Photo: Aga Jones Photography
Time’s ticking as you get closer to walking down the aisle, but there still a lot for you and your fiancé(e) to do before saying “I do!” After all, marriage is forever, and you want to make sure you’re good and ready for it. While there are tons of things to discuss in terms of your relationships and your futures—yes, we mean having tough talks about finances, kids, religion, and career goals—there’s also plenty of fun to be had that will equally prepare you for life as a married couple.
Give these pre-wedding bucket list ideas a try:
Never gone on vacation—just the two of you—together? Do it before taking those wedding vows. You’ll learn a lot about each other during the experience, because travel is a microcosm of the worst of times (hello long flights) and best of times (awe-inducing sunsets on a beach, anyone?). Learning what each of you enjoys on vacation will help you find a happy balance for future trips, teach you some negotiating skills, and inspire adventures to come (yes, honeymoon!
). Still not buying it? According to the US Travel Association, studies have proven that couples who travel together feel closer, consider each other “best friends,” and even find more romance and better sex.
Yes, after reading all of the above we still want you to take a solo trip with some friends. Sometimes, it’s good to miss each other for a few days. Having your own identity outside of your relationship is important to hold on to, and a little vacation always helps remind us of that. You’ll also learn some good communication skills—no more quick “Dinner at 6?” text messages. Spending a week apart will lead to late night phone calls and new ways to connect with each other.
Try Out Each Other’s Hobbies
Is he always booking a Sunday morning tee time? Are you a constant book worm? Give each other’s hobbies a try before dismissing them as yours and mine. If he’s into golf, ask him to take you to a driving range and teach you how to swing. Share your favorite books and make it a book club for two. Love movies? Introduce her to the classics! While not every hobby will be a fit for both of you, there’s bound to be one or two that stick and become joint activities for life. Shared interests will make your relationship stronger
Photo: Rivkah | Fine Art Photography
Spend a Holiday Together
If you’ve never spent a holiday together, dividing between your families, now’s the time to start. While it may be hard to give up your family’s turkey dinner, or your partner is hesitant to spend Christmas away from home, holidays are going to come into play
the second those rings go on your fingers—so start getting used to it now. Come up with a schedule you both feel comfortable with—and a rotation you can live with year after year. Trying it out now will give you time to adjust to new holiday traditions, and even introduce some of your own. Spending a holiday with each other will not only be good for your own relationship, it will help you bond with each other’s families.
Binge Watch Your Favorites
Are you obsessed with Game of Thrones
and your S.O. has never even heard of the Red Wedding? Have you missed the excitement of House of Cards? Time to introduce each other to your favorites. Make date nights out of binge watching your favorite shows. Then, find new shared favorites. You’ll be surprised how much TV talk can really bring a couple together.
Go to an Open House
We’re not telling you to get ready for a down payment or dive into a big life decision, but visiting a realtor’s open house is a good way of figuring out what you two are looking for in a future home. Drive around nearby neighborhoods to find one, then walk in and tour the place. We promise: This visit will lead to all the important discussions, from where you want to live to what furniture you like, to how many kids you want to fill those empty rooms. And while you may end up deciding you’re happier in your city apartment, those discussions are important to be had.
Have a Joint Party
While we’re sure you’ve met each other’s friends by now, your best pals may not have interacted with each other much yet. Before the celebration starts, throw a party together with all of your closest buddies and let them mix and mingle. A lifetime together means these friends are going to cross paths here and there for years, so why not get them all comfortable now? But here’s the key: Make an effort to spend time at the party talking to your significant other’s friends rather than your own. These folks mean a lot to them, and they’re going to be in your life forever now too. Let the bonding begin!