One of the hardest things for most couples to do is to find time to dedicate to one another, what with the busy schedules taking over and such. It’s especially hard when there are children under foot. It’s a constant race to keep up with life, that getting five minutes together is hard, let alone a whole night to yourselves. However, there’s an importance to spending time together, and I’m not talking about just brushing your teeth together, followed by hitting the sack with a kiss, ending in a snore-fest after a few minutes of pillow talk. I’m talking about an actual date. Something that is planned by one of you—however simple or complex—that gives you time to reconnect.
Date nights don’t have to be perfectly planned and intricate. The only true planning is the one that gets a sitter lined up for the kids, if they are in the picture. Once that’s set in place, the rest is a piece of cake (and in my opinion dates should always include cake. Or pie. Or ice cream. Or chocolate).
Here are some ideas to help get you and your partner back in the swing of the dating game as well as inspire you up to get up and do something you haven’t done in a while:
- Go to a museum. Hold hands and tour all the exhibits while you discover things you might not know about a cool painting or a dinosaur or how tornadoes form, and you may re-discover the spark that drew you to each other. There’s something totally sexy about being all brainy!
- Get sweaty together. Who says date nights need to be hours long? If you only have a half hour to an hour, how about a nice bike ride, or a walk/jog, or even take a hot Yoga class together (I dare you to keep your sweaty hands off each other after that).
- Plan a photo-shoot. Look into local photographers and plan a couple photo-shoot. If you do your homework and get the right photographer, he or she will take you to romantic locations while documenting your time together. And, there will be a lot of closeness and kissing, too!
- Recreate your first date. Reminiscing that first date is so good for the heart and soul. It allows for a rush of emotions and suddenly you remember just why you fell in love with each other in the first place.
- Have themed “Dinner and a Movie” nights. If you’re going to see the latest Kung Fu flick opt to have dinner at the local Chinese restaurant. Maybe you’re going to see a mystery that takes place in Italy? You’ll definitely need to share a big bowl of pasta, with a nice glass of red wine, and garlic bread.
- Take an all-day hike. Do some research and find some hiking trails. Nature can be inspiring, you know, what with the birds and bees.
- Take turns planning a mystery night. When there’s an element of surprise added to a date, it makes it so exciting for the one being who wasn’t doing the planning. Taking turns planning a date allows both of you to be dazzled by your partner’s idea(s).
- Taste wines together. Visit a local winery and learn about and taste different wines. Don’t forget to buy one for home, either.
- Plan a picnic, go to a concert, see a local band play, hit a coffee shop, go for some ice-cream, try pies at a little diner, attend local festivals, etc… There are so many wallet-friendly things to do that don’t cost of lot of money, but are so fulfilling and energizing and an absolute blast.
And, if you HAVE to stay in on date night, give these ideas a try:
- Have a living room camp-out. Pitch a tent in the living room, make it completely dark, use flashlight (or a fire in the fire place), and make sure to share a sleeping bag.
- Have a marathon movie night. Rent all your favorites, pop up a bunch of popcorn, and don’t forget the ice cream or Gummi Bears.
- Play some good old-fashioned games. I’m not talking Chutes and Ladders, either. I’m talking about games like Strip Poker, Twister, and Truth or Dare. Hubba, hubba!
What if you can’t find a sitter and you don’t want to stay in?
- Take the family out for miniature golf, to the batting cages, or zip around at the local go-cart place.
- Hit an amusement park for hair-raising, roller coasting fun.
And, don’t forget to let the kids see you get all kissy-smoochy! It’s healthy for them to see their parents in love and happy. Kiss, hug, hold hands, and show those kids just how much you love one another.
Most importantly, no matter what kind of date night you plan, just take the time to re-connect and show just how important and special you are to one another.
Also, remember this statistic: 70% of dates end in sex. How’s that for motivation to plan a date night once a month?