Africa / Jungle Date Night

Jungle / Africa Date Night

 

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Do you want to spice things up with your honey? Try this date idea!

Part of the Traveling the world Date Series! I give you Africa. Now Africa is a huge continent obviously! So you may want to choose a specific place say South Africa for example.

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I even wore a cheetah print dress, and we played jungle music while we ate. I hung fun balloons from the ceiling. I use to be able to find animal print stuff everywhere, but I really had to search. I think this was a really popular children’s birthday party theme when I was a kid, maybe its not as popular now?

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I decided to just use the entire continent as inspiration because it was easier to plan food around that.

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Menu

-tomato and cucumber salad

-Shrimp kabobs

-veggie platter with homemade hummus

-rice

-chips and guacamole

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It was a huge hit! We had a lot of fun. I recently read the book called Dead Aid. It is written by a woman who grew up in Africa and it goes into the foreign aid dependence and the future of Africa.So interesting! It facilitated a fascinating discussion with my man.

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We also talked about Jungle animals because I got him little party favors, which he loves. So we talked about what it would be like to be in the jungle! Fun times!

Let me know if you do a Jungle date?

Russian Date Night

With the Olympics gearing up, I thought it would be cute to have a Russian date night! This is apart of my “traveling the world” with you series. Basically you “travel” in your living room with your honey. My boyfriend is a full time law student, and I have two jobs and I am working on my masters, so its hard to find time to date (or the money). So with the Traveling the World in our living room dates, we pretend to be in another country together. This is a great way to spice up your dating at home life, and if you have kids, they can easily be incorporated into the date. Its really educational. Usually I will print out the countries flag and some facts about the country.

Photo: The colorful onion domes of St. Basil’s Cathedral

I like to surprise my boyfriend with these date nights, I will usually have them in the middle of the week, and I will come home early and decorate. He loves surprises, but if you honey doesn’t you can plan the dates together.

Spas na krovi, Saint Petersburg, Russia http://www.travelbrochures.org/208/europa/tour-to-russia

First you need to learn about the country your visiting. I started with Pinterest. I simply searched for “Russian Party” and surprisingly there are a ton of party ideas with the Matryoshka Russian Nesting Dolls. Its actually a really popular little girl birthday party theme. Who knew?! It’s adorable! You can purchase all sorts of printables. I just used google image search.

Russia

Second you need to make a menu. I went to Cost Plus and purchased whatever Russian food they had. Here is some examples: pickles, mustard, & wine. I found myself not knowing much about Russian food, so I did a little research online. mustardpickles

There is this popular dish in Russia with Mushrooms, I followed the following Websites instructions, it was delicious, its called Mushrooms and Sour Cream

Mushrooms Sour Cream by Yelena Strokin, via Flickr

I also made this.

Russian Cucumber & Radish Salad | The Cook Who Knew Nothing

Honestly I kind of threw this date together last minuet so my decorations were lack luster. I used a tassel decoration I had used for a birthday party (the how to here) and simply taped pictures of the nesting dolls onto it. But I also included a basket of Russian things. A disclaimer though, don’t go over board with the Russian food. I bought a jar of green tomato salad and pickled squash. And now I have a lot of it in my fridge. It’s an interesting taste. It is a little to different for me.   image(12)

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I picked Russia because of the Olympics, but be on the look out for upcoming date nights apart of the Traveling the World in our living room, others I have planned include Ireland, Greece, Italy and Brazil.

How to feed two adults for 33$ a week

(Source: google images)
I am in the middle of completing my master degree, I am in between jobs and I am up to my eyeballs in student debt. This makes me appreciate being frugal. One way to really save money is to eat at home! Are you looking to save money on dinner without losing taste? I have complied a weeks worth of dinners for only $33 for 2 people.

  •  Wednesday – Enchaladas
    Ingredients: corn tortillas, cheese, onion, green chili
    Side: beans
    Prep time: 25 min
  • Thursday – Corn Bread Salad
    Ingredients: corn bread, corn, tomato, green beans
    Side: salad
    Prep time: 30 min
  • Friday – Fajitas
    Ingredients: tortillas, bell pepper, onion, sour cream
    Side: beans
    Prep time: 20 min
  • Saturday – Salmon
    Ingredients: salmon, lime
    Side: rice & veggie
    Prep time: 30 min
  • Sunday – Tacos
    Ingredients: taco shells, cheese, onion, beans
    Prep time: 20 min
  • Monday – Boca Burgers
    Ingredients: Veggie burger, Buns, lettuce
    Side: home made potato fries
    Prep time: 30 min
  • Tuesday – Pasta
    Ingredients: pasta, red sauce, garlic,
    Side: salad
    Prep time: 20 min


source: eatingwell.com

Shopping list:

  1. block of cheese ($4)
  2. Beans (four cans ($3)
  3. potato ($1)
  4. Boca Burgers ($3)
  5. Buns ($1)
  6. onions ($3)
  7. bell pepper ($2)
  8. corn in a can ($1)
  9. corn bread ($1)
  10. tomato ($1)
  11. grean beans ($1)
  12. pasta ($1)
  13. red sauce ($1)
  14. taco shells ($1)
  15. Salmon ($4)
  16. Rice ($1)
  17. Veggie ($1)
  18. Romain lettuce ($3)

Total: $33

A Pros tip to saving money===

What we have been doing is eating dinner earlier on weekends then going out for a beer and an appetizer after! When we eat dinner at before 6:30 and then go to a restaurant, we are full and our wallets are not as empty.

and when we split the bill its only about 7 bucks a person, for 2 beers and an appetizer and it feels like we ate out!

stretch that quality time together, its like 2 dates! one at home with a home cooked meal, and another at a restaurant!

Do you guys have an other dinner saving tips?

14 Days of Love

I have seen this floating around pinterest, this idea that for 14 days before Valentines day you spoil your honey. I employed this in full force for this years valentines day. I would recommend planning in advance. Or maybe only doing a week of love. It got kind of intense. But it is so rewarding to spoil someone you love.

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I set it up with 13 gift bags, with a “gift” inside each one. the gift gave a hint about what was planned for that day.

Day One   photo(91)
For today, I decorated the bathroom and had a gift for him. I gave him chili pepper, because I was making enchiladas for dinner. I put a note on the chili pepper that said “you set my life on fire”

For dinner I found plastic heart plates at a thrift store. I also cut the homemade tortilla chips I was making into hearts.

Day Two

Was a movie night. I set up a fake concession stand and rented some movies. (pictures to be added).

I tried to recreate something like this:

day 1, first night credit: http://www.pinkpistachio.com

movie night! credit : http://www.yourhomebasedmom.com

Day Three

Today was super bowl. I decorated the table, made bean dip and other super bowl favorites.

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Day Four

I made a notebook of “alphabet of love”

I also made calzones, which he LOVED.

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Day Five

this was bear hug day. I made him a card with Colbert on it, because the number one threat to America is BEARS. I also hand sewed him a teddy bear and got him a honey bear.

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I completely eyeballed the pattern. i made the feet into circles, and cut the body in one big piece. real professional looking. Except not really. However! he really liked it.

I also gave him a honey bear.

credit: http://www.make-it-do.com

Day Six

Box of sunshine day! I packed him a “lunch” of a bunch of yellow stuff i got at party city and brought him a sandwich from his favorite deli!

I tried to recreate this: You are my sunshine, my only sunshine... you make me happy, when skies are gray! credit:http://happymoneysaver.com

I just used a cheap Yellow gift bag and filled it with stuff from the dollar store that was yellow, and surprised him at school with it.

Day Seven

today was a burger date. I made veggie burgers. I also gave him 4 framed photos of the two of us.

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Day Eight

Today’s Theme was “you’re the only fish in the Sea for me”

Day 4 _ I love you! Heart-shaped Sushi. Perfect for a Valentines Day dinner with your honey ;) credit : http://hollyshelpings.com

So I made sushi….

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Home-made sushi, as you can see above, is easier than I thought it would be :)
I simply followed the instructions on the sushi roller box. I made Cucumber, Avocado, Californian rolls, I even added some salsa to some. Yum!

http://www.worldmarket.com/product/sushi-mat-bamboo-95×825.do?&from=Search

 

Day Nine

food

Home cooked meal

This is just a biscuit from the grocery store,  that I rolled flat and placed sliced cheese on top with kale. Then I rolled it into this shape and baked until golden. They came out beautiful, I served with a salad.

Day Ten

Chinese New Year

chinese

http://pinterest.com/theamueh/chinese-new-year/

I decorated the house with stuff from Party City, and made Wontons

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/crispy-wontons/

Day Eleven

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Today’s theme was about our cute little Poodle.

dog

http://www.etsy.com/listing/62802149/dog-treats-gift-baskets-with-dog-toy-dog?ref=sr_gallery_11&ga_ref=auto&ga_search_query=gift+baskets&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_ship_to=US&ga_search_type=handmade&ga_facet=handmade

I gave him something like this wrapped really nice!

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Here is our dog running in the snow. She is so Cute.

Day Twelve

Today’s theme was love bugs.

 

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I got this funny headband from the dollar store, and made cute little valentines like the ones below:

bugs

http://www.createcraftlove.com/2013/01/valentine-pom-monsters.html

Day Thirteen

Tonight we caught up on TV shows and cuddled on the couch…

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Day Fourteen

Tonight, he took me out to dinner, and bought me roses

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whew, so that was 14 days of LOVE,

Maybe you can try something like it? let me know of your adventures :)