Since Dougie was born, date nights for Sam and I have changed considerably. Of course we can always get a babysitter and go out together, but that isn’t always possible…

Dougie usually goes to bed around 7pm, so once he’s settled, we make the most of spending time together. I thought I’d share some of our favourite things to do when we’re having a date night at home…

Unplug

Both Sam and I are guilty of spending too much time on our phones, so we’ll leave our phones in our bedroom, keep the TV off and just put on some music and talk. So much of our time is taken up with work and parenting, it’s not often we get to just sit and talk together. You could even go as far as unplugging the lights and just use candles, which would be pretty romantic!

Eat together

Sam is usually the cook in our household (although I make a great mac’n’cheese) but it’s always fun to cook together and try out new recipes. We only recently got a dining table (our kitchen is pretty small, and our living room has been taken over by toys) so it’s really nice to actually sit down and eat together at the table, rather than eating on our laps in front of the TV.

Film night

When Dougie was really little, we used to go to Baby Cinema, which was when the cinema near us would show the latest releases for parents. Now he’s a bit older, that isn’t really possible (the thought of trying to keep a toddler quiet for 15 minutes is hard to imagine, let alone an entire film!) so we usually have to wait for films to be released on DVD or on streaming services. HMV always has a great selection of DVDs, and it even has an Awards Season category, so you can easily find award-winning titles to watch. We recently watched Manchester by the Sea and Lion, I’d really recommend both! Get some popcorn, turn off the lights and you could even be like Sam, who creates a ‘Trailers’ playlist on YouTube of upcoming films so we really get the full cinema experience!

Play cards

Ever since our first holiday together, Sam and I have unleashed our competitive sides with numerous games of blackjack. We have a running scoreboard tallying up how many games we’ve played (I’m very much in the lead) over the the last few years. Each trip we go on, we start from scratch, and now we’ve started playing it during the evenings. It’s so much fun to play together, and we happily spend hours with a glass (or bottle) or wine and a pack of cards.

Pamper

I LOVE a pamper session. I’ll have a nice bubble bath with a book (during which time Sam will happily play a few games of FIFA) and then once I’m out and we’re comfy and snug on the sofa, I’ll treat myself to a facemask – and usually Sam is also happy to use them too!

What are your favourite things to do on a night in?

*This post is written in collaboration with HMV. All opinions are my own.