Simple Date Ideas for Busy Parents
Life rushes by and dating our spouse often falls to the bottom of the pile of commitments. While making love is one very important way to express our commitment to and friendship with our spouse, there are so many more adventures we can have together and so many other ways to deepen our soul connection! Date night can be one of them. And, yes, the following date ideas are functional enough that you might actually start going steady!
So, turn off your phones, empty your mind of the undone tasks, and start dating! Here are some tips:
“We schedule it in on our calendar for once a week” says one busy mom of four.
We may wish for date nights to be the spontaneous footloose and fancy-free occasions of intrigue that they once were, but let’s face it, after a day of toddler tantrums, teen attitude and diaper duty, who’s going to surprise their spouse with an evening to be envied? I know that, all too often, we consider it a treat just to fall into bed at a decent hour!
So we need to plan it! Schedule our date nights into our calendar. Pick a night of the week that works most often and start there. Don’t forget to put it on your calendar and into your phone! Even set up a reminder if it’s a busy week.
Mix in-home dates with evenings out
A date doesn’t have to be over-the-top in creativity, expense or extravagance. Rather, go for meaningful, relaxing and intimate.
You could go out once a month, but spend the other three dates doing something special at home after the kids are down for the night. Having a regular rhythm to your date nights will help make them actually happen.
Try rotating several activities that you both enjoy. (Or, choose to get to know one another better by delving into something your spouse enjoys even if it’s not an interest of yours.) There are so many things that can be done together without dipping into your savings.
Some ideas for nights out…
- a simple walk at sunset or in a favorite park or to a nostalgic location
- go for coffee and actually sit and chat for a couple of hours
- take in a local attraction without the clamoring of kids around
- how long has it been since you’ve been bowling?
- a movie seems obvious, but make sure to take the time to make it an evening of connecting with your spouse as well
Ideas for dates at home…
- once a month have a games night. Take turns choosing a favorite or try a new one each time.
- go through photo albums (or your scads of digital pics on the hard drive) and tell stories of your lives pre-marriage or reminisce about the early years of your journey together or your children when they were younger
- crafts…I know, most of you are thinking there’s no way your husband is going to agree to doing a craft for date night! But hear me out… My sister-in-law and her husband have been doing craft nights once a month for dates and have completed some amazing projects! They finished a pair of stunning paint-by-number wildlife masterpieces that are beautiful in their living room! They have also sewn leather moccasins for each of their children as Christmas presents one year. Isn’t that cool? So yeah, crafts. You just have to find ones that appeal to both of you. Or ones that provide a common goal beyond the scope of the craft itself. Or, if nothing else, you can each just work on a craft of your own interest and enjoy the time spent together.
- for those with children who don’t go to sleep at a consistent or early hour, just plan to cuddle up together on the couch or in front of the fireplace, each with a mug of hot chocolate or tea, before packing it in for the night.
- in the summer, step out the back door and star-gaze for 20 minutes. If you promise not to fall asleep 🙂 , even lay in the grass for a while as you enjoy God’s handiwork.
- and as always, movies. I would just challenge you to try some new things if movies tend to be your go-to for date night.
So, there you have it. Eight very simple date ideas (not counting the movies) for you to try with your spouse. Even if you’re at a stage where you don’t have much time to spend with each other, there are versions of the above ideas that can take very little time and go a long way to expressing your love for your spouse and your desire to deepen your relationship with him.