Kids in Bed? 7 Ways to Bust Out of Your Nighttime Rut


My evening hours are precious. They’re my adult time—my big chance to unwind and hang out with my husband. So why does it feel like we’re doing the same thing every night? At 9 p.m. almost any night of the week, you can find me on the couch, cuddled up with my hubby, eating ice cream and watching TV. Which is lovely, but sometimes it feels like we ought to be a little more creative…not a full-on date night necessarily but just something a little different. 

Are you stuck in a post-kids’-bedtime rut too? Here are some ideas for changing things up (and reconnecting):

1. Have sex. I know, I know, that’s what got you into this whole mess of having to stay at home, on the couch, every night of the week. Change it up by Googling “Kama Sutra” and trying one of those positions. It might be fun…and you'll laugh really hard.

2.  Host a happy hour. Break out all that barware you got in your early 20s and mix up a fun retro cocktail like Tom Collins. Invite the neighbors that you've been dying to get to know over. Caveat: your kids have to be deep sleepers to pull this one off.

3. Play a board game. Think Connect 4, Scrabble, jigsaw puzzles, Monopoly with some Parmesan Popcorn.

4. Skype with a faraway friend or relative. With a glass of wine in hand and no kid noise, you may even trick them into thinking your life is sophisticated and quiet. 

5. Make it a theme night. Prepare a feast of souvlaki, pita and tzatziki and re-watch "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," or make French onion soup and a loaf of crusty bread and put on "Les Miserables." Takeout counts too: Try "Life of Pi" with Indian food.

6. Have a card party — as in listen to Christmas music, drink egg nog, and write your holiday cards.

7. Enjoy his and hers massages. Light some scented candles and use massage oils for a little R&R. Who knows, you might be inspired to try #1 (or take it on again). 

How do you bust out of your nighttime rut?