Dear Hallee: Date Night
I have a date night question for you. My husband and I were talking about finding more time for each other and I told him about you and Gregg and your once a week date night. Could you give me some good advice on how to make it successful. Do you all do it on the same night each week? Do you always have a babysitter or sometimes wait till the kids are asleep? How do you make it inexpensive? We want it to be about our time together not the money we spend. Do you take turns planning the dates or do you plan them together? Any advice you could give would be greatly appreciated. My husband and I are very much in love and enjoy each others company outside of being parents. It seems like we spend too much of our time on the daily tasks of living and raising a family. I really like [my husband] and want to spend more time focusing on him.
We just take each week as it comes. One night, we went to a mystery dinner theater. Another night, we went to see a cheap movie and then had a picnic dinner with homemade food. A few weeks ago, we went and looked at houses with a real estate agent. One week, we didn’t have a free night, so we had lunch. This past week, we spent $8 for two tickets and enjoyed a show about the night sky at the planetarium.
What we do is meet every Sunday afternoon and purposefully discuss the previous week and discuss the coming week’s schedules and activities. Date night is always discussed. If there’s something that one of us wants to do, we typically email it to each other prior to the event, so that tickets can be bought and we know when it’s coming up. I’m subscribed to Living Social Deals and Groupons, which are daily ‘deals’ — sometimes it’s spend $20 on a $40 restaurant certificate, and sometimes they’re total busts — but they come every morning and provide ideas for restaurants or activities. I also am a Facebook follower of Lexington 365 — a daily “do this in Lexington” idea page.
We always have a baby sitter. Sometimes it’s Kaylee, but she’s our standing Monday night sitter for our volunteer work on Mondays, so we try to get someone else to sit on our date night, or hire a girl from our youth group to come and hang out with her while they both babysit.
It’s not always expensive – though sometimes it is. And it’s not always easy to juggle in a date – this week would be an example of that. It’s Tuesday and we’re still trying to figure out how we can have a date this week. But we’re committed to doing it, and we both really look forward to it every week.
Good luck! I love love. And I love loving and happy marriages.
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