Looking for some ideas of cool things to do at home with a partner.
May 25, 2012 11:27 AM   Subscribe

Looking for some ideas of cool things to do at home with a partner.

The boy and I are looking for new ways to spend qualiy time at home together. We love going out to dinner, movies and stuff like that but can't afford to every night and lately I have been feeling like when we are home, we are too off in our own worlds and I would like to find some stuff we can do together.

TV has been an issue for me because he finds it too easy to multitask (e.g. go on e computer) and so I feel we aren't really getting time together. And it is an issue for him because he feels my tastes are too different from his. We both like Star Trek, Apprentice, Modern Family, Sports Night and a handful of other shows. But I am more into sci fi and mystery and he prefers stand-up comedy and sitcom. When we turn on Netflix to see what there is, we seldom agree.

We have also experimented with board games. He dislikes my fav game, Scrabble, because I always win. I dislike his fav game, Monopoly, because HE always wins :-) He is the classic math brain and I am the classic language brain :-)

I am open to suggestions for movies/TV and board games other than those listed. Also open to 2-player games for Wii or Xbox that we might enjoy together. But more than that, I am open to suggestions for other stuff outside the box a little that we might not have thought of to do together.

Extra wrinkle: we are both great at being independent, and have our own hobbies and interests. But I think that he, more than I am, is sensitive to feeling like his me time is getting encroached upon. So I have resisted stuff like inviting myself to go to the gym with him because I think that is his personal time. It's a tricky balancing act...
posted by JoannaC to Grab Bag (31 answers total) 70 users marked this as a favorite
Cooperative board games might suit you better than competitive. Check out Pandemic or Forbidden Island.
posted by griphus at 11:28 AM on May 25, 2012 [3 favorites]

Husbunny and I each require a lot of alone time. I usually read or watch crap on TV, he usually messes around on the computer.

What we find that works is having certain shows on TV that we enjoy and watching those together with the kitties.

We look forward to our shows, we know when they're on, and it's scheduled. Each night at around 11, we get together in bed and watch a Simpsons, Robot Chicken and/or the first 15 minutes of The Daily Show.

Have you tried card games? Cribbage, or maybe backgammon?

How about Zumba or another Dance game for the Wii?

Perhaps go for an evening walk, or joing a cheapo storefront gym and go together.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 11:32 AM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

posted by empath at 11:35 AM on May 25, 2012 [5 favorites]

Buy a bottle of vino and pull out Carcassone. It's a great board game that can be played with 2 or more people.
posted by zoomorphic at 11:35 AM on May 25, 2012

nthing carcassone. Also Lost Cities! Any of the lego (harry potter batman etc.) whatever video games are fun and great with a partner.
posted by edbles at 11:39 AM on May 25, 2012

Looking for some ideas of cool things to do at home with a partner.

Well, there is the obvious thing... Perhaps adding some spice to that department would be a possibility? Role play, toys, kinks, etc.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:39 AM on May 25, 2012 [4 favorites]

My boyfriend and I have been enjoying playing Gin Rummy lately -- it's rules are simple and not mentally taxing -- somehow it's very relaxing after a tough day of work.
posted by peacheater at 11:41 AM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Ukuleles are cheap, relatively easy to learn*, and fun for two people.

*I mean easy learn a few chords, enough to play hundreds of songs rather badly but in a really fun way.
posted by bondcliff at 11:44 AM on May 25, 2012 [2 favorites]

Mario Cart on Wii =c)
posted by pyro979 at 11:45 AM on May 25, 2012

Another vote for Carcassone and Forbidden Island.

For the Xbox, all of the Lego games are great - co-op problem solving, in the Lego world. Loads of fun.

Maybe some hidden object games, played together on the computer? Or perhaps team up on an escape-the-room game, or something more esoteric like Submachine?
posted by jbickers at 11:45 AM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Taluva is a good game if competitiveness is not a problem.
posted by rr at 11:48 AM on May 25, 2012

Cards? Jigsaw Puzzles?
posted by fancyoats at 11:57 AM on May 25, 2012

Cooperative videogames are great fun with a partner. Competitive videogames are a different type of fun. We like some of the casual friendly co-op shooters like Halo, Left 4 Dead and Borderlands.
posted by 2bucksplus at 12:07 PM on May 25, 2012

Nthing jigsaw puzzles. Those puppies can keep you occupied for years.
posted by Melismata at 12:08 PM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Go for a walk in the neighborhood together.
posted by Ery at 12:09 PM on May 25, 2012

DIY projects -- fix, make, or organize something around the house. Build something out of wood. Make something electronic. Make art for the wall.

Cook together. Or experiment with making cocktails. Give each other blind taste tests.

Learn how to dance. Or if you're not into that, play "Just Dance" on the Wii or Xbox. Or some other active video game.

Sing or play a duet.
posted by chickenmagazine at 12:14 PM on May 25, 2012 [2 favorites]

Play modern board games: Carcassonne, Dominion, and Ticket to Ride.
posted by smorange at 12:27 PM on May 25, 2012

Ukuleles are cheap, relatively easy to learn*, and fun for two people.

This is actually what I have been doing lately. My SO is more of a musician. I am like "No, I have no musical ability, no, quit asking" and one day he just got me a uke and ignored me when I said I would never learn. And, I am usually pretty smart but I was wrong about this. Getting to play music together has been a really neat part of our list of things we do together [right up there with walking around outside, watching old teevee together, totally fruitless geocaching, organizing old photos, cleaning the hell out of the house, sending postcards, that sort of thing]. You might also try Boggle which is sometimes a good overlap for the math/language folks.
posted by jessamyn at 12:38 PM on May 25, 2012 [3 favorites]

If you have a dining table or desk play ping-pong (there are nets that can be attached to tables)! If you have more space play frisbee!

Learn to make sushi or Korean food (look for how-to videos on youtube).

Try body painting.

Have a spa night, learn massage, take a bath or foot bath together, apply face masks.

Build a diorama (those can be very advanced, on any theme and if it turns out nice you have a cool piece to hang on the wall/put on a shelve).

Be silly like kids: Have a photo shoot or dress up (you pick out his clothes/he picks out your clothes/you can only wear his clothes/he has to wear your clothes). Have a glass of wine if this one is 'wild' for you.

Some advanced activities: write a book/graphic novel together - each person one page a week and then switch, start reviewing things (TV shows? sports?) and write a blog/record podcasts & upload to youtube. Get involved in some shared cause (fundraiser or some such) and brainstorm how to help the matter and tweet/blog about it together.

If you haven't seen those:
posted by travelwithcats at 1:50 PM on May 25, 2012 [2 favorites]

One thing we did recently: I saw a suggestion online for toasting the outside of a marshmallow, pulling off the toasty outside part, putting it in your mouth, and then having your partner fill it with Bailey's or Butter Shots. Like a marshmallow shot. We experimented with all different kinds of liqueurs. (I also learned that you can pinch the marshmallow skin closed like a cup, which is less messy.)

This is only maybe half a night's worth of entertainment, but it's fun.
posted by chickenmagazine at 1:53 PM on May 25, 2012 [4 favorites]

Boom Blox for the Wii is fun.

America Horror Story is an awesome show. Gallows humor, mystery and really well written.

Doing some sort of art project is also fun. My bf is a really amazing artist and I am mediocre at best, but if you use a medium like encaustic (painting with wax, basically) which is really unpredictable and anything you make ends up being cool, there's no worry about artistic abilities.
posted by waitangi at 1:56 PM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

For Wii, I think Mario Cart is super fun to play together. As I recall, you can set different cars to different skill levels to even things up if needed (depends if you care - I do not mind playing that sort of thing even if I totally suck/lose!).

Another thing my SO and I like to do together is cooking and baking together. It's especially nice to pick a sort of fancy/complicated meal that would be a pain to make all by yourself, but it is a lot more fun with someone to chat with and split the work. You can absolutely do this with inexpensive ingredients!

You could also learn how to make/mix nice cocktails as a substitute for going out for drinks. There are lots of recipes that involve steps like making a fruit puree or flavored simple syrup. Then you guys could enjoy cocktails and conversation together - maybe light some candles?
posted by rainbowbrite at 2:02 PM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Rock Band/Guitar Hero games are great for this.
posted by Navelgazer at 3:54 PM on May 25, 2012

I have a couple xbox suggestions: Braid and Limbo. These games are technically one player, but require problem-solving, so together you could work out what to do to advance in the level, and they are also beautiful-looking for the person watching (of course, switch it up!)
posted by to recite so charmingly at 5:30 PM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Ha... my husband and I have the Monopoly/Scrabble split going on too. Carcassone is a game we both love, but we play it on the XBox because the scoring is automatic (also it tells you all the "legal" options for placing your piece on each turn.)
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 5:37 PM on May 25, 2012

We do crossword puzzles together. You can get collections of the NYT Sunday puzzles at used bookshops. If you have different areas of expertise, and it sounds like you do, together you will be unstoppable!
posted by blurker at 7:55 PM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Weird that people have suggested Lego video games but not actual Legos. My husband and I have built dozens of Lego models together. Not cheap in startup costs, but the ones for adults take hours and they're a lot of fun to make - it's neat to see a big project like that come together, but it's not so tricky that you can't converse while you're doing it.
posted by town of cats at 10:41 PM on May 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Mancala! Mr Corpse and I were obsessed with it for a while. Then we got tired of it and knew it was time to have a kid.
posted by The corpse in the library at 9:29 AM on May 26, 2012 [1 favorite]

The boyfriend & I like to do crossword puzzle challenges. We pick up two copies of a free paper like the Onion or the local freebie, or otherwise photocopy the puzzle if we only have one copy, and then we race each other to see who can finish first. He's been doing them forever and is way better than me, but we have way different knowledge bases and so a lot of times one of us will get hung up on one section that the other has completed, so we'll trade answers. I've gotten a lot better at crossword puzzles since meeting him!

We also like to do jigsaw puzzles together, and play games like Aggravation or Kismet. And sometimes we do book club, where we find a book that we're both interested in (this is pretty hard to do, so only 1-2 times a year in general) and then we try to read at the same pace and discuss it when we finish different chapter/sections. The Harry Potter books have been a lot of fun for us to book club.
posted by jabes at 11:25 AM on May 26, 2012

Scrabble is a math game.
posted by jeffamaphone at 8:57 AM on May 27, 2012 [1 favorite]

Well, it involves maths and language - and if you can remember the right words, it's easier to win than planning your scores.

My SO and I like to play boardgames together. There's some which involve direct conflict (I like Cold War: CIA vs KGB) and some which are more relaxing, like Carcassonne. I'd recommend finding a local game shop and trying some out - which is a cheap night out in itself.
posted by mippy at 8:01 AM on May 28, 2012

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