Winter Date Night Essentials.

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I will be the first to tell you, non-proudly, that date nights fall by the wayside in colder weather.

It’s the getting in and out of freezing cars and being shuffled into overheated and crowded restaurants. It’s the fact that one, two or all four family members might be sick in the fall and winter. It’s the fact that it’s my busy, busy season – the tail end of wedding and foliage season, right into the start of holiday card season. And that’s just photography. There’s blogging too. There’s his job. There’s his cough and my cold. There’s open house nights and Magic: The Gathering and Ladies Game Night and days I want nothing more than to take a peppermint bath and curl up with a bowl of popcorn. Alone, though.

Sometimes the odds are against us. And I want to change that.


Sometimes it’s hard to feel sparky. Sparkly? No, sparky. You know the feeling. Crushy. Swoony. Dizzy, but in a good way. And since I took the time to post a 20 part love story on this blog when I was pregnant with my son and since my friend once told me that nearly every story I tell is romantic, it shouldn’t be too hard for me to channel a great date night. I’m a die-hard romantic and I’m a dreamer and I’d like to be even more of a do-er, since that seems to be my trend right now. What can I do during these cold nights? I can schedule a great date. I still love to get excited and dressed up for him, as if we’ve just met.

Here are my top five favorite winter date ideas:

1. Popped popcorn on the stove, maybe a sweet treat as well, and a holiday movie marathon.
2. Find a favorite cozy restaurant to visit again or discover – preferably one with soup.
3. Choose a movie theater and go, and see the first movie that’s about to play. No matter what!
4. Trivia Night at a bar! We have themed ones near us – like Star Wars and Harry Potter. Definitely no reason to miss.
5. Breakfast! If you’re really enterprising – hotel and then breakfast. This requires preparation which leads me to..

Five ways to prepare for date night:

1. Have a sitter you firmly trust. There are options out there – word-of-mouth, Care.com, or the local college job boards always have college students looking for extra work. We sometimes use a friend’s nanny, but make sure we do it only on days she’s not working for our friends. Another thing we do is line up grandparents for a date night, or overnight or weekend!
2. Get all work stuff done, out of the way and out of mind. I’m a workaholic and it’s hard for me to go through life without checking emails or voicemails. Give yourself time to do so to be fully present on the date. I actually just put my phone away, if I take it all, and leave Cassidy’s phone number with our sitters.
3. Put on good music. There is nothing so healing and inspiring to me as music. I am writing to it right now!
4. Have an outfit picked out. A special one. It’s hard for me not to wear the same ripped jeans I drop the kids off in, but date night is special. Pamper too. I love to do face masks and maybe take a hot bath. I don’t do those things often, so it is really special. It helps put me in the mood for an amazing time.
5. Stock your purse with date night essentials. In my case, that includes Emergen-C, ChapStick Total Hydration and Advil.

Since we have a weekend to ourselves soon, I went to Walmart earlier this week to get my favorite purse essentials.


On one of my first dates with Cassidy ever, I started to feel like I was coming down with something and I didn’t want anything to spoil the date so I bought Emergen-C. Since then I always have it on hand. I really love the variety:

More Healthy Days, More Healthy Nights
“Let Your Healthy Out”
With over 20 varieties of vitamin supplement drink mixes, Emergen-C offers the formula, flavor, fix, and FUN you’re looking for!

Advil is another important one for me. With the time you make for date night, it’s just precious, and you never know if it will be the one night you have a headache or any discomfort. Even if you’re not prone to headaches or discomforts, like I’m not, I still keep it in my purse to make sure nothing stands in my way:

Advil Liqui-Gels
Use as directed.
Nothing’s faster on tough pain (among OTC pain relievers).
Muscle ache
Joint pain
Advanced liquid fast relief

My third purse essential for date night is ChapStick Total Hydration. It smells awesome and I love having soft lips. It’s sort of a thing with me. This is what I love about ChapStick Total Hydration:

100% Natural
Age defying
Advanced nourishing formula with argan oil and avocado butter and rosehip oils
Instantly smoothes and moisturizes
Visibly renews lips
With omega 6 & 9
Clinically proven healthier looking lips

What’s your favorite cold weather date? What’s in YOUR purse for date night?

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  1. We love watching movies together. In fact we’re going to watch ALL the Star Wars movies with the kids to get ready for the new one 😉 And of course there is popcorn!

    1. That’s so awesome! In order? Like from 1-6? Or like us and just do 4-6 and then pretend 1-3 doesn’t exist, until we have to show them and then we still show them 4-6 first and then 1-3?

      haha.. that was a ramble.

  2. Date night tends to be movie night when no kids are around and we can watch what we want. How pathetic is that? Occasionally we go out, and sometimes we try to plan things with friends too, which is nice as well. I’ve never given any thought to what is in my purse! Usually I just make sure I have my phone, just in case!

    1. Not pathetic. It’s life!
      You have older kids so I imagine it’s so different. My kids are young and on my case all the time but they do go to bed early!

  3. I’m fighting a cold, and now !’m thinking I need to go get some Emergen-C! And I always have Advil in my purse – always. These darn kids give me headaches:). And i hope you get your over-night date night@!

  4. It is hard to feel sparky, sparkly all of it. Date night isn’t as easy as it used to be these days, but we really need to do it to help our relationship stay strong. I have to tell you about a month ago my husband and I went on a date and I forgot my Chapstick and as dumb as it may sound, I kept thinking about it all night. Don’t forget the Chapstick ladies!!

    1. Not dumb! I’m one of those people! If I’m not wearing ChapStick, I’m thinking obsessively about it and I’ll keep messing with my lips and they’ll get dry or irritated! It’s a pattern of ridiculousness.

  5. Great list and agree though about this time of the year feeling sparkly and all, but we do try as well and will be sharing some more date ideas for one of my upcoming posts soon, too for this time of year, as well. So great twin minds think alike 😉

  6. I love the idea of going to a movie and seeing whatever is playing! So spontaneous, LOL! I always carry Advil or ibuprofen in my purse and I usually pop them like skittles, LOL! I like getting dressed up for my husband on occasion too! 😉

  7. I have emergency every single morning mixed in with my crystal light peach mango green tea! 🙂

    I love that you are such a romantic, and I swear looking at you two just always gives me the chills with the sighs… Dreamy I tell ya. You both are just so dreamy.

    Derek and I desperately need a weekend away. I hope you enjoy yours!!

  8. I’m a fan of cozying up on the couch with a good movie for a date night. Last year we did paint-your-own pottery in January, and then got a beer together. That was a really good date!
    I’m such a workaholic too, but it’s important to take breaks! (I have to often remind myself that.)

    1. What an awesome date!
      Our kids are away so tonight I asked Cassidy to go look for a family of moose with me. They have been hanging around my friend’s house. We didn’t see them. Sob. Maybe tomorrow.
      Speaking of workaholics, I’m writing seven blog posts next week. Will I survive? I have no idea how that happened.

  9. I’ve been taking Emergen-C these last few days because I need the extra boost of vitamins. And speaking of date nights, we’ve FINALLY got one lined up in a few weeks and we’re going to watch a movie 🙂 Though not as cute as your idea of the impromptu movie. I not only already bought the tickets but I even reserved the seats lol! Looking forward to it very much!

    1. I think that sounds awesome! Our kids are away this weekend so tonight we went looking for a local bull moose on the loose. Didn’t find him but looking forward to some fun together all weekend.

  10. My mom likes Emergen-C, but I’ve never tried it. I probably should have taken it last week when I had a cold. I should still probably pick some up. I’d rather stay inside when it’s cold outside too. Sometimes our dates are just getting take out and buying a movie we haven’t seen. We go home and eat in the living room and watch our movie. It’s a good stress free date option for us when we just want to chill together.

    1. It’s a great product. It made me feel better fast.
      I think take out and a movie is amazing. It seems so simple and yet it’s generally a special occasion when it happens.

  11. Seriously, Emergen-C works. I’m probably jinxing myself, but I haven’t had a cold in forever because I take it. Plus, my kids are older, so that probably helps too. This made me want to plan a date night!

  12. I love the picture of you and Cassidy on the bench!!
    I agree with everyone here about Emergen-C, I keep it stocked.
    Cheers to date nights and day dates. 🙂 (I had a day date yesterday 🙂 )

    1. Thanks! That photo was taken in Yosemite and really only a few weeks after we had gotten back together. So Yosemite.. wasn’t seen much. Maybe one day I’ll go back!
      Gosh, that was TMI.
      Day dates = yay!

    1. You can have our cold! My father-in-law flew here from Orlando today and said it was hot down there! He said, “not warm.. HOT!” My brother-in-law lives there and he was visiting.

  13. Hi Tamara, we’ve never done date night and now I feel as if I’m missing out on something! Lipsalve and Neurofen express are staples in my bag. Popcorn, movies and sweet treats would be my first choice for a date night (not many warm and cuddly places to go here in winter), but I’d probably be asleep long before the end credits on the first film!

    Love the photos of you and your other half.


    1. Date night is a tough thing to schedule for us.
      Popcorn is definitely a must have for me. And I love just hanging out here and seeing a movie we’ve never seen before. That’s always special.

  14. Date night has definitely fallen by the wayside around here. It was never something we did often, but it’s something that I always enjoyed when we would do it. I especially like the idea of pampering yourself for a little bit beforehand. Nothing like a little self-facial to get really relaxed.

  15. we are still working on finding a babysitter we trust. so hard these days. we keep getting referred to teenagers and we are like, no way we are entrusting our 18 month old to a teenager!

    1. Exactly! I just “stole” my friend’s nanny because I trust her and she’s been their nanny for about seven years and she’s so good with my kids. They cry when she leaves.

  16. We need a date night soon – it’s been a while since our last one. You have some great ideas too (love the holiday movie marathon)!

    Love your purse essentials! We like the same chapstick!

    I’ve been meaning to try Emergen-C… I should totally try it sometime soon.

    Thanks for sharing.

    1. I LOVE holiday movies! Like.. deeply. Cassidy.. well.. he does like to make me happy, so I’ll give him that.
      I don’t think he’d watch the movies on his own!
      That ChapStick is the BEST!

  17. Love the date night ideas and the tips for prepping! I certainly need those. These days, I easily get lazy and most of the time, I just wanna rest at home. But ha! I need a date night. LOL

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