How to Plan your Year of Dates Present

This year, my husband asked me to gift him A Year of Dates again. If you missed last year's present, read it here.

I am sharing with you how I am planning my gift to him this year. I obviously cannot share specifics since he does read my blog. I will be posting throughout the next year about what dates we are doing so you can use them for your gift next year!
Planning a Year of Dates - how to including printables | Managing a Home
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Matching Months to Dates
Pretty obvious, but it is harder than you think! I used my Date Ideas Board on Pinterest to provide some inspiration.

I have a handy, dandy printable that I used to help me plan. It has a column for the month, the date that I chose {use pencil - lots of erasing and moving around}, as well as cost for the entire date and what I am willing to contribute. I am always sure to include a BIG date in there. Big date = most expensive. I always pay the full amount for that one, because some months, I opted to not pay for the entire date and that month we just budgeted in some of the money needed. For the rest of the dates, I mixed in some cheap and free dates as well.

I also have added columns so that you can note what gift item you will include {gift card, voucher, cash, etc} and a column to help you remember if it is completed or not.
Printable Planning Page for Year of Dates Present | Managing a Home
Click here to download planning page
I am cheating a little this year and reusing one that was extremely popular and re-gifting dates we didn't get to do, so I feel confident I can share them with you. 

Spa Date - I opened up the Schramm Spa for one night only. I gave him a choice of 6 options, he got to choose 2. {can't have it all} I found recipes online for facials, foot scrubs, bath salts, massage oil and a lavender face mask. When he made his choice about what we would like and made his 'appointment', I gathered my materials and made what I needed to make. I was rather inexpensive because it is done at home and all of my treatments were made at home as well. This was by far his favorite date. 

Hiking Bushkill Falls - we didn't get to do this date because of the timing. The height of the season this year fell later and it just didn't land on a weekend we could get up there. Going for a walk or hike is a perfect date. You get exercise, beautiful views and best part for us is we could take our baby girl along. You can find hiking trails near you and pack a picnic to take along. 

Drive-in Movie - We still have a couple if drive in movie theaters near us. It seems like such a great experience. You can see if there is one near you. If not, many movie theaters are starting to convert to full service theaters. This would be a great "dinner & a movie" all at once. 

For ideas, you can follow my Date Ideas Board on Pinterest, check out Groupon or Living Social {just be aware of the expiration dates} and be sure to think about some things you did when you first started dating and throw those in there too. These traditional things took up most of my dates for our first year.

Writing out your dates or Printing them out

I have to admit, this was my most difficult task. I wanted to say something meaningful but everything came out not-so-cute quirky or it didn't make sense. Since I hand-wrote each month's date so I went through a lot of paper. Surprisingly, this is the one thing I got the most comments on from my last post - how handwriting the notes really adds something special to the gift. I have always believed in handwriting notes when it is especially sentimental or meaningful.

This year I started to type out each date idea. This way I can have my wording available and then hand write on the pages I chose to use. 

Some tips to help you: 
Title page: Explain why you are gifting this to him. In our case, my husband's love language is time spent together so this is my expression of love.  Here is a glimpse of last year's.
How to assemble a Year of Dates Present. Introduction letter | Managing a Home

Month descriptions: Give brief instructions on how it is to work. This is also where you can make it sweet or add any cryptic messages you may want to add {wink,wink}.
How to plan a Year of Dates. Monthly letter example | Managing a Home

Assembling it all together

Use any envelope you would like. I used these larger ones because I had some gifts that wouldn't fit in a small envelope. This year, I may use the small envelope - haven't decided.
How to plan a Year of Dates. Monthly envelope example. | Managing a Home

Here are the labels that I used for the large envelopes. I have included ones for smaller envelopes. Print, cut and paste onto the envelope.
How to Plan a Year of Dates. Labels for envelopes for the gift | Managing a Home
Click to download the large labels or small labels
Put in a box and you are ready! Happy Holidays!

I also have created a Year of Dates for Kids!

Plan a year of dates for your kids. Free printables. Makes a great Christmas Present

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  1. What a great idea! I know my husband would love to have date nights planned and scheduled for the year!

  2. Love this! Dating your spouse is so important!

    1. It really is and I did not realize HOW important it really was until we had our baby girl.

  3. The inner planner in me likes the organization a little too much. ;) Great ideas to keep romance part of your marriage!

  4. I love this! Hubby and I barely go out at all these days due to a serious lack in finances and the fact my husband is not the most romantic/creative guy. It's not that he doesn't want to, he just can't figure out how to do a date beyond going out to an expensive restaurant! I'll have to do something like this, and figure out a bunch of inexpensive ones and free ones and maybe even do some things for people to finance them myself! It would really be great for our relationship right now, and I didn't have any ideas for him for Christmas this year yet either! Thanks for the idea!

    1. I'm glad that I could help you! My husband isn't much of a romantic/creative guy either {he has his moments} but his love language is spending time together. Be sure to check out my Date Ideas Pinterest board for some free/cheap dates

  5. I LOVE this idea. My husband and I definitely need to go on more dates together. I think we've only had a couple in the past year!

    1. Then this is great for you! Even if you are like us where this year we only got to do 7 of our 11 so far, it's a chance you will actually get out!

  6. I love this! Great ideas for married or dating couples!

  7. This is perfect! I love it! Pinned and tweeted. Thank you for being a part of our party. I hope to see you on tonight at 7 pm. It wouldn’t be a party without you!
    Happy Monday! Lou Lou Girls

  8. What a smart idea! I love this!! Excited to share~


  9. This is such a great idea!! Now that we have a baby, our time together has really taken a toll. This is the perfect way to intentionally spend time together!! AND, the grandparents will love to come babysit. :) Thanks for sharing, pinned! :)


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