Someone once wrote to me and said date night is a great concept, but how does one make it happen? I thought I would throw a few ideas at you on how to make a date night happen when finding the time seems next to impossible.
Here are four tips with budgets, ages/stages, and time crunches in mind:
Sometimes the money isn't there for the date let alone a sitter. Or perhaps there are nights when you want to shell out a bit more on a date and the sitter is going to put the evening well over budget. Why not swap with a friend? My good friend Emma and I have successfully swapped so that each couple can go on an evening date. Since my daughter is five and pretty transportable and they have a two- and a four-year-old, we often go to their place. We put all the kids to bed and watch a movie at theirs while they go out, or leave our daughter with them while we have our date. It works great.
Compile a list of trusted care providers. Maybe you use family members or friends. But what if you are far from family or new to an area? If this is the case, it might be time to investigate with trusted friends or professionals about who cares for their kids or the agencies that they use. For me, I found out that many of my daughter's former daycare workers are often available for babysitting. This also provides a nice little reunion for my daughter.
Sometimes you have to make a date night happen and let the rest of the world wait. We can be great at dragging ourselves to work functions, a friends 11th bridal shower or the book club we haven't read the book for; yet we can't seem to prioritize our relationship. Use the same superhero like powers you use to make everything happen for others and pour that creative power on your relationship. Plan it like it was Uncle Bob's 70th!
Finding an evening during the week can be tricky and frankly we are often exhausted by Friday and this exhaustion can sometimes lead into Saturdays! We find the occasional lunch date while our daughter is in school works well. It is easy enough to organize, child care is arranged and we are often less tired and more vibrant in the middle of the day.
Motivations change as a relationship matures. That first kiss novelty just isn't there anymore. We aren't conspiring to see each other every minute of the day nor do we feel the need to. Familiarity replaces novelty, it's true, but with that comes intimacy and intimacy needs time, energy and attention and is well worth investing in. So, if you want your relationship to grow, you have to put time into it, like any other relationship. Date night, although often the first on the schedule to go, is actually really important. Try and carve out the time for each other and reap the rewards.
It certainly comes in with a bang, but for many, January can be a difficult time. And despite the party that kicks it off, many of us, parents especially, can barely keep our eyes open to ring it in. January can be a let down. In his post January is the Worst Month of the Year writer Nathan Macintosh said, "January is also the first month of the year, which really just makes it the year's Monday.” Macintosh hilariously writes about Monday mornings that are cold and dark and hard to get up to and says “Those Mondays are awful. And that's January, January is one straight month of that day. It's a thirty-one day Monday.”
How can January compare with the wonder, lead up and excitement contained in December? January is a cold month, a dark month followed by a few more months of the cold and dark.Today's medical insight recognizes a condition called SAD, Seasonal Affective Disorder which is a type of depression that corresponds with the changes in the seasons, shorter days and changes in weather that leads to people feeling lower during the fall and winter months. The diagnosis has specific diagnostic requirements but many of us can still relate to feeling a bit lower at this time of year.
January is also known in Hollywood as the "dump month", known for smaller viewing audiences and when the movies not expected to do well are released. Yes, even Hollywood has given up on January. Again, it doesn't have to be that way. Instead, be the Office Space (which correspondingly also addresses the case of the Mondays) or the Silence of the Lambs, two movies released during the dumping period that beat the odds and expectations. In turn, let's beat ours!
January, being fraught with challenges, requires some preparation and some processing going in. Knowing it could be a tough month will make you more mindful of what you need and what works for you and therefore, plan for it.
Here are some ideas to get help you get through, nay, own January!
After a lovely month of feasting, we can sometimes feel a bit sluggish, and our sluggish selves often start craving for carbs and sugary foods. Make sure you are eating nutritionally packed meals this month. Seanna Thomas, Holistic Nutritionist, suggests maintaining an 80/20 balance in the new year so you can eat well but not feel guilty when occasionally indulging.
Embrace the beauty of this season and enjoy a sport that might make you want January to last longer. Exercise brings in the happy with increased exposure to light and cardio. Outdoor skating rinks and snowshoeing can work too!
For many this is is a great month to get away and could be the month of that family holiday that you look forward to every year.
Clubs, activities, and lessons often start up again in January. Sign up for something new this January, and again next year, and the year after that and pretty soon you will look forward to the new adventure January can bring.
This is not a time to be hard on yourself for not getting to your goals sooner, today is a new day. Bound and rebound! Shed what didn't work and get excited about some new plans.
Get to bed in good time and even set a night alarm if needed to remind you to turn off the Netflix or step away from that computer.
When the weather outside is frightful, bring out the games and have a fun night in. Or get out in the snow and have a snowball fight, make a snow angel or build a snowman. It will feel great.
Go out on the town, or have friends, or if all went well over the holidays, family over for a get-together. I know a lot of people who are having family Christmas or holiday get-togethers well into January just because of scheduling. It is a season that keeps giving.
I lived in the tropics for many years and I always missed the idea of cozy, so grab the blanket, don your cool new Indigo reading socks, build a fire and enjoy a mug of tea or hot chocolate, read and bask
January can feel tight money wise but it can also be a great time to get more discerning with spending habits and more creative with purchases. DIY or upcycle instead of going the usual purchasing route, it could be quite satisfying!
An end of January girls weekend with friends? A family excursion to the city? Add in an event that makes every January become extra special.
There really is so much to enjoy at this time of year so don't dread January, get ready for it and plan it into a great month this year.
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