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52 Dates in 2018!!

This year, my husband & I came up with a new idea for reconnecting in our marriage:

Go on 52 dates in 2018!!

As parents to a sweet toddler, finding time together as a couple can be a challenge 🙂 In the past, we’ve wanted to go on weekly dates but always seemed to put it off because we had limited time to plan them. Now we’ve found a way to make “Date Night” exciting & fresh this year!! This idea is a fun way to keep it a weekly tradition without the continual pressure of coming up with NEW ideas each week.

The concept is simple: On 26 slips of blue paper (hubby) & 26 slips of pink paper (me), we wrote down date ideas & put them in a bowl. Every Sunday, we draw from our “Date Bowl” — alternating blue & pink slips so we each get 2 of our date ideas a month! 🙂 We then look at our calendar & decide what day or night that week we can make our date happen. Easy!

Now, instead of half-heartedly coming up with new date ideas each week (who has time for that? lol), we have 52 unique dates we both LOVE! And instead of just talking about the fun things we wanna do together (& never putting them on our calendar), we’ve written them down & make them happen every week!

“Date Night” has gone from stressful to fun & easy, something we look forward to every week! We no longer dread coming up with an interesting date every 7 days; we’re excited to find out “what our date will be” that week 🙂

I encourage you to incorporate a similar idea into your marriage!! Most couples I know have the best of intentions, like we did, but need a little practical help making weekly dates happen. We found that “Date Idea” lists written by other people were too cheesy for us or full of things we’d never want to do (painting pottery? ice skating? haha).

This way, we have 52 pre-approved dates we are EXCITED to do! By spending 20-30 minutes writing out your favorite ideas yourselves, you take the hassle out of planning weekly excursions & make it easier to stick with this commitment all year long.

Plus, it’s fun! The anticipation of your next date is exciting & romantic, and that’s what dating your spouse is all about.

Some Guidelines We Followed

  1. Don’t overthink your date ideas. These should be things you BOTH enjoy doing together (or at least 1 of you doesn’t hate) 😉
  2. Have “close to home” dates for when you just want to be together & not deal with the hassle of dressing up/getting childcare/driving far/spending a lot of money. Put the kids to bed & have your date night!
  3. Come up with free & {budget-approved} dates that cost money, like picnics in the park & dinner at places you’ve been wanting to try.
  4. Feel free to have “day dates” & evening dates — we mixed it up & LOVE it! A few Saturdays ago, we drove to St. Pete & had brunch at a local place people rave about & had a great morning together.
  5. Leave room for spontaneity. You never know when a fun opportunity will show up — causing you to tweak your planned date or shelve it altogether for something better (like finding out your favorite musician is in town or landing tickets to a local event). There are no rules except to have fun! On our St. Pete brunch date, we found a nearby park & explored it after enjoying our meal & amazing coffee. It was a beautiful day & a wonderful way to end our time together!
  6. Choose relaxing & active dates — Running to the park, tennis, cycling one morning together & going hiking at a nearby park are all active dates we chose… but candlelit dinners at home (& other intimate dates) 😉 are just as acceptable & fun ways to connect ❤
  7. Each week, have a day where you draw from your bowl & decide when you’ll make it happen that week. We chose Sundays because it’s the one time we tend to look at our calendar together for the upcoming week.
  8. If you have seasonal dates that don’t apply (like a beach day or hot chocolate under the stars), simply put it back in the bowl & redraw a new date.
  9. “Netflix & chill” is totally okay  just add a twist to it! Friends of ours do “blanket & fort nights” when watching movies together, and we recently had a “home movie” date night with grilled cheeses & tomato soup {perfect this time of year!}. Consider asking each other questions after the movie or listing things you’re looking forward to / grateful for as starting points to a deeper conversation.

I hope this helps you make “Dating your spouse” a priority again & sparks more love & connection in your marriage this year!!

Enjoy, and please share how this is working for you in the comments 🙂 Here’s to more fun & adventure in 2018!

 

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