Dating as a parent can be challenging, so more and more couples with kids are finding home date night ideas to save time and money.
Along with establishing daily habits to strengthen your marriage, dating your spouse is also very important to include in your relationship.
There’s no need to sacrifice your dating life in your marriage just because you have children. In fact, one comprehensive study conducted by the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia showed the importance for married couples to have regular date nights. Dates can be difficult to schedule, however, when you have little ones at home. They also can be very expensive between paying a babysitter and going out on the actual date. That’s why many couples are exploring creative home date night ideas instead of the usual “dinner and a movie” choice.
Creative Dates Are Important
My husband and I NEED to have our time together. We learned early on that it was very important for our relationship to spend that quality time together.
Once we had children (especially after kids #4 and 5!), it became very difficult finding the time and extra money to even go out. We needed to get creative and started scheduling impromptu home date nights for the two of us.
Intimacy in Home Dates
We began to notice that going to dinner, followed by a movie, wasn’t very conducive to creating an intimate experience. Dating was supposed to spark romance and intimacy, but sitting quietly for two hours wasn’t helping that goal (and honestly, good movies these days are hard to find!). We wanted to connect intimately, and our usual date night wasn’t allowing that to happen. We began to think of other activities we could do that would “heat up” the night and give us the quality time we so desired!
Bonding in Home Dates
When we began to date at home, we looked for ways that we could bond more as a couple. This included finding creative activities that we could do after the kids went to bed. We began to explore new home date ideas to see if they worked for us as a couple. Some of these ideas we’ve done at home and others are still on our “to-do” list. It’s been fun to see how it’s helped us bond more by bringing up various conversation topics! We’ve also thought outside the box and planned activities we normally wouldn’t have done.
Fun in Home Dates
Above all, dating needs to be fun and exciting! It can help married couples rediscover the romance, fun, and laughter that we used to experience in dating during our pre-married life. There’s NO reason married dating can’t be even more exciting! It’s a chance to explore your interests as a couple and learn new things about one other, whether you’re in your sweats or dressed to the 9’s!
These unique home date night ideas can make quality time with your spouse fun and unique!
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1. Van Gogh paint night
Are you and your love the artistic type? Even if you aren’t, this DIY Starry Night Paint By Number is fun and bound to spark some great conversation! Play some classical music, pour yourself a glass of wine, and pretend you’re in Paris.
2. Yoga Couples Workout
I know what you’re thinking. “Exercise? Are you crazy?? I’ll never get my spouse (ok, let’s be real, husband!) to do this!” Now hear me out. Yoga is amazing for stretching the body out and can actually be a very sensual activity – especially if you are guided by this Intimate Yoga DVD for Couples. Yes, they seriously make things like this – I researched it! Whether you both end up laughing hysterically because it totally is NOT your thing OR you actually enjoy the grounding, connecting force of yoga, you will have a great time!
3. YouTube Dance Lesson
Yes, you can learn how to dance in your own living room! YouTube has some excellent tutorials on various styles of dance. My husband and I have done several salsa dancing ones at home! Or you can get a dvd that fits what dance you want to learn. Perhaps you and your spouse want to learn ballroom dancing. Do you have an inkling to learn how to swing dance? Or maybe country line dancing? Just move some furniture aside, put some music on, and dance away!
4. Chocolate Bar Tastings
I’m all for this date night! Pick out some various kinds of fancy chocolates, and you can make a lovely chocolate spread. Make it a fun game by guessing which chocolates are which!
5. Wine & Cheese Tasting
Hands down, one of our favorite home date nights we do! Grab a good variety of cheeses at the store and a few bottles of wine, and enjoy a tasteful evening and deep conversation. There’s just something about wine and cheese that can make an evening romantic! Not sure how to pair them? Use these wine and cheese pairing cards.
6. Wedding Date Night
What better way to spark romance than to go back in time and remember where it all began? Pull out the wedding album and remember that special day where your married life began. Watch your wedding DVD (if you have one), and dance to your wedding song. Accompany these activities with your favorite meal, and enjoy reminiscing about your life together.
7. Drive-In Living Room Movie
Go back to being a kid with a drive-in movie in your living room – adult style! Set up a blow up mattress, lots of blankets and pillows, and cuddle up with each other. Don’t forget the popcorn, snacks, and drink – make sure you have all your favorites! Pick a movie you both will enjoy and enjoy an evening of snuggling (without the bugs or colder temps!). These comfy blanket sweatshirts make a great addition during the winter months!
8. Cook It Up – A New Recipe competition
When my husband and I were dating, we loved cooking together in the kitchen. To this day, we still enjoy the chance to make dinner together. We usually blast our favorite music, sip our favorite drinks, and dance our “kitchen dance” which we’ve perfected after 12 years! Make this a fun home date night by turning up the heat – the competition heat! Each of you will choose a brand new recipe to cook for dinner. Without telling the other what it is, race to see who can finish first…and which one will taste the best! Creative juices will flow and laughter will be in plenty supply as you both have to SHARE the kitchen (and kitchenware) in the race for dinner!
9. Nailed It – Love style
Pick out some fun, artsy love-themed treats to make and have your own Nailed It show in your kitchen! See how close you can get to the actual creation and decide who Nailed It…and who didn’t! The winner gets a special request for the evening!
10. Double Date
While this idea isn’t earth-shattering, it’s still packed full of fun! Have another couple come over and double date in your home. Plan dinner and drinks, and just enjoy the evening with another couple.
11. Escape Room in a Box
I’ll be honest: we haven’t done this one yet! But several of our friends have and when I looked into it, I thought it looked like lots of fun! Basically, it’s the concept of the escape room but in a card game that you can play in your own home! There are various levels to these games, I discovered when I explored this idea. If you’ve never played before, try starting with this easier level game Exit: The Sunken Treasure. This other game, Exit: Dead Man on the Orient Express, intrigued me because my husband and I are big Agatha Christie fans. It is rated a 4 out of 5 in difficulty, though, so you might want to start with the easier game. This home date night idea was unique and intriguing – something we are definitely going to try!
12. Dressy Candlelit Dinner
Take a classic date night and bring it into your own home. Plan a real candlit dinner (the food can be ordered in so you don’t have a messy kitchen to clean!). Take your time getting dressed up to look your best, set the table nicely with (gasp) your wedding day china!, and light the candles. Enjoy a quiet, romantic dinner (with the kids tucked away in their beds) and some adult conversation on the couch, uninterrupted.
13. Plan a vacation
Plan a vacation for date night? Absolutely!! Take an evening to plan out a vacation or weekend get-away for just the two of you. Brainstorm ideas of where to go, what activities you’ll do, etc. Couples need to have a chance to get away and spend time together – making a purposeful plan will make it actually happen for you and your spouse.
14. Travel Around the World
This date night idea takes you back in the kitchen, but working together as you bring a variety of cultures to life for dinner! This international cookbook gives a number of recipes that can make this date night culturally fascinating. Pair it with the classic movie Around the World In 80 Days.
Home Date Night Challenge
Now my husband and I haven’t done ALL these date nights – but he has challenged me to actually complete every one! I’m not going to say no to that! As we embark on our challenge, I will also encourage you and your spouse to use these activities to plan your own home dates. If you do, please comment below to be featured in my follow up article!