Editor's Note: Originally published on Aaron and April's blog Nurturing Marriage. It has been republished here with permission.
If you prefer to "date-in," here are a few of our favorite ideas for making date night happen.
1. Have a candle-lit dinner
We like to call it the "Cozy Corner Cafe."
If you can't go out, turn your very own kitchen into a restaurant. Create a warm atmosphere, write up a menu in your fanciest handwriting and then whip up a culinary masterpiece (PB & J or Mac n' Cheese count).
Woo the love of your life with a special dinner right from the comfort of your own home. Throw in a little soft music and some slow dancing to top it off (after dessert, of course!).
2. Read together
Reading is romantic. Period.
Grab a blanket, pick out a book, cuddle up on the couch and take turns reading out loud to each other. If he likes adventure and she likes romance, try to find a book with both. There are plenty of great options to choose from.
Don't forget the cuddling — that's important. Also, it would be smart to have some chocolate close by.
3. Play board games (or card games)
Board games can be a ton of fun. They can bring out a different side of your spouse — that fun, playful, competitive, and even flirtatious side. A lot of couples have a favorite board game, even if they don't play it that often. Some like competitive games, others like games of strategy. Try picking a game that will make you think, laugh and also allow a bit of time to talk. Some of our favorite games (that you can play with just two people) include Canasta, Bananagrams, Ticket to Ride and Yahtzee.
Oh, and it never hurts to throw in a friendly massage wager.
4. Make a music video
Doesn't sound super romantic, we know. But CRAZY fun, right? (...it could be romantic, depending on the music you select.) Your spouse may be totally uncomfortable doing a lip dub or a music video, but you don't have to share it with the world (though that would be awesome — who knows, it could go viral). It could just be "for posterity's sake."
Just pick your favorite song (all the better if you know the words) and then start dancing. It's true. Making a music video together will instantly place the two of you in the category of complete awesomeness (with a touch of crazy). And it will probably end up being your favorite date, EVER.
So typical. Yet so fun (and relaxing). Let your spouse pick the movie this time (you may be surprised when you actually like the movie they pick), and then settle in for a romantic evening at home. Cuddle up and turn off the lights. Being in a dark room with your spouse, cuddled up on the couch, just cries "romantic," right?
Just remember, any date-in needs to end with a romantic evening in bed. So make sure there is some serious cuddling going on during your date at home. Enjoy!
Aaron & April are the founders of Nurturing Marriage, a website dedicated to strengthening marriages. They enjoy playing football with their two little boys, watching sports, eating cereal late at night, and going out for frozen yogurt.