20+ Cheap Date Ideas

20+ Cheap Date Ideas and a Free Printable

We often write goals in January but spring is a time of renewal and also a good chance to work on goals. Something that is always one of my goals is to spend quality time with my husband.

I’ve been married almost ten years so it can be easy to get into routines and not include enough quality time together. It’s great to be comfortable with each other but you want to keep passion and fun alive in your marriage as well.

An excuse that is often given by couples for why they don’t go on more dates is the cost. Especially early on in marriages, money can be really tight. Dates don’t have to be expensive to be fun though! Sure going to a fancy restaurant, all dresses up can be a lot of fun but so can many free and cheap dates. Here are just a few cheap date ideas to get you started.

20 Cheap Date Ideas

  1. A picnic at the park. As the weather warms up, consider taking a picnic to your favorite park. This is also a great date if you are watching what you eat because you can pack a healthy lunch.
  2. Go camping. If you don’t have a tent see if you can borrow one from a friend. If you don’t have camp grounds near you, set up your own in your backyard. Bonus to backyard camping for those that don’t love the outdoors, you are close to an indoor bathroom!
  3. Attend local events. Towns often have fun free or cheap events in the spring and summer. Check nearby towns as well.
  4. Volunteer at local animal shelter. Playing with dogs and cats is always fun and helping animals in need is a great bonus.
  5. Check out a local musician. Local musicians often play at coffee shops and bars with little or no cover. You may just find some hidden talent. But don’t forget to tip the musicians.
  6. Play mini-golf. This date may take you back to your early dating days.
  7. Find out if and when your local museums have free or low price days.
  8. Try picking some fresh, local fruit. Visit PickYourOwn.org to find a farm near you.
  9. Buy a lottery ticket and then write down all of the things you would do if you won.
  10. Tour a local winery or brewery. These free tours often include free samples, what’s not to love about that?!
  11. Go to a matinee. Skip the higher priced night showing and check out a matinee of a movie you have both wanted to see.
  12. Visit your local farmer’s market. While you are there maybe pick up some ingredients to use to make dinner together.
  13. Go on a hike. Check out some local trails and not only improve your relationship but also your health.
  14. Visit an open house. This is a great way to get to know each other’s tastes better and it’s fun to fantasy about living in different houses.
  15. Take a class together. It can be fitness, cooking, painting, whatever. Libraries and local colleges often offer affordable classes that are a lot of fun.
  16. Go to karaoke. Are you brave? Sing some karaoke together, or even just sit and listen to others sing.
  17. Check out a local flea market. You don’t have to buy anything, it can be fun to just look but you may also find a hidden treasure.
  18. Go for some ice cream. For those that love vintage, see if there is a soda fountain nearby and go share a malt.
  19. Be a tourist in your own town. See if there are any walking tours around, or make your own. Be sure to take silly photos along the way.
  20. Attend a play at a community theater or local college.


Make your spring bucket list using this free printable.

Spring Bucket List Printable | Retro Housewife Goes Green
What are your favorite cheap date ideas? I’d love even more ideas!

Photo Credit- Sven Türck (1897-1954)
Department of Maps, Prints and Photographs, The Royal Library, Denmark.

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Simple Toilet Bowl Cleaner

Simple Toilet Bowl Cleaner | Retro Housewife Goes Green

You have likely seen many people suggest a toilet bowl cleaner made with baking soda and vinegar. While these are two great cleaners this is the wrong way to use them. Learning why they react will help explain why they shouldn’t be used together.

They react because baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid dissolved in water. When you mix an acid and a base in a solvent, which in this case is the water, usually the acid transfers hydrogen to the base to form a new compound. In this case, the new compound is called carbonic acid, which then decomposes to water and carbon dioxide gas. – source

So when you clean with baking soda and vinegar, you are basically cleaning with nothing. This reaction does work well for clearing clogged drains though!

Simple Towel Bowl Cleaner

A better way to use these two ingredients is one at a time. Here is a simple toilet bowl cleaner, it’s so simple it’s only one ingredient.

  • Spray the inside and outside of the toilet with white vinegar.
  • Let sit for about 10-15 minutes. This is a good time to clean other parts of the bathroom.
  • Wipe down the outside of the toilet with a clean rag, start with the cleanest parts and work to the dirtiest.
  • Scrub the inside of the bowl with a toilet brush.

For an even deeper clean, flush the toilet and sprinkle baking soda inside the bowl. And then scrub again. Baking soda will help scrub off tough stains.

The easiest way to keep the toilet clean is a quick wipe down everyday. This should prevent the need for deep cleaning.


Did you know you shouldn’t clean with vinegar and baking soda at the same time? I’d also love to know, how do you clean your toilet?

Be sure to check back each week for more tips for your spring cleaning. And don’t forget to print the free spring cleaning planner printable. 


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Real Food on a Budget: Dirty Dozen & Clean Fifteen

Real Food on a Budget: Dirty Dozen & Clean Fifteen

While I recommend buying organic produce whenever possible, it’s not always in the budget or available. The Environmental Working Group has just released EWG’s 2015 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce to help with this issue. The guide lists what they call the Dirty Dozen, the most pesticide contaminated fruits and vegetables.

The Dirty Dozen are the items you want to focus on if you can’t buy all of your produce organically. They also have a list called the Clean Fifteen, containing the fifteen least contaminated fruits and vegetables.

The newly updated list ranks 48 different fruits and vegetables by total number of pesticides found on them. This list has been coming out every year since 2004. The guide is easy to use and helps us to be informed customers.

Dirty Dozen (most pesticides)

  1. Apples
  2. Peaches
  3. Nectarines
  4. Strawberries
  5. Grapes
  6. Celery
  7. Spinach
  8. Sweet Bell Peppers
  9. Cucumbers
  10. Cherry Tomatoes
  11. Snap Peas – imported
  12. Potatoes
    + Hot Peppers
    + Kale / Collard Greens

Clean Fifteen (least pesticides)

  1. Avocados
  2. Sweet corn
  3. Pineapples
  4. Cabbage
  5. Sweet peas (frozen)
  6. Onions
  7. Asparagus
  8. Mangos
  9. Papayas (Note: Papayas may be GMO if not organic)
  10. Kiwi
  11. Eggplant
  12. Grapefruit
  13. Cantaloupe
  14. Cauliflower
  15. Sweet potatoes

To see the full list check out EWG’s 2015 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce. You can also get a PDF version of the lists or with a donation of $10 you can get a bag tag to keep with you while shopping. You can also get the guide as an app! The app includes the full list and is very easy to use.

I’d love to know, do you use these lists when shopping or will you now?

Don’t forget to come back every Monday for more tips on eating Real Food on a Budget

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Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses

Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses | Retro Housewife Goes Green

*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own. *

As a kid I always got a new dress before Easter. It’s still fun to get a new spring dress. With Easter just over a month away it’s a good time to look for one. It’s pretty cold here today but I’m ready for spring and loving all the florals and beautiful spring colors. These are some of my favorite dresses I found.

Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses | Retro Housewife Goes Green

Bunny Rabbit- eShakti

Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses | Retro Housewife Goes Green
Take Me Wish You- ModCloth
Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses | Retro Housewife Goes Green

Floral Wash- eShakti

Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses | Retro Housewife Goes Green

Spring Floral Garden Dress- Amazon

Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses | Retro Housewife Goes Green

Wing the Blues- ModCloth

Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses | Retro Housewife Goes Green

Vine Sweetheart- eShakti

Vintage Inspired Easter Dresses | Retro Housewife Goes Green

Just in Timeless- ModCloth

If you are interested in a vintage dress for Easter, check out Chronically Vintage’s 25 fabulous vintage dresses to buy right now for spring. Many of these great dresses would be perfect for Easter.

Are you getting a new dress for Easter? If so, what’s it look like, share in the comments below. If you like vintage inspired fashion follow me on Pinterest for more inspiration.

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Free Spring Cleaning Printable


Spring Cleaning Printable | Retro Housewife Goes Green

We may still have some snow on the ground but spring is less than a month away! This is great news to anyone, like me, that is not the biggest fan of winter. I’ve been pinning lots of spring decor ideas and I’m getting ready for some spring cleaning.

Confession, my house is not in the best shape right now. Last year was so busy and my house suffered. This year things are somewhat less crazy after we decided to scale back our family business a bit. I also am learning to say no to extra things I don’t really have time for.

Spring is going to be a fresh start for my home! I’m planning on giving it a good deep clean and getting ready to start some projects that need taken care of. I really need to get some painting done but that will be easier with everything in order and cleaned. De-clutting is another project that needs to happen.

I will be starting my spring cleaning, as well as my spring cleaning series here on the blog, in March. And before I start my spring cleaning I like to come up with a plan. Did you know there are only three days left in February?! Isn’t that hard to believe? So it’s time to start planning if you haven’t already.

To help myself get prepared I have created a printable to fill out and I want to share it will all of you!

Spring Cleaning Printable | Retro Housewife Goes Green

Hope you enjoy this printable. If you have any tips for preparing for spring cleaning share them in the comments below. And check back in March for some more spring cleaning posts.

Sign up for my newsletter for a quick spring cleaning tip each week! You will also get a summary of the past weeks posts. 


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