Home Date Night: Indoor Picnic
It’s almost Valentine’s Day! What will you be doing to celebrate this year?
Last year, Jermaine and I opted for a special night in the house with a fancy dinner and loved every second of it. We (he) made steaks, lobster tails, baked potatoes and veggies and it was so nice to just relax in the comfort of our own home. We even dressed up in nice clothes to make it a whole date night experience as if we had gone to a restaurant. We talked over dinner and wine and just vibed with one another while we avoided the expensive, overpriced and crowded restaurant scene, which I loved!
Jermaine and I try to get in 1 date night a week, where we just pick something to do with one another, whether it’s discount movie night, taco Tuesday, making dinner at home or going somewhere fancy! With our busy schedules, the time we get to spend with just one another is so special so we like to cherish it and tend to just act crazy, laugh and goof around and eat GOOD!
Plus I believe that it’s important to be intentional about our time together. There were times when I was requesting date nights with Jermaine and he couldn’t understand why I was “complaining” about us not spending time with one another because we had been together 3 other nights that week. I had to explain that just because we went to a birthday dinner, a work event and worked a catering event together, does not mean we spent quality time together. He began to understand then when I was requesting quality time that meant: one on one, uninterrupted, up close and personal, just him and I time. He understood where I was coming from and has worked on that aspect of our relationship ever since!
I’ve been thinking of cute ways that we can bond and spend time with one another without breaking the bank or having to venture out and with Valentine’s approaching I just wanted to show you guys that a date doesn’t have to be expensive or require a new outfit. Use what you have, in your house and make it unique to you and your partner, that’s actually the fun of it!
Also, not sure who decided to make Valentine’s Day in the thick of winter but - can we move it to June? Seriously, idk about you, but I’m less reluctant to want to get super cute and glammed up and go out when it’s so cold out. I’m just saying…
Anyway, I have it all laid out for you below so you can just gather your materials, customize it to you, tell bae you planned something special and cuddle up! It’s perfect if you want to spice your usual date night up, if want to put the kids to bed and then set this up, or even include them and make it a family affair!
What you’ll need:
Lay the thickest blanket down on the bottom of the floor to provide yourselves with some padding. Use a comfortable and non-itchy blanket on top. Throw pillows you have laying around the floor… yes all of them! The more pillows the better! Gather what you have around the house, from baskets to plants and trays to customize it and make it your own without having to spend any coins. Arrange those on perimeter of the blankets to set the ambiance. Feel free to dim the lights and light your favorite candles and have a book or two nearby and a romantic playlist going… really set the tone!
What to make:
Tomato Basil Flatbread + Couple’s Cheese Boards
These 2 yummy date night snacks are simple and tasty! The flat bread is quick and easy and perfect for any palette! The combo of garlic, basil and tomato is fresh and the flatbread is a great grab and eat option that’s not at all messy (just make sure this isn’t the first date, otherwise cut the garlic! lol) Honestly, I’m not really sure what to say about a cheese board because you know how much I just adore them! A cheese board makes great for any occasion and is perfectly customizable so make it your own! Add what you love, remove what you don’t and then… add more of what you love! Cheese boards are the easiest way to munch and snack while cuddling up with your loved one!
Tomato Basil Flatbread
2-3 pieces Trader Joe’s garlic naan bread
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh garlic, pressed
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes
a small handful of fresh basil, chopped
1/2 teaspoon italian seasoning
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
Arrange flat bread on a medium baking sheet. Spread olive oil on each flat bread and brush each piece of naan with pressed garlic, covering entire piece of bread.
Sprinkle a light layer of cheese on each piece of naan, then add a layer of tomatoes, basil and a bit more cheese to cover toppings and empty spaces
Sprinkle italian seasoning top of cheese
Bake in oven for 12-15 minutes until cheese is melted and edges start to become golden brown
Garnish with more fresh basil and cut into slices!
Couple’s Cheese Boards
fresh veggies like carrots or celery
sharp cheddar cheese
a variety of crackers + bread or breadsticks
black + green olives
red or green grapes
honey or jam
fresh rosemary, thyme or edible flowers for garnish
Lay your toppings out around your cheese board
Lay down a few sprigs of rosemary or thyme
Begin arranging your cheese board by creating a focal point - I find it easy to start with a block of cheese or a bowl of olives, uncentered on the board
Start adding additional toppings to your cheese board, not putting 2 of the same type of thing next to one another, or arranging by color - for example put meat and cheese next to one another because you’d want to eat those together
Get creative! Roll or layer your salami, cut things up in different ways, use small bowls to give height and keep things interesting! Make it your own :)
Finish the board with a few more sprigs of garnish in places where there are blank spaces or holes!
CHEERS to a simple and romantic indoor date night for you to get intimate with your partner! Have fun with it!