A positive relationship can be a strong foundation for a happy family, but after a while, “dating” just isn’t what it used to be. Often, we fall in love with our partners over the new exciting experiences that we shared together. Maybe we were learning about their interesting hobbies, or maybe we just had the time and attention span to go the extra mile, but one thing is for sure – 10 years and 2 kids later, date night (when you’re lucky enough to get one) can turn into rushed meals at the same old restaurants or movie nights because you both just want some peace and quiet. But not this year! We hope these twelve date ideas for parents will inspire you every month through 2019.
- Just Desserts. Ah, sweet simplicity. Next date night, think of the messiest and most decadent desserts whose existence you’ve secretly been hiding from your kids. I’m talking ordering half the menu, and not holding back on the whipped cream and chocolate sauce. Get a little dangerous and order an espresso in the evening; it’s a beautiful feeling to enjoy your coffee without having to explain why caffeine is not for kids. We particularly love this idea for nights you need something quick or thrifty, but don’t want to cancel date night!
- Do Something You’re Bad At: Some of us are guilty of avoiding activities that we’re “bad at”. (Karaoke or painting classes come to mind.) But is that any way to go through life? Often, activities that scare us a little can end up being the most exciting. Perhaps your partner is a pro and would be happy to give you some tips. But if not, at least you’ve shared the thrill of trying something new!
- “Uncultured”: You don’t have to be an art aficionado to have a good time at the museum. It can be just as fun (and pretty darn hilarious) to make light of it instead. Whether you find your Renaissance doppelganger or invent wild backstories for abstract paintings, it’s a whimsical way to bring bring creativity into your relationship.
- Taste a New Cuisine: Your kids may not be up for Ethiopian food, but that doesn’t mean you can’t indulge. Do some Googling and try to find a cuisine neither you nor your partner has had before. Bonus points for ordering a dish you can’t pronounce, visiting a neighborhood you haven’t been to, or trying food from a country you’d love to travel to together.
- Tourist in Your Hometown: Often, we think there’s nothing “new” to do because we’re looking at our city through the same lens we always have. But there’s always more to discover, especially if you live near a larger city. Guided tours, site-seeing and even an occasional ‘staycation’ at a local hotel may show you a side of your town that you’ve never seen before. Not sure where to start? Your local tourism bureau’s website is probably chock full of hidden gems.
- A Day in the Life: It’s healthy for couples to have a few separate hobbies and interests – but it can occasionally be exciting to experience what your partner enjoys when they are alone or with friends. If one of you loves baseball and the other spends their Saturdays at the Farmer’s Market, for just one week try taking a walk in their shoes. The point? Never stop learning about each other!
- Photo Walk: See the world through your partner’s eyes. If taking a walk sounds kind of boring, but jogging isn’t your thing, a photo walk is a perfect way to get your heart rate going and your creativity flowing at the same time. The concept is simple: just grab a camera (no distracting cell phones!) hit the town, and explore the neighborhood at your own pace. When you’re done, be sure to look through the photos together. You may even find a few worth framing!
- Staycation: Instead of having a sitter come to your house and going out for a few hours, why not enjoy some unprecedented peace and quiet in your own home? If you have a saintly relative that’s willing to take the kids, spend a night cooking for each other, trading massages, or whatever you’d like! *wink wink.*
- Your Presence is a Present: We all like to get spoiled from time to time, but it doesn’t have to be a special occasion to exchange gifts. Head to the store together, split up, and challenge yourself to find one perfectly personal gift for your SO. The budget can be a small as you’d like – if you can find a meaningful gift at the dollar store, that says a lot about how well you know your partner!
- Field Day: Your kids will have serious FOMO, so you may want to be sneaky with this one. Unpack the football, hoola hoops, and a few more of your kids favorite outdoor toys. Head to the park with a picnic (and perhaps a chilled six-pack or bottle of Pinot Grigio) and spend the afternoon. Bonus: it’s sometimes easier to find a sitter during the daytime.
- “When I Grow Up”: What did you want to be when you grow up? It’s never too late to spend a day channeling your inner child and living out your fantasy career. Did you want to be a ballerina? Catch a show, and sneak onto the stage after the performance has ended. Perhaps a cowboy? See if there is a nearby farm or ranch where you can go horseback riding!
- Borrow Some Wheels: Shake things up by renting (not test-driving) the car of your dreams. Maybe it’s a zippy convertible, maybe it’s a huge pickup truck, but either way it’s a great opportunity to get out and explore with a twist. If it’s a particularly beautiful day or evening, consider renting a Vespa or motorcycle – if you know how to drive one, of course!
There you have it! We hope these creative date ideas are just what the doctor ordered for 2019.