Saturday, February 11, 2012

My Version of "A Year of Dates" {Part 2}

me & the hubster
Today I am finishing up a 2-part post on "a year of dates" gift idea that I'm making for my husband for Valentine's Day this year. If you haven't read part one, then you can read it HERE.

Yesterday, I went to Hobby Lobby and bought some special paper and envelopes to print the dates on. They turned out really cute! I'll show you pictures of that at the end of this post. I wanted to get this post finished today so that if you want to make this as gift for your man, you'll still have a few days to get it done before Valentine's Day.

Okay. Quickly, the basic idea of this gift is to have 12 pre-planned dates (one for each month of the year) all written out and packaged up to give to your hubby. Most ideas I've seen out there have each month written on the outside of the envelope, but I wanted to do something a little different...

So, instead of 12 dates, I'm planning out 24 dates (TWO each month--woohoo!) of which 18 will be pre-planned and 6 will be left open for my husband to choose his own ideas; AND instead of packaging the dates by January, February, March, etc., I am labeling each date with an exciting ADJECTIVE. So, for example, instead of him opening an envelope labeled February, he can choose from a variety of envelopes with adjectives such as adventurous, romantic, athletic, steamy, or wild & crazy! That way, he can choose based on what kind of date he feels like doing. Pretty fun, huh? Now, I will say, that you'll have to write on the outside of the envelope if the activity you have planned can only be done in the summer or if it needs to be done during the day versus the evening. That way your hubby doesn't pick a date that has you photographing wild flowers in January! :-)

Part one of this series highlights ideas for the following 8 dates: adventurous, romantic, boring, athletic, intellectual, steamy, frugal, and wild & crazy. 

Here are 10 more date ideas...

  • Traditional:  On this date, you'll do what you normally do on your date nights. For us, our traditional date night includes dinner and a movie, so that's what we'll be doing. 

  • Relaxing:   If your husband chooses this date, then you'll know he just needs some time to relax and unwind with you. So, be sure to have something pre-planned that you know is actually relaxing to him! Don't pick something that could potentially be stressful! Only you know your husband. Some ideas: couple's massages, fishing, pick up dinner and have a movie night at home, drive through the countryside while listening to an audio-book or his favorite music, take a stroll at a park, work a puzzle together, or feed the ducks at a local pond. For us, our date will be picking up dinner and then heading out to his parents' farm to fish on one of their ponds!

  • Artistic:   This one can be really fun! I envision this one as either doing something artistic together or attending an artistic event, like visiting an art gallery. We have several places locally where you can make pottery or take a painting class. There's also a place just down the road from us called Terra Studios where you can watch glass birds being made by hand. It's really cool, and it's free! And they have beautiful grounds to picnic at or walk around in and explore, plus a cafe where you can get coffee or hot tea. Other ideas: Happy Home Fairy's Crayon Date, build a model airplane, etc. of his choice (you can go to a craft store and pick one out then take it home and work on it together), pick up some canvases at a local craft store and go home and paint something, learn a new skill like sewing or crocheting (yes, my husband is willing to try both!), or take your camera and go somewhere interesting and take turns taking photographs (nature walk). Our date will be to visit the Crystal Bridges Museum (there's no admission fee right now!) and eat dinner there! Then we might have to go home and do the Crayon Date mentioned above. :-)

  • Cheesy:   Sometimes you just gotta be a bit...cheesy! That's what this date is for! On this date, you'll do a variety of cheesy things, like getting some cheesecake at a local coffee shop or restaurant, giving each other cheesy grins all throughout the date, and taking turns to see who can say the cheesiest, romantic things or pick-up lines. If you have a place like The Cheesecake Factory then go and get samples of their different cheesecakes and then get a slice of your favorite! Other ideas: tell each other cheesy jokes, watch the cheesiest movie or tv show you can think of, purchase a variety of cheeses and go home and sample them with crackers. Add some fancy glassware and sparkling cider for fun! For us, our date will include a variety of cheesy activities (cheesecake will definitely be involved though!). :-)

  • Patriotic:   This date is inspired by one of my friends who is very patriotic! I know she would be able to think of some really cool ideas for this one, so I may come back and update this date idea later! Here are some ideas off the top of my head: wear red/white/blue on your date, say the pledges every time you see a flag (make it into a contest and see who can spot a flag first), pull up the Constitution or another patriotic document on your iphone/internet/or go to the library, and read it and discuss, attend a political function, watch a movie about the Founding Fathers or a documentary on America (Netflix has several), bless a soldier in some way (we know several soldiers or families with soldiers who are overseas, so we could write them a letter of encouragement/appreciation or buy them a gift card to a restaurant, etc.), or find a fun quiz about U.S. History and see how much you know! I think our date for this one will be to discuss current, political events (my husband enjoys not so much!) while eating dinner and then go home and watch a documentary on Netflix. 

  • Sensual:  I'm really hoping that all of your dates lead to some sensual activities in the end, but here's a date that just revolves around the idea! Visit the blog To Love, Honor, and Vacuum for an excellent series on this topic entitled "29 Days to Great Sex."  Use some of her ideas or read the series with your husband! Play Happy Home Fairy's Love Dice game (free printable--her blog is SUCH a great resource!), look up all the different types of kisses there are and practice them (Types of Kisses and Encyclopedia of Kisses are two resources), watch a romantic movie together, take a bubble bath together, buy some new lingerie together (let your spouse pick!), know how to get this date going! :-) And I'm NOT sharing our date plans for this one!

  • Just Plain Fun:   This date is just supposed to be fun! So again, make sure you know what is fun for your spouse! Some ideas: play video games, go to a local arcade, set up a Nerf Gun War (found this on Pinterest) at home, go bird watching, have a water gun fight, have a game night at home (any type of game can be played: board, card, video, etc.), feed the ducks together at a local pond, go to the drive-in movies, visit a flea market, go to a park and push each other on the swings, be carefree and light-hearted! Our date for this one will probably be to either play the games at a local arcade or play video games at home...I'll probably let hubby decide!

Nerf Gun War

  • Silly:   We all need the chance to be a little silly, and I hope this date will bring you lots of laughs! Date ideas: watch a comedian on Netflix or LIVE!, tell each other silly jokes, tickle each other and see who can stand it the longest, have a pillow fight, make it a rule that while on your date you have to be touching the entire time (another great idea from the Happy Home Fairy), mute the sound to a movie and fill in the voices with your own silly dialogue, play "rock/scissors/paper" and whoever wins each round gets to decide what the loser has to do! Please share more ideas with me on this one! Our date will include trying to touch the entire time we are on our date and watching a comedian on Netflix at home. :-)

  • Musical:  Can we say...karaoke?? :-) This one could go under the Silly date night too! I think it would be hilarious to watch my husband singing songs to me! Hee hee! Other ideas: dance to your favorite music, watch a musical like Seven Brides for Seven Brothers or The Sound of Music, go to a broadway show (this would be awesome!) or another musical show (visit The Walton Arts Center for a local calendar of events), go to a store and buy a new cd (or buy some new music for your ipod), if you know how to play musical instruments, then have an evening concert at home (if not, then you can always play kazoos together!), go to a concert, eat dinner at a restaurant that has live music, the ideas are endless on this one! For us, I'm gonna try to get us tickets to a show at the Walton Arts Center. Or I really am tempted to get a karaoke machine...). :-)

  • Friendly:   On this date, you should try to recall why your mate is your best friend! Do some of the things you did together while dating. Do you have any common interests? Remember what they are and do some of them! Here are a few ideas: hold hands, make a list of all the things you remember about your first year of marriage (Happy Home Fairy idea), go on a couple's date with some of your close friends, tell each other what qualities/things you admire about them, have fun answering some of these great Date Questions, and remember...just be NICE to each other! 

Wowzers! That's a TON of date ideas! I hope these fun dates will help create some special moments with your spouse. And I encourage you to think of your own key words...maybe these ideas have sparked some new ones for you! The main purpose of all of this is just to have fun with your spouse, so don't get frustrated if he doesn't want to do some of the dates you have planned. Just go with his flow, and make sure you're a fun wife to be around. :-)

Now on to the presentation! I'll just show you a few quick pics of what I'm doing. I wanted this idea to be frugal, so I went with the special paper and envelopes. The total for 25 of each was $5. The stamp was extra, but you wouldn't have to do that part.

Bought this cute stamp to go on the outside of the envelopes...I thought it was appropriate!

Fun and cute!

The date letter has the following headings: Goals, Time, Activity, and Place.

All packaged up!

Another cute way to package your dates. I found these at Hobby Lobby for $10 and used a 40% off coupon.

Happy Valentine's Day! Here's to a special year of great moments with your hubby! :-)

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  1. This series is just SOOO fabulous, Audrey!!! I definitely want to do this for Zack.

  2. Also, if you know the kind of dates you want to do, you can keep an eye on Groupon/Living Social/etc. to see if massages, restaurants, show tickets, etc. come on sale.

  3. Thanks, Lauren! :) Btw, GREAT tip to keep on eye on local deals...hadn't thought of that!

  4. This is great. I found it too late for Valentine's Day and life is SOOOO crazy right now. I am going to use some of your date ideas for now and give him the coupons for his birthday in July. Thanks so much for the inspiration.

  5. I LOVED this!! So creative and fun! I think these past two posts have been chock-ful of great date ideas!! Thank you!!