Couples, especially married ministry couples, need regular times alone to reconnect and recharge. If their list of date ideas reads like: 1) Go out to dinner, 2) Go out to dinner, 3) Go out to dinner, they might be in a rut. Fall is the optimal time for unique activities. Here are a few hints for lively autumnal dates. Dinner is optional.
1) Visit a local orchard. Pick your own apples. Bring them home and make an apple pie together. Eat it warm.
2) Rake fallen leaves into a huge pile and have fun jumping into it. Save raking the whole yard for another day.
3) Get tickets to a local high school or college football or ice hockey game. Wear the school's colors. If the weather is cold, think of it as an opportunity to snuggle.
4) Rent or stream an old science fiction or suspense movie that is now more camp than it is scary. Two to try: Panic in the Year Zero; Hitchcock's Rear Window. Make popcorn without the use of a microwave.
5) Hike in the woods or ride bikes on country roads. Collect colorful leaves. Sip hot chocolate and eat pumpkin donuts at the end.
6) Go to the gym with your husband. As an occasional treat, stop at the frozen yogurt place on the way home.
7) Sign up for an adult education class together. Consider drawing, photography, cooking, a foreign language, pottery or beginning bridge.
8) Sit by a fire, play board games and drink warm spiced cider. "Hungry, Hungry Hippos" doesn't count, but "Ticket to Ride, Europe" does.
9) Try a moonlight hayride. Avoid those billed as "haunted."
10) Play H-O-R-S-E basketball with your husband. Save your stats for future games.
11) If you must go to a restaurant, try something a bit exotic like Colombian or Vietnamese food. Or, get takeout and eat it in a new place such as a public park.
12) Teach your husband how to do something you excel in, like baking oatmeal cookies. Learn something from him, and give him a chance to show off in front of you.
13) Go to a fall fair, harvest festival or family farm. Pick a pumpkin from the patch. Take photos of each other using the painted wooden scarecrow props that have cutouts for faces. Go through the corn maze.
14) Make a playlist of seasonal songs. Drive through the scenic countryside while listening to the music.
15) Cook hot dogs and marshmallows over an open fire in your backyard. Tell each other stories about your happy fall childhood memories.
Fall is a great time to date your spouse. What are some of the special things you do together when the weather turns colder?