Before kids, my husband and I never struggled to find time to reconnect. It was so simple to head out for dinner or drinks on a whim—without needing to worry about coordinating schedules or arranging childcare. Babies brought a new challenge to our date nights, but we were still able to get out at least once a month or so for some time alone.

And then the pandemic hit, and suddenly even a "free" night meant being confined to our living room. But rather than give up on romance, we decided to view the challenge as an opportunity to get creative.

Here are four date night ideas you can still enjoy right now—plus the perfect show or movie to watch while you do.

Takeout and movie night

Crazy Rich Asians / HBO Max

Dinner and a movie has always been a staple for our date nights. Our HBO Max subscription has made it possible to experience old and new favorite movies, series and Max Originals in the comfort of our living room. Whether we're in the mood for a comedy, a drama or a thriller (or even just a great show to binge a few nights in a row!), it's easy to put in an order for takeout and then queue up a romantic comedy we both enjoy.

What to watch: Crazy Rich Asians

Wine and cheese night

The Undoing / HBO Original

One thing that helps keep the spice in date night is taking turns planning it. Wine and cheese night is the perfect opportunity for one of us to surprise the other, selecting a bottle or two and arranging a tasting board of cheeses, crackers and spreads for us to sample together. If we're feeling competitive, we might each put together our own charcuterie and then decide who did it best. (Spoiler alert: Everyone wins!)

What to watch: HBO Original The Undoing

Learn a new skill

The Flight Attendant / Max Original

Whether we're perfecting a cocktail recipe or learning how to roll our own sushi, at-home date nights are the perfect opportunity to learn something new together. Recently, we've tried making our own pasta, painting,or reading the book that inspired a TV show before we watch it.

What to watch: Max Original The Flight Attendant

Game night

Superintelligence / Max Original

Before kids, my husband and I often spent evenings with friends or alone playing cards or other board games, but somewhere along the way we got out of the habit. Sheltering at home has reignited our love for a good game night. We'll break out a puzzle or the Scrabble board while we watch our favorite new comedy.

What to watch: Max Original Superintelligence


New and returning subscribers can save over 20% when they prepay for the first 6 months of HBO Max this holiday season . Offer valid from December 3, 2020 to January 15, 2021. Terms and conditions apply. For complete details , including eligibility restrictions and auto-renewal terms that apply after your discounted subscription period expires, visit hbomax.com .

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