Free and Cheap Date Night Ideas
When it comes to date night it’s important to me to make sure we find cheap or free ideas to stay on our budget.
I’ve been married to my husband now for almost 5 years and we never really ‘dated’ each other. When we started dating, he was an Assistant Principal and I was a teacher and we had to keep our relationship semi-hidden since we didn’t want anyone to think that there was any favoritism.
That meant for us, date nights and getting to know each other better happened a lot at home and movie night and take out was our go-to. Even after we shared our relationship, our lives were so busy that we didn’t often take the time to date each other as we should and I knew that when we got married, if we didn’t take the time to ‘date’, then romance would be out the door.
This year, with the addition of a 3rd kid to our family, we knew we would have to be super intentional about our time together. Add on top of it that my husband had been out of work for 7 months (starting again soon, yay!) so we’ve been together A LOT and it was hard to separate those romantic moments from our day today.
So, we made a resolution to date each other more this year.
To do this we knew we had to set intentional measures (and we’re both data nerds) so we determined that we’d do AT LEAST one ‘home date’ a month and one out of the house date every other month. We knew this wasn’t 100% as much time together as we wanted, but it was a much more realistic goal for us. Plus, these goals are STILL a reach for us since honestly, the only ‘dating’ we did was if we got invited to a wedding a few times a year.
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Why You Need To Date Your Spouse
Your relationship matters
As life gets busier and busier for us moms a few things get pushed back in our lives; ourselves and our husbands.
It’s sad but true.
We take care of ourselves less and we often forget, in between the day to day conversations about cooking dinner, picking up diapers, or who is going to do bath time, that our husbands (and us!) deserve to feel special too.
Your relationship with our husband matters. Remember, that when your children are grown and gone, it will just be you two again. And when you are both in love and happy with each other (a byproduct of dating each other!) your home feels happier and that trickles down to your children.
Feel like YOU again
There are a lot of really great benefits on your relationships when you make the effort to date each other but let’s focus on the effects it has on YOU.
I often get stuck in the day to day drudgery. I can’t remember the last time I washed my hair, I’m constantly covered in spit-up, and by the end of the day, I am just over being touched by someone each day.
Even if you choose to do a ‘home date’, can I encourage you to get dressed and out of those yoga pants?
Now don’t get confused, I don’t think women have to wear makeup or dress a certain way to be happy or feel good about themselves but, let’s be real, changing your clothes and taking a few minutes on you does make you feel better. I make it a rule to get dressed first thing in the morning (even if I’m changing into my ‘nice yoga pants’) because it makes me feel better, more in control, and less frumpy.
On those occasions, you decide to get a sitter and go on a date outside of the house, take the time to put on something that makes you feel good, smile at yourself in the mirror and remember that person you were before all the stress and craziness.
That woman is still in there, smiling and waiting for you to remember her too!
Okay mamas, this HAS to go on the calendar or it’s not going to happen. Life happens, we get tired, and it’s so easy to say “let’s just do it another night”. By putting it on the calendar and committing to each other that there is NO negotiation on that date, you can ensure that your date happens.
Invest in a sitter or date in
We often do our date nights in because we’re in a season where we have little kids who go to bed early. We rarely are out after dark and we’re okay with it.
This means, our date nights in can be done super easily! Now that the baby (currently 5 months) is going to bed at the same time as our toddler, we can put them to bed and go downstairs for our date.
On the times we want to leave the house, we make sure to lock in a sitter (for us that’s my mother in law) so that we can leave the house. Having secured that someone is going to come over gives us even more accountability to actually making our date happen.
28 Ideas Free or Cheap Ideas
So what do you do on your date night; whether they are in the house or not?
If you’re like me, you don’t want to spend a ton of money (or maybe you’re in a season like us where we can’t spend a ton of money) on your dates and are tired of saying “you just want to pick something on Netflix?”, I’ve got some ideas to get you started!
I came up with my list of 28 date ideas that you can use to mix up your dates AND the best part is that they are FREE or CHEAP so they won’t break the bank. So often ‘not having money’ is just another excuse we use to not do the things we know is important and I hope this list helps give you some ideas!
You can print it out and use it as a checklist with your spouse! We alternate dates on who picks which idea, and our goal is to complete the list by the end of the year! So put it on your fridge as inspiration, and a reminder, to date your spouse!