Date nights are a great way to reconnect with your partner and spend quality time together without the distractions of children, work, or other obligations. However, it is not always easy to carve time out of busy schedules to hang out as a couple, and by the time the weekend rolls around, you may be too exhausted to even consider getting dressed up and going out on the town.
If the club scene just isn’t your thing anymore or the idea of dressing up and dealing with finding parking and making reservations to dine amongst other people just isn’t that appealing, at-home date nights might be more your style. After all, they are much easier to plan, can happen whenever you find some free time, and do not require getting out of your pajamas. You can also save money on babysitters by having at-home date nights after the kids have gone to bed.
Now that you have decided that date nights at home are a good solution for spending time together without worrying about hiring a sitter or figuring out which new restaurant to try, you need to find a way to make your date night special. After all, if it just feels like every other night of making dinner and catching up on recorded shows, then it will not feel much like an actual date night.
1. Limit distractions:
Make sure the kids are settled in for the night, leave your phones inside, and make sure you put away any yard maintenance tools or other items that will remind you of your to-do list.
2. Make a schedule:
Date nights usually do not just happen. If you have jobs and kids and other responsibilities, you are going to have to plan your date nights to make sure you find time in your schedule to connect as a couple.
3. Take turns:
Planning backyard date nights should not fall on the shoulders of just one partner. Take turns planning your dates and use this as an opportunity to surprise your partner or show them how special they are to you.
4. Make a list:
Make a list of potential date night ideas to make it easier for both of you to plan a special night when it is your turn. This also allows you to more easily plan your dates without having to come up with ideas at the last minute.
5. Be flexible:
Even the best-laid plans can be interrupted by a child with a stomach ache, one partner having to unexpectedly work late, or inclement weather. So, have a backup plan and be flexible – the important thing is making time for each other when you can.
6. Use what you have:
If you do not have a backyard, most backyard date night ideas will work just as well on a balcony, porch or rooftop deck.
7. Make time when you can:
If you are simply too exhausted at the end of the day to have a date night, try making your dates in the morning. Set your alarm early so that the two of you can enjoy coffee and breakfast together on your patio as you watch the sunrise before the kids get up.
8. Try new things:
Date nights are all about connecting as a couple, which can be even more fun if you are also trying a new food or learning something new together.
9. Make it your own:
You do not have to plan an evening of wine, cheese, and a romantic movie just because that is a pretty typical at-home date night. If that is not your thing, then tailor your dates to suit your personalities. Beer and board games, energy drinks and video games, or sodas and sports all work just as well.
10. Don’t stress:
Your backyard date night does not have to be a big production. The important thing is that you are spending time together, so it can be as simple as throwing a blanket on the grass and watching a movie on your laptop.
11. Arrange for privacy:
If you have nearby neighbors, part of creating a romantic setting might involve sound or sight barriers, such as a water fountain or music, and privacy landscaping or a privacy screen.