Have a breakfast date in the bedroom
Sometimes even the best date-night plans can go awry. Your foolproof recovery plan: have a breakfast date the morning after. If your children are old enough, drop them off at soccer/piano lessons, head home and get back into bed. But first, fix yourselves your favourite breakfast (or just bring in croissants and jams to avoid post-breakfast cleanup). Pour mimosas, Bloody Marys or prettily garnished virgin versions. Then, enjoy your stolen time beneath the covers: read aloud to each other; relax; snuggle. What better reason to put off those Saturday-morning chores for another day or two?
Serve something spicy in your dining room
The best part about date night is not having to cook – or clean up. So why not order takeaways from your favourite eatery, making sure you add a few spicy dishes to the menu? ‘Spicy foods, like hot chilli peppers, warm up your body in a way that can be a prelude to foreplay,’ says Schwartz. Once the food is on its way, put on soft dressing gowns and crank up some sexy tunes. Then push the table against the wall and slow dance. When the food comes, arrange it on small plates, spread a blanket and plush cushions on the floor and throw table manners to the wind by feeding each other with chopsticks or your fingers.
Melt away stress in your master bathroom
When you’re too exhausted to get down to business, pampering each other is a no-pressure way to feel connected.
Think your husband will roll his eyes at a spa date? Seventy-four percent of couples who consider their relationships very happy give each other regular massages, says Schwartz. So warm up massage oil, run a bath and take turns stroking. You can buy a mini hot-stone massage kit for under R100 at Kalahari; try heating the rocks in a slow cooker (carefully!). Once you’ve both been kneaded, shower together and dry each other off with big, fluffy towels.
Take a holiday in your guest room
Who cares if your guest space doesn’t overlook the beach? Just transform it from spare room to holiday suite with a few items that will whisk you back to your favourite getaway. Smell is the sense that triggers our most powerful memories, so grab that tiny bottle of coconut-scented lotion from the island hotel you adored, apply all over (on your man too!), inhale and imagine the crystal-clear waters outside your door. Slice up fresh mango, like you did every day at the open-air breakfast buffet, and feed each other. Queue up holiday photos on your laptop for a slide show accompanied by the music you heard on your trip – even the silly pop songs in every café that drove you a little crazy. Finally, don’t forget to wear your holiday lingerie under your sexy beach shift – but be sure to sleep in the nude. Couples who do so tend to have more sex – reason enough to send those baggy flannel pyjamas on a permanent holiday.