Date Night #FromHome ideas
“So, what movie should we watch?” The dreaded question. Twenty minutes of “mmm, maybe” later, you settle on an old episode of “The Office” and call it good.
If that sounds a little too familiar, this post is for you. With so many of us having date night at home, now seems like a good time to throw out a few other options that look beyond streaming TV and movie queues. I chatted with a few friends, did a little looking around on the web, and came up with a few ways you and your loved one can hang out, chat, and simply settle into a great evening together.
Bake Stuff, Make Stuff, Do Stuff
Verbs like bake, make, and do are a great place to start. Even at home, there are plenty of ways to get active together. A little searching online will turn up a number of ideas, as numerous website, and brands are offering all kinds of free content that can get you moving and doing things. (Related, if the two of you want to learn a language or take a class together, check out my previous article on personal and professional development from home.) Here are a few ideas:
25 Goodies You Can Bake Together
Hop into the kitchen, crank up some tunes, and whip up some comfort food, like cheesecake-stuffed chocolate chunk banana bread muffins or some cinnamon sugar apple cake. This article from Huffpost has those recipes and more, which are bound to taste even better when you bake them together.
Take a Photography Class Together
Practically all of us have a camera thanks to our phones, and as of this writing Nikon is offering their photography classes for free at Nikon School Online. While some of the classes focus on some of their cameras and equipment, they also have general courses on photographing kids and pets, photography fundamentals, and macro photography too.
Work Out Together
Quite on the other end of the spectrum from movie night is workout night, or afternoon, or whenever. Grabbing a workout is not only great for your body, it’s great for your head. Life Time has all kinds of workouts available for free online, including cardio, strength, and yoga for all levels. There are even some family courses too.
Wind Down Together with Some Yoga
Yoga with Adriene is great. She’s been featured in numerous fitness blogs and her YouTube channel is well over 7 million subscribers. Check out her free yoga sessions. Her approach is quite unique, with sessions built not only around fitness goals, but moods and headspaces as well. Sessions range anywhere from 5 to 45 minutes, with plenty of options for beginners, so you can take your pick.
Virtual Museum Tours
Okay, so nothing beats the real thing. But it’s nice to know that even if some of the world’s greatest museums are closed right now, we can take some pretty amazing guided tours on our laptops or tablets together. Here are just a few of the many—a simple search for virtual museum tours will turn up plenty.
Tour the Louvre
The Louvre, expansive as it is, hosts not one but seven different virtual tours of its museum. The virtual tour page for the Louvre offers a number of exhibitions, along with a virtual tour of Egyptian antiquities and several other online resources for exploring its collections.
Go to the Guggenheim
The two of you can virtually stroll along the Guggenheim’s famous spiral walkway and take in its Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, and Contemporary art along the way. The museum has further options for the two of you to explore its collections and history from home here on the “Guggenheim from Home” page as well.
Check Out Rembrandt, Dali, and More in Spain
The website for Madrid’s Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum houses 87 virtual tours (yes, 87!) featuring greats like Gauguin, El Greco, Van Gogh, along with the work of American Impressionists, Pop artists, Surrealists, and more.
Step Inside Air Force One and 11 Other Famous Planes
Seattle’s Museum of Flight currently hosts the first presidential jet plane, a Boeing 707-120, delivered for President Eisenhower, which you can visit as part of the flight museum’s 3D tours. It’s one of the many classic planes you can climb inside, along with NASA’s Space Shuttle trainer. The site is loaded with galleries
Unplug with Game Night
If you want to get away from screens entirely, game night provides a great escape—and plenty of time to simply sit together, chat, and laugh as you play. We have plenty of gamers here at McAfee, who are among the many who have revitalized tabletop gaming in recent years by looking for fresh ways to connect with friends and family after a screen-heavy day.
If you haven’t picked up a board game in ages, “game night” might conjure up sessions of Monopoly or Clue. That’s changed. The games that today’s designers have whipped up during the recent renaissance will come as a surprise—and offer you two some together time.
This one is beautiful. Inspired by the Moorish tiles of Portugal, Azul is a game of pattern placement with wonderfully wrought tiles of its own. Completing specific patterns and sets racks up points but wasted tiles “fall to the floor” and cost you points in return. It’s tactile, colorful, and lends itself to conversation. You can knock out a game in 45 minutes or less and it plays great with two people.
Take a head-to-head card game, an adventurous archeological expedition theme, and mix it in with quick-playing rules that are easy to teach, and you get Lost Cities. It’s an excellent game for couples because there’s just enough suspense and strategy to the play to make it fun—but not so deep that you find yourself sitting in silence. It pairs well with your favorite music and relaxing beverage of choice.
Ticket to Ride
If you like a little more competition in your games, this game of building a railway empire in 19th Century North America might be your thing. Ticket to Ride (and its many spin-offs) another game that you can learn in about 15 minutes, where you build routes that connect cities for quick points (like Los Angeles to Phoenix) and then string together stretches of connections for even bigger points (like Los Angeles to New York).
Modeled after the bucolic vistas of southern France, Carcassonne is a tile placement game where players collectively build a landscape full of cities, fields, roads, and cloisters—and claim points as they’re completed. It’s almost like a puzzle that you build together, with lots of strategy and risk-taking along the way. Half the fun is watching the map take shape as everyone takes their turn, and no two games end up looking alike.
On a side note, it may be tough to go shopping in your area right now. However, many local game stores and game cafes support online shopping, which is a fine opportunity to support a small business in your area. Likewise, you can find these and other games at larger online game stores and ecommerce retailers.
Playing It Safe When You Plug Back In
Whenever you hop online for that cooking class, workout, or tour, consider using protection that keeps you safer while you’re surfing—all so you can steer you clear of sketchy links, misclicks, typos, or bad downloads that could drop adware, spyware, or viruses on your device. Likewise, if any of these ideas lead you to a quick online shopping trip, take a moment to brush up on your security smarts with our latest article about online shopping scams and how to avoid them.