By Michelle S. Lazurek, Crosswalk.com
The Christmas season can be very hectic for couples. With everything that must be done, it leaves little room for romance. However, intentional couples can still spark romance in their relationships while getting into the Christmas spirit. Regardless of a couple’s budget, the suggestions below will help them enter the Christmas spirit while sparking a little romance. Here are seven romantic dates to get couples in the Christmas spirit:
1. Horse-Driven Carriage Ride
In a nearby town where I live, people gather around the beginning of December to celebrate the start of the Christmas season. One of the biggest draws for people to come out is a horse-drawn carriage that goes around the town. The driver, adorned with a top hat and tuxedo, welcomes passengers into the carriage. He then takes them on a slow ride around the town, where customers can admire businesses adorned with twinkling lights, streets filled with lighted lamp posts, and a chill in the air. Local shops that would normally be closed during this time remain open until late evening. They also offer discounts on some of their merchandise to make the evening special. Couples can research and participate in a horse-driven carriage ride where they get to re-discover their town or explore a town they’ve never been to before. They can also go shopping or visit a local coffee shop and carry beverages around as they walk around town.
2. Game Night with Mistletoe
If a couple prefers a night in, they can pull out old board games and have a game night. However, the reward for the winner is a kiss under the mistletoe. The mistletoe can be hung on the nearest doorpost or even above the couple's head. You can go one step further and get a new game just for couples. There are wholesome games where the objective is to ask questions of each partner to spark intimacy and connection between the couple. Answer openly and honestly to each question. Seek to discover something new about your partner you did not know before. Extroverted couples may want to invite some other couples over to play games. This may not sound romantic, but the fun had between each pair may spark some romance after game night is over.
3. Nostalgia Night (with Gifts)
For couples who have been together a long time, it’s easy to forget the carefree days when the couple was first dating. However, Christmas can be a great time to reminisce and remember places you used to go when you were dating. Re-create one of your favorite nights. Perhaps it's a long yet chilly walk on the beach. Perhaps it's going to see a favorite Christmas film or going out to dinner where you had your first date. Remembering the old days can spark romance for a couple missing that spark. Make the night more Christmas-oriented by including tokens of appreciation for each other at the end of the night. Wrap them in Christmas paper, but make it something memorable for you both. Perhaps you gave each other a special gift for your first Christmas. Perhaps you have a favorite snack or food you enjoyed early in your relationship. The gift you give does not have to be expensive to be romantic. Romance is best sparked when thought has been given about the gift. Demonstrate that thoughtfulness as well as the importance of your partner by giving them a special gift that makes them reminisce about days going by.
4. Scavenger Hunt for Lights
As a kid, I loved traveling at night during Christmas time because I got to see the neighbors’ lit-up homes. Some places went above and beyond with their lights, causing a great display. Do a scavenger hunt of your town or area around you. Try to find the homes with the biggest light display. Tell each other which lights you find most enjoyable and why. Enjoy the beauty and twinkle of the lights and reminisce what it was like in your home during Christmas. Did your parents do an elaborate display, or did they keep things simple? Even if you know the answer to these questions, ask the questions again and allow yourself together as a couple to re-discover each other.
5. Send Each Other Cards
Although Christmas cards are reserved for friends and family who are not nearby, take the time to send each other a Christmas card. Get a blank Christmas card and write all the ways you love each other. Spend the night writing your card. Don’t rush; take the time to think about exactly what you want to express. Tell the good things about each other. Affirm their character. The more thought you give to your sentiments, the better. Allow the card to be your love letter to the other. Express your true feelings in that card. When finished, address it, stick a stamp on it, and allow your partner to be surprised with a special card just for them. While they may enjoy receiving photo cards from friends and family or reading others’ Christmas letters, the best card this Christmas may be the one in which you express your true feelings. Since intimacy is found when both parties express emotional intimacy, allow yourself to be truly vulnerable with the other.
6. Take a Romantic Christmas Photo
Whether you use photo cards to send to the people you love or not, you can do a romantic photoshoot with just each other. Find locations around you where you can take a nice photo. It can be a park lightly dusted with snow, your town’s main street with a well-lit Christmas tree, or even on the couch in your home, rubbing noses or kissing. Have the partner with the best phone take the photo. Go through the photos and vote on your favorite. Surprise the other by going to your local print shop and printing off the photo. Frame it as one of their Christmas gifts. Some of the best gifts come from the heart, and this is no exception. Allow the photo to be a daily reminder of all the ways you love each other.
7. Couples Adventure Book
Search the Internet for books that allow couples to have different adventures each date night. There are scratch-off books you can purchase in which couples can scratch off boxes containing suggestions for the date. Plan to scratch off and complete one of the date suggestions listed in the book. This is especially good for couples who may have run out of ideas for things to do and want to do something new and exciting in their relationship. The date suggestions inform the couple of how much money is involved and whether it is an indoor or outdoor adventure. Choose accordingly and allow your spirit of adventure to emerge.
Christmas doesn't have to be a time when intimacy is lost. In fact, it can be quite the opposite. Even with a small budget due to the strain of Christmas on your finances, follow the suggestions above or create your own romantic night. It doesn't take a lot of money to make someone feel special. The best way to spark romance is to simply reminisce about times when you were truly in love. Place yourselves back in that time frame, and often, the feelings of love will return.