Valentine's Day is fast approaching, which likely means you're anticipating a date filled with chocolates, flowers, candlelit dinners, and romance. Unless, of course, you're anything like me, and you're instead trying to find at-home Valentine's Day dates — something that doesn't force you to leave the comfort of your own house (and, uh, pajamas).
I'll be the first to admit that I'm basically the definition of a homebody. And, on top of that, my husband and I have never really been big fans of Valentine's Day. In fact, one year we ended up on the couch in sweatpants with a pint of Ben and Jerry's between us, and it was essentially my definition of perfection.
But, just because we don't make a routine of surprising each other with overpriced chocolates and teddy bears with heart-shaped eyes, doesn't mean we don't want to enjoy a little fun together on the holiday of romance. It's just that I'd rather not do it amidst the hoards of people who are trying to enjoy an intimate evening together — in a crowded restaurant.
So, Valentine's Day at home it is! If you're envisioning a standard evening filled with TV and frozen pizza, think again (although, that doesn't sound half bad). These at-home date ideas are fun and creative, without forcing you to have to put on real pants. It's a win-win, really.
1. Put together a theme night
To differentiate your date from any other night at home, why not pick a theme? Crack open a bottle of Italian wine, make spaghetti and meatballs or lasagna, and watch something like The Godfather or Under the Tuscan Sun. Or, challenge each other to a game of poker before watching Ocean's Eleven. Having a theme helps to pull your whole night together.
2. Cook together
Have you always wanted to try to make your own sushi? Have you ever tried to bake a pie together? Are you both craving fondue? Get in the kitchen and have fun whipping something up with each other.
3. Play a game
There's nothing wrong with a little friendly competition on date night. Whether it's a video game, Scrabble, or a bit of a compromising match of Twister, letting out your competitive side is sure to make your Valentine's Day at home a little more exciting.
4. Take personality tests
These weren't just something you were forced to take in your high school psychology class. Personality tests can be a fun activity to do with your partner — especially once you compare your similarities and differences. True Colors, Jung, or DISC are all good ones!
5. Set up a tasting
Just because you're at home doesn't mean you can't enjoy a sophisticated tasting. Whether you want to sample wine, cheese, or chocolate (or all of them!), pick up some goodies and coordinate your own delicious tasting in the comfort of your own kitchen. Bonus points if you have each other try to guess what's what while blindfolded.
6. Star gaze
I know it's winter. But, that just means the sky is extra clear. Plus, what could be more romantic than snuggling under the blanket in the backyard with a couple of mugs of hot chocolate?
7. Pamper each other
Foot rubs, back massages, or even homemade facials. Do what you can to spoil each other and enjoy a relaxing Valentine's Day evening at home.
8. Get crafty
Purchase a canvas and paint it together — rotating the canvas every so often. Get out some craft supplies and make Valentine's Day cards for each other. Relive your childhood and play with some Play-Doh. What you want to do is up to you, but exercising your creativity is a great way to do something different.
9. Write a bucket list together
At first glance, this might sound a little morbid. But, your bucket list doesn't need to include the things you want to do before you die. In fact, it can be a list of things you want to do together before next Valentine's Day. Do you want to take a cooking class? Do you want to go on a ski trip? Do you want to volunteer? Jot down your year-long bucket list, and look forward to a great year together.
10. Play a question game
Remember the fun and excitement of just getting to know somebody? At this point, you may feel like you know your partner better than anybody. But, there's always more to learn. Get some small pieces of paper for each of you to write down a bunch of random questions. Throw them all in a bowl, and take turns answering them. I'm willing to bet you'll learn a few things that surprise you.
11. Plan a vacation
Alright, so maybe you don't want to leave your house on Valentine's Day. But, that doesn't mean you never want to leave. In fact, sitting down together to plan an upcoming vacation is not only a recipe for romance, but it also gives you something to look forward to.
12. Build a fort
Building forts was likely one of your favorite things to do when you were a kid. But, somewhere along the way, you stopped. Grab your partner, push all of the furniture around, and build the biggest, baddest blanket fort you've ever seen. It's different, fun, and sure to inspire some fort snuggling.
For more ideas, check out Bustle on YouTube.
Images: Unsplash; Giphy (12)