My husband and I recently decided we needed to find some date night ideas just for parents–time alone to just be, time to step outside our roles as mother and father, house frau and handyman, disciplinarian and bedtime enforcer. So I put my daughter in charge of my son and two dogs and told her we’d pay her to babysit ( and of course she HAPPILY OBLIGED!)
So here we were, free to indulge our every whim, without having to defer to our kids’ needs; several luscious hours to reconnect to those primal forces of attraction and shared beliefs that drew us together nearly 20 years ago.
And despite what you may think, it wasn’t just about reconnecting in a physical way but sharing quiet intimate moments, whether it was snuggling up on a couch watching the passionate sparring between Bogey and Bacall or laying side by side getting a sensuous couples massage sipping on champagne and feeding each other chocolate truffles.
Having time away from the monotony and sometimes drudgery of parenthood was like an infusion of new breath and perspective into this little family unit we’ve created and gave us a new appreciation for each other and, of course, our kids. But before you think this renewal you wax about could only be achieved via a carefully planned weekend away, here are a few easier-to-organize options!
Four surefire ways to get your romantic date night on!
1/ Let food be your guiding light.
Karen Sherman, Ph.D. says date nights will be most effective if they are truly about the two of you and enjoyable. Therefore, no talking about kids, bills or problems. She suggests either:
a/ Create a meal or dessert together and then feed it to each other; or
b/ Order a pizza but eat it by candlelight and then put on music and dance with each other rather than wait for a wedding.
2/ Play a GAME!
Seductive Couplets game deck is 27 cheap dates, happy endings guaranteed! The games range from silly sexy play to erotic. It is available for sale online and in NYC at the lingerie shop La Petite Coquette.
3/ Open a bottle of wine and take the QUIZ PLUNGE!
101 Quizzes for Couples is designed to spark dynamic conversations between couples, no matter if they’ve been dating three years or married three decades. Unlike other quiz or question books, 101 Quizzes for Couples was written not only with practicality in mind (as in, what questions do couples “actually” want to answer?) but the author designed the quizzes to get couples to reveal memories and opinions that don’t typically come up organically. Ranging from silly to sexy to existential, the questions in the book help deepen relationships and allow couples to truly bond — all for only $10. 🙂
4/ Start a “Thursday Night Ritual”
According to Sharon Gilchrest O’Neill, Ed.S., LMFT and author of A Short Guide to a Happy Marriage who has been married for 30 years this not typical nor traditional date night was one of the behaviors that she and her husband have counted on in their marriage over at least 20 of their 30 years together. It became something that kept them connected week after week, through the good times and the bad. They never called it a “date night,” but it was a few hours on a Thursday night after all their work and chores, etc. were ended, when they shared anything as simple as watching a favorite show together. It became a comforting ritual that they counted on, through good moods and bad ones, through times of little talking … no matter what.
Here are her tips for establishing a Thursday Night marriage ritual that never ends:
1/ It is best done every week, at the same time, and for at least 2 hours;
2/ It should be something that is simple, doable, and works for both of you as a team;
3/ Only emergencies should take precedence over your ritual – it is time together you can always count on;
4/ This is not a “date night” – it is special time that becomes a ritual you truly look forward to and enjoy 52 times a year; &
5/ No matter how badly you may be feeling at times about your marriage and spouse, your ritual must go on!