Would you ever consider having a special date night at home?
Think back for a minute and remember where you were the first couple of times you went out with your future spouse, before you were married. What were you doing on those dates?
The odds are you didn’t just “Netflix and Chill.”
At that point in your relationship, it was probably something unique like trying out a new coffee shop, a new restaurant, walking through a park.
But once you’re married, things change. For starters, it’s not sustainable to go out on the town every other night.
Maybe you’re on a budget. Maybe you want something quiet to do without having to find a babysitter.
Or maybe you’re a true homebody and never liked going out all that much anyway!
What a lot of couples do is default to staying at home and watching TV. This is something simple you can do together, for free, every night if you wanted.
It takes no planning, and it’s nice to be together.
But…it can get repetitive and just doesn’t feel special enough to be an activity for your weekly date night.
By the way, I strongly recommend setting the practice of having a weekly date night with your husband or wife.
You’re together every night, but are you really together?
A date night is a night for you two to not only be together, but to have a change of pace, to get away from it all.
And, to rekindle the kind of passion and excitement you had in the initial stages of your relationship.
It’s so refreshing to reconnect with those times and feel a little of that early infatuation without completely losing your head.
Sometimes that date night is going to involve going out of the house, or something less mundane and more complex.
But, just because you have a date night at home doesn’t mean you can’t try something new! Or, more specifically, something familiar in a new way.
Want to know how? Read on…
Little things that show you care can go a long way further than big, dramatic displays, and they’re certainly better than nothing.
Sometimes, showing just a little bit of intention is enough to set things apart from just going through the motions.
It doesn’t have to be big at all, just different.
So here’s an idea…spend your next date night at home with your spouse:
(This assumes you both like beer, of course. If you don’t, then substitute it for another one of your favorite beverages, with or without alcohol.)
To prepare, one of you will need to swing by the grocery store beforehand and pick up several different bottles of beer that you’ve never tried before.
Most larger stores will have a section where you can buy individual bottles of craft brews – get local selections when possible.
And while you’re there, pick up some of that yummy gourmet popcorn that often comes in a bag or tin. It could be kettle corn, caramel, or some other delicious flavor.
The other spouse will be responsible for the music (or one person can prepare both – whatever works best for you – but it’s often best to make it a team effort).
Think back to your favorite songs from your dating days and the early days of your marriage.
Which artists and songs really capture that era of your lives?
Then, put together a playlist on Spotify, iTunes, YouTube, etc., so you can enjoy the memories that come from listening to great music.
Once the kids are in bed, crank up your playlist and enjoy sampling small pours of different brews while munching on some fancy popcorn.
The memories and conversation will flow from there!
I strongly suggest that during your date night at home, you don’t watch TV or a movie but pick something more interactive instead.
After all, you can watch TV any night. This is date night!
And the point is to spend time communicating with each other – just the two of you – undistracted, with nothing else occupying your thoughts and energy.
I’ve found the best thing is to just talk. Don’t worry, you’ll find something to discuss.
Maybe catch up on their day first, and then move on to something deeper, or discussing your shared past or future.
Flipping through photo albums (digital or even print if you’ve been together a while :)) is another fun activity that can rekindle your cherished times together and also prompt the kind of conversation that brings you closer.
There’s all kinds of activities! But don’t get too focused on what you’ll be doing.
The bottom line is that you’re spending time together!
The beer, popcorn, and tunes set the stage for a thoughtful and engaging evening that’s a bit of a break from the norm while showing them you care.
If you like this idea, you can click here to download a beautiful PDF summary. There’s no need to opt-in with an email or anything – just download it and get to planning your date!
Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.