By Jennifer Harrington

Love takes time and hard work to nurture. And, for newlyweds, this is especially true, following the intensity and attention that accompany a wedding and honeymoon. What are some practical ways for newlyweds to keep the honeymoon phase going strong, and the spark alive as the marriage progresses? Here are ten ideas to keep your love sizzling:

Don’t stop celebrating

While the wedding and honeymoon have passed, it doesn’t mean you have to stop the celebrations. Take opportunities to pause from daily life and acknowledge special milestones in your relationship. Have a special night together when your wedding pictures come back from the photographer. Plan a trip back to your reception venue to mark your six-month wedding anniversary. Planning these types of activities will give you a reason to look back at how far you’ve come together, as well as an opportunity to make new memories together.

Related: Long-Term Relationships: 5 Ways to Keep the Spark Alive

Pencil in a regular date-night

As some couples settle into their relationships, regular date nights can become less frequent. Don’t make that mistake. Make it a priority to schedule dates with your sweetie. Dates are important because they allow you to spend time and share experiences with your partner. You can take turns planning your outings to ensure date night is always something new to anticipate!

Plan thoughtful surprises

Everyone loves a spontaneous, thoughtful gesture. Surprises can range from extravagant to simple, but it ensures your chosen one feels special and loved. They can be especially important when you know your partner is going through a rough or busy time.

Embrace a new hobby

While you and your partner have hobbies you already pursue individually and together as a couple, it’s also a great idea to adopt a new hobby together! Choosing a hobby together and pursuing the hobby can be a very gratifying way to learn together, and can also be an interesting way to learn more about your honey. From dancing to cooking lessons, the options for hobbies  you can do as a pair is limitless!

Get away

Plan a long weekend or vacation. Not only is it a great way to check out different places and experience a new destination with your better half, it’s an opportunity for you to spend time together uninterrupted by the people and tasks you face every day. One great idea is to make a list of places you’d like to visit someday with your partner. Consult this list as you plan future getaways and cross things off your travel “bucket list” together! Need inspiration? Check out this list of the 50 most romantic places on Earth!

Book club for two

Reading the same book and discussing it can be a fun, easy, and thought-provoking way to bond. Aim to read a book together each month and you can take turns selecting the book. Not only will you end up reading some books different than your usual selections, but you will have guaranteed fodder for conversation as you both make your way through the novel.

Branch out

While quality one-on-one time together is crucial, it’s also important for you and your partner to have a close knit group of friends and family. Taking the time to nurture and build your social network together can be a great way to establish and deepen your relationships with others as you nurture your social life together as a couple. Spending time with others is fun, and will also give you the support you need as you navigate life together.  An easy way to incorporate this idea is establishing a regular date night with another couple!

Spice up your routine

Newlywed  actress Anne Hathaway recently said, “Mellow doesn’t always make for a good story but it makes for a good life.” This quote means that everyday life can be routine, mellow and sometimes boring. Cherish the fact that you’ve found your life partner, but always be on the ready to find ways to mix up your routine so things always feel fresh. Instead of the usual Monday nights you hit the gym together, make plans to go rock climbing instead. If you always order in pizza on Fridays after a long week at the office, mix it up and take an Italian cooking class instead one week! These are small and easy changes, but will help you escape the rut that people can sometimes feel when they are in an established routine.

Related: 4 Steps to a Stronger Long-Term Relationship

Keep talking

When relationships are new, it’s easy to soak up every word and story your new love interest says. Keep this in mind, and look at each day as a new opportunity to learn more about your life partner. Listen to the stories and jokes, and be sure to ask questions when you want to know more about a particular experience or point-of-view. The more you communicate, the deeper your relationship will be, and the better foundation you will have to avoid future conflicts.

Don’t sweat the small stuff

When you spend every day with a person, it’s easy to become frustrated and annoyed by some of their habits. So your partner sings really loud in the shower, or forgets to tell you when they used the last of the toothpaste. Is it worth it to pick a fight? Probably not, because little fights (over nothing) over time can cause problems in your relationship. Pick your battles! Remember, this is your soul mate — try to overlook a few little things and focus on the wonderful person you are spending your life with.

What are some other ideas to help keep the romance alive after the honeymoon is over?  Tell Cupid your suggestions!