So pleased to be reviving our series of ‘Monday Moments’, our regular column dedicated to talking about… sex.
Well – not just sex. Relationships too. We’re not talking about the singles dating game – this is a lighthearted look at life inside a relationship that’s been ticking along for quite some time.
It’s an adult-only read, with a seasonal twist. We’re talking winter date nights… and some sexy massage, toys and grown up pleasures too. I don’t claim to be a relationship expert, but I guess the people at Durex were right when they said that you don’t stay married for 23 years, have four children and manage to maintain a satisfying sex life without picking up a trick or two along the way…
As we face down the barrel of December madness, I thought it would be great to remember that even though the sun’s rarely shining and life’s becoming increasingly hectic there’s no reason to stop taking time out to be together. In fact, when it all gets grey and dull and dreary and Novembery, there’s more reason than ever to add a little schwizz to your week.
So here’s our Top Five Tips for winter date night ideas to get the warmth sizzling and your eyes sparkling…
- Outdoor Picnic for two – sunset optional.
Just because it’s not summer, there’s no reason the picnics should stop! Just change things up a bit – who doesn’t love a mug of hot chocolate in wooly gloves?
Winter picnics are ALL in the planning. A little forethought and these can get really really special…You’ll want a nice thick blanket (even if you’re in a park with a bench there’s nothing less romantic than a frozen arse), and if it’s not a waterproof-backed one you might want to fold up a square of groundsheet inside it to keep you dry and warm.
A Thermos of Hot chocolate – if you’re not driving home then make it a Grown Ups Hot Chocolate, and lace it with vodka & Baileys Marshmallows. Remember this is a Date, not just the two of you slipping out for ten minutes. So don’t forget the cream, the marshmallows and some chocolate sprinkles too.
And of course you want Good Things to Eat. Warm pies/quiche/sausage rolls etc in the oven and double wrap them in foil, then a tea towel. They’ll retain the warmth for ages, and nothing beats hot food on a cold day outside.
Pick your spot – but it’s easier in the winter as less people are out. Even your local park will be relatively empty if you steer away from the regular dog walkers route. Of course, the beach is fabulous, if you’re close enough to get there. If you can, time it for sunset- but even if it’s after work in the dark it’s still magical. Take a lantern or two, and a cheap set of battery-operated fairy lights will transform your spot.
- Walk To Eat Out
Go for an evening walk through your town to a fast food place. Ideally you just want to buy ice cream, but if, like me, you’re in a rural area and the fast food place is a chippy, then a bag of chips it is!
Wander slowly home again – turn down the streets you’ve never walked down, take a look at the houses, spot who’s got their Christmas decs up already, find the magnificent houses you’d love to buy, find the old ones that need some loving. We often play a stupid game and score points – we have to stroke a cat, find a blue door, walk right round a green car, jump all kerbs, hop between two lamp posts…
It’s stupid and simple – but you’ll always arrive home with that sparkle of fun hanging around you.
- Breakfast Together
I find it’s pretty easy to sort a dinner date. But breakfast together only ever happens on holiday – and always with the children too.
So if you can, take advantage of willing friends or relatives and ask them to have the children for a sleepover. Use your date night in any number of fabulous ways, obviously. But the important thing is to prepare so it keeps going; have a breakfast date too.
Fresh orange juice and a hot pot of coffee. A bowl of chopped fruit & yoghurt. Muffins. Croissant or danish pastries. Create a full English together. Whatever your choice, either take it back to bed, or set the table with a cloth and the best cutlery. Sit down, and enjoy…
It’s really nice to connect first thing when you’re both still energised and enthusiastic to make plans for the day ahead, rather than exhausted from a long stressful day and actually just looking forward to an early night
- Local Theatre
Keep an eye on your local community centre or theatre listings and surprise your date with tickets. There’s something far more romantic about tickets to a show than a night at the cinema, and local options are far more personal (and more cost-effective) than the big shows. Look for open mic nights, comedy clubs, winter plays, one night appearances by special guests, or a local band you’ve never heard of. Just wing it – you never know when you’ll trip over something amazing, and no one ever regretted getting out and having fun.
5. Couples Spa Night
Keep an eye on local Spas – they often offer special offers on an evening couples session (my personal favourite is the Aqua Sana Twilight Escape). Nothing recharges the soul like some absolute relaxation; no noise, no demands, no interruptions – you don’t even have to speak. But of course, you don’t need to go out for the Spa Night – it’s pretty easy to create your own at home. You just need to book the kids out on a sleepover for this one – it’s no fun if it’s interrupted!
Light some candles, turn the heating up or get the fire going. Lay out a blanket with lots of cushions on the floor, have the massage oil warming and the music needs to be suitably soft and floating.
Prepare and share a long slow dinner together with a couple of glasses of icy cold chardonnay, and then head for the ‘spa room’.
Any couples massage sessions just may be the very best solution to gear up for an intoxicating moment – I’ve talked before about how amazing massage is for any relationship, there’s nothing quite so intimate as slow, intentional physical closeness.
So there’s my top five favourite Winter Date Nights – how about you, what do you do as the nights get colder to keep the spark sparking?