Before I got married, I thought the idea of married people having “date nights” was kind of silly. I even remember telling Connor we’d never be that couple that had to schedule our time together and ranting on and on with questions like… Why do they need to call it that? Why do they have to set aside an exact time to spend time together when they’re together, like, every day?

I thought the whole idea was cheesy and that if we were married we’d obviously spend loads of time together! It’s safe to say that now that I’m married, I get it. I get why it’s necessary to plan and set aside certain nights for dates. I’m sure I’ll get it even more when we’re parents! (Oh, boy!)

The thing is that life ends up getting in the way and nights spent lounging on the couch kissing and talking till midnight are far and few between! After busy days of work, school, and taking care of responsibilities, there are times when we barely get a few words in before dragging our tired bodies into bed. I will say that we are best friends, so we tend to joke around and have fun even when we’re busy, but the stress and chaos of adulthood can make it seem almost impossible to set aside a few hours for each other.

That time together is SO crucial, though. Even though “Quality Time” isn’t my love language, I notice a HUGE difference in our relationship and general happiness levels when we take time out of our busy schedules for each other. When we take that time, we end up communicating better, understanding each other better, laughing and joking around more together, and connecting on a deeper level. Those few hours every week or so are comparable to exercise. We’d survive without it (at least for awhile) but without doing it regularly we’re far less happy. (And more irritable with each other, less emotionally connected, etc, etc. You get my point.)

Because setting aside time for dates (or whatever you want to call that time you spend together) is SO crucial, I thought I’d round up a list of my all-time-favorite date ideas for you to fit into your schedules! These will be fun whether you’re dating, engaged, or married. Of course, some of them probably aren’t the *best* idea for a first date, like a helicopter ride (unless you’re on The Bachelor), but most of them are great for whatever stage your relationship is in! Here’s a nifty printout to write all your favorite ideas on. Put it on the fridge and cross them off one by one!


  1. Book love letters (Choose a page in an old book and blot out words and sentences to create a love letter with the remaining words.)
  2. Read excerpts from your favorite books to each other (Curl up on the couch or set up a picnic outside to read your favorite passages.)
  3. Make a playlist of your favorite love songs (Then play it while slow-dancing in the living room!)
  4. Make a blog together (Use a free service like Blogger or Tumblr to post all of your adventures together. Keep it updated with quotes, interviews with each other, and stories about your relationship. This could also be done in a Couples Journal. Super cheesy but also super cute.)
  5. Share embarrassing photos (Find your top 10 most embarrassing photos in albums or on Facebook and share them with each other.)
  6. Have a coloring book marathon (Reminisce about the good ol’ days as a kid while you color.)
  7. Learn a new skill together from home (Watch a tutorial video on how to knit, cook a certain meal, juggle, learn calligraphy, etc.)
  8. Learn how to make melted crayon art (Learn online and then post images of your art, hang them on your wall… or throw them in the trash. The fun part is making them!)
  9. Take the Five Love Languages Test (See how you can improve your relationship. You could even read a chapter of the Five Love Languages book together whenever you have time.)
  10. Do a DIY project from Pinterest (Pick a craft/DIY tutorial to do, get the supplies, and then DO it! It could even be something useful for your home… like these DIY hanging shelves.)
  11. Look up museums in your area and attend one (It sounds boring but boring stuff calls for more talking, right!? Eh, eh?)
  12. Teach each other cards tricks (Look up card tricks separately and then show each other what you’ve got up your sleeve! Impress each other with your new skills!)
  13. Have a book club date night (Pick out an interesting book together and set a date to discuss it. Or read it together and discuss it as you go. Whatever you have time for!)
  14. Mute a TV show and make up lines for the actors (Or turn on a foreign film without subtitles and guess the storyline.)
  15. Do Mad Libs together (The sillier, the better. My husband and I did Mad Libs together for a couple hours on our last road trip. It was a BLAST! We were cracking up.)
  16. Learn a language together (Download a language learning app, search for online tutorials, or go all-out and register for a class together.)
  17. Take the MBTI Personality Test (Ummm… if you haven’t already done this, what are you waiting for!? This is the BEST personality test ever! If you have taken it already, read each others personality types and tell each other what you think was accurate on the test and what wasn’t as accurate. This is a great way to know each other even better. And yes, even couples who have been together for ages can always learn more about each other.)
  18. Do a wood/soap carving contest (Whittle your favorite animal or your date’s face. Give each other your final products.)
  19. Hold a white elephant gift exchange (Set the price around $5 and see who gives the most creative present.)
  20. Plan a fake vacation (Find lodging, activities, and restaurants for your dream vacation. Maybe you’ll even decide to go for it after you’ve done all that research!)
  21. Show each other your favorite songs from middle school (Get to know each other’s angsty teen sides.)
  22. Play rocket scientist or expert egg saver (Find creative ways to protect your eggs using limited resources. Then create an egg launching parachute- a towel or sheet, and compete to see which egg is least damaged. Reminisce about 9th grade science projects.)
  23. Play card games (Deep Sea Adventure and Bonanza are Connor and I’s favorite two player games!)
  24. Work on a puzzle together (Throw on a movie and work on a puzzle together or better yet, actually TALK!)
  25. Do Twister with paint (Put corresponding colors of paint on the Twister mat and have at it. Make sure you wear old clothes!)
  26. Download a vintage radio program or spooky podcast (Go listen to it in a unique location; think horror story in the woods at dusk.)
  27. Play with Legos (Have a contest to see who can create the best Lego creation. Send pictures to a family member or friend to have them decide who wins!)
  28. Make clay and sculpt (Find a salt dough recipe, sculpt it and let it dry before painting.)
  29. Play video games from your childhood (Dust off your old childhood favorites like Donkey Kong and Mario Kart.)
  30. Learn origami (Buy some colorful paper and learn how to create paper sculptures.)
  31. Teach each other one of your talents (Take interest in each others favorite hobbies and stare in awe as your partner shows you how they rock their talent the way they do.)
  32. Have a movie marathon (Get your favorite snacks at the store and watch an entire movie series or different versions of the same film. Or an entire TV series! The options are limitless!)
  33. Have a culture night (Pick a culture that you want to learn more about. Play their music, eat their food, and do an activity that is popular in that culture.)
  34. Set up a spa night (Play relaxing music, massage each other, make DIY face masks, and take a bubble bath)


  1. Go indoor rock-climbing
  2. Go to a gymnastics center “open house” (Local gymnastics centers usually offer “open house” nights where anyone can come and try their hand at swinging at the bars and jumping on the trampolines)
  3. Go to a trampoline gym (Relieve some stress and laugh at each other’s goofy jumping moves. Become like carefree kids again!)
  4. Paint your own ceramics (Make each other something sentimental. Get creative!)
  5. Go to a nickel arcade (Challenge your partner to a range of arcade games. See who can get the most tickets and then trade your tickets in to get a gift for each other.)
  6. Be a tourist in your own city (Look up “What to do in ________” and go check out some more “touristy” spots/places to eat.)
  7. Go to the zoo (Who says zoo’s are just for kids!? Only people who don’t know how to have any fun!)
  8. Go to an aviary
  9. Visit an aquarium
  10. Go antiquing (Find a wide variety of interesting items and maybe take home a souvenir.)
  11. Play hide and seek in IKEA (While being somewhat inconspicuous, cause ya know, you don’t wanna get banned from the best store ever… )
  12. Attend a date night mystery dinner theatre show (Look up local or nearby mystery dinner theatre shows. You might be surprised by how much you enjoy something like this!)
  13. Find all of your unused gift cards and use them (Say what!? There’s nothing better than a free date!)
  14. Take a luxury helicopter tour (Most somewhat larger cities offer luxury helicopter tours which can actually be quite romantic and EXTRA adventurous.)
  15. Go to an open mic night
  16. Adopt a goldfish (The least expensive/messy pet ever but still a fun venture!)
  17. Recreate the first date you ever had with each other (Relive early memories getting to know each other and trying to impress each other.)
  18. Help one another archive a bucket list item (Check something off your bucket list, and bring your significant other with you!)
  19. Give away flowers (Buy flowers and give them to random people who look like they need a “pick-me-up.”)
  20. Donate blood together (Talk your way through the ordeal with your lovely date. It’ll be a bonding experience. And you’ll be helping other people at the same time.)
  21. Volunteer at a soup kitchen (Get closer together by serving others. This can also help you put your own lives into perspective although your sole motivation should be to help people, of course.)
  22. Get a disposable camera and have a contest (See who can take the best pictures. Once printed, cut them out and make a collage together.)
  23. Go to a ‘Drive-in’ movie (Switch up your movie-going experience a bit! Cars call for more cuddling… and kissing *wink wink*)
  24. Take care of animals at an animal shelter (This is a great date for animal lovers. Who knows, you might even bring home a cute little puppy… or get into an argument about whether or not you should bring home a cute little puppy. BUT either way, it’ll be a rewarding experience!)
  25. Visit a local bookstore (Read your favorite childhood picture books together or grab all the books that have personality tests in them to take!)
  26. Go on a mini-road trip and explore the area (A “staycation” can truly do wonders for a relationship. It may not be far from home, but going on a little getaway is just what you need when “real life” is extra overwhelming. If you’re brave enough- and childless enough or extra trusting of your babysitter- you could even leave your phones at home *gasp*!)
  27. Go bowling Skittles-style (Draw a random Skittle. Each color means something different (e.g yellow= left handed, purple= through the legs, etc.)
  28. Play mini-golf (It’s less stressful and less expensive than the full-size game… and a little healthy competition can be fun for a relationship!)
  29. Go on Groupon and choose a random activity to do (From horse-back riding to painting night, Groupon has it all!)
  30. Attend a play put on a by a local high school or theatre group (Who says you need to spend big bucks to see a play or musical!? Support your local high school kids by seeing one of their plays!)
  31. Attend a ballet put on by a local ballet company
  32. Check out what festivals are coming up in or near your city. (Find one that interests you, stuff your faces with booth food, and run around like kids in love!)
  33. Check out a local food truck (Look up local food trucks in your area and visit one that sounds delicious!)
  34. Go indoor skydiving
  35. Go shopping and pick out outfits for each other (To make this even more interesting, go thrift-shop shop swapping! Make each other wear the outfits you choose for the rest of the day!)
  36. Go go-karting (A somewhat affordable adrenaline rush… what could be better than that!?)


  1. Go camping (A lot of campsites have “walk-in” campsites which is great for a spur of the moment camping trip! Or pitch up a tent in your backyard!)
  2. Go white-water rafting
  3. Canoe on a river/lake nearby
  4. Train for a 5k and run/walk it together (Train together and then accomplish the goal together! It’ll feel amazing to do something like that as a team.)
  5. Go star-gazing (Get serious about it! Download star-gazing apps and look for constellations. Make it a romantic evening.)
  6. Spend a Saturday scouting out yard-sales
  7. Go on a hike in your area that you haven’t been on before (or go on one you always love!)
  8. Have an outdoor movie night (Whether you have a projector or just a laptop, an outdoor movie night can be fun and romantic. Bring a blanket and watch a movie in the park or in your backyard.
  9. Go to a waterpark (and pretend your kids again!)
  10. Go zip-lining
  11. Go to your local Farmers Market (Walk around hand in hand sampling and supporting local businesses. Farmers Markets have such a fun vibe that you’ll be sure to enjoy yourselves!)
  12. Go to an amusement park or carnival