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Personally, I love winter, but a lot of people really, really don’t. Something about freezing temperatures and slippery road conditions…bah! I say it’s a beautiful season with so much to offer as long as you drive carefully and dress appropriately. So here is a medium long list of fun activities you can get up to in the winter time.
Reading at a cafe
So this date is probably more for couples that have been dating for a while and are okay with just sitting with that other person. Find a cute local cafe. The kind with super comfy couches around a fireplace. No Tim Hortons or other chain restaurants. Go in there and buy your favourite hot drink and the biggest, most ridiculous pastry they have on offer. A small local shop is much more likely to have actually freshly baked donuts or cinnamon rolls. For an extra treat, ask them to warm it up first! Then find the coziest spot in the cafe and settle in to read. By a window is best if you want to enjoy watching the snow falling between pages.
This is one of my favourite things to do since it’s so cozy and comforting. Reading with someone else is a nice way to spend time with them without it being a huge event or activity. I love to just sit in companionable silence, perhaps exchanging funny moments in your book with the other person. It’s surprisingly intimate.
I know what you’re thinking: I’m not 12! Why would I go tobogganing? And you do it because it is fun as hell. Stop thinking that if you do something like tobogganing or any other activity that children enjoy then you’re throwing away all of your adulthood and fail at growing up. We’re all just children trying our best anyways. So go tobogganing! Find a hill near your house and go have fun! Get covered in snow, breathless from laughing, and sore from rolling off your sled halfway down! Just let go and have fun.
Afterwards, warm up with a meal together. You just burned a surprising number of calories walking up the hill after each slide, so you need to refuel. A nice hot drink will also help thaw out your frozen hands.
Treat yourself at home
You don’t need to pay ridiculous prices to pamper yourself and your partner. The winter can be so damaging, drying out our hair and skin or chapping our lips. This is a perfect date to help combat that yucky feeling and spend some time together. First, a bubble bath with some sweet smelling bubbles. Pour two glasses of wine and settle in. You could also do face or hair masks while you soak, and laugh at each other’s silly green faces. Light some candles to make it even more romantic.
Afterwards, you can put on your warmest and comfiest pyjamas or robe, slip on the fuzzy slippers and just relax. Listening to some music and keeping the candle burning help as well. Order in a delicious dinner and enjoy it with your partner. You both will feel relaxed and closer than ever.
Explore a winter market
There are tons of farmer’s markets, handmade shops, and festivals going on in the winter time, especially around Christmas. They almost always feature baked goods, farm fresh food, and cute handmade goods. Treat each other to a small gift, something warm like a scarf or woollen socks. Many of these markets will also have entertainment of some kind, whether in an official capacity or just buskers playing their music. Grab some hot cocoa and enjoy! You can feel good knowing you’re supporting local businesses while on date night.
If you really want the full experience, look for activities you can participate in. Libraries and community centers are great for this. Cookie decorating, arts and crafts, cooking classes, photo booths, carriage rides, carolling, the list goes on! These small events are something you would probably not normally look into, but they can make you feel so connected to your community and your partner.
Ever made a pizza from scratch? Cooked Chinese takeout yourself? Well, why not give it a shot? Team up with your partner to cook a dish that you would normally buy pre-made or with premade ingredients and try to make it all on your own. It’ll be harder work than just ordering delivery, but working together and eating a fresh meal is a fun and simple way to spend the afternoon. Also pretty cheap, if you choose the right meal!
Homemade pizza, Chinese takeout, Indian curry, a tiered cake, or anything else that you’ve never made before. Really challenge yourself and make a promise not to get offended if you end up having to call in delivery in the end anyway! Enjoy the meal together, just the two of you, and spend the time talking. No TV, no cell phones, just the two of you, hopefully congratulating each other on what great chefs you are!
Have a campfire
Obviously, do not do this if you don’t already have a fireplace or a legally placed fire pit. Had to say it. But if you do, this is a great excuse to cuddle up with your loved ones. It may be cold outside, but if you build that fire just right, it will be plenty warm enough to sit out at it, perhaps with the help of a couple of blankets! Make sure you have a warm drink to keep your fingers warm. People tend to associate campfires with summer or fall, but the only thing stopping you in winter is just an extra layer of clothing and bit of dedication.
Plus, now you can make smores! Bonus! You could also try to roast some dinner over the fire as well if you’re feeling ambitious. Snuggle up, enjoy the cool air on your face, and spend the evening together. A campfire alone is a beautiful thing to just watch, but you could also set up a device to watch a movie together too.
Play with your dog
It may seem like a chilly idea to take your dog to the dog park in the middle of winter, but that’s probably when your dog needs it the most! The two of you could have a snowball fight, with your pup trying to get in on the action. Trying throwing a snowball for your dog and watching them romp around trying to find it. If you don’t own a dog together but own your own pets, this is a great time for them to get to know each other. They’ll both be so excited but all the fluffy white stuff they’ll be best friends in no time!
Not only does your dog need the exercise, but you probably do too! No offence, but we all know that winter is when we’re at our laziest. The sunlight is out for about 5 minutes a day and it’s so cold! So use this opportunity to let loose, run around with your dog, and burn off all that cabin fever, while also spending time and making memories with your two favourites: your dog and your partner (probably in the order, let’s be honest).
Host a board game night
Maybe not your typical date night, but you could invite all your couple friends and make it a multi-date! But don’t leave anyone out though. Anyways, board games are a classic for when the weather is too frightful to go outside. You could make it a classic night, where Monopoly and Charades are the games of choice. You could choose a theme such as only games that are about fantasy or science fiction. Personally, Nick and I love the long, 5-hour long narrative board games. Many of them are co-operative and help Nick and me at solving puzzles and working together.
Make it easier on yourself as hostess as well by having a potluck style where everyone brings their own dish. Or you could just buy out your local shop of their appetizers and just pig out on spring rolls and pizza bites! They always add a certain nostalgia to a board game party.
And I’m not talking about just watching one or two movies. I’m challenging you to watch all the Lord of the Rings Extended Editions. Watch all the Harry Potter movies! Choose an actor you both like and watch their whole filmography! Let’s be honest: you probably don’t want to go outside on a day like this (imagine heavy snow and icy roads). So cuddle up on the couch all day and enjoy everything cinema has to offer!
Pop way too much popcorn, pour a tall glass of soda, and maybe buy a couple of chocolate bars too. For added fun, you could make a game out of it. Drinking games are the obvious choice, but you could also do a challenge with each other, such as everytime someone casts a spell in Harry Potter, the first one to say the spell out loud wins! It adds a little more interactivity to a pretty passive date.
This one can technically be done anywhere, but I personally suggest going for a walk on a nature trail or a local park. If you both like photography, try challenging each other to take the best winter photo! The winning quality of the picture is up to you. It could be the cutest picture of an animal, most magical photo of the snow and ice or just the best-composed shot. Either way, it’s a fun way to challenge yourself and each other, not to mention capture tons of memories along the way!