As good as you know it is for your marriage, sometimes a date night out on the town just isn’t possible. Maybe trustworthy babysitters are in short supply (or you’re short on the extra cash to pay them), your kid gets sick at the last moment, or you’re both just too tired to head out of the house.

If you’re going to fight for time alone with your spouse, a little creativity is in order.
And prioritizing time for your marriage is worth fighting for. While family time is a good thing, so is time as a couple. In fact, for the sake of the health of your marriage, getting “away” just the two of you is equally good.

So what’s a couple to do? Consider giving “date night in” ideas a try:

1. Play a card game on your bedroom floor.

If not the floor, find a different space you don’t typically spend much time in. Positioning yourself in an atypical location can help make it special.

2. Take a walk around the neighborhood.

No dogs. No kids. And no headphones. Just you two.

3. Relax in your backyard.

Toss around a Frisbee or play catch for a while. Heat up the fire pit and roast marshmallows on a chilly night.

4. Cook dinner together.

Doesn’t matter who the usual chef is. Get in the kitchen and prep the meal side by side.

5. Read a book out loud.

Maybe there’s a biography you’ve both wanted to read or a couple’s devotional that’s collected dust for months. Why not give them a try?

What could your family do with 500 Hours? Take the challenge.

6. Turn on a forgotten, favorite TV show and laugh awhile.

You’ve probably had your fill of kid movies, right? You could use a break.

7. Have a picnic on your bed for date night in.

Bake some cookies or other treats specifically for it. Make it an event by talking about what you’re thankful for.

8. Do a house project together.

Do you have paint sitting in your garage begging to be used? If you’re like my parents, maybe you’ve lived in your house for twenty years and still never painted your master bedroom. Or maybe, like me, you have a piece of furniture in your garage in need of a fresh coat. Lay a sheet down in the bedroom, the garage, or backyard, and enjoy working on the same thing together.

9. Work out together.

The gym is closed. So go vintage with a hilariously old exercise video. Might I suggest aerobics or jazzercise? You might earn your main ab workout from pure laughter.

10. Focus on your marriage.

Even if you can’t away for the weekend, you can still work on your marriage. The Art of Marriage online mini courses can be streamed right into your living room for some likely overdue discussion.

When we come out on the other side of this quarantine life, don’t you want to say your marriage is stronger because of it? Let in-house date nights be a part of strengthening your marriage.

Copyright © 2020 by FamilyLife. All rights reserved.

Lauren Miller serves on staff with FamilyLife as a writer in Little Rock, Arkansas, though she’ll always be a California girl. She graduated from Biola University and the Torrey Honors Institute where the Lord first planted in her a love for family and marriage ministry. As a single, she loves serving the youth at her church, watching British dramas, and reading a good book in her free time.