The obvious changes in your physical relationship notwithstanding, newlywed life opens a wealth of special date options that simply aren’t as practical or prudent during your time as an engaged couple. My husband and I were engaged long-distance and looked forward to our married life, when we’d see each other daily, but even if you’re planning your wedding near one another, the difference between having to say goodbye at a certain point in the day and having the freedom of fewer limitations on your time is a sweet one.
If you’re looking forward to, or already living out, the realities of your newly married days and are looking to savor them in particularly memorable ways, it’s helpful to consider times of day, like early morning and late at night, when it’s far simpler and more free to spend time with your beloved, as well as the fact that after the wedding you’ll share a home.
Here, four date ideas that speak to these changes and celebrate your status as newlyweds:
Plan a late-night Holy Hour.
The graces of placing yourselves in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament as often as possible speak for themselves. Whether as a periodic date or standing weekly commitment, find a parish with Perpetual Adoration, set your alarm for the middle of the night, and head out together for an hour of prayer. Sacrificing the comfort of sleep for the sake of time with the Lord is sanctifying and unites the two of you to the faithful and their prayer time the world over.
Picnic at sunrise.
In our early days of dating, before having children meant we tend to cling to every possible second of sleep and when we lived minutes away from each other on the same campus, my now-husband and I loved meeting in the early morning to watch the sun rise from the porch of our university’s admissions office. If your engagement is taking place in the real world, off of shared college turf, it’s likely that meeting up early in the morning--before work, and from different neighborhoods--is hard to pull off. It’s a pleasure to finally wake up together as a married couple, so take advantage by soaking in the early morning together! Program your coffeemaker and pack a blanket and simple meal the night before, or drop by a coffee shop before heading to a scenic spot.
Spend an intentionally lazy afternoon in bed.
Intentionally lazy sounds contradictory. But what I mean is this: carve out time to relax with your new husband, but make specific efforts to take things up a notch from your typical weekday Netflix o’clock. One of my husband’s and my favorite ways to spend a Sunday afternoon (or, if I’m being honest with two toddlers, Sunday nap time) is to come home from Mass, make a meal for brunch, and eat in our bedroom while reading or watching a movie. I like to make things intentional and special by wearing nicer pajamas or loungewear than my typical college T-shirts, tidying up beforehand, lighting a candle, and opening the curtains and windows--taking a few moments to create a peaceful atmosphere makes it feel much less like you’re holed up in your room and much more like you’re surrounding yourself with beautiful things and, God willing, beautiful weather.
Work on your new home together.
While it’s likely the two of you began gradually moving and combining possessions and choosing several new furniture items before your wedding, new needs and projects frequently arise as you both begin hanging your hats in the same dwelling. Elevate necessary chores and errands by checking them off together and adding in an out-of the ordinary element: go shopping as a duo to complete your registry or purchase materials for a project, set aside an afternoon to assemble furniture or appliances, hang a gallery wall of your wedding photos. Choose a new-to-you audiobook or podcast to accompany your work, and pick up takeout, maybe from a spot that’s a notch above fast-casual, on your way home.
We love hearing your own experiences and offering them to our community. If there are any special rituals you've adopted as a couple after marriage, be sure to share them in the comments and on Spoken Bride's social media!