If there's one thing that Joel and I look forward to every week, it's definitely date night. It's our guaranteed, set aside time to connect, relax, and enjoy one another. Whether that entails dressing up and doing something elaborate, or playing rounds of UNO (go ahead, laugh!) and stuffing our faces with chocolate chip cookies at home. It's fun either way, and it has been a great weekly tradition that I keep with my best friend.
Practically speaking, our date nights are usually on the same day every week. This allows us to have a "standing appointment" on our calendars that we know to keep open. Of course some couples we know can be more flexible, but planning ahead of time is key to us having one consistently.
Over the years, our date nights have looked different depending on what season we're in. At the moment, we have a cute third wheel that tags along and our oldest kiddo stays at home with a babysitter. We are also staying pretty close to home when we go out and for just a couple hours at a time, but it's still fun and refueling. I encourage you to embrace the season you're in and find some way to make it work, even if it's only going out for a 45 min. coffee break. The quality time you're investing is worth it!
Joel and I both enjoy surprises, so most of the time we will take turns with who plans the date. He has planned some pretty creative dates over the years and I always appreciate the time and thought it took for him to put it together. Every now and then though we get stumped on what to do next or get in a rut of doing the same thing (very easy to do!) so we like to ask others for good ideas. I decided I would put together a list of November date ideas that might provide something new for you and your significant other to do this month. Here it goes:
1. Friday Night Lights - I don't know about you, but I get nostalgic thinking about how I used to spend my Friday nights as a high-schooler - standing out in the cold with my best friends, cheering on our school's football team. There's something about the brisk air, hearing a marching band play their fight song, and cowbells that are WAY too loud that just makes me smile. SO, this date night is designed to take you back. Grab your significant other and head to a local high school football game. No, you probably won't know anyone, but that's the fun of it! Get dressed up in the school's colors and cheer like you know all the players personally. Bonus points if you purchase some sub-par concession stand food to add to the experience. Nachos with fake-melted cheese anyone??
2. Food Tour - Do you both have several restaurants that you've wanted to try, but haven't gotten around to it yet? This is your time. Pick three different places and then decide which one you'll go to for an appetizer, your entree, and dessert. Ask the waitress/waiter what some of her favorite dishes are and be adventurous with what you get. While you wait for your food, be intentional about your conversation and ask each other good questions. Need some ideas of where to start? "Well Known" is a great take-along guide made up of 100 questions geared toward helping foster deeper conversation and connection. Joel and I have both enjoyed going through this together, and we highly recommend it!
3. Drive-in Movie Theater - Yes, these places DO still exist! It's a nice change-up from going to your usual movie theater down the street or opting for Netflix on the couch (although I love both of those options too). Google where the nearest drive-in theater is and pack a dinner you can eat in the car if it's freezing out or on a blanket next to your car if the weather's nice. Make sure you save room for popcorn though! Some drive-in theaters will have double-features so check out their website to see what's playing before you go.
4. Make & Give - Tis' the season for expressing your gratitude, spending time with the ones you love, and eating lots of good food. Why don't you combine all three? Spend the evening baking some yummy treats and package them up to deliver to friends. While you're making the goodies, spend some time telling each other what you're grateful for, especially things you love about each other. Once everything is ready to go, pick out a few friend's houses and deliver their sweet surprise. Make sure you tell them you are thankful for their friendship! Here are some recipe ideas to try, or just make your mouth water: Pecan Pie Cookies, Pumpkin Muffins, and Oatmeal Brickle Cookies (yum!)
5. Star Gazing & Meteor Spotting - Bundle up, find a dark sky and enjoy a quiet evening star gazing. Make sure to grab a blanket to lay on and bring along a thermos of your favorite hot drink to sip on. Create a playlist to listen (or dance!) to and enjoy being outside under a starry night sky. For the late-nighter's: From midnight to dawn on Friday, November 17 and Saturday, November 18 there will be a Leonid meteor shower to watch and be in awe of. This meteor shower is an annual occurrence, but according to Travel + Leisure, this year promises to offer a good showing! It will be occurring during a New Moon, so there will not be any "moonlight to block the view". Sounds like fun to me!
What are some of your favorite date night ideas this time of year? I'd love to hear them :-)