Well, it's Friday night and what is this swingin' single Cheap Chick doing? Babysitting. Technically, I'm DOUBLE babysitting. Cuz that's how I roll.
How does a person double babysit? Well, I'm nanny-ing a teenager whose parents are out of town, and while she is at home, watching a movie and generally behaving herself, I'm down south, babysitting Lou's two boys while she and Husband (seriously all y'all, this is what she calls him) go out for their 6th wedding anniversary.
So, while I sit here on the babies, I thought I'd explore the things a single person could do on a Friday night WITHOUT hitting the bars or blowing a wad at the mall. Here is a short list of what to do if you have no one to do it with.
1. Babysit for your friends. As a rule, I don't actually DO babysitting. It's too much like being a parent for my tastes. But I'll break my rule for date nights and emergencies.
Here's the thing; I WANT my friends to go out with their spouses. They married the big lugs so they could spend endless amounts of time together, and once the rug rats arrive, their couple-dom is non-existant. I'm good with pitching in with the kiddies so SOMEBODY around here can get a little action.
I also do emergencies. And by emergencies, I mean one or more parent is stranded somewhere, in the hospital, or dead.
2. Home spa. I'll do a face mask, paint my toes, shave everything that I can reach (whether it needs it or not), wax my brows, and self-tan. The best part is how pretty I am on Saturday.
Product Recommendations: Biore Pore Strips, gross but oddly satisfying; Queen Helene's Grape Seed Extract Peel-off Masque, trashy but fun fun fun; Dove Energy Glow Self-Tanner, which I mentioned before but it bears repeating; and Revlon tweezers - don't buy into the Tweezerman hype! I own a pair and they are sub-par to my cheapo Rev ones.
3. A Movie and The Extras Night. I like nothing better than to rent a movie NO ONE will watch with me - usually horror or sci-fi, like Aliens Vs. Predator - and then make a Target run on the way home. I either buy the gold standard, Totino's Party Pizza, or some new junk food I'm dying to try out. Right now, I'm loving Oreo Cakesters. It's cake that tastes EXACTLY like an Oreo cookie and comes 6 to a box. Genius.
Then I scurry home for girl's night in. The key to making this a reward, instead of a sad remake of Bridget Jones' Diary, is in the execution.
Get a movie only YOU want to watch, whether that's a Merchant Ivory joint or your favorite 80's slasher film. I prefer the original Halloween and the first Nightmare on Elm Street. Soooooo scary, and surprisingly light on the gore.
Then, get the food only YOU want to eat. Or better yet, stuff that comes in single servings, so you couldn't share even if you weren't alone. I like Hot and Spicy Ramen noodles, Hot Pockets and Tator Tots. Although usually not at the same time.
4. Hang out with your parents. I can only hang with Ma most nights, since Dad lives in godforsaken Omaha. But hanging with Ma means free dinner (heavy on the cheese and chocolate, light on the nutritional value), free booze, and someone else to clean up after me.
Seriously, though? You should spend time with your parents. They put up with your bullshit when you were a teen, the least you can do is give them the time of day now that your conversation skills have progressed past "Leave me alone, I hate you!"
5. Read a damn book. If you don't own a book, hoof it down to Barnes and Noble or Border's. While you're there, join one of their book clubs to receive discounts on your purchases. I have a Border's card, myself.
Book Recommendations: (Abandon all hope, ye who enter. I like fantasy novels, Sue Grafton, Stephen King and Dean Koontz. Chick lit is RIGHT OUT.) The Kushiel's Dart trilogy by Jacqueline Carey, sexy and over-dramatic fun; The Nightside series and The Man with the Golden Torque by Simon R. Green, for fantasy set in London; Desperation and The Regulators by Stephen King, so you can compare and contrast what King wrote vs. what his alter ego wrote; Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman, Best. Book. Ever.
There. Five ideas to keep you entertained on "date night." If you're still bored, I can find something for you to do, like your chores. Better yet, get over to my house and do MY chores. That'll teach you to whine.