Taking time to care for your marriage in the middle of raising kids can feel exhausting! I’m so grateful I had a friend early on who introduced me to At-Home Date Nights.
If you’re like me, as much as you’d like to get out of the house some days, the last thing you want to do is hire a babysitter to keep your kids while the two of you go out.
Well guess what?
You don’t have to!
Pick one night of the week as your date night, let the kids know they will need to go to bed or at least their rooms a tad earlier (I recommend before 9pm) and the two of you should have at least an hour or two together to do something fun, relax or just be.
This has been so much fun for my husband and I, and it’s now by far our favourite way to spend time together.
While there are hundreds of ideas on Pinterest, here are my easy 10 to get you started!
Fort Fiesta – Couch cushions, blankets, pillows, wooden planks, the table…whatever you can find to create a cozy little hideaway big enough for the two of you to fit inside. Add some twinkly lights, snacks and music and you’ve got the perfect environment for a cozy and relaxing date.
Games Night – Pick your favourite board game, card game or even electronic game and bring out your competitive streak. If you want to raise the stakes each of you choose what you want as a prize if you win!
Art Adventures – Pull out the classical music, coloured pencils and sketch books for a classy evening. If you’re the artsy type this may result in some real, actual art! If you’re like me, you’ll borrow one of your kid’s colouring books and try to stay inside the lines. Regardless, it’s an easy, relaxing way to sit side by side and chat while you keep your hands busy. This is my husband’s favourite way to listen to me if I have spaghetti brain and need to untangle a few noodles 🙂
Cooking – Try out a new recipe or just pull out your favourite cookie recipe. It’ll be more fun than you think to create a yummy treat together. Tip: If neither of you likes the kitchen pick something simple and quick.
Dinner for 2 – Feed the kids earlier and occupy them with a movie or something so you can spend some time preparing your feast. Grilling some red meat usually gets men excited and you can always pull out some fancy dishes and wine glasses to make even the simplest meal feel special. Kraft Dinner by candlelight tastes so much better!
Apps & Movie – Grab a recent release or old favourite the two of you would enjoy watching together and pick up some tasty appetizers at your favourite restaurant or the grocery store. Our favourites are flatbreads, spinach dip and boneless bites. Mmmm.
Campfire Cuddles- I am so looking forward to summer time again. Many summer nights at our house have been spent roasting hot dogs around the campfire with the kids and then as it gets dark out we tuck them into bed and creep back outdoors to sit and enjoy the fire. Stars, crackling wood, smoky scented air and a blanket or two make the best conversation atmosphere…or to just sit and enjoy being together in the quiet.
Dream & Imagine – For this date, grab a notebook and a couple pens and start a bucket list of your dreams, goals and crazy never-going-to-happen ideas. You’ll make 3 lists. His, Hers and Ours. Now start shooting questions at each other. Where would you like to travel? What are your career aspirations? Where do you want to see our family in 10 years from now? Don’t stick to realistic expectations. Feel free to laugh, cut loose and fall in love with the person you married all over again 🙂
Book Club – If you’re both readers look no further! Tonight all you need to do is each grab a book, flop down on the couch and get reading. Sometimes as parents all we want to do is to be in the same place, doing the same thing, in the quiet! If you want to add some conversation to this night, each of you read a chapter and then swap books and do the same. After you’ve each read one chapter of the other person’s book, talk about what you learned, the questions you have and what your take on the book is!
Closet Clean Out – It is Spring, after all! If your closet is needing a thorough sorting, set a date for the two of you to go at it together…and have some fun! Bring some snacks, music and a bunch of garbage bags to toss your old and tired wardrobe into. Don’t forget to ask your spouse’s opinion on what items should be donated, tossed and kept. You might be surprised what you learn about your spouse’s style and preferences!