It’s doubly important to take care of a marriage after having kids but it’s easy to neglect it!
Here’s how we do date nights as parents of a big family.
You’ve probably heard me laud our (mostly) weekly date nights on social media. Surviving as a mom means being really purposeful about taking time for yourself and your relationship with your husband. There are some weeks that I hardly even see Luke, let alone have an adult conversation with him. Our date nights are essential for remembering why we even like each other!
That being said, the “dates” we go on as an established married couple look a lot different than those single date nights of our early 20’s. We’re not interested in strenuous sunrise mountain hikes or adrenaline-laced cliff jumping. We mostly just want to get away from kids to have a conversation that doesn’t involve poop jokes and a meal that doesn’t include chicken nuggets.
In honor of this week’s Valentine’s Day, here are a few super simple date ideas that we’ve either done or plan to do, and that don’t require a lot of money, thought or energy. Because after a week full of wrangling a bunch of kids, the easier the better!
*Takeout & movie rental: some nights a babysitter doesn’t happen but we still need some time together. We feed and put the kids to bed early, then eat a late steak dinner we’ve ordered in and have a conversation about something other than Pokémon. It’s glorious. (This is also our favorite way to enjoy New Year’s Eve…followed by going to bed at 10pm).
*Grocery shopping: when date night happens on a super crazy week and we desperately need eggs and bread, then we just head to Costco or WinCo together. Shopping for food is WAY more fun with your spouse as a partner and we pick out a fun treat to share in the car or at home after kids are asleep.
*Weekday lunch dates: these are especially great if you have kids in school, but even if you don’t, consider swapping babysitting with a friend for just an hour or two. It’s surprisingly fun to meet up with the hubs for some Mexican food in the middle of the day!
*The library: Luke and I are always interested in reading some new novel (Louis L’Amour for him) or self-help book (I’m nerdy like that) and I relish the time to browse a quiet library without bringing kids who make the library decidedly less quiet. This is also a good time to grab books I’d like my kids to read that they might not pick out for themselves. Win-win!
*Couples game night: We love double dates but sometimes funds are low or you just don’t want to change out of sweats. That’s when game nights come to the rescue! We pick a friend’s house to go to and then show up with treats and card or board games and have a great time. A couple of our friends also have dartboards similar to the ones on https://hqdartboard.com/ so we often play those too! This is especially helpful for couples with small children when there’s no babysitter available because you can have a blast while kids are asleep in the next room!
Red lace skirt (pricey but a high quality classic that I wear over and over) || Similar polka dot top || sandals and these are even cuter! ||
similar clutch || watch & slim version (also an investment piece but I’ve had it 2+ years now and still love it) || earrings
Photography by Let Me See You Sparkle