A Romantic Night In: Valentine's Day at Home

A Way To Have A Romantic Date Night At Home With or Without Kids

By Melissa Shrader Editor Publisher Loveland Macaroni Kid January 31, 2021

With Valentine's Day falling on a weekday this year, you may have trouble getting out to a restaurant since there is school the next day, unless you have older kids. With a little planning and imagination you can make Valentines special. 

What To Do With The Kids
 If you've got little ones in the house, they probably already have a fairly early bedtime. Perfect! Just put them to bed at their regular time and start your evening after they've fallen asleep. For older kids, have them choose a movie or two and set them up with snacks and a show in another room. Tell them you'll ground them from video games til summer if they interrupt you. Or, if you're lucky enough to have relatives nearby, see if they'll take your kids for a few hours (or overnight).

What Level Of You Do You Want To Bring To The Table
 One of the benefits of staying in is not having to wear heels all night, however you need to decide if you want you outfit to say "hot momma" or try to find a happy medium. Get a pedicure. Shave your legs. Take a bubble bath. Put on some mascara and scented lotion. THEN put on yoga pants, or slinky dress you decide what works for you. Casual can be just as "hot momma" as the slinky dress depending on how you put it together. Do a little upscale detail as some accent. Paint your toe nails, use scented lotion, maybe some body glitter - use  your imagination. These can be done with the slinky dress or the yoga pants.

Now To Set The Mood
 Candles, flowers, and no visible toys are all you really need to set the mood. But you can also add some special touches, if you choose. Don't get carried away in to much detail. Keep it simple so that you can enjoy the night too and not have to worry about a mess or making sure you have time to relax and enjoy everything too.

Now For The Meal
 If your Valentine has a favorite dish that doesn't get made very often because it's too spicy for the kids/ takes too long to prepare/ has too many expensive ingredients for a family meal, now is the time to dig out that recipe and make it just for the two of you. Make this your special gift or surprise.

 If you don't have a favorite, it's hard to go wrong with a couple of steaks. This is a great Steak Marinade:

Awesome Steak Marinade

·        1-1/2 cups olive oil

·        4-1/2 Tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce

·        1-1/2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

·        3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar

·        2 Tablespoons Montreal steak seasoning

·        1 Tablespoon crushed garlic

·        1 Tablespoon garlic-pepper blend

Combine all ingredients. Pour over steak, cover, and chill at least three hours to overnight in the refrigerator. Grill or broil steak to your liking (just know that anything over medium-rare is considered "charcoal" in many parts of the country).

Keep the rest of the dinner light with just a nice side salad and a glass of sparkling cider or your favorite wine (being overly full will kill the mood). For dessert, I can't think of anything better than chocolate. Pick up something decadent from the local bakery or try this slow cooker recipe:

Slow Cooker Molten Mocha Cake (My favorite)

·        4 eggs, lightly beaten

·        1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted

·        2 teaspoons vanilla

·        1-1/2 cups sugar

·        1 cup flour

·        1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

·        2 teaspoons instant coffee granules

·        1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

·        1/4 teaspoon salt

Spray a 3-quart slow cooker with cooking spray (you can use a larger slow cooker; just add 30 minutes to 1 hour of cooking time). Stir together all ingredients in a large bowl. Pour into the slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW for 2 to 2-1/2 hours, or til set around the edges. Turn off the slow cooker and let stand 30 minutes (keep covered). Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Find Your Perfect Movie
Whether you choose from your own collection, rent one from the library, or stream it through Netflix, make sure you pick something you both like. 

Cool Classics

1.     An Affair to Remember (1957) starring Cary Grant & Deborah Kerr

2.     Casablanca (1942) starring Humphrey Bogart & Ingrid Bergman

3.     Gone with the Wind (1939) starring Clark Gable & Vivien Leigh

4.     Roman Holiday (1953) starring Gregory Peck & Audrey Hepburn

5.     When Harry Met Sally (1989) starring Billy Crystal & Meg Ryan

Favorite Rom-Coms

1.     Ever After (1998) starring Dougray Scott & Drew Barrymore

2.     Never Been Kissed (1999) starring Michael Vartand & Drew Barrymore

3.     The Proposal (2009) starring Ryan Reynolds & Sandra Bullock

4.     Sleepless in Seattle (1993) starring Tom Hanks & Meg Ryan

5.     You've Got Mail (1998) starring Tom Hanks & Meg Ryan

Top Tear-Jerkers

1.     City of Angels (1998) starring Nicholas Cage & Meg Ryan

2.     The Notebook (2004) starring Ryan Gosling & Rachel McAdams

3.     Sweet November (2001) starring Keanu Reeves & Charlize Theron

4.     Titanic (1997) starring Leonardo DiCaprio & Kate Winslet

5.     A Walk to Remember (2002) starring Shane West & Mandy Moore

Guy Picks

1.     10 Things I Hate About You (1999) starring Heath Ledger & Julia Stiles

2.     Benny & Joon (1993) starring Johnny Depp & Mary Stuart Masterson

3.     Friends with Benefits (2011) starring Justin Timberlake & Mila Kunis

4.     The Princess Bride (1987) starring Cary Elwes & Robin Wright 

5.     Jerry Maguire (1996) starring Tom Cruise & Renee Zellwegger

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