When you are young and still on the "chase", date night is something you look forward to but over the years it can become redundant, expensive, or just something to put off until next week. Unfortunately, as wonderful as marriage and long-term relationships can be there's a trap that you need to avoid called complacency. Here's some tips to overcome that and impress your date with how much you care for her.
Married couples often suffer from the "I don't know ... what do you want to do?" dilema. This is your chance to step up and create an awesome experience that she will love. It's also the chance to show her how much you understand her likes, dislikes, and interests so don't screw it up!
Wash Up, Dress Up, and Clean Up
Part of being "familiar" with each other is that we forget to be anything except casual around each other. Make sure you shave, wear a nice shirt and put on her favorite cologne. Just because you're spending the night in doesn't mean you can't still make it special for the two of you. Similarly, make sure to clean up the kitchen, the dining room table, and maybe even make the sure the sheets and stuff are tidied up in the bedroom too. It's all about setting the mood and showing her that she's special.
Pick The Right Easy To Make Food
While it would be nice if all of us were great chefs able to put together a 4-star meal from scratch - that's just not the case. There's nothing wrong with taking shortcuts as long as the goal is to create something awesome vs just being lazy. For instance, while Tai Pei frozen entrees are delicious right out of the box and you can find it in most grocery stores nationwide. I'm not sure how they do it but the rice is super flavorful too since it is "flavor-infused". Plus, compared to other frozen options out there I like the fact that it has no additives, preservatives, artificial flavors, or colors. That being said, here's a couple creative recipes to make it even better for date night!
Chicken Chow Mein Noodle Soup
Ingredients - 12 oz of Chicken Broth, 1 Carton of Tai Pei Chicken Chow Mein, shredded carrots.
Preparation - Pour 12 oz of low salt chicken broth into a medium sized bot and bring it to boil. Empty the Tai Pei Chicken Chow Mein Noodles along with some shredded carrots into the broth and season to taste with sesame oil, salt, pepper, and minced garlic.
Pepper Beef Stuffed Bell Peppers
I like this one since it goes great with the Tai Pei Pepper Beef - but honestly it would also go great with almost any of the other options from Tai Pei including Beef & Broccoli.
Ingredients - 2-3 Bell Peppers, 1 Carton of Tai Pei Pepper Steak
Preparation - Cut the tops off of the peppers and remove seeds and membranes. Cook the Tai Pei Pepper Steak for three minutes and then spoon the pepper steak into the peppers. Place the tops of the peppers back on the now stuffed peppers and place back in the oven preheated to 360 degrees. Bake for 30 minutes.
Get Creative With Drinks and Set Up a Wine Tasting
One of the most important things to remember for date night is that it's more than just "dinner and a movie". It's a chance for the couple go do something TOGETHER. This is your chance to share an experience, talk, get to know each other in ways that you don't during everyday living. Even though I don't drink that much ... I drink often ... that might make me sound like an alcoholic but it's about the experience of tasting new wines, beers, and spirits. You don't have to finish the full bottle but it's the experience of sharing your impressions of the wine that is important.
Each town is different, but most areas have a store know for discount wines. I find that sometimes you'll get "undiscovered" varietals ... and sometimes you'll get ones that are discounted for a reason. Either way though, these bottles are almost always less than $5 per bottle so get 2, 3, or maybe even 4 bottles. You aren't under any obligation to drink all four and you can of course, re-cork the ones you like and enjoy it later as well.
However, as you go through the process of sampling (2-3 oz pours), share what you like about it and compare the flavors and nose that you experience with the tasting notes on the bottle of vineyards website.
Just in case you think this doesn't fit the "Chinese" theme ... China is now the world's second largest wine market and is also producing some genuinely good domestic wines as well. Unfortunately those wines are rarely found in American stores.
Warm Her Heart With a Thoughtful Gift
No Chinese dinner is complete without a fortune cookie and a personalized one makes a perfect gift at the end of the dinner ... but we can go better than that!
Buy a Chinese takeout box and place the personalized fortune cookie along with something you know she'll love that reminds her of a shared experience. This could be a printed photo from a previous vacation together, or simply a selfie that you guys took together at the beach a few weeks ago. The key here is to create something memorable, inspire emotion, and ultimately warm her up for a great hug ... kiss ... or whatever else might happen.