Summer nights might possibly be one of my favorite things in the entire world, right up there with chocolate and chick flicks. I love the temperatures, the sounds of nature, the clear night sky, the later daylight hours and the occasional thunderstorm. With toddlers, it’s hard to get out and enjoy those summer nights, unless we have a babysitter. It could be really easy to climb into bed and watch Netflix after the kids are in bed, while the sun is still out, and I’ll admit that’s happened at our house a few too many times recently.
In an ideal world, we’d enjoy late night strolls, movies in the park, and stay out late watching the sunset and people around us. It only took a week of letting our kiddos stay up later than normal for me to realize that I do not want that to be our every day norm. But I’m determined to get out there and enjoy those summer nights with my husband, even if it feels like we’re stuck at home and don’t have as much freedom. If you’re in the same stage of life as us, or if you’re more of homebodies who don’t like to go out as much, these ideas are for you!
Enjoy Summer Nights Together at Home
Watch the Sunset
Classic summer night activity. We have a great view of the setting sun from our deck. Find yourselves a spot where you can watch the sun set together. Set up your lawn chairs or a comfortable blanket. After the kids are in bed, grab a treat or your favorite drink and enjoy your time together. Relax and watch the sunset in all its glory. Talk about your day and your dreams and how you are doing on your goals. Don’t go inside until the sun has completely set and the stars start coming out.
Make a Summer Dessert
You can never go wrong with a dessert date! If you’re not up to making anything yourselves, one of you could run out and grab gelato or ice cream or one of your other favorite desserts to go and bring it home for the two of you to enjoy. We love making these cookie skillets on the grill during the summer or you could keep your favorite ingredients on hand to make milkshakes. Play games or browse through funny YouTube videos together while you eat your creations.
Watch the Stars Come Out
Combine this with a sunset date, or do it separately. We love climbing out our bedroom window to sit on the roof and watch the stars and the neighborhood from a different perspective. Layout on a blanket in your yard and listen to music together while the world gets dark and quiet and the sound so crickets replace the sounds of traffic and the light of the moon takes over the sky. Summer nights are my favorite for so many reasons.
Every once in a while, I love a late dinner on the deck, after the kids are in bed. One of my favorite cookbooks, Date Night In, shares stories of a couple who cooks a meal together once a week and then enjoys eating it. It’s a weekly date night at home, low key but it can be a really intimate experience to share together. Cooking together allows you to work as a team, create something, and enjoy the success of your hard work all in one evening. It’s a great time to talk and laugh and spend quality time together, doing something that everyone has to do three times a day anyway. Weekly dinners together could be a really fun tradition to start in your marriage, even beyond summer.
Work in the Yard
Maybe this is an idea in this post just because we’re in the middle of a huge yard project, maybe not. I know a lot of couples who really love to work in the yard together. I’m not a work in the yard sort of person, but my husband is. He’s always asking me if I’m going to join him in whatever project he’s working on, but I usually bow out. Find something you can do outside together, whether it’s working in your garden, planting flowers, or tackling a bigger project. Some nights we spend time outside doing something simple like watering our plants and pulling weeds. It’s a great way to get outside and accomplish something together.
Share a Cold Drink
Juice some lemons and make lemonade or pull out your favorite cold beverage. Sit outside on your porch or watch one of those rainstorms out your window. Sit as close to each other as you can, stare into each other’s eyes and just enjoy being together.
Writing this post has made me so much more excited for our summer nights at home this year. Most of ours so far have been spent recovering from a day of hard work and a night working in the yard and cleaning the house. I’m determined to cut out some of our Netflix nights and fill our time with these activities instead.
What’s your favorite summer night tradition?
Photography by Sadie Banks Photography