Twenty-five Inexpensive Ideas for Great Dates
- Thursday, September 16, 2004
Romance doesn't have to be expensive to be great. The best romance is often free or nearly free because it is usually accompanied by a lot of creativity! If you are in a romance rut, try one of these ideas to fan the flame. Here is a list of free or nearly free ideas to make your dating a pure pleasure:
1. Have a candle light picnic in an unusual location, like your rooftop, a park bench or over looking the ocean.
2. Go on a photo date where you snap photos of each other all over the city. If finances permit it, take them to a one hour developing location. You may want to frame your favorite snap shot and give it to your spouse with a note. The others can be sent as postcards to each other over the next year.
3. Walk or bicycle to an inexpensive ice cream shop or a fancy coffeehouse.
4. Drive in the mountains, arriving in time for a sunset or moonlit stroll.
5. Go to a park, push one another in the swings and talk. Take turns listing A to Z the reasons you love your mate.
6. Walk the mall. The goal is not to buy, but to test perfume and cologne along the way.
7. Have a squirt gun fight.
8. Write clues on dime-store Valentines and place them around town, then take your love on a car rally or treasure hunt. The date consists of gathering clues and small romantic treasures like poems, chocolates, and other small treats.
9. Go to the library and check out a poetry book. Robert and Elizabeth Browning's works are a nice place to begin. "How do I love Thee, Let me count the ways . . ." Then count the ways you enjoy loving each other.
10. Write a song or a poem and perform it for the one you love. Even an original version of "Roses are Red . . . " can be a treasure since it's from the heart.
11. Reenact a portion of great romantic drama. Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet is a great place to begin.
12. Celebrate your married romance. Spend the day in bed. Prepare breakfast ahead and have breakfast in bed. Bring piles of magazines and play soft music. Rest in your love.
13. Reminisce over old photo albums or your wedding album. Set the mood by relaxing together and talking by firelight or candlelight. Another option is to have your children play waiter and waitress and serve a romantic dinner, then tell them the story of how you fell in love. After they are in bed, choose one other idea on this list to enjoy.
14. Go to a local Christian Bookstore and buy a book on marriage and read it together. Try our book, Men are like Waffles, Women are like Spaghetti . The once a week date night assignments are enriching and fun. (For a deeper time together, each of you get the study guide that goes with the book and spend time in God's Word together).
15. Have a living room luau. Often local music stores have island music at rock bottom prices. Get some plants, throw down some beach towels, put on your bathing suits and eat Hawaiian food. Aloha!
16. Borrow plants from all your friends and neighbors and turn your patio into a private garden retreat and enjoy a quiet dinner.
17. Rent an old fashion romantic movie. The movies made in the 30's to 50's are a good place to start. Hot flicks are often remakes. The original can be more wholesome but just as romantic.
18. Rob the kids toy chest. Go fly a kite or play some one-on-one basketball.
19. Work out together. Go for a jog, do aerobics to a video, or visit a gym.
20. Bake something extravagant together. Bonus points if you both help in the clean up.
21. Play a board game together. Classics like Scrabble or the Ungame are good conversation starters.
22. Put on your special song and waltz around the living room or find some new Christian romantic music.
23. Play twenty questions. Each of you think of ten questions you'd love to know the answer to. Try questions like, "If you introduced me to a stranger today, what one thing would you say I do that you really appreciate about me?" or "If money was not a factor, where would you like to go on a romantic getaway?"
23. Go to a church, or an outdoor cross and pray together. Take turns praying and thanking God for one another.
24. Anticipate the future. All marriages go through seasons. Consider buying a book to help prepare for the next season of love. Jim and Sally Conway (Midlife.com) and Dave and Claudia Arp (marriagealive.com) , have many books that help guide couples through some of those rough transitions. Talk about how to stay in love for the next ten years.
25.Renew your vows (or write personal vows, if you didn't do that in your original ceremony.) This can be a private affair or you can invite the children or friends and celebrate.
Remember, it's not the expense of the gift but the thought that counts!
Article adapted from Men are like Waffles, Women are like Spaghetti (Harvest House).
Pam and Bill Farrel are international speakers and authors of over 20 books, including best-selling Men are like Waffles, Women are like Spaghetti. They have been happily married for 25 years and they are the parents of three children. Their ministry, Masterful Living is sponsoring two romantic events, Joy in the Journey, to encourage and equip couples. For more info on the cruise and dinner gala in January. '05, go to http://farrelcommunications.com
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