Date Night Ideas for ParentsKatlyn Joy |18, October 2010
For the last nine months you two were focused on the big event; baby's arrival. However, you were focusing together. Now that baby is here, together might seem a relative term. With nighttime feedings, endless diapering and fussy moments you two might start feeling more like roommates than a couple.
One tactic to keep close is to schedule couple time in the form of date nights. If you wait for an opportune time it may never happen, so ink those dates on the calendar. Commandeer a sitter, roping grandma or auntie into it if necessary, but get away for some valuable one on one time.
Some folks argue for the value of even staying in together but scheduling time for parents only. However, if one parent is at home full-time this might not work. A change of scenery can do wonders and work a new attitude between you two.
It's so easy especially in those stressful early months of parenthood to become overwhelmed in the new role of parent to forget the old role of partners. You don't want to be staring at a stranger after your child's kindergarten bus pulls away, so take the time now to avert that disaster.
Few new parents have a generous entertainment budget, but a good date night doesn't require big bucks. Just a commitment to the calendar and a little creativity.
1. Can't swing a night out due to exhaustion creeping in around 9 pm? Then schedule a lunch out or maybe a weekend brunch. These meals are cheaper and you're less likely to waste valuable couple time waiting for a table.
2. Cheap movies. Most cities have a dollar movie theater, and it's unlikely you've seen the less-than-new movies yet anyway. It's nice to hold hands in the dark and share a bucket of popcorn.
3. Bowling. Most bowling alleys have an off-peak time where you can bowl for cheap. It's a fun date that maybe you used to enjoy together in early days of dating.
4. Go to a museum. Cultural outings can be both fun and cheap. See some art, or a historical exhibit. Learning new things together can be a fun way to reconnect.
5. Pack a picnic and head to a park. Take a bottle of wine and a nice blanket and really relax together. Yes, there is a small chance you might catch a nap together but would that be so bad?
6. Find a drive-in. True they are harder to find, but what could be more fun that watching a movie (or not watching ) like a couple teenagers. Pop your own corn ahead of time and bring a comfy blanket to snuggle under.
7. Go window-shopping together. Look at things you wish you could buy for each other. Then head to the thrift or dollar store and get a trinket for your sweetie. Gag gifts are fun, too.
8. Go for a scenic drive, and maybe a less than arduous hike. Pack the camera and some snacks, or head to a nice local diner afterwards.
9. Get physical. Go to the driving range, the basketball court, or the batting cages and play. Or maybe you'd rather shoot some pool. Just have some fun competition which often turns into some playful flirting.
10. If you can swing it, camp out for the night. Maybe in the next town, or if need be, in the backyard. Just spend the night together under the stars cuddled together.Katlyn Joy is a freelance writer, and just graduated with a Master's of Arts in Creative Writing. She is mom to seven children, and lives in Denver, Colorado.
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