[COLUMN] The Lovers Rocque:<br />
Spring Clean Your Date Night Routine

The Mr. and I both have demanding careers, which sometimes takes up a lot more of our respective schedules than we’d like. It was something we realized about a year into our relationship, before we became husband and wife. By this point we were already living together but quality time didn’t come very often. As writers, it’s easy to spend a ridiculous chunk of your day staring at a computer screen and not physically communicating with human beings in real life, even if said human is in the same room.  Sadly, that happens between hubby and I a lot more often than we like to admit.

At some point, though, the Hubs decided that we should designate at least one night of the week to spending quality time with each other with no computers, no work, just us and good conversation, relaxation and bonding. That’s how our Friday date night was born. It’s an event that has become the highlight of our week. Most of the time we start off with dinner that leads to a movie, going to play pool, or sometimes just snuggling on the couch at home. When the weather is warm, we go to Coney Island or walk around Brooklyn’s promenade. Regardless of the post-dinner destination we always have a great time but, admittedly, we’ve fallen into a bit of a rut so I decided it’s time to Spring Clean our date night routine.

Here are five new dates that I have plan for us (and you), that’ll mix things up:

1. Take an Exotic Cooking Class

We often find ourselves eating Thai, Greek and Indian food but sometimes eating out can get expensive and fattening, since you don’t really know how certain items were prepared. A simple fix for both of those problems is to cook at home—together. It’s about time we take some classes and learn how to apply them at home. Besides, getting our hands dirty can be sexy.

2. Workout Date

We both enjoy taking various classes but we’ve never actually done it together. I’m a fan of dance, which he swears he can’t do, while he loves kickboxing, something I haven’t tried yet outside of Billy Blanks tapes. It’s time we shake things up by either introducing each other to our workout worlds or, trying something new together like in-door rock climbing.

3. Have a Slumber Party

We usually don’t do date night in unless the weather’s bad because of the temptation for us to jump on our computers and ignore each other. However, with April showers upon us it’s time we stay in, order some treats, play Def Jam Rapstar and watch cheesy B-movies.

4. Volunteer Together

Giving back to your community is a wonderful reminder of why you should be thankful for what you have, especially each other. In our case, I’m thinking we might hit up a soup kitchen. There’s nothing more romantic that doing a good deed with the one you love.

5. Dessert Date

I have a sweet tooth and sometimes manage to drag the Mr. into my madness. He has gotten me to tone it down a bit but every now and then indulgence can be fun. My plan is for us to eat a meal at home and then hit the city for an outrageous dessert to try, like wasabi ice cream or French Toast-flavored rice pudding. Yum!

What are some of your favorite things to do for date nights out? I could use the suggestions. Sound off!

Mr. and Mrs. Rocque are the couple formerly known as Anslem Samuel and Starrene Rhett, New York-based journalists who found love in between bylines. Follow the newlyweds’ musings of a marriage in progress here, on Twitter and via their joint blog.