A few days ago, I was brainstorming restaurant ideas with a friend of mine, who is very excited to be spending this Valentine’s with his boyfriend of four months. (Puppy love, so cute, right?)
Upon being told in return that B and I weren’t planning on doing much, he exclaimed “Lame!” Thanks, F.
But, as I readily explained to my lovestruck pal, it isn’t, really. B and I are so busy all the time — particularly with me being out at evening events — that just hanging together at home is a treat.
Plus, as I alluded to in my previous post, I’m a big believer in ‘just because’ or ‘anytime’ celebrating, not linking to a specific date on a calendar. While I love dining out, I also don’t feel like it’s something I HAVE to do on Valentines, New Year’s Eve, etc.
But, for you folks who do want to celebrate V-Day and may have potentially neglected to make plans or a restaurant reservation, I’m more than happy to share ideas from the Tickle Trunk for a romantic evening.
1. The “It’s All About You” picnic
For this one, it’s important to have a clear space somewhere inside your home, so if you can get your honey out of the house for a little bit or can scoot home from work early, get there and start shoveling stuff out of the way. Try and put it somewhere where it won’t fall on your head later.
You could cook, but this might create some mess that you won’t have time to clean up. Instead I recommend calling up your favourite restaurant and asking if there’s any chance they can make some takeout for you. Hopefully this is doable — many joints have very structured seatings on nights like this and may or may not be able to slide a couple more meals onto the burners.
If not, head to a high end grocery store like Urban Fare or Whole Foods, and see what they have in their ready made/hot meal counters. You could also hit Big Lou’s, The Dirty Apron’s deli, or Meat and Bread.
The idea is to replicate a summertime picnic menu, so fried chicken, sandwiches, potato salad, some cake, or whatever is normally on your picnic list is good. A little lemonade wouldn’t hurt you either, or, if you’re looking for something alcoholic, I’m incredibly in love right now with Innocent Bystander’s moscato. It’s pink, a little bit bubbly, a little bit sweet, and incredibly well priced at ~$14 per half bottle at the BCLDB.
Spread a blanket and pillows over your cleared space, and — THIS IS IMPORTANT — turn off all of your electronic devices, except perhaps a source of music. Sit down with your valentine and take the opportunity to talk about your hopes and dreams for the future, or maybe just about the funny and best parts of your day. (If you don’t like to talk to each other, you’re SOL and maybe you shouldn’t do this one. Or date each other.)
2. The “Lazy Sunday on a Monday” scenario
You know that feeling of deep and utter contentment on a weekend morning when you’re eating breakfast in bed with your BF/GF, and don’t have to go anywhere by any time or see anyone in particular? That’s actually pretty romantic to me.
So I say bring on the scrambled eggs and bacon, and set them up on a bed tray. Cuddle up with some classic movies on a laptop, or read bits of a favourite novel aloud to each other. You could hop out midway for a bubble bath, but I’m a big fan of staying in the bed as much as possible. Any other activities that you might get up to, other than those listed above, are your own business, as this is a family blog…
3. The “Keeping Each Other in the Dark” dinner
I was very lucky to snag tickets to Dinner in the Dark recently — I’ll post more fully about it shortly, but essentially it was a lavish meal eaten while the guests wore blindfolds.
They say that when you can’t see, your other sense are heightened, but I think it’s more of a case that you concentrate more fully on experiencing something. I was very cognizant of the flavours and textures of what I was eating and drinking, but at the same time, I was also focusing more on listening to the conversations around me. It was a very intimate thing to share with fifty or so other people.
That’s why I think it could be a good option for V-Day if you haven’t anything else planned. Take turns wearing a blindfold and shaking up mystery cocktails for each other, to see if you can figure out what’s in the mix. Cut the food up into bite size pieces, and savour every morsel to discover what they are. Dessert’s an opportunity to play around with hot and cold, sweet and salty, etc. Discovery is pretty damn fun when you do it with your sweetie.
Okay, hope that’s enough in the way of suggestion. Wishing you all a day of love today, and every day.