With George and I celebrating our NINE year wedding anniversary next week – yup, you hear that right…nine years! I wanted to something simple and special but uber romantic for him this year. When was the last time you and your husband or wife had a romantic date night? Go ahead and think about it for a minute. That long ago huh? With the incredibly busy lives we all lead, it almost seems impossible to have those important moments and one on one time with the one we love. It is easy to forget to focus on nurturing your own relationship when you are busy worried about kids, work, juggling schedules and everything in between.
Let’s be real here, it is not even just the stuff mentioned above, scheduling a date night out is exhausting in itself. It not just about hopping in the car and driving to a restaurant anymore. You have to first, find a day that isn’t filled with late meetings, PTA, kids practices or games and then you have to hire a sitter! It’s just too much to do to make it something that you do often. But what if I said you and your spouse could have date nights all the time? How would you feel about that?
Believe it or not, you can make a regular date night happen. All you need to do is prepare a day and time for the two of you to have the perfect romantic candlelit dinner night in and follow a couple of simple steps to make it happen. Here is how it is done:
- Prepare your meal in advance. Do you have a slow cooker? Why not create a meal that both of you love the night before your planned date? Something like pot roast or beef stew can easily be prepared in advance and will taste amazing. Get all of your ingredients prepped and ready to go and then put them overnight in the refrigerator to chill and marinade. Then, on the morning of your date, you can place the ingredients into your slow cooker. This will keep you from spending hours working over the stove.
- Get the kids to bed early. This job is easier if your kids are small obviously, but this is a great opportunity to get some quiet time for your date night in. Feed the kids a simple dinner (sandwiches, anyone?) and send them off to bed early after they are done. I am betting they could use the extra sleep anyway and we know that you need some alone time with your hunny!
- Set the table. Even if you typically eat your dinner plopped on the sofa watching the television, make a point to set the table beautifully tonight. Set out two place settings with your finest dishes and don’t forget the candles. A warm candlelight glow can do wonders for romance after all. Combine the candles with your favorite table centerpiece to really make the night feel like a date night rather than just another night at home. For date nights, I like to go with 2 tall candles on each side of a bottle of wine in an ice bucket. It looks great and it’s nice to focus on adult stuff for a change, don’t you think?
- Time to enjoy your date. Now it is time to sit down and enjoy your kid free, romantic candlelit dinner date for two. Prepare yourself for conversation that doesn’t include talking about the kids, bills, housework or anything else stressful. Just visit with your spouse and enjoy each other’s company. Begin with a conversation starter such as “Tell me something great that happened to you today” or “what is something you would love to try, but you feel scared to” or maybe even start working on a bucket list or dream vacation together. It’s amazing how much you can learn about someone that you already spend so much time with. Oh, and I feel like this is a given, but don’t forget to turn off your phones. I am sure I do not need to tell you this, but staring at your phone during dinner is not a very romantic way to spend the evening and a very quick way to offend your date.
Once your dinner is over, you can easily work together to clean up your dinner mess. Besides, there is something romantic about doing chores together. For your dishes though, just be sure you are using Cascade Platinum in your dishwasher so that your cleanup consists of just loading the dishwasher and you don’t have to pre-wash (hello timesaver!). This is my favorite dishwashing detergent because it comes with 3x the grease fighting power and a rinse aid and works great. If you don’t already have it on hand, print out a coupon for it here.
If you haven’t used Cascade Platinum before, head on over here and read these reviews (if you have used it, be sure to add your own review while you are there).