Staying at home might not sound like your traditional date night, but connecting with your partner from the comfort of your couch definitely has its advantages. There’s no babysitter, no worry, and best of all, no pressure.
You can’t count falling asleep on the couch as a date, so we have a list of fun activities you can do as soon as the kids are in bed.
1. Play a board game
Board games are fun with kids, but they can be even better when it’s just you and your spouse. Finally, you can play a game that you pick, and there’s no worrying about choosing a game that everyone in the family can play. You can dig out an old favorite or learn a new game together.
2. Complete a puzzle
Can you put together an entire puzzle during one at home date night? Now’s the perfect chance to find out. Puzzles are a great way for couples to work together while doing something fun.
3. Put together a Lego set or model airplane
If puzzles aren’t your thing, what about Legos or model airplanes? Turns out, those fun projects aren’t just for kids. Friends of mine spend their date nights working together on Lego sets. They buy a new set and spend an entire night drinking wine and putting it together. It costs about the same as going to the movies, and when they’re done, their kids get new toys.
4. Enjoy a bonfire
Nothing says romance like an at home date night by the fire. If you have an outdoor fire pit, grab a blanket and an adult beverage, and turn the music on low. You can chat by the fire and see where the evening takes you. This plan also works if you have an indoor fireplace. Don’t forget the marshmallows!
5. Bake together
Cookies, cupcakes, brownies—it doesn’t matter what you make. All that really matters is that you and your spouse enjoy spending time together. Work together in the kitchen and end the night by tasting your creations. This butter cookie recipe is a good place to start.
6. Host your own tasting party
You can have a tasting party just about anywhere—even your own kitchen. If wine is your thing, grab a few bottles you’ve never tried before and spend the night ranking your new favorites. You can also do this with chocolate, cheese, and just about anything else.
7. Take your movie outside
A movie on the couch is a classic at home date night idea, but it’s time to spice things up. Instead of your living room, why not move your movie outside? Shining a projector on a sheet or the side of the house will be fun, but you don’t need a big setup for an outdoor movie night. All you really need is a laptop and a comfy place to cuddle. Movies in the playhouse, anyone?
8. Set up your own spa
If you love the spa but hate how expensive it is, an at home spa night is the perfect solution. Both mom and dad deserve a little after-bedtime pampering. Hit up your local drugstore and get supplies like face masks, foot scrubs, and bath bombs. Complete the picture with fancy finger sandwiches and fuzzy robes.
9. Do a workout video
Active couples might want to take advantage of kid-free hours by trying a new type of at home exercise. Look on YouTube for at home yoga, kickboxing, HIIT, or even belly dancing. Wear your best leggings, break out your favorite sports bra, and get sweaty together. Or try our at home legs and butt workout!
10. Have brunch for dinner
The kids are all about their weekend pancakes, but this at home date night is all about those brunch favorites you don’t normally get to enjoy. Have you ever made eggs Benedict at home? How about a fancy omelet with all the fixin’s? Get creative with your brunch, and don’t forget the mimosas.
11. Take virtual dance lessons
You can find just about anything on YouTube. So if you’ve always wanted to learn how to salsa or swing dance, now’s your chance. Plan your next at home date night to be a virtual dance lesson right in your living room. You may have to keep the volume turned low so you don’t wake up the kids, but learning a few new moves will be a fun way to spend time with your partner.
12. Get artistic
Have you ever done one of those “paint and sip” events? This date night idea is just like that, but you do it in the comfort of your own home. Buy some paints and canvas—or use supplies you have at home—pick a picture, and see if your kids get their artistic talents from mom or dad.
13. Play video games
During the day, the kids are probably hogging the video game consoles. But when they go to sleep, it’s time for parents to pick up the controllers. Choose a game that both you and your partner will enjoy. You can play against each other or work as a team.
14. Plan a theme night
Take at home date night to the next level with a fun theme. If you’ve always wanted to travel the world, choose Paris, Rome, or Bali as your theme. If that’s not your thing, pick your favorite decade. Your theme could be literally anything, so get creative! Once you nail down your theme, plan your night with music, food, and activities.
15. Have a cook-off
There’s nothing wrong with a little healthy competition during an at home date night. You can settle the debate of who’s the best cook once and for all. Make the same dish to see whose is better, or split up recipes to create a full meal. You’ll have fun putting it all together—and even more fun when you get to taste all your hard work.