe a movie. Then we did outings with friends. But we still felt . . . confined and a bit disconnected.

Then we made plans to go to Atlantic City for Valentines with friends. I rented a room at the Showboat. Affordable for parents if done a few weeks in advance. We arrived, checked in, hubby went to the casino with the boys, the girls went up to the rooms to change after the traveling. An hour later I appeared at his side in a black wrap dress with knee high boots. Just to say hi before walking off with the girls. An hour later hubby had me back in our room. He was amazed to see the woman he married. Lately all he saw was the mommy of his son. The woman of the house. His partner. That night he saw the WOMAN. We found what had been missing. We reconnected. We also conceived Natasha.

Two months after Natasha’s born, we realize we need that away time more than ever. But with four kids, no one’s going away for the night or spending money. So we went out to dinner one night, hit a bar and instead of going straight home, we decided a motel room was in order. Four hours, $40, no diapers, no bottles. Just communing.

But then we got home late, realized everyone was in a tizzy. Damian was still awake. Natasha was still awake. Both were missing mommy and daddy and driving my mom and the girls nuts. Were we gonna give up? Hellno.

Photoxpress 2130906 No Tell Motel to the RescueEvery two weeks, hubby and I have to “work” Saturdays from 2pm to 6pm. So we leave home at 12:30pm and we return at 7:15pm. One and a half hour commute each way on the weekends into Manhattan. Truth be told, the motel’s 10 minutes away and when you check in early it’s 6 hours for $55. But first we grab wine and food. We unwind, we chat, we eat. All at the little table in our private sanctuary. And we bloody well commune. We get lost in the moment and not worry about the kids hearing us or Damian knocking on the door.

It’s made our marriage so much better. We’ve even gotten back into the groove of quickies at home. Just to keep us going. Our next Saturday “workday” something to look forward to. And yeah, my mom’s no doubt figured it out. but, she won’t say anything as long as I’m happy.

Now some will say, ewhh, stay in a motel? Not a Hotel where it’s bug free? Not the Showboat? The fact is, some motels are really clean. The one we go to definitely is. And, if you’re driving, hide a bag in the trunk with the necessities. You’re own sheets, a nightie, maybe candles, definitely massage oil. It’s cheap and it’s saving your marriage and your sanity.

I’d love to hear what you do when you need to get away and spend quality time with your partner.

Update: January 31, 2011 For other ideas on keeping your marriage alive, check out SocialMom’s recent writing prompt “How do you keep the romance alive in your relationship with your spouse?” You’ll find other mom bloggers are sharing links to their great ideas in the comments section.
By the way, SocialMoms has a list of daily blog prompts to help moms find a little inspiration for non-commercial blogging/writing topics. The prompts are topics that other mom bloggers submitted and are interested in reading about.Happy blogging!

PhotoCredit: Trevor Allen and Daniel Fuhrvia PhotoXpress

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39 Responses to No-Tell Motel to the Rescue

  • Dazee Dreamer says:

    >I think that is a great idea. And yes, just because there are kids, you still need to work on the "lovers"

  • vanita says:

    Exactly! Relationships of all types need to be worked on and nourished, especially when the demographics have changed.

  • Liza says:

    >That sounds like so much fun! With my almost 2-month old and a dog, it's definitely like, "ok, she MIGHT be out for a little bit. Shut the door so the dog doesn't come in!" But there's certainly no time for MASSAGE oil. Gotta figure that out…

  • vanita says:

    >@Liza, there's always time for massage oil! don't forget there's also baby sitters and dog sitters, and hey! what are relatives for?

  • Lindsay Blogs says:

    >That's fantastic! What a great way to keep the heat alive!

  • vanita says:

    >@Lindsay, it's to keep the heat alive and keep my sanity intact!
    Feeling quite sane today.

  • indigogirl says:

    >It is so important to make time for each other, after our 2nd daughter we instituted date night every other Wednesday night when my mother-in-law would look after the girls whilst we went out to eat or to a movie.

    It makes a huge difference having that quality time together even if our marriage did end in divorce.

  • vanita says:

    you said it sistah! quality time is a must

  • krisgoescrazy says:

    >I think thats awesome, I loved this post! I loved how you called it 'communing' I never thought of that, lol. We don't have kids but if ever we do, I would definitely keep this in mind.

  • vanita says:

    even without kids this happens. life gets too busy. be sure to take time out for each other. you've already got one advantage, you don't have to pay the $55 to be alone. :-D then again, its nice to get away and "commune" too. mini honeymoon.

  • Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! says:

    >Yes, motels work! Whatever it takes to get away and find yourselves and each other amid the chaos!

    Thanks for visiting!!


  • Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! says:

    >Yes, motels work! Whatever it takes to get away and find yourselves and each other amid the chaos!

    Thanks for visiting!!


  • Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! says:

    >Yes, motels work! Whatever it takes to get away and find yourselves and each other amid the chaos!

    Thanks for visiting!!


  • Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! says:

    >Yes, motels work! Whatever it takes to get away and find yourselves and each other amid the chaos!

    Thanks for visiting!!


  • Sarah says:

    I love this! :D So many marriages/relationships fail because of this very thing. You stop communicating & being friends. You become all business. lol. Thanks for sharing. :)
    Sarah recently posted..the veteranMy Profile

  • Kris says:

    I have been married, and there have been periods of time in out marriage when we have not felt as connected to one another. But you know what? One of us always notices after a week or so and is all, “Hey! Get over here!” Really.

    We have never let the kids get in the way of spending time together.


    We have never gone to a hotel on a “date,” and that does sound like fun.

    We just close and lock the bedroom door.

    It so works.

    For us.

    • Kris says:

      So annoying to type quickly and hit “submit” without looking over what I have written.

      I said that I have been married.

      What I left out is that I have been married for over 20 years.

      Snort! My fingers don’t move as quickly as my brain sometimes.

      • Vanita says:

        we’ve been married 4+ years now, and with a family to start with and a family that grew so quickly (besides my two teens and our 2 toddlers, we have my hubby’s parrot that considers me competition and my mom is staying with us, lord help me), in an apartment. It gets too crowded to find privacy most of the time. without the bi-weekly trips, I couldn’t stay sane. it’s not only a chance to be alone together it’s a chance to get away from EVERYBODY, including the damn parrot. :-D

  • Eve says:

    That’s a great idea! Although we’d probably have to pay more for a room since my hubby won’t stay in anything less than a four-star hotel. LOL Right now our little dude sleeps 10-12 hours a night without waking so we’ve been lucky in that our sex life hasn’t faded at all. I’m sure that’ll change in the future, but for now we work it out. There are a lot of late nights and whatnot!

    …Oh and I think it’s hilarious that you call it “communing.” :-)
    Eve recently posted..Red Writing Hood: Where We Sleep and Find PeaceMy Profile

    • Vanita says:

      hubby and i go every other week, though it’s been 6 weeks or so since our last trip. the sound of “quiet” beats out the need for luxury. lol. and the price fits my budget beautifully.

  • Melissa says:

    As a mother of 3 kids 4 and under I can complete relate to this post! It is so hard to make time for yourself. Kudos to you for making some much needed and important time for one another.


  • Karen says:

    The time when you made up was so touching. I have the same problem after every quarrel with my husband. We had been silent for awhile that I don’t know how to make amends anymore. Now, I try to settle the problem and communicate with my husband early. Prolonging it would make it difficult for me.

  • Betty says:

    Having some quality time alone with my husband has been difficult when the kids arrived. It is difficult but we understand the situation. Like you, we have a good relationship yet we have quarrels from time to time. But settling and solving the problem together just feels great.

  • Wacky Dad says:

    I totally love this article! Somehow I missed reading it when you first posted it. You ain’t afraid to lay it all on the line are you? :)
    Wacky Dad recently posted..Campfire CuisineMy Profile

    • Vanita says:

      Oh no, I’m not afraid. Hell I’m a married 35 year old with kids, I’d talk about sex and marriage exclusively if it would fit with this blog. hmmm, maybe i need another blog. LOL
      Vanita recently posted..There is HopeMy Profile

  • Berna says:

    I’ve enjoyed reading your blog post, hope to hear more from you Vanita.

  • Maureen says:

    Oh I am so gonna have to re-read this IF I ever decided to get re-marry, girl! That’s so awesome that you and your hubby got to have your ‘mini-getaway’ to be alone. I think all couples need that and this is a great reminder. When I was still married, I never had any date nights with the ex, and now I know better that those things are majorly important.
    Maureen recently posted..No, I Didn’t Just Push A Baby Out Of My Vagina, I Just Have Big Boobs!My Profile

  • Vidya Sury says:

    I am glad you made up. :D And I am happy you found a way to “commune” ( i am loving that word) So many people seriously believe that once the kids come along, they can “manage”…communing AND stay close. But I think that is bollocks. You gotta keep the romance and fun alive as long as you’re together. And hey, where there’s a will, there’s always a way (sometimes even a lawsuit – but that’s irrelevant here. ;-))

    Hugs – and I hope lots of women and men who think they can’t, read this and know they can :D
    Vidya Sury recently posted..An Interview At BlogAddaMy Profile

    • Vanita says:

      Vidya! girl. this post is probably a year old. hubby and i haven’t had a saturday away in months. but because we had it for the longest, we’re still closer than we were before we had them. and we keep planning for the days when we’ll do it again. we won’t give up on each other! when i was merging the blog this post somehow got wonky and i had to republish it with a newer date so it would work fine. lol. thanks for stopping by girlie!

  • Jas says:

    You have 4 kids? I have only one and it beats the charisma out of me every now and then…. I can totally relate to the post…. loved every bit of it… :)
    Jas recently posted..Don’t Die On MeMy Profile

  • Ann says:

    So great! Such a universal problem and such a sassy solution : )
    Ann recently posted..Ultimate Baby Nursery Wishlist (accessories)!My Profile

    • Vanita says:

      definitely a universal problem! i remember being a pain when i was 6 year old and not giving my parents any alone time. now imagine if there were four of me? hahaha

  • Tammy says:

    How much do I LOVE that? I think we’re going to have to give that a whirl. Best use of 60 bucks ever.

  • Tammy says:

    I LOVE this. Talk about the best way to spend 50 bucks evah!

    • Vanita Cyril says:

      I miss those days. Our code word for our weekend trips was “Boston”. So we’d ask each other “hey, you wanna go to Boston to do the taxes?”
      Anytime it rains and we’re out and a cab passes by, I ask. And he responds “I wish”.
      Vanita Cyril recently posted..How to start your FridayMy Profile

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Vanita Cyril

Vanita Cyril

Entrepreneur | WAH Mom | Supporter of Mom Entrepreneurs Everywhere

I'm one wicked SEO demystifying, WordPress theme designing WAH Mom who tweets, pins, blogs and conquers the world while simultaneously searching for blankies, proof reading English assignments and burning dinner.

Yes, I do burn dinner daily.



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