With me getting a new job and the expense of moving to a new, bigger apartment, my boyfriend and I found ourselves pretty strapped for cash. And next week we will be completely broke, until we get paid. My new job only pays me once a month, so it’s pretty stressful the last week while waiting for my check. But we also like to get out of the house and do stuff, and doing stuff usually involves spending money, so I did some research and came up with my top 10 dates for under $10.
In no particular order of importance, here they are:
- Take an at-home cooking class. Find a recipe you both want to try and learn how to make it together. Or check out any videos on YouTube to learn new techniques in the kitchen. This is a great idea if one or both of you are clueless in the kitchen.
- Go nuts at the dollar store. Each of you gets $5 or you can spend $10 together. Get puzzles, coloring books, dumb games, logic puzzles, anything that will entertain you without having to turn on the television and rot your brain. Or have a contest to see who can find the weirdest thing the quickest and then whoever wins gets a massage or gets to pick the movie you watch that night.
- Buy a bag of cheap candy and quiz each other on your favorite things. Colors, movies, songs, TV shows, animals, food – and make up some funny ones too. Each time you get one right you get a piece of candy, and when you get it wrong you have to give one up. It’s a little corny but it’s a fun way to get to know your partner.
- Check out your local zoo. Admission is usually free or less than $10, and it’s a great way to spend time outdoors while also doing some light exercise. Take a camera with you and take pictures of each other with the animals, or pick a day when the zoo is doing a special event like a charity walk.
- Go onto Pinterest (or make an account if you don’t already have one), pick a craft, and see if you can make it happen without spending over $10, or by using things you already have in your home. Everyone owns way too many T-shirts – kick your sewing skills into high gear and make a T-shirt quilt. Or make clay dough and create sculptures to paint.
- Play a board game. Some games are out obviously because sometimes they aren’t really fun with just two people, but some of my favorites are Taboo, Catch Phrase, Scattergories, and the ever-popular Scrabble. Or Google new card games, grab a deck and start playing. Hand and Foot is my favorite, but you need four players so invite another couple and have double date night.
- Use your ten bucks, cash it in for quarters, then go to an arcade together. Once the money runs out, pick out a prize together with your tickets. Last time my boyfriend and I did this, we ended up getting a Magic 8 ball and then used it to decide what we wanted to do next!
- Pick out a show on demand or on Netflix that you have never watched before and start watching it from the beginning. After each episode talk about what you thought of the characters and plots. You can also do this with any trilogy of movies – The Matrix, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Iron Man, etc.
- Find a couples quiz online – the cheesier the better! – and give it to each other.
- Take all your old magazines/newspapers/books, some school glue, a pair of scissors and some posterboard and go to town making a collage. Bonus if you give it a theme that has something to do with you as a couple, like places you want to travel to, things you want to do someday, a wish list for Christmas, or things you love about each other.
Emily Little (nee Campbell) was a perpetually single girl who recently met and married her Mr. Right. Her blog, Dating Emily, has been a two-year diary of her adventures in relationships. Her life of bar-hopping and casual dating has turned into one of dog-walking, craft-making and budgeting for eventual home ownership. But just because she can make a mean casserole doesn’t mean her adventures are over. As she prepares to become a first-time homeowner and eventually, a mom, she is discovering that the adventure may just be beginning.