Thursday, March 3, 2011

Thrifty Thursday: Date Night Ideas

Dating my husband in the past few years has become somewhat of an Olympic sport. It's been a world class challenge. When your children are all boys and have a crazy age difference 26, 14, 13, and 6, date night can be tricky. Our 26-year old doesn't live at home, is in college and works full time, so he's not an option for a sitter. Our 14-year old is somewhat capable, but thinking of all 3 boys home alone, while I dine out, gives me indigestion. Considering when I am at home, the moment I get a long distance call, all chaos breaks out, I would have a hard time relaxing at dinner while away from the boys. Hiring a babysitter when you already have a 14 and 13-year old at home is just plain wierd. They don't need or want a sitter. It's just Little guy, at six, needs one.

Searching for a sitter is another challenge. Because we live out in the sticks, one of the prerequisites is; they must have a car. As anyone knows, a babysitter with a car means your rates go up dramatically. Our rate of $7.00 an hour seemed fine to me. I have since then found out, I've been ripping babysitters off. Even at our rip off rate, we still spend at least $21 or $28 each date. And we haven't even paid for the dinner.

We don't live near much family, except for my brother and his wife. They did watch Little Guy a few weeks ago. It was very special for Little guy. We had dropped our teens and cousins off to play lazer tag while we went to a party. Family is an occasional option. But...

The date night hoops are endless. Sometimes just planning a night out with my honey exhausts me.

Last month's date night...A Thrifty Solution.

A month or so ago, the Gman had arrived home late for dinner. Since the kids had already eaten, we decided to dine alone. Paperboy, who snatches any excuse to play on the wii, promised to keep everyone out of the dining room. So the Gman and I feasted alone on a fine dinner and had a lovely evening. Of course, I had to clean up afterwards, but nevertheless, it was still wonderful. And it was certainly in the budget.

This month's Thrifty solution.

Little Guy will be playing for 2 1/2 hours at a kids night out at his friend's church. He is excited about this. The Gman and I have a gift certificate for a Uno's Chicago Grill. Be still my heart,  two thrifty date nights within one month.

For those of you who get out weekly with your hubby, how do you do that? I'm already jealous. Do you have any ideas for next month's thrifty date night? I'd love to hear yours.

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Heidi said...

Great post, Terri. Right now, our 17 year old is content to babysit for the 10 and 4 year olds. But she won't be here forever. Fortunately, my parents live right down the street and are always willing to help out and enjoy spending time with the kids (truthfully, I think they are a little sad that Ashley's capable of babysitting now!)

We don't get out anywhere near once a week - maybe once a month or once every other month at best. :)

Linds said...

get out weekly? what's that like? haha! I told Drew the other day that once we get our kids out of diapers we can afford date nights whenever we want... we both laughed. The rates for babysitters here, for two kids, run you about $10 an hour. Not doable right now for our budget. So we tend to swap date nights with another couple, keeping their kid one night and then the next week they keep ours. Works out well.

the Mcclanahan 7 said...

We have 1 boy (age 20) & 4 girls (ages 18, 9, 8, & 6). The minute our son walks in the door it is total choas. But I know he loves his sisters & they love him.

We get out about every other month. Oh well, they all be grown before we know it.

Heidi said...

At 11 and 14, ours are capable of being home alone without too much concern - if they stay out of each other's space. However, actually setting time aside to go out alone is an entirely different matter. We've been making a habit of going to an inexpensive restaurant each week after drop-off for youth group. We've been known to plan outings to friends on the same evening too. :)