Wednesday, November 12, 2014

My Top 10 Favorite Date Ideas from Spouse Dates

I signed up for an email newsletter called Spouse Dates that arrives in my inbox every week with three or four fun date ideas, including at least one I never thought of and several that we haven't tried for a while. Here are my top faves.

1. Karaoke Night: Manny and I went to a karaoke bar on one of our first dates together. The only song we both knew was The Impossible Dream from the musical Man of La Mancha. You could hear the sneer in the karaoke emcee's voice when he announced us, then we totally blew it out of the water. Fond memories!

2. Drive-In Movie: Not every area still has a drive-in movie theater, but they're lots of fun. There's one in Virginia near where my parents live and we try to go every summer. If you're feeling brave (and limber), you can even lie down on the hood of the car together. Just make sure you bring a blanket to get comfy.

3. Run a Race Together: This idea is especially good for couples who (ahem!) need a little extra incentive to exercise. Our town sponsors a "Turkey Trot" 5-mile run every Thanksgiving. There's also a 1.4-mile "Fun Run" earlier in the day for people who just want to ease into it.

4. Romantic Scavenger Hunt: My husband Manny excels at scavenger hunts, obstacle courses, you name it -- the more elaborate the better. He recently designed a scavenger hunt with pictures of our April 2014 trip to Spain taped up all over the house and a list of riddles to help me and the kids identify the right picture. A romantic scavenger hunt could include items that are a bit more ... personal. Just make sure the kids don't find them first!

5. Visit an Aquarium: We've visited aquariums in places from Coney Island, New York, to Lisbon, Portugal. The dim lighting creates a great atmosphere, and watching fish undulating through the water is very soothing.

6. Local Wine-Tasting Event: You can combine this with help for your favorite charity, if you're so inclined. In the Long Island area, for example, the St. John's Kenyan Children's Foundation holds a wine-tasting fundraiser every year.

7. Breakfast Date: This works especially well on a day when hubby's off of work, but the kids are away at school. Since my husband works at a Jewish hospital and the kids go to Catholic school, Manny and I are sometimes home together on a Jewish holiday. No need to leave the house for the breakfast date, if you don't want to.

8. Read Poetry or a Novel Together: Manny likes Shakespeare, I like Chaucer. We could definitely explore both. Great saints have also written poetry, like St. Theresa of Avila, St. Therese of Lisieux, and even Pope St. John Paul II. A novel might be more your cup of tea, but reading poetry together takes a lot smaller time commitment.

9. Watch a Romantic French Movie: Since Manny and I mistakenly wound up in Paris for our honeymoon (a story for another time), we picked up the habit of shouting "Vive la France!" whenever unexpectedly awesome things happen. Watching a romantic French movie could give us lots of opportunities to shout "Vive la France!" at least as long as the main characters don't drive themselves off a bridge or something. Ever noticed how many "romantic" French movies have very, very depressing endings? Avoid those.

10. Go Ballroom Dancing: The parents of one of our friends used to go ballroom dancing together every week until she died. So sweet! Restaurants with ballroom dancing often feature live bands, so it's worth trying it for the music alone. You don't have to be any good, since honestly no one knows how to dance any more. Just put your arms around each other and hold on.

If you enjoyed this post, we highly recommend:


  1. That is a nice list of ideas....

  2. After almost 46 years of marriage, I think your suggestion for ballroom dancing could be an image for marriage: "Just put your arms around each other and hold on."