In the Mood: A Non-traditional Date Night

How was everyone’s Valentine’s Day? Do tell. Dish!

Are you a hopeless romantic when it comes to Cupid? Or are you more into Singles Awareness Day?

I would be ok with this.

I think Valentine’s Day is like any other holiday. Yes, of course the stores use it to make money so we’re bombarded with sales pitches and $$$ signs. Plus the media focuses on romantic love relationships, which is leaving a lot of people out.

Why not celebrate all kinds of love?

I sent Valentine’s to my mom and pop, my sis, and my bestie. No gifts. Just a nice note letting them know I was thinking of them.

There was a lot of chatter at work and online, everyone asking each other what their Valentine’s plans were. I heard the whole spectrum: from the traditional fancy dinner reservations to a Walking Dead marathon. They both sound great to me!

Joe and I started a non-traditional tradition for Valentine’s day a few years ago where we stay in and gorge on my favorite date night dinner: meat, cheese, crackers, fruit, all with a variety of spreads like pepper jams, mustard, and jelly, and of course, WINE.

VDayThe perfect romantic evening spread.

Ok, ok. I know you see it mixed in there and are scratching your heads. Why, you may ask, did we watch The Silence of the Lambs for Valentine’s Day?

Well, that’s our tradition. We watch very (emphasis on the very) un-Valentiney movies for Valentine’s. I think it started the year Joe convinced me to watch Tremors.

I am the best fiance ever. Seriously.

I readily agreed to watching Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins solve the Buffalo Bill murder investigation.

I gotta say, you all cracked me up when I shared that photo online. Many of you asked where the fava beans were. And had we been smart, we would have picked out a nice chianti. ;)

Thank goodness Joe didn’t buy me any lotion for V-Day! That might have set the creepy bar over the edge.

Instead, he got us a new plant. His name is Hubert. Say hello, Hubert.

HubertThe card says “We should be able to keep it alive.”

Two years ago, Joe got me a plant for my birthday. She was beautiful with peach colored blossoms. We named her Calliope. We gave her sunlight and water and took her outside sometimes…only to learn that she didn’t like a lot of sun or weather changes or water.

#GardeningFail

We started over on last year’s birthday with a new plant we named Rue. After Rue McClanahan (Blanche in the Golden Girls). I like my plants to have pizzazz. Rue and Hubert are happily watching out the kitchen window for spring to come. Which I fear is never.

What do you think of Valentine’s Day? Do you celebrate all forms of love? What’s your favorite non-traditional date night activity you and your love share?

And stick around for some mystery this Friday when I have guest blogger, Kathy Owen, on The Happiness Project talking about Sherlock Holmes and “The Red-Headed League.” I can’t wait!

32 responses

  1. Hi Jess! Sounds like a fab Valentine’s Day to me. Hubby and I usually stay in, but this year we decided to go out to a restaurant for the occasion. We hadn’t been to this restaurant in at least a decade, but we remembered the food as being good and the atmosphere relaxing. We figured, hey, with reservations, what could go wrong?

    Plenty.

    Our area got a foot of snow the day before, but the roads were clear, so we figured we were golden. Wrong. The restaurant parking lot was plowed, but the plowdriver had dumped huge piles of snow on about 30% of the spaces in an already tight lot. We spent the first 10 minutes of our date with me out of the car, waving hubby into parking position. When we finally got inside, there was another 20 minute wait, which we kind of expected, so that was okay. But the tipping point came when we were seated…in a side room that looked like we’d walked into the middle of a kids’ end of season soccer party. Tables full of kids, with other tables of parents shouting to their offspring regarding some problem or other. I don’t know which group was louder, but those apples didn’t fall too far from the tree, IYKWIM.

    This was NOT the restaurant we remembered! And who takes their kids to the restaurant on Valentine’s Day?

    After looking at the steep prices on the menu (and the sticky chair back was the clincher for me), Hubs and I decided that discretion – in the form of retreat – was the better part of valor, and high-tailed it outta there. We stopped at Chipotle on our way home, where I hit my cheek on the passenger side window getting back in the car – ouch. Finally, safe at home, we ate with our 13-year-old while watching Inception. A much better end to our Valentine’s night!

    At least now we have a good story to tell. ;)

    1. Ohmygosh, Kathy! That sounds horrible! I would’ve been really upset too with a side room table full of loud kids. Not on Valentine’s when you’ve made reservations!

      But my fave part of your story is when you high-tailed out of the restaurant and hit up a Chipotle. Joe would love that. Hahaha I’m glad the night ended up on a better note. That’s why we stay in on Valentine’s. The crowds are insane and the prices steep to eat out. This way we can nibble on our favorite goodies (like good wine) and take our time.

      It was kind of a nice touch too that Joe and I ended up buying local for the weekend. I purchased locally made cheese, he stopped a local meat shop and then a bakery, and then we went to Rochester, MN for the day and got a local cheese at the grocer there. We both felt good about supporting smaller businesses than hitting up any chain restaurant for the weekend. Besides, that bacon he bought was OUT OF THIS WORLD! *drools* :)

  2. Hubby got me flowers and we watched “Hannibal” on Saturday night. Not very romantic, but I can certainly identify with your special day! Nothing like a little Anthony Hopkins to stir the pot a bit… ;)

    1. I love it! We have a theme. I’m seeing a non-traditional blog hop next Valentine’s! We’ll call it…”Be Still My Beating Heart” and we’ll all watch scary movies for Valentine’s!

      This. Must. Happen.

  3. We brought in Chinese food and watched an episode of “Chopped.” Not particularly traditional or romantic, but it suited us fine. We actually had a more traditional date Saturday evening, with dinner and a show by our favorite band.

    1. Sounds fantastic to me! You might have included a Voodoo Donut in the mix, but I forgive you. Coincidentally, Joe bought me a donut with maple frosting. I should’ve saved it for when he made bacon the next morning. CURSES!!! Why didn’t I think of that before???

  4. Maybe you should make it a tradition to watch Silence of the Lambs or something related every Feb 14th, at least you both are walking your own paths. My sweetheart has the idea to watch “Rent” on New Years Eve every year, I think it’s a silly idea however when I followed through with it, I know it made her day.

    1. Aww, that’s sweet of you to watch it for her. We definitely have movies we watch each season, but never on a specific day. It’s been awhile since Joe’s made me watch all four (yes, four) of the Tremors movies….

      Shhh, don’t mention it to him.

  5. You are so funny! What a perfect night with your love and Hubert! We didn’t do anything THAT day but we made for it the next 3 days. :)

    1. All I can think about is your recent post, so I’m not going to ask. *blushes*

      I’m glad you had a wonderful Valentine’s weekend! ;)

      1. LOL. We are kidless this week so um…yea.

          1. If only we had a…Hubert!

            1. Don’t you bring my succulent into this!

            2. LOL. Don’t worry, we don’t want anything that requires our care this week.

            3. Attention Happiness Project Guests: Please send rations of food and water to:

              Brick House Chick
              2222 Under The Covers Way
              Do Not Disturb, USA

            4. OMG, this is great! Thanks for your charity! :)

  6. What a great evening! Hubert is adorable.

    We don’t care much about celebrating Valentine’s Day–a card here and there. I think it started when we were first married and dirt poor and decided to ignore the commercialness of it. :-D

    Worked great for me last weekend, because I got to go on a writing retreat, which was very productive. That was one of the best Valentine’s Day gifts ever!

    1. Oooh jealous! That does sound amazing. Where did you go? Was it warm? Was it beautiful? Tell me about it. I’ve forgotten such things.

      1. Some friends of mine own a crafters’ retreat B&B a couple of hours north of Dallas. Most people scrapbook. I write.

        It’s in the country and the weekend was beautiful and all meals were taken care of. Pure heaven!

        As a bonus, my bestie was there and she got to read my new opening and final chapters in my WIP. Her reaction made my week! (Now I have to finish the rest of the revisions.)

        1. That sounds amazing! I’m making it a goal for next year to do a writer’s retreat. They sound glorious.

          And cheers to a great reader review!!! Yay!

          1. If you go with scrapbookers, be prepared for lots of questions about what you’re working on. The group I went with last weekend is used to me now. LOL (I go with them once a year, more if I can manage it.)

  7. I don’t participate in the Great Hersheys-Hallmark-FTD-Debeers Conspiracy Day. Neither as a single, or as an attached person. Call me a cynic, but love is saving her the last piece of her favorite cake, not being seen spending money on her. :D

    1. I like cake. Cake is a good gesture. Cheesecake is an even better gesture. :)

      I think you’re on the right track, Derek! It’s the little things that count and are way more memorable.

      1. You may have my share of the world’s supply of cheesecake. Unless/until I get a gf who likes cheesecake, then you’re out of luck, and I’m taking it back. :D

  8. Interesting way to spend the day. :) Hubby and I made a nice dinner at home, but I don’t think I could do the scary movie – I’ve never been good with scary movies. :)

    1. Well they are more fun with someone to hold onto. hehe

      Dinner date in the kitchen sounds fab! I hope wine was included!

      1. Of course! :) How about other holidays – are they non-traditional too? :)

        1. Mmmm, not as much. But our favorite is Halloween. That’s the only one we go all out for. Muahahahhaaahaha!

  9. Love your unconventional V-day, Jess. Rock it out! Horror movies on the loviest, gooiest day of the year?! Hell yeah! Mathair and I aren’t much for Valentine’s day, so we always have an unconventional one. I’m single and we lost my Poppa a few years ago, so me and my Nana had some red wine, dark chocolates, while Mathair and I brought out the blender, mixed up some margaritas and watched Magic Mike. LOL. Have to say, though, my little brother has been my valentine for the last few years and he always gives me a box of Nerds (they’re my fave). He also gives Mathair and Nana their fave candies. He’s seventeen, but he never forgets his girls. ;)

    1. Everything about how you spend VDay sounds fab! I love that it’s all about the girls. Margaritas and Magic Mike? Yes please. I love me some Joe Manganiello.

      Happy Valentine’s ladies!

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