Summertime is over, family vacations are done, and the school year is in full swing again. If you’ve got kids, their plates are full once again with homework and extracurricular activities. You and your spouse are back in your regular routines as well, and it’s gearing up to be a busy season.

You always cherish the family time that comes with summer break and vacations. It’s a great time to not only connect on a deeper level with your children, but spend some much-needed time with your spouse. So once you’re all back to your regular rhythm, how do you continue investing quality time in your marriage?

Vacation might be over, but that doesn’t mean your schedules have to edge out intimacy. Today, we’re sharing four ways to make more time for your spouse this fall. Let’s jump in.

1. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SCHOOL DAYS

Got the kids back in school? Now might be a great time to consider taking the occasional day off work together during school hours. This is one way to invest a little alone time in one another to reconnect and ignite intimacy.

Whether you plan an outing, a nice lunch, or a little private time at home, make this day all about your relationship. You could:

  • Stay home for an intimate “date day” with candlelight and a romantic movie
  • Get a couples’ massage
  • Go out for an afternoon lunch at a nice restaurant
  • Have a picnic at the local park
  • Go on a long walk together at a botanical garden or wildlife preserve

If you want to extend your day together, arrange for a trusted friend or family member to pick the kids up from school. (Bonus if your date day is on a Friday and spills over into the weekend.)

2. AVOID OVERFILLING YOUR CALENDAR

If you have kids in school, they’re going to be busy no matter their age. And with the kids’ school activities come additional responsibilities for mom and dad. Opportunities to organize and volunteer at events abound, and it can be very easy to say yes to too many obligations.

Remember that when you say yes to too much, your time with your spouse suffers. Carefully pick and choose where you invest your time, and be cautious not to edge your spouse off your calendar. It can happen easily, before we realize it. If you do find yourselves facing down an activity overflow, see where you can team up. You might be able to participate in some of these activities together.

3. ATTEND SEASONAL EVENTS AND ACTIVITIES TOGETHER

Fall activities and sporting events (like football) can take up a lot of your time. Whether you or your spouse is a fan–or whether your children are involved in sports, marching band or another activity–you can easily find yourselves split between events.

If your spouse is a football fan, why not attend games together? Or if your kids are in the marching band, cheer them on as a team. If you’ve got volunteer work coming down the pipeline for sporting events or fall festivals, volunteer together. Staying connected and tag-teaming events will pay dividends toward your intimacy.

4. KEEP WEEKENDS OPEN WHEN YOU CAN

Weekdays in the fall might be packed, but your weekends don’t have to be. The weekend can be a great time to reconnect with your spouse and invest time in one another after a busy week.

Fall weekends are a great time to send your kids to grandma’s for a sleepover. They’re also an opportunity to connect with other couples you’re friends with to arrange alternating babysitting and date nights. However you choose to arrange it, the weekends offer so much opportunity for intimacy and connection with your spouse.

How are you going to make time for your spouse this fall? Have ideas to share that we didn’t list here? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.