25 (Mostly) Free Ways to Date Your Spouse *without even leaving the house!

simple free ways to date your spouse at home
Image via EverydayFamily

For new parents, it's often hard to find time for romance and your relationship. Life is busy, and the lack of sleep (and often money!) can make it difficult to do the things you once did, like get out of the house for a date together. On top of that, there are things to be done all the time, children that have you touched out and cranky, and sometimes, the search for a babysitter seems hopeless.

With all these challenges, something has to give, and it's often your relationship with your spouse that drops to the bottom of the priority list. But here's the thing: you liked them enough to have a kid with them, to commit to a life together, so surely you like them enough to put in a bit of extra effort to reconnect, right?

Here are 25 ideas to get you started, and you don't even have to leave the house!

video game controllers
Image via Flickr/ prettyinprint

Play video games together.

Any type of game will do, but find ways to make it interactive. If you're competing, why not arrange stakes ahead of time so that the winner gets to be lavished with special attention (or gets a night off from doing dishes)?

fun-times-scrabble-game-flickr
Image via Flickr/ peddhapati

Play board games together.

This is great for laughs and conversation, but it's also fun to establish a little friendly competition. Scrabble and Jenga are skill-testers, but even Battleship and Connect 4 can get interesting.

movie projector
Image via iStock

Watch a romantic movie.

Pick your favorite dreamy love story (there's got to be a Nicholas Sparks one you like, right?) and cuddle up with your honey.

popcorn
Image via Flickr/ anneheathen

Watch an action or scary movie.

These can make for just as much romance as the chick flicks, since the adrenaline will get your heart pounding and encourage a little closeness.

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basketball scoreboard
Image via Amanda Rodriguez

Watch a game together and cheer on your favorite team.

Add some hot dogs, nachos, and warm beer for an authentic feel.

toenails
Image via Flickr/ timsamoff

Let him paint your toenails.

Give him a spa treatment. (Who doesn't like a good face mask?) Help her color her hair or work together on getting full coverage from the tan-in-a-bottle lotion. Find something to make each of you feel pampered and cared for by the other.

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Image via iStock

Give one another massages.

Even better if you strip down before you get started.

two yellow ducks
Image via iStock

Take a bath or shower together.

Each of you can take turns washing the other.

woman with tablet
Image via iStock

Bury yourselves in a book.

Read the same book and talk about it over wine and cheese (… or beer and pretzels … or juice and animal crackers).

woman holding remote
Image via iStock

Have a Netflix marathon.

Choose a TV series on DVD or Netflix to binge watch together.

painting-nursery
Image via Flickr/ Ms..G

Do a home improvement project together.

Paint some furniture, build a shelf, decide on how to decorate your bedroom.

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Laundry folding
Image via Momof6

Fold laundry together.

If you want to get all the laundry done, you should take off those dirty clothes … just sayin'.

couple talking
Image via Flickr/ R_x – renee barron

Sit on the porch and enjoy the weather.

Or snuggle up by the fire or under a blanket. Or throw a beach towel down on the living room floor and pretend it's summer — make yourself a margarita and use your imagination.

crockpot-wild-rice-chicken-snap-peas-chopped-veggies
Image via Eatpicks.com for EverydayFamily

Decrease your stress and spend some quality time together by spending an evening prepping meals for the week.

Whether you chop and prep for crock pot favorites or stock the freezer, you'll have some quiet time to catch up with each other while you work.

makeup care
Image via Flickr/ aninafish

Play dress-up.

This could go many ways. Get dolled up like you're going out, then don't. Dress up like your favorite sexy character. Put on your fanciest lingerie.

Cheerful young couple in bed
Image via iStock

Send one another naughty text messages.

Talk about what you want to do later.

coffee chocolate brownies ingredients
Image via EatPicks for EverydayFamily

Bake and share a sweet treat.

Mix up some brownies from scratch and then eat them warm from the oven.

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Image via iStock

Exercise together.

Get your hearts pumping and work up a sweat while getting fit.

couple wine glasses
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Feed the kids and put them to bed, then order in from your favorite spot.

Set the table with real dishes and light a few candles if you want.

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Image via Wikimedia/ Ahmed Rabea

Take a quick break while the kids are napping.

Use nap time to snag a quick coffee from the kitchen together while the house is quiet … and maybe a quickie?

diy frame
Image via Dagmar Bleasdale for EverydayFamily

Drop your partner a note.

Leave love notes in unexpected places around the house.

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Image via Flickr/ Martin Cathrae

Wine and dine together.

Buy a few bottles of wine or beer and have your own tasting with some snacks and good music.

happy couple hugging
Image via iStock

Create a just-for-the-two-of-you playlist.

Like the ever-important mixtapes of yesteryear, spend some time choosing just the right songs to express your relationship. Your wedding song, that one song that you listened to on repeat when you had a big fight, the song that was playing during your first kiss. Take a stroll down memory lane as you choose your favorites.

happy couple
Image via iStock

Dance.

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Whether it's a slow dance, two-stepping around the kitchen, the salsa, or the robot, work on your best moves with your partner.

happily married couple
Image via iStock

Plan a real date together.

Talk about what you'd really love to do — see that new museum exhibit, try the restaurant downtown, get a few hours of uninterrupted sleep. Then figure out how to make it happen.

Start a piggy bank to dump all your change in. Call in a favor from a friend (you watch their kids one night, and they'll watch yours another?). Take the time to remember how much you like one another.

{ MORE: How to Surprise Your Wife on Vacation }

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25 (Mostly) Free Ways to Date Your Spouse *without even leaving the house!

Sara McTigue is a secret agent, cupcake chef, award winning author, photographer, and PTA mom. At least, that is how things look in her mind. When she isn’t testing the bounds of her imagination, she is a mom to three amazing and hilariously funny children, wife to a charming and handsome man, and thoroughly addicted to reading. With a BS in English Education and an MA in English Literature, words – and their ability to shape our lives and thoughts – are an everyday fascination. Af ... More

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