With the economy totally sucking, we’ve modified our babysitter retainer model slightly and are trying to have a few more date nights at home. If you thought it was totally unrealistic when I told you to put your kids to bed before 7pm and have a date-night, I feel you.
Here are six slightly more inventive ideas for dating during your kids waking hours, because let’s admit it, things just ain’t what they used to be.
No-babysitter dates involving the kids
It can be a tricky balance to let the kids participate and still have it feel like a date, or at least a special occasion.
- Serve me. Get the kids to serve you somehow. Big kids can prepare dinner, little kids can walk on your back and we can call it a spa/massage.
- Join us. Throw a wintry picnic in the living room, a silly way to celebrate that you’re more than a couple, you’re a family.
- Class it up. Order the best takeout in town, serve it on the good china with cloth napkins. Light candles.
- Play karaoke where you do the singing and your kids accompany with egg shakers and tambourines from their kits.
Dates while we have other childcare
We use a few different strategies to double dip on childcare we’re already using. For example, Alec and I can sometimes have coffee date before work or sneak in a lunch date or matinee when the boys are at preschool.
While the kids are distracted
I found these next two to be highly impractical for my life, but I know other parents have had success sneaking in a date while their kids are looking the other way.
- Elmo sex. As described by Mom101, “in which you plop the kids down in front of Elmo, race into the bedroom for 15 minutes, then get the 2 minute warning when the theme music comes on?”.
- Drug ’em. Benadryl the kids and make out while they’re passed out. Naw, I wouldn’t do it. But tell me if you you’ve tried it.
What kind of things do you do to have a “date night” at home?
Somewhat-related thoughts: Over on our BabyCenter column, I extol the virtues of video games for parents during naptime.