It’s so easy nowadays to get caught up in the rollercoaster ride that is parenthood and forget that before our little treasures came along there was actually another person that received most of our attention and vice versa. The truth is our lives can become so demanded of and consumed by our children that we end up with very little time to share just one-on-one with our partner. And I am talking about quality time. Not just snippets grabbed in passing throughout the day or in those few minutes between when you finally put your children to sleep and hear the gentle snoring of your tired other half from the lounge room couch.
This is why the idea of taking some planned time out with our partner for a “date night” is now so popular – and important. It not only gives us some much-needed time out together but allows us to de-stress and reconnect with the person we share the day to day pressures of life with. It helps us rejuvenate and capture the essence of who we are aside from mums and dads and can sometimes be the quiet time we need to have proper conversations and laugh.
One of the biggest deterrents to giving ourselves this time out though is the cost. Raising a family is expensive – especially if you are only on one income – and unfortunately many see date night as an expensive luxury that really can’t be afforded too often. This is not the case!!! It’s good to make this a regular event and a night out with your partner does not have to mean a three course meal at an al-a-carte restaurant or a champagne river cruise followed by a night in a flash hotel. In fact there are heaps of cheap ways to have fun together and they are just as romantic too!
Below are 15 great ideas for a date night (or day – sometime the better option) on a budget.
What to do for date night
- Drive up to Mt Cootha at night and share a bottle of wine overlooking the lights.
- Fill the back of your car with pillows and blankets and head to the drive-in for a movie under the stars. There is one at Yatala and the Tivoli drive-in at Ipswich charges only $10 a car.
- Head in to the Southbank markets, on every Friday night, and wander through the stalls taking in the music and entertainment.
- Get some fresh air – grab a city cycle bike and cycle along the river.
- Go strawberry picking and enjoy them later with some champagne and ice-cream.
- Take in some culture together and spend some time wandering the Gallery of Modern Art. Entry is free except for special exhibitions.
- Send the kids on a sleepover at grandmas and have a date night IN. Have a home cooked candle-lit dinner, rent a movie and settle in for an uninterrupted night at home.
- Pack a picnic and head to one of the beautiful parks in Brisbane. The Botanical Gardens, Sherwood Park and Newfarm Park are all good options. Newfarm Park has its Moonlight Cinema in the park starting again this summer.
- Head to the coast, grab some fish and chips and eat them on the beach. So simple but it is ALWAYS a winner. The best picnic with the most scenic view.
- Go to MUD dessert bar, order two bowls of coffee and take as long as you like sipping them without fear of being interrupted. Maybe share a dessert too!
- If you have an overnighter – instead of a hotel pack up the tent and head to a campground in a scenic spot. Even better if it is a remote area that allows you to build a fire and toast some marshmellows.
- BBQ and bushwalk at Brisbane Forest Park.
- Buy a daily city cat ticket and head up and down the river at a leisurely pace, maybe hopping on and off at West End, New Farm, Brett’s Wharf and Southbank for a wander.
- Have a night BBQ along the cliffs at Kangaroo Point. Watch the night rock climbers (quite mesmerising) and if you are lucky you might see a fire-twirling class in action.
- If you are after some light giggles head to the Sit Down Comedy Clubs open mic nights. Details are on their site but the best part is entry is FREE.
Without the budget constraints there is very little excuse not to give you both a break every now and then. So plan dates in advance, get the sitters organised and go out and have some mummy and daddy free time! Remember, it’s not so much about how you are spending your time as who you are spending it with.
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