Making date nights a priority is not always easy–case in point, the SW gals all try to go on at least one date night with our beaus per month, and we check in at the end of every month to keep each other accountable. In February, only one of us had made it! We’re committed to doing better in March, and if you’re in the same boat as us during this busy time, I hope you’ll be as encouraged as I was reading Hilari and Grant’s top five date ideas. Their favorite dates are all about simple activities, quality time, and great conversation with one another–and isn’t that the point of dating your spouse in the first place? Enjoy, friends!
Names: Grant and Hilari Williams
By day: Grant loves numbers and spreadsheets and works in financial sales. Hilari is a masterful organizer and logistics lover, and works as project manager for a boutique marketing/advertising agency.
Where they live: Nashville, Tennessee
Tell us your love story, in a few sentences. We met at the last tailgate of our senior year at Vanderbilt–our mutual friends thought we’d be a perfect match. It turns out they were right! I was completely smitten after meeting him and knew he was the one even before our first date. We got engaged two years after we met, married 18 months later, and are now happily settling into married life. Our entire relationship has taken place in Nashville (minus a summer in NYC and many weekend getaways), and we feel fortunate to live in a city that holds so many happy reminders of our journey.
Tell us about your wedding! We got married on May 16, 2015. Our wedding was a glittery gold affair full of love, laughter, and celebration. Because we met at Vanderbilt, we chose to have both our ceremony and reception at Belle Meade Plantation, an iconic Nashville venue. 95 percent of our guests traveled from out of town to celebrate with us! We wanted the day to be full of our favorite things and to not only celebrate our marriage, but also our amazing friends and family who have been with us throughout our journey.
Hilari and Grant’s five favorite date ideas:
1. Football and picnics in the park: We love food, football, and being outside, so one of our favorite dates is to throw the football around at our neighborhood park. I’ll pack a picnic full of our favorite foods (definitely including homemade cookies) and prosecco, and we just enjoy each other’s company. We find that this time together allows us to unwind, connect, and people watch.
2. Radnor Lake: Grant’s grandparents used to live right down the street from Radnor Lake, so he has many fond childhood memories of lake adventures, always complete with a stop at Granny White Market for banana pudding. We love to go in the afternoon just as the sun sets–some of our most meaningful and memorable conversations have taken place as we walk, talk, and take in the magnificent natural beauty found right in the city. And the banana pudding that follows can’t be beat! It’s homemade with the same recipe used for decades.
3. Tacos: Need I say more? We share a love for tacos, chips and salsa, and margaritas! Thankfully, Nashville has a variety of taco offerings, so we are always trying new places all over town. We usually combine trying a new taco shop with exploring the neighborhood it’s in–it’s almost like playing tourist in your own town, and makes for a fun weekend date!
4. Marriage group: We are blessed with the opportunity to be part of a marriage ministry of sorts–four couples married for less than one year meet with a mentor couple (married for over 35 years). We meet every Tuesday night and will continue to do so for two years. We read scripture and books, and most importantly, talk and learn from each other during this exciting phase of life. Before our group meets, Grant and I go out to dinner, talk about our goals, values, and upcoming events, and align on “us.” We find this time truly grounds us in our marriage and we look forward to sharing our newlywed journey with others walking the same path. We’ve found that a supportive community has been instrumental in our happiness and positive outlook on life!
5. Planning adventures: We love to see the world, explore new places, and try new things. While adventures are amazing ways to connect and experience life together, it’s not always feasible to have an adventure every single week! So, we make it a priority to always have something fun planned on the calendar. Whether it’s a cooking class, tropical vacation, mountain adventure, or nearby hike, it gives us both something to look forward to and allows us to spend time together planning excursions, meals, and more. We are both a little bit OCD and love the time we spend together planning ahead almost as much as the fun outcome!