This post was written by guest author Kassy Schanen.

Sometimes the babysitter is busy, the budget is tight, or you just can’t imagine having to put on real pants. For those times when you absolutely need a night out with your partner but have to stay in, a member of our #momforce Facebook group put together some quick ideas to make it feel like an escape with your special someone.

Say, “Buh-bye, phones.” Instagram stories will be there in the morning, so put your phones away and enjoy each other’s company. Digital dating is not a thing. You can’t spend quality time together while staring at a screen. Go off the grid for a moment and talk about your day, and maybe share some favorite moments over a bowl of ice cream. Connect through face to face communication and it may surprise you how a little friendly conversation can make you both feel closer by the end of the night.

Make it a movie night. Let’s face it—you could do a one-woman show of Frozen after all the times you had to watch it with the kids. It’s probably been years since you’ve been to a grownup movie with your partner, so why not put the kids to bed early and watch something together? You could rent a movie or dust off one of your favorite DVDs. Pick up some candy and popcorn and make it feel like a special night, as opposed to just asking, “What’s on TV tonight, honey?” Sharing a kid-free couch during the movie will take you both back to your earliest dates and remind you of those initial sparks long, long ago.

Get your game face on. Stock up on snacks—it’s time to show your partner how competitive you can be! Pick up some two player board games and card games—even “Would you rather….” can be loads of fun and a great way to reconnect. If a double date is more your speed for game night, invite some friends over and pick a theme for snacks and even attire by choosing team colors.

There’s nothin’ like a little home cooking—at home. Step out of your comfort zone and find a recipe that challenges you and your partner. Maybe try a new ingredient like eggplant or tofu. Plan in advance and find a recipe you would both enjoy. Make it extra special and get out your fine china for this one. Light some candles and dim the lights for this special night of cooking and dining in on Italian, Mexican, Indian, or whatever you decide. And remember, it’s always okay to kiss the cook. 😉

Delivery is not a four-letter word. Mama sick of dishes? Eating food that has been prepared for you and not by you can be the best-tasting food you’ll ever know. Skip the babysitter, get the kids to bed early, and order some delicious eats. You can relax sans kids, and won’t even need to clean the kitchen afterward, leaving more time for each other!

It’s no easy feat raising wee ones and keeping that spark alive. We hope these tips spur some creativity on ways to reconnect with your partner. You got this, mama!

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The #Momforce by Chatbooks Facebook group is a community and support group for women hosted by Chatbooks. Join us here for tips, tricks, and mom relief efforts.