Keeping the magic and mystique in Marriage: 5 Ways to Date Your husband


32 Years Ago this August, we committed to “Till death do us part.”

Marriage is the foundation for all families. Together, you and your husband are partners in writing your family story. Once the honeymoon is over and children become a part of our relationship, we need to be much more intentional about making time for our husbands. After being married for many years, I have learned that as a wife, I must always continue working at our marriage. There will never be a year when it is okay for me to become passive and settled. Whatever is watered will grow–and a marriage will always need to be a priority to keep growing.

As women, we often place very high and unrealistic expectations on our husbands when it comes to romance because of false expectations from movies, media and television. Many years of marriage are very demanding and depleting.  We just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other, between ear infections, miscarriages, sleepless nights for years on end, bills, moves, exhaustion, ……you know the routine.

Because women are often isolated in life–no friends as neighbors, no family close by, few kindred spirits–their personal needs build and build. When an exhausted husband walks in the door from work, it is a temptation to expect a husband to meet the needs that God intended a community of family and other women to fulfill. Women really do need the fellowship,compassion and sharing of life with other women in their same situation.

Often, we expect our husband them to be prince charming everyday on top of being a husband, a father, a friend, and a hard worker. While I wanted Clay to be the “leader of the pack,”, I realized that it meant  so much to him when I would intentionally cultivate the companionship and close relationship we had before children. Clay so appreciated when I would  plan dates and intentional time. It took a huge weight off of his shoulders.

The tips below are some ideas from our life to give ideas for you to plan intentional time and dates with your husband. They are all budget friendly, and many are free and don’t require a babysitter!

5 Ways To Date Your Husband:

1: Dine Al Fresco.
It is summer time, and nothing is more romantic than a warm breeze. Save money by cooking something lovely and having a date night in the backyard. Set up the ambiance at your patio table, or lay out a picnic blanket. Light some candles, let the children and pets stay inside, (Winnie the Pooh saved me many a night!), and enjoy some quality time.

2: Get Out!
It has been proven that couples who go for walks together have all around healthier relationships (physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally). Go on a walk at sunset with your husband. Hold hands, talk about your day, and enjoy the peace and quiet.

On occasion, even now most Sundays, we ride on a country road near our home in the quiet of the mountains with  our favorite music playing and just enjoy the calm of nature, mountains, meadows–greens and blues. When we lived in big cities, we would take a ride on the metro and just sit and talk!

3: Ask Questions.

In our busy lives with children, work, and a million tasks, we often forget to ask our husbands how they are doing. Set aside a few minutes of intentional time to chat with him. Men like to be strong, and not every guy has the personality to just ramble about everything that crosses their mind (like women do). Ask your husband how he is feeling, what he is excited about, what is overwhelming him, and how you could help.

Clay did not always tell me what was on his mind, but nonetheless he wanted me to care enough to ask and spend the time to open his own pressures and issues.

My mom taught me to wait until the time was right to talk about big issues that might create stress. So often, I would make a tasty meal, light candles and play calming music (most every night), and then after Clay had time to breathe off the stress of the day, I would bring him a cup of tea and just sit and visit. Then, when the atmosphere was clear, I would then bring up the stressful issues of the day. (Much like Esther waiting until after the King had been fed before she asked a request.)

4: Recreate Your First Date.
This is such a wonderful way to remember falling in love with your husband. If your first date included dinner at an Italian restaurant and a movie to follow, you can recreate that timeless moment at home! Cook up the pasta dish you had on your first date (you could even go online and print out the menu from the restaurant you went to). Rent the movie that you watched, and play it at home after your romantic dinner. You could even include the children in this night as a way to show them your love, and you could tell them the story of how you first met. Involving your children in this memory is wonderful, because it is crucial that your little ones view your marriage as something that is healthy, flourishing, and full of love.

5: Wake Up Early.
Sometimes, the only way we can find the time to be intentional is to wake up before all of the other tasks begin. Have a special, quiet, coffee time with your husband. You could even include a devotional in this time, or just take the time to pray together.

Clay does not like to compete with the demands of the kids. He would wait until the early mornings to have a cup of tea or to talk to me about things. Now we either have a short time before dinner where we focus on each other, or a cup of tea in the mornings.

Do life together and remember to honor your husband and take initiative when it comes to creating intentional time as a couple. It is a grace of a godly woman to cultivate an environment of peace and calm where her husband can feel confident and safe enough to share all the issues of his heart, both insecurities, failures, hopes, dreams and struggles. 


Still, after all these years, and even more, because of our trials we conquered together, my beloved Clay is still “my man.” He has endured so much with me. Our story of survival and faith and unconditional love, makes our story all the more precious.


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  1. says

    This is such a great article. I love it. It is also quite timely for me. We have been married 13 years as of June 24th. We have lived through more in those 13 years than many people live through in a lifetime. My husband had brain surgery about five and a half years ago and he not the same person anymore. As his brain continues to rewire and he is changing more and more as his cognitive function continues to increase. We met with the pastor that married us a couple of weeks ago and he said that it just means we have to work harder on our marriage than some others do. We are also seeking the Lord to ask what His plan is for our marriage and family. I don’t believe we walked through it all for nothing. So being flexible and definitely taking some of your suggestions are definitely in order for our marriage.

  2. says

    Happy Anniversary! What a beautiful wedding picture. Thank you for sharing it and thank you for this encouraging article. So important to remember to nurture our marriages.

  3. says

    Great read Sally, So true a marriage is the first building blocks to a great foundation. I love that! I tried to find an email for you but couldn’t :( my name is Jenny; you do not know me personally, but I am a homeschooling mother of four (7 and under); two sweet little girls and two charming boys. I have been a long time fan of many of your books; The Mission of Motherhood, Desperate, and The Mom Walk just to name a few. Your wisdom, knowledge, support, encouragement, and loving heart through the years have been immeasurably supportive to me. If you would be so kind as to please consider our new up and coming website; ‘Keystone Ministry’: to do a product review and/or giveaway promotion/offer with one of your many books of wisdom. We will be encouraging REAL people, to create REAL community, develop REAL co-op support networks, and make REAL friends. Homeschooling can be a lonely road at times just like motherhood. We are called to be a community, love one another, and be held accountable. Keystone Ministry is hoping to do just that; ‘hold’ each homeschool families hand each step of the way on this sometimes bumpy journey. I thank you for your time, support, and consideration. You truly have been an absolute blessing to my family and I look forward to meeting you someday to thank you in person over tea. :)

    Many blessings your friend in Christ~
    Jenny Irvine and the Keystone Team (Andi Gould, Kelly Mahalak, Amy C.)
    Twitter; @jnnyrvn

  4. Angel says

    Thanks for writing such thoughtful pieces regularly. I’m always blessed by your posts filled with a refreshing perspective. Keep writing! Mom’s like me are so grateful.

  5. Deb Weakly says

    This is so beautiful Sally! I love how much you and Clay have accomplished together. Thanks for all that you both do for us Moms. :)
    Bless you my friend!

  6. says

    You and Mr. Clay are such an inspiration to me. Your wisdom has already helped me immensely as I prepare myself for marriage. You two are the ultimate power couple, and Nathan and I strive to have a marriage someday that is as wonderful as yours :)

  7. Jenna says

    Beautiful bride! Great photo!
    Sally, I so appreciate your words. You are an encouragement to this very-often-lost momma. So grateful for you and your example.

  8. says

    Any extra tips for parents of babies and toddlers who can’t be left at home for walks or backyard picnics (and there aren’t really any options for babysitters?)

  9. Michelle Clinton says

    Beautiful picture!! You guys look great!! It’s fun to know a little bit of your story and how you met. Fun post!

  10. says

    Our 9th anniversary was yesterday.

    So, this type of thing has been fresh on my mind.

    With all of the trials, and hiccups, and obstacles, and opportunities to forgive – that a marriage brings…..having a wife that is intentional about getting time, serving, and loving – is key.

    Sweet reminder. Thank you :)

    May faith and joy be yours today,
    Kate :)

  11. sara says

    Beautiful piece; very inspiring. Sally, you have helped me so much as a mom and wife … I am so grateful for your ministry!

  12. Katelyn says

    Thank you for your words of wisdom! It was inspiring to hear about your marriage and your tips on helping it grow. My friend just introduced me to your blog and I look forward to reading your posts.

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