Over the past couple of days, we have been talking about date nights. Stacy shared with you why date nights shouldn’t end in marriage, and then, Anne shared a great idea for having a romantic date night-in! Mark and I benefited greatly from their thoughts and ideas. I hope you did too!
Furthermore, I hope you are seeing that date nights are an essential part of a surrendered marriage. As I surveyed women about their marriages, the one thing that was absolutely, without fail the most mentioned advice was keep the date nights! Yes, it is hard, but our priorities indicate that even with small children, busy schedules, and lack of ideas we should still make every effort to ensure that we are spending quality one-on-one time together.
To be transparent, Mark and I have always struggled with making date nights a priority. Our entire marriage has been made up of one transition after another. We’ve moved four times in less than four years of marriage (Update: we’ve moved yet again and are in the process of a SECOND move since writing this!). Mark has changed jobs three times and completed his masters degree. We’ve started a couple small businesses (you’re reading one of them). Birthed a baby. Housed a twenty year old. Served as community coordinators for an apartment complex. Lost a fish. Killed a few plants. And picked up photography. Just to name a few things. If you’re wondering … yes, we are crazy, weird, and very passionate. Shew!
The point is, in all of that craziness, date nights easily fall by the wayside. However, they shouldn’t. Recently, we’ve changed that. We have instituted a weekly date night – Thursday nights. We’re not in a position where we can go “out,” but we can stay in (our home is our favorite place to be anyway), and make each other a priority.
We close down the computers, the phones, and maybe even the lights. We make a nice dinner, put Sam to bed early, and just spend time together. We talk, we read, we play dodge ball in the living room, we pull out a board game, we sword fight, and we hide toothbrushes when it’s time for bed (note: we do not do all of those things in one evening!). We love being married, and on Thursdays, we intentionally spend time together without any other distractions!
To help us keep date nights a priority, I have put together a list of ideas for us to draw from each week. Maybe you’ll pick up a few tips, and share a few of yours in the comments?!
21 At Home Date Night Ideas
1. Have a picnic (either outside or inside).
2. Turn our dining room into a dining destination.
3. Watch a wholesome movie on Netflix. We actually enjoy documentaries.
4. Read a book together (or a book series).
5. Play dodge ball in the living room. You thought I was kidding up there …
6. Light candles around the room and sip wine together.
7. Get into an intense javelin fight on the Wii. Talk about getting your heart rate up.
8. Spa night.*
9. Sit around a bonfire outside with hot chocolate.
10. Lay under the stars and talk.
12. Secret Agent Love Mission.*
13. Start a game tournament. One year, we had Yahtzee wars. We kept a running tally of wins, and had a play-off on New Year’s Eve. Right now, we’re playing lots of Sequence and Ratuki!
14. Watch a TV series together. We got so addicted to LOST last year, and this year we’re into 24.
15. Turn your outdoor patio into a dining destination (complete with table cloth and candles).*
16. Make homemade ice cream together.*
17. Play a little one-on-one in the driveway (basketball, I mean).
18. Take skiing lessons in the living room (complete with goggles and mittens). Or just go skiing!
19. Play the Newlywed Game.*
20. Play hide-and-seek…in the dark.
21. Play hop scotch in the driveway.*
Other times, we just want to go out. So, we find a babysitter, and we hit the town.
21 Date Night on the Town Ideas
3. Take a bike ride together.
4. Walk through a local botanical garden while holding hands.
5. Swing on the swings at the park.
6. Go on the same date you had the night your man asked you to marry him.
7. Hit balls at the driving range.
8. Go to a drive-in movie.
9. Take a hike. Really. Take a hike and take turns taking pictures of what you see.
10. Go to dinner at your favorite restaurant, then play cards at the park.
11. Pick berries at your local farm.
12. Take an art class together.
13. Go canoeing together.
14. Ice Skating in your town square.*
15. Order gargantuan size ice creams and eat it all.
16. Get really dressed up (maybe even formal attire) and go to a local coffee shop. Act like you just came back from a very important event.*
17. Take a ride on a bicycle … built for two.*
18. Go to the dollar store and each pick out a gift for the other.
19. Garage sale date.* Kind of like a scavenger hunt.
20. Take a dinner cruise.
21. Go to a jazz club.
*want to try this