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If You're Not Dead, Then Chivalry Shouldn't Be Either!!!

Creative Ideas for Dating during the Quarantine of 2020

Whether you're in a relationship, in the early ages still, or just so GD lonely after binging through an entire TV series by yourself last week (!?!? Dude, are you okay!?!!)... we can all agree that we're STARVING for more than snacks these days. And low key... I have eaten A LOT of snacks. That's right. We're looking for some good old fashioned company. Maybe even a little L-O-V-E. This shit is WAYYYYYYYYY more powerful than any "cuffing season" I've ever seen. Ring by Spring? People out here about to propose to the next person they meet so they never have to go through something like this alone again!!!! Why wait!?

But all jokes aside, we know that things like this take time. Some courting. Wooing, if you will. And Netflix and chilling just isn't gonna cut it! I know what you're thinking. "But Rachel... everything's closed... we can't go out for food OR drinks *look of utter panic* AND I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT ELSE WE'D EVER DOOOOOO!" I am LITERALLY shaking my head. This is not a time for excuses... this is a time to step up, put on our thinking caps, and GET CREATIVE like I imagine they did in the good old days. Or small suburbs. HAHA. I can make that joke since I'm from one. But I want to be clear... NO ONE is safe!!!!!!!! You've been dating for 5 years? Congratulations, but I doubt you've been helped captive in the same pajamas for weeks on end with nowhere to go and no one else to see before. So, get ready to spice things up a little, and let's KEEP. THE. LOVE. ALIVE, PEOPLE! These are some of my ideas below:

1. Weekend Getaway-- Getaway offers tiny cabins nestled in LaRue, TX (1.5 hrs away), perfect for unplugging and connecting with loved ones. You can take it as an opportunity to get out in the surrounding nature, or just snuggle up by a fire, making s'mores over wine. They provide a radio, books, supplies for making food and starting a fire; and I suggest bringing games, food for cooking (either on the campfire grill grate or stovetop inside), and of course, beverages of your choice! They are taking serious measures to provide utmost safety and comfort to all guests; and should you wish to reschedule, or don't feel comfortable going, they will provide you a credit for the value of your Getaway to be used at a future date (at any location!).

2. Set up an at-home picnic-- Whether or not you have an outdoor patio space, this is completely doable! If it's in the middle of your apartment floor, it's in the middle of your apartment floor. The key is the AMBIANCE, so as long as you do what I say... you'll be fine. First, lay down the blanket! Maybe add some pillows for comfort if you think it's necessary. NEXT-- create a spread. For me, picnics are about grazing and wining. So, some ideas are to 1) get a mini board from YaYaYum Boards ($45). If you think you can make your own just as beautiful, by all means! BUT these are pretty damn impressive and seem worth every penny. On the other hand, I thought it could also be fun to 2) order in from Enrique Tomas and give it a Spanish tapas feel! Olives, Meats. Cheese. HOW COULD YOU POSSIBLY GO WRONG!? Then, just set out a bottle of wine, and some glasses, and... you have KILLED it! Put on some music and light some candles if it's at night for extra points :)

Top Left: YaYaYum Board Mini

3. Get your wine tasting on-- Foxtrot (and I know Cork is working on getting this up and running, too) is hosting virtual Somm. lead wine tastings! Basically, you just purchase the bundle of wines they're talking about before the tasting (by 3 PM Thursday; it starts at 6) and download Zoom on your computer if you don't have it already. You receive the code to join in after purchase (this is important!). It's limited in space so that you can actually meet, take notes, discuss, and participate. The one they're featuring right now is $40, and here is the link to purchase! I'd keep an eye out on Cork, too, to get more details once they're released. Again, this is GREAT because you are not just sitting around drinking, but learning and doing an activity together!

4. Movie night-- Movie nights can come off as low effort, but this one is different. This involves the utmost thought, energy, and strategy....because you're going to watch it from a PILLOW FORT. You heard me! The coveted structure of comfort and nostalgia-- in your own home. I'd probably do some thinking beforehand about what resources you can utilize to make this successful (because I can also see this ending in a fight haha); but once it's up in're GOLDEN! Add some lights or candles (obviously be careful!), cozy up, and relax the rest of the night. Of course... do NOT forget the movie snacks! (My faves are popcorn, pretzel m&m's, and gummy bears or sour patch... all mixed together)

5. Make dinner & drinks together-- Pick a fun theme & come up with a menu for the evening! You can start from scratch, or order-in items that just need final touches before heading to the dinner table. Some ones that I've been planning include:

- Sushi Night: Making Sushi is easier (and cheaper) than you might think! I bought a bamboo sushi rolling mat and a life supply of chopsticks for about $10 on Amazon today (lol). If you're feeling FISHY about the current seafood situation, go with vegetarian/vegan options! I LOOOOOOOOVE the veggie options at Blue Sushi, and will be trying to recreate some later this week! Linked the menu here-- the Shiitake to Me and Thai Hippie are totally worth trying :) Pair it with some Chardonnay, bubbles, or homemade lychee martinis and I'd say it's a homerun. - DIY Pizza Night: Pizza night is always awesome. But making it yourself!? Takes it up a notch. And it's something you guys can do together. My suggestion is to grab a cauliflower crust at Trader Joe's (let's fight the quarantine 15 & keep things simple, ppl!), and find out their favorite pizza ahead of time! Whether it's from Pie Tap, Coal Vines, Cane Rosso, YOU NAME IT-- you can look up the ingredients and recreate it with them. SO CUTE. Pair with wine and/or beer, and VOILA.

- Mexican Night: Did someone say margs!? If you haven't mastered your own, there are TONS of awesome margarita kits out there! You can order them from spots like Mesero, Primos, José, Beto & Son (all require a purchase of food); BUT if you feel like cooking, go with Las Palmas (you can just order a side of chips $1 and meet the requirement).

- Chinese Night: Jia Modern Chinese has frozen handmade vegetable and soup dumplings SUPER easy for you to steam at home! There are bamboo steamer baskets on Amazon Prime for $10, and Jia has how-to videos for you to follow along on Instagram. Again, a fun experience you probably wouldn't do normally! If you don't have alcohol at home, they're also offering 50% off all their wines.

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