Surprise suprise, romance is not just found at some exotic place or fancy restaurant, it can be found right within your home! One of the keys to balancing your budget and your finances is to find ways to be creative and not overspend where it is not needed. You know you and your sweetheart need some time together but you don’t know how to create that without overspending? Let these ideas give you the inspiration you need!
It may take some creativity to make this a special night, but let me remind you of the many benefits:
- You will save money
- You will avoid crowds and over-priced entrees
- There will be more time to enjoy each other’s company
- It’s the perfect time to start a new tradition
- There will be no traffic (for those of us living near cities!)
Really, the list can go on! So let’s put a positive spin on this night in and make the best of what we can inside with our loved ones!
- Cook a Romantic Dinner for Two
Chances are, you don’t feel like cooking yet another meal when you’ve been stuck cooking at home for the last year! I hear you, but I also know that it only takes one person to make Valentine’s night extra special, and that person can be you! This is not the time to make your everyday meals. Think of something you would typically order at a fine dining restaurant. In case you need some ideas, here is a list of some new recipes to try that will wow your significant other!
Chicken Cordon Blue https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/chicken-cordon-bleu-recipe2-1952383
Beef Bourguignonne https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/beef-bourguignon-recipe-1942045
Lobster Pot Pie https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/lobster-pot-pie-recipe-1945357
Linguine Shrimp Scampi https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/linguine-with-shrimp-scampi-recipe3-1916619
Ideas for fancy side dishes:
Roasted Green Beans
Baked Macaroni & Cheese
2. Pack a Picnic and Go for a Day Hike
Depending on where you live this may or may not be possible! But if you are like me in sunny southern California you are able to get out and enjoy a nice hike. Even if the weather is particularly cool this year you can go for a short hike and pack hot chocolates in insulated mugs like this one: https://www.amazon.com/YETI-Bottle-Shot-Rambler-12Oz/dp/B07G3BX657/ref=sr_1_12?dchild=1&keywords=yeti%2Bmug&qid=1612394523&sr=8-12&th=1
If you are able to get out in the sunshine and go for a regular hike you can even do a fun wine and cheese tasting! Think special wines you’ve never tried before. Make your picnic complete with a selection of cheeses, crackers, olives and roasted nuts.
3. Movie Marathon
Yes, we’ve all been watching a LOT of movies lately…but this is a special occasion, and should be treated like one! Here are some fun ideas for movie marathons that will give you something to watch together and help you get to know each other even more:
- What is the first movie either of you watched in theaters? How about the first movie you watched together?
- What trilogy or series can you watch that at least one person has never seen?
- What are each other’s favorite movies of all time? Can you watch two in one night?
- Which romantic movie reminds you of your relationship? What are the similarities and what are the differences?
- What is one movie that reminds you of your childhood?
The idea here is to do something different, to spark conversation, and to come together to learn about each other and have fun in the process!
4. Fancy Take-Out
You know that one restaurant in town that you absolutely love and can never seem to get a reservation to? Why not try takeout! This would be the night to splurge. Make the whole scene extra special by lighting candles in your home and setting the table. While we consider this a “splurge” you can actually save money outside of ordering at a restaurant. The tip will be much less and you can even buy your own bottle of wine instead of paying for the restaurant’s markup price. Take all things into consideration and see what you can supplement on your own and save money.
5. Teach Each Other a New Skill
With a little preparation beforehand, you can create a very fun night of teaching for you both. For one, your significant other will love showing you a new skill. Think of something they truly love to do, maybe a musical instrument or a hobby of some kind. Spend some time learning the basics and let him/her teach you the rest. On the other hand, you can be ready to teach a skill you know! It doesn’t have to be something major, maybe even knitting or crochet. But make the effort to teach each other well and this will turn into a very fun bonding experience. If you’re having trouble coming up with something you can teach, why not learn something new together?
- Learn to paint/draw together
- Learn to play a new instrument
- Learn the skills to write a poem or a song
- Learn a DIY project for your home
You can always go over some ideas with your significant other and figure out what you would like to do together. Remember, this should be fun for you both, not stressful! So let the creative juices flow and don’t be afraid to fail or be “bad” at a certain skill, that is the fun of learning!
What do you do for date nights in? Have you needed to become creative during the craziness of this pandemic? Let us know in the comments below!