Let’s Stay In: 4 Date Ideas to Have at Home

While a lavish night out on the town makes for a wonderful date night, every night out together won’t be such a special occasion if this new relationship is going to make it for the long haul. Instead of another dinner at your favorite chic restaurant and drinks at the hottest new wine bar, go low key and spend your next date night at home with your man. Here are some fun tips for making an evening at home together just as memorable as a night out:

Bring the Wine Bar Home

Head to the local wine shop to find a bottle or two of special wine that you wouldn’t normally splurge on. Get adventurous and go with the sales associate’s recommendation for a unique selection that suits your taste. Then, hit the market’s fancy gourmet meat and cheese section to gather an assortment of charcuterie. Get a loaf of your favorite artisanal bread, crackers, some good olive oil and balsamic vinegar as well as a variety of olives, vegetables and fruits to add to your smorgasborg. Slice everything up and arrange it artfully on a few wood platters.

Create a romantic setting in your living room or outside on the patio, complete with candlelight, soft music and cozy seating. Enjoy trying something new together and let the conversation meander throughout the evening as you get to know one another even better.

Channel Your Inner Kid

Does your new guy have a little one? When you meet his son or daughter, make it a little less awkward with a kid-friendly date at his place so you can get to know each other in a comfortable environment. Pick up a kid-friendly movie and some dough from the local Italian shop. Make a pizza together, and let the little one choose all of the toppings. Bring ice cream for dessert with a few different toppings.

Make the night extra special by making it a theme. For example, you could watch “Frozen,” and decorate with Frozen party accessories like plates, bowls and napkins. He’ll appreciate the extra effort you’re making to win over his little one, and hopefully, his kid will too!

Host a Game Night

Meeting each other’s friends can be nerve-wracking, but if you do so on your home turf, it can be a little less awkward. Invite him and his friends over, and have a game night. Serve some light snacks and simple desserts like fudge brownies or salted chocolate chip cookies. Taboo or Catchphrase are always fun games for a new group, or a good old-fashioned poker night is a dependable standby. Keep the wagers friendly, though. You wouldn’t want to risk ruining a new friendship because of a few bad hands of cards.

Taste Another Culture

Skip the long plane ride, and bring international cuisine home with a culturally-themed date night in the kitchen. Select your favorite culinary fare and plan a menu filled with all of the traditional offerings for the two of you to prepare together. Love everything Spanish? Mix up some sangria or pop a bottle of cava, and make some tapas and a seafood paella. Turn on some relaxing Spanish guitar music, and channel your inner Penelope Cruz for a romantic evening in.