Alternative Date Night Ideas

When I first got married, it would take me anywhere between five hours to five weeks to tell my husband when something was bothering me. Thankfully, he has a let’s-talk-it-out-before-it-gets-worse mentality towards life, and this has been a great way to balance out my no-nothing’s-wrong-I’m-just-going-to-go-hang-out-by-myself approach. While we’ve had to work with each other on that, there’s one thing that we both agree on – it's really easy to be too busy to discuss important things and spend quality time together. And if we don’t make time to see each other just us two, we can get into the unhealthy habit of forgetting we are not just parents but spouses. But here's the thing… how in the world do you carve out time to see each other on a somewhat regular basis? If you have kids, going out usually includes finding a babysitter, and paying for dinner. It can get expensive. So my question is… what are your “alternative date night” ideas? What have you and your spouse done to relax, hang out, or have fun with each other alone?

One thing we’ve done is go out just for dessert and sit at the bar, which gives the night a fun, relaxed vibe. We also like to just hang out on the couch to read and talk (and then eventually fall asleep, wake up at 3:00 AM, go to bed, and then have a child start crying at 3:30), or we’ve also gone to a cafe to talk over coffee. When we went to Traverse City last summer for a few days, we brought our small grill and made hot dogs and burgers or steak for dinner. We even grilled in a parking lot at one point and everyone who walked by cheered us on for our creativity and for the amazing smell.

What ideas for an alternative date night do you have?! Do you have any tried and true favorites?