Tuesday, February 18, 2020

XO, Detroit


Those of you that have known us for awhile and/or followed some of our journey through Bluebird Songs are aware that since we got married we have lived a lot of places, been blessed with a few children, and been mostly far away from family.

When you live places for a short while, it's challenging to find trusted childcare. Then, when you have a child with extensive medical needs, a disability, feeding delays, and severe food allergies it becomes extremely challenging to leave your kids for any amount of time and actually relax. For the majority of the time we have been special needs parents, it has been (not just felt - but actually been) impossible for me to travel or take much of a break.

Thankfully, Rosalie has recently made BIG strides with feeding and has been medically stable for awhile, so when my husband suggested we stay overnight somewhere for Valentine's Day and we knew we had trusted childcare (hi, Mom!) I readily agreed. Staying somewhere overnight away from the kids without any reason beyond just wanting to spend time together is something we have never been able to do in our entire lives as parents. Just one month ago I would have been nervous and worried about us both leaving Rosalie overnight, but we successfully did it not once, but twice for a couple of recent weddings! So a real date night without any fixed timeline or obligations felt both totally feasible and long overdue.

With my forever Valentine!

We didn't want to go too far from home, but still far enough for it to make sense staying overnight and feel like we were actually away...so we chose to spend the evening exploring the revitalized areas of downtown Detroit!

We ate dinner in Greektown, enjoyed free drinks from our hotel's bar (thanks to a debacle with our room at check-in that took the staff a long time to remedy), then headed down the street to an intimate (as in, it only seats 31 people!) bar with an old Hollywood ambiance that is tucked away behind the lobby of a boutique hotel. We had originally planned to go dancing as well, but we waited long enough to get into the bar that we just took our time enjoying the most delicious drinks of the evening and uninterrupted conversation

The next morning we didn't set any alarms(!) and ate an unhurried breakfast at a trendy restaurant that would have been stressful with our three young children (especially with food allergies involved). So, basically we took full advantage of our mini get-away and lived it up!

I had never been to Detroit and it had been 10 years since Michael last went, so there was a lot to take in. There are some nice, new areas filled with restaurants and shopping (or gambling at the new casinos), but my favorite sights to behold were the beautiful, historic buildings that have been maintained and/or renovated and re-purposed. For example, the breakfast place we went to was right off the lobby of the historic Chrysler House (originally a grandiose bank built in the early 1900s). And our hotel? Also located in a historic building! Check out this gorgeous view of the atrium from the elevators:

This overnight get-away exploring a new area was a fun way to spend Valentine's Day with my husband (thanks, Mom, for watching our kids so we could go on a date without worrying about them)! It had been a long time since Michael and I did anything "fancy" to celebrate this day together (basically since our very first Valentine's Day as a couple, which was right after the weekend we got engaged), so this was a fun evening I won't soon forget. Whether you went out, stayed home, are single, married, love the feast of St. Valentine, or despise the unfortunate societal consumerism of it all: I hope you were able to celebrate and know the love found in YOUR everyday - whatever stage of life you're in.

Happy Valentine's Day! XO, Detroit.

"I know of only one duty, and that is to love."
-Albert Camu

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