Wasn’t it fun to go out with your husband on Valentine’s Day and set aside special time for just the two of you? Why don’t we do that more often?! Oh yeah… time and money.
However, continuing to date your spouse throughout your marriage is a great way to promote a stronger marriage. It sets aside your relationship as a priority, gives you a chance to spend quality time together, gives you an excuse to dress up, makes for fun memories, and ultimately helps you grow closer to one another. Here are a few date ideas and tips for dating your spouse without any worries of breaking the bank.
First, it’s important to remember that date night doesn’t always have to entail dressing to the nines, going out to a fancy restaurant, and heading to a live show after. As long as the two of you are spending quality time together, nothing else really matters. Some of your very favorite dates will probably even happen right inside your home, with a homemade dinner, a movie, and a fun game to play together.
Embrace at-home dates.
Dates at home are a great way to enjoy time together while spending hardly any money. Ask around to see if someone would be willing to take the kids for a few hours (or put the kids to bed a little early), and then head back home for a fun-filled date night! Here are a few great ideas for free or cheap at-home dates:
YouTube cooking lesson
Found a recipe from one of your favorite YouTube chefs that you’ve been wanting to try? Make a fancy dinner at home, prepare a romantic table setting, and enjoy your delicious creation together. You could even prepare each other different dishes and surprise one another!
New skill practice
Have the two of you always wanted to learn to knit, do yoga, or paint? Pick up the supplies you need and again, let YouTube be your teacher for the night.
Here’s your chance to dream about your future together—where you’ll go, what you’ll do with your kids, where you might live… Set aside settling boring logistics for a moment, and talk with your spouse about dreams you have for the future. Maybe plan a fun trip for the future (whether or not you’ll really go on it), or dream about how you might design your future home. You’ll be surprised at how happy and hopeful you’ll feel, even if your plans are purely hypothetical.
Netflix and Redbox are great go-tos for an affordable, at home movie night. Make your living room ultra cozy and prepare a few tasty snacks to enjoy. Go ahead and rent that movie you’ve been wanting to see, or have a TV marathon of one of your favorite TV shows.
Game night is another great go-to home date. Play a few favorite two-person board games, challenge each other to Dance Dance Revolution dance-off—you get the picture.
How about a good old fashioned dance party? Dim the lights and blast your favorite music to dance to. Then dance like nobody’s watching—since nobody is! Here’s a bonus tip, especially for those who might be shy on the dance floor: try putting on headphones and syncing the music you play. You’ll be surprised at how comfortable you are dancing your heart out!
Taking your dates outdoors lets you have a fun adventure with your spouse, even while you’re on a budget. Here are some free and cheap outdoor date ideas:
- Picnic in the park
- Feeding the ducks
- Flying a kite
- Picking local produce
- Going on a walk
- Hiking on a local trail
- Camping at a local campsite (or in the backyard!)
- Cooking over a campfire
- Watching the sunrise or sunset
- Netflix on a laptop…outside
- Taking photos in a pretty place
- Scavenger hunt
Don’t underestimate what your city has to offer.
Going out doesn’t have to mean spending lots of money! Don’t underestimate the free and cheap activities that your city might have to offer. Here are just a few examples…
- Tour of a local museum
- Local carnival or festival
- Free performances in the park
- Mini golf
- Discounted movie tickets
- Drive-in movie theater
- Restaurant specials (you can get some tips on saving while eating out here)
- Volunteering at a local shelter
Remember the time in-between dates.
It isn’t just about getting all of those regular date nights in; it’s also about expressing your love for one another in the in-between times. Leave little love notes around the house to brighten your spouse’s day, and call or text your spouse just to say hey. Kiss and hug often, and find opportunities to laugh. Continue courting one another as if you were still in the “just dating” stage. Continuing courtship will strengthen your relationship in incredible ways, and it will put less pressure on the two of you at those times when you simply might not be able to do a date night.
By: Maurine Anderson
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