June 16th, 2008 Jamie
Living on a shoe-string budget doesn’t mean you can’t go on awesome dates-it just means you have to be a little more creative. : ) Here are fifteen of my favorite ideas for great dates that won’t break the bank:
1. Cook together. Shop for favorite pizza toppings & whip one up together, or use a recipe from Copykat Recipes (http://www.copykat.com/) to recreate your favorite restaurant fare.
2. Progressive dinner. Plan a meal with a few other couples. Everyone meets up at one house, has a course, and moves on to the next-all the way from appetizers to desserts!
3. Pizza for Dessert. Try throwing together a dessert pizza with a cookie dough or brownie base. Gather your favorite candies, fruits, and syrups for toppings and wing it, or follow this recipe.
4. Relive your childhood. Head over to an elementary school or playground for some swinging & tetherball, make chalk drawings on your driveway, and finish up the evening watching your favorite childhood cartoons and eating sugar cereal in a blanket fort.
5. First-Date Do-Over. Live your first date over again: Try to get the details as close to the first time as possible, and talk about how you each felt & what you remember most. (If your first date was a catastrophe, do it over the way you wish it went!)
6. Home Sweet Hometown. Visit one of your home towns, and show your sweetie the spots that are most important-or most fun-from your past.
7. Play Teacher. Teach your date something new-something you’re an old pro at and passionate about-and enjoy reliving your own learning process. Anything from skateboarding to painting, kickball and beyond. Be patient and make it fun (and if it goes badly, just make up for it with some ice cream at the end. It worked when you were a kid, didn’t it?).
Mixed-Up Timing Dates
8. Picnic in the Rain. Add the fun of a picnic to a rainy day by packing a lunch and eating in the car. Watch the rain come down & enjoy some hot soup or cocoa. If you’re feeling adventurous, go puddle jumping after. : )
9. Pajamafied. Make an ordinary activity goofier and more fun by adding pajamas to the mix. Catch a matinee movie in your PJs, or check around for local hangouts that offer pajama discounts (some Color Me Mine locations offer a 50% deal for pajama-wearers!).
10. Good Day, Sunshine. Break with the traditional sunset-watching date! Get up early, pack breakfast (cereal and a thermos of milk will do if you’re not a chef), and watch the sun come up.
Coffee & Culture
11. Ifs, Ands, and Buts. Pick up a question book (I like “If…Questions for the Game of Life“) and grab a coffee or two. Snuggle into a comfy chair at the shop and quiz swap questions.
12. Amusing Museums. Many museums offer free admission on certain weekdays. Check the calendar of your local one and go peruse the dino bones or modern art.
13. Local Literates. Stop by an open mic night or other event at a café or bookstore (search through Barnes & Noble’s events here) and see what local culture has to offer. If you’re feeling brave, you might even jump in for a spontaneous poem or song yourself.
14. In the Park. Fair-weather cities often offer summer series of free (or very low cost) movie screenings or concerts in local parks. Take a picnic or some beach chairs and settle in for some relaxation and hand-holding.
15. L’Artiste. Spend some time with some wonderful art-for free. Browse through local art galleries, check out your campus’s art department offerings, or scour the local paper for upcoming art shows or festivals, like Santa Barbara’s annual chalk arts festival.
Entry Filed under: dating