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There are times when I not only feel mom guilt but I also feel wife guilt. As a woman who has a full-time job outside of the home, I come home and start on my second job of taking care of my family and then my third job which is this blog. After a full day of all of this, I want to have some time for my husband.
Kids are a blessing but sometimes you might feel distant from your spouse after they are born. Our attention turns to the child and we forget about our spouses. It is not intentional, its just that our lives go in so many different directions that we forget to take care of each other. We have to remember to do those fun and romantic things you did before you had kids. If you have drifted away from your spouse, don’t worry. It has happened to most of us. You can get your spark back!
You might think it is impossible but it is very possible. All it takes is planning and flexibility. We have a toddler so between fighting sleep, asking for snacks, and wanting to play with daddy, a scheduled 8 p.m. at home date night might turn into a 9 p.m. at home date night.
So, let’s get to it! It’s important that you start with the following strategy:
1- Plan well: It’s ALL about planning ahead. It’s so easy to fall into the “normal” routine of any other night but when you plan ahead of time, it gets you out of that “normalcy” rut.
Tip: Send a text to your husband sometime during the day to remind him of your date and to let him know how much you are excited about spending time with him.
2- Be creative: Don’t let the fact that you are home stop you from making the most out of your night. Be creative. Be romantic. Pretend you are out on the town and act like you would at a nice restaurant.
Tip: Sometimes you are so tired that you don’t need to pretend. You are happy to have a break. Go with that! Enjoy your home and enjoy each other.
3- Set a date and time. This may seem so obvious, but you would be surprised on how easy it is to continue to put off doing the date if there isn’t some sort of commitment to making it happen, so set a date.
Tip: My husband and I are soooooo guilty of this one. You have to make this a priority even if you don’t feel like it. When I push through my feelings of tiredness to spend time with my husband, I find myself really enjoying the time with him.
4- Get things ready. It’s not enough just to plan for the night; you actually need to set things up for the night. Having kids around should not be an issue. Get things ready in such a way they won’t interrupt the date night.
Tip: Have your kids help in the preparation. It’s good for kids to know that mommy and daddy are going to spend some alone time together and they have a part in helping make it happen.
5- NO distractions. It’s easier to get distracted by things because you are at home. Make sure to be present and focused on your relationship, not things that need to get done around the house.
Tip: I can find something to do in our home every minute of the day. I am learning to let things go. Another tip is to turn your cell phones off. Your kids are home so you don’t need to make yourself available to anyone else.
Now after the planning has been done, here are some ideas on what to actually do during the date night:
Make Dinner or Dessert Together:
Making dinner on a weeknight can be a rushed and stressful affair. Meanwhile cooking together when you have intentionally blocked off time for the task, and the kids are in bed, can be a lot of fun and a nice way to reconnect. Make something you haven’t tried before that’s hands-on in preparation, like sushi or cheesecake. My husband and I have started preparing some vegan meals so we are preparing things we never even eaten before.
Eat Dinner By Candlelight:
It’s amazing what a little change in atmosphere can do to transform the experience into something special. Sure, maybe you eat dinner all the time in front of the TV but put a tablecloth on the table, light some candles, turn on some jazz music, and really take the time to talk, and you’ll be surprised how rejuvenated you will feel.
Ask Each Other Questions:
There are tons of “questions for couples” books and card decks out there. There are also ones that are not specifically couple-focused, but simply offer fun conversation starters for everybody. If you feel like you and your spouse haven’t really talked in a long time, and have trouble discussing anything other than work or your kids, having a list of interesting question prompts can get you laughing, conversing, and learning new things about each other again.
Do a Puzzle Together:
Like playing a board game, doing a puzzle together is a nice relaxing activity that helps you chill out and have good conversation. Pick a puzzle you can finish that evening something like 200-300 pieces. This one is my favorite!
These are a few steps and tips that will give you and your spouse a different scenery from the normal every day routine. With these few date night idea, you are committing to focusing on your relationship and taking time out to focus on each other. Your marriage will be stronger because of it.
I want to hear from you! What are some stay at home date night activities you do with your spouse?