If your idea of date night is catching your husband’s eye over the top of screaming kids heads while evening grocery shopping, or perhaps setting up some Netflix before you both just fall asleep on the couch – it might be time to inject a little extra romance into your week.
For couples out there who might be struggling for date night ideas as a parent, we have interviewed some of the Mums of the Shire for their best options. If you’re looking for something easy, stress free, unique and with a touch of romance, check out the list below.
Weeknight Date Ideas for Parents
This might be a little bit of a no brainer – but the best way to get a night out together as a date is to get a babysitter.
There are all sorts of reasons why this doesn’t work easily in real life, however, including; trying to align schedules, having too tight a budget to extend to a babysitter as well as the expense of going out, and feeling too tired at the last minute to want to go out at all.
We can’t promise that you won’t be too tired to go out when the night arrives, but we might be able to help with some of the other problems.
If you haven’t got family nearby to hit up for free babysitting, it can be a great idea to connect with other couples in your area for a ‘babysitting swap’. You give them a night out by looking after their kids (hosting the kids for a sleepover will make you an even better friend!), and then your friends return the favour when your date night rolls around.
If you have difficulty planning ahead for a night out and are better at being spontaneous, you may need a trustworthy babysitting service on call.
For an instant fun night out that comes with peace of mind, check out Mummymetime. They provide qualified and insured babysitters who are available with as little as 2 hours’ notice and can help you with children of any age, from newborns through to teenagers.
Mumma’s Little Secret
For parents with younger children, Mumma’s Little Secret is a fantastic idea. You can find them on Level 3 of Westfield Miranda and they’re open until 9pm every Thursday night. Drop the kids for a play at this supervised play space and buy yourselves up to 2 hours of child-free date time. You can spend that time together in the Westfield getting a couple’s massage, buy each other romantic or sexy presents, or enjoying an uninterrupted dinner or a drink in one of the many restaurants. Bliss!
Places with Playgrounds
It may not technically be a date, but if you take the kids to a restaurant with a playground (even better if it has kid’s entertainment as well such as face painting or a magician) then you’re guaranteed to get at least some alone time with your partner while you are there.
Check out these local spots on the specific nights listed below for either kids-eat-free deals or evenings with extra kids’ entertainment to keep them busy while you enjoy a quiet cocktail (or two!)
The Taren Point Hotel has a great kids’ area that they’ll love any evening of the week, but that also offers extra entertainment from 1-4pm on Sundays.
The Prince has a very cool kids’ area including activities like mini basketball, table tennis and giant Jenga.
The Loft @ Tradies Caringbah has a supervised kids’ play area called Max’s World which offers entertainment during dinner Thursdays to Sundays. Kids eat free on Sundays as an extra reason to go out that night too!
This place offers exceptional food and a great ambience as well as the farm-themed kids’ club open every evening from 5.30pm. Order for the kids first, then let them enjoy some time dressing up, colouring in, or playing on the ipads in the fully-kitted out kids club while you eat your meals in peace.
Something at Home
If you’re struggling to get out of the house, there are still quite a few options for a romantic evening in.
Set up the Kids for a Movie Night
If you have two different spaces where movies can be watched, set them up for your two different audiences. Pop the kids in their pyjamas and with pillows and popcorn, put them in front of the latest Disney or Pixar.
Then in the other room, set up wine, dips and cheeses, chocolate-dipped strawberries and a more grown-up movie – something you and your partner will both really enjoy.
There will probably be some interruptions throughout your movie, but you should still get most of the feels of date night.
Dinner for Grown-Ups
Parents of small children learn pretty quickly that takeaway food is no longer sexy. When you’re trying to please the whole family by getting takeaway food, it ends up being stuff that pleases everybody – so generally pizza or McDonalds.
Plan a date night at home just for the grown-ups after the kids have gone to bed. Get more sophisticated takeaway – something sexy and spicy like Indian or Thai, Japanese or perhaps indulgent seafood. Get big rich desserts that you don’t want to share with the kids. Open up wine, turn off all screens and light candles – eat at a table and actually look at each other.
If the budget will allow, or for very special occasions, splurge for a chef or proper catering company to bring you a full 3 course meal.
Get a Couple’s Massage
Arrange to get a couple’s massage delivered to you in the luxury of your own home after the kids are tucked up in bed. You will instantly feel more relaxed as well as connected as a couple – and it may put you in the mood for something even more intimate after the masseuses have packed up and left!