When you are dating and single, you always think, "Man, I can't wait to settle down and not date anymore." After all, dating is stressful and filled with a million decisions: what to wear, what to do, what to talk about, etc. You long for someone you can loaf around the house with, read the paper on the weekends in bed with, and cozy up next to while you watch a DVD. The ironic thing about getting married is that at some point you realize you need to date again in order to keep your marriage fresh.
A.P. and I had this realization this summer. We've always led a pretty active life, usually doing something each weekend. But we also like our couch time. We like to relax on the weekends, watch a movie and chill out. Getting married made us more insular in some ways; we stay in more now. It didn't seem like a bad thing until I realized that we never really go on dates anymore. We never leave the house and all the distractions it contains anymore just to focus on each other. Don't get me wrong, we leave the house. But when we do, it's to run errands or go out with friends or family. A while back I realized that we needed to be more proactive about things. That we'd both gotten lazy in the date making department. Plus, when you get married, I'm going to tell you the truth that nobody says sometimes: it gets boring. Sometimes you need awesome, old fashioned dates to keep it fancy and fun. You need to connect in that way.
At the beginning of the summer, I came up with an awesome plan. We would go on at least four dates a month, each of us planning two. Since we're now on a budget, I figured it wouldn't be the best idea to have all of those dates cost us an arm and a leg at a restaurant or on some kind of outing. So the plan was to each plan one date in the house (rent a movie, play a game, make dinner for the other person, etc.) and one date out (dinner, movie, daytrip, etc.).
I haven't done my dates for this month yet (we've been BUSY), but last month I did our trip to Long Grove and we rented a movie/made dinner one night, which I think counted as both of our in the house dates. A.P. kind of forgot, so this month he made more of a priority to remember. This past Saturday, he took me out to dinner at Glenn's Diner in the Ravenswood area. We feasted on a seafood dinner and I had some vodka gimlets and got slightly tipsy, which I so rarely do. Fun! Plus, we talked about all kinds of things and had a sweet little time being all flirty!
We need to get better about planning the in the house dates, though, as those can totally be the ones you skip actually planning. But other than that, we're excited to keep moving forward with our new plan.
Do you have date nights? If so, are they structured or spontaneous?
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