Monday, February 11, 2013

Day 11: Date For Less

Alright, people. There are just two more days before Valentines and I'm here to give you some crazy cheap ideas for dates. As you read these, remember that we are the ones who say, "This is not good enough," whether it's a Valentines celebration, our attempts at stain removal, or anything else. We set our own standards and therefore, our dissatisfaction level. The higher (and dangerously close to impossible) your standards are, the lower your satisfaction will be. If you're attempting a No-Spend or less-spend romantic holiday, first ask yourself this question: What does it mean to me when my partner spends a lot of money on me? Do I feel more loved in the shower of their extravagance? Then, open your mind to different kinds of extravagance. Most of us aren't capable of serious financial extravagance, but we can be extravagant with our  thoughtfulness in planning, our attention to detail, our knowledge and understanding of the other, and our time. 

Effort's the thing that's easy to skimp on when someone's promised to love you no matter what. I'll admit, my eyes get buggy as I'm drawn toward the path marked "easy" and sometimes that means doing just enough that Brian feels loved, but not enough to blow him away. So this Valentines, I'm recommitting myself to doing something extravagant and unselfish from time to time, to show Brian I'll go the extra mile for him. Part of that will be dates during this month, since more prep's needed when less money's spent.

That being said, we took the easy route tonight because we weren't up to much after our crazy weekend. Next week we'll celebrate with a delicious, homemade candlelit dinner, but tonight we were excited about a free Redbox code. For 3.77, we ate burritos at Taco Inn. It was all I could do not to order a Dr. Pepper, but I'm buying my son socks tomorrow and I'm not sure how much they'll cost. But back to the date ideas...

Tent date 

Pull a blanket over a table and "furnish" your tent with blankets and pillows. This is a great option if your house is a mess or staying home you see all the things you need to do. We tried this last month and I ran a string of white lights around for a little light. We ate our homemade supper in there and then used a laptop to watch a Redbox movie. $1


Pretend you're snowed in and do everything at home. Eating at home usually sounds awful for two reasons: we don't want to spend the time and we don't want a big mess. Make Ramen noodles. If that's not filling enough, pair it with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. This random combo doesn't sound right, but it is. For entertainment, pull out a game that's fun with just two people. We enjoy Scrabble and Chinese checkers...even Uno if we're brain-dead.  $0

Pajama date 

When it's cold out, there are nights when the glimmer of going out fades in comparison to the coziness of my jammies. So let it be. One of you can stop on the way home from work to get cheap take-out and as soon as soon as you're both home, don some pj's. Eat your take-out on the couch or in bed and watch a couple TV shows or a favorite movie. Then go to bed early. Everyone could use a little extra sleep. $7 (depending on your take-out)

Salad and Dessert

We hardly ever have room, not to mention spare calories for dessert if we eat a whole meal. So if you have a sweet tooth and like to cook together, make a special salad for supper. Then enjoy a dessert like coffee ice cream, cheesecake or an apple tart. If you're really into the cooking part, you can make the dessert too; chocolate-dipping strawberries in the summer or baking cookies in the winter. $0 

Total spent: 3.77
Fun money: 6.42

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