Date Night Gift Baskets

With Valentine’s Day coming up in a couple weeks I’m thinking about date nights and sweet gifts so I thought it was the perfect opportunity to share some ideas that combine both! Giving a gift basket that has a date night activity is a thoughtful gift that shows your loved ones that you value time with them over any material object. Find the ideas below and click through to get all the details of what you can include in each basket!

Cooking Dinner for 2 Date Night Gift Basket

Painting Date Night Gift Basket

Game Night Gift Basket for Couples

Dinner and a Movie Date Night Gift Basket

A Year Of Date Nights Gift Basket

Looking for other date night ideas?

5 Winter Date Ideas

50+ Date Night Ideas

Summer Day Date Idea: Recreate Memories On A Local Road Trip

One Year of Pre-Planned Date Nights Gift

Strengthen Your Marriage with a Year Of Dates 

 

I’d love to hear about your favorite date night you’ve had with your significant other! Chat with me on Twitter @aliciamarie112

PIN THIS POST TO SAVE THESE IDEAS FOR YOUR NEXT DATE NIGHT!

 

‘Dinner For Two’ Date Night Gift Basket

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WonderfulYourWay #CollectiveBias The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older.

Before we had kids, Sinisa and I would go on dates quite often. We’d go out to eat, go to the movies, and walk around local downtown areas. It was nice to be able to connect during those times. Unfortunately, once we had our first child, our date nights out became almost non-existent. Nowadays we tend to do a lot of date nights in which basically consist of watching a movie on the couch.

With Valentine’s Day coming soon, I wanted to change things up a bit and create a special date night basket. Since Sinisa loves to cook I thought he’d enjoy a gift basket full of goodies that would let us have a date night in where we could cook a special meal together. I’m calling this a “Dinner for two” date night gift basket.

I started by figuring out what type of meal we’d make and decided upon pasta. Maybe it’s the whole Lady & the Tramp spaghetti scene stuck in my head, but I equate pasta with romantic meals. Along with the box of pasta, I put some other items we’d need for our date night in the basket including Valentine’s themed kitchen hand towels, some red cooking utensils, a couple chocolate roses, salt and pepper shakers, candles and a bottle of wine to enjoy with our meal.

We have a few go-to pasta dishes that we make but Sinisa made a really delicious one a couple years ago that I wanted to recreate together. It’s a dish similar to Pasta Carbonara though we don’t add eggs to it like the typical recipe calls for.

For our recipe, I got all the ingredients at Kroger, including Barilla® Pronto® Penne pasta, a product innovation that allows for one-pan meals to be created with no need to wait for water to boil, and no draining required. I like this pasta because it cooks within ten minutes and is perfect for one pot meals.

Ingredients to make dinner for 2:

  • 1/2 box of Barilla Pronto Penne
  • 1/4 cup of bacon pieces
  • 1/2 cup of frozen peas
  • 2 cups of (cold) water or broth (we used vegetable broth)
  • 4 ounces of cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup of shredded parmesan cheese
  • Seasoning to taste (we used black pepper and garlic powder)
  • A teaspoon of vegetable oil

Directions:

Add the oil to the pan along with the bacon and peas and heat for a minute or so, stirring to mix.

Add the dry pasta.

Pour the cold water (or broth) over the pasta. (Feels strange doesn’t it? Usually you have to put a pot of water on the stovetop and then wait forever for it to boil before you can put your pasta in but this new pasta is “no boil”.) Cover and let cook on medium heat for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stir in the 4 ounces of cream cheese. Then cover and cook for three more minutes to finish cooking the pasta.

At this point the pasta is fully cooked. Can you believe that you have perfectly cooked pasta in just 10 minutes?! Whoever invented this no boil pasta is a genius. I also love that you don’t have to drain it because the majority of the liquid has cooked out. To finish making this pasta dish, add the shredded cheese, season to taste and stir everything together.

I love the combo of cheese and bacon in this dish and the addition of the peas helps me meet my veggie goal for the week lol. This pasta dish is so easy to make and requires little prep which is perfect for date night. You’ll have dinner on the table within 15 minutes and making the whole meal in one pan is great because nobody wants to spend date night stuck in the kitchen washing a sink full of dishes.

What pasta dish would you make on your “dinner for two” date night? Find more “Wonderful Your Way” recipe inspiration here.

 

7 DIY Valentines With Printables

Valentine’s Day is about a week away so I wanted to share 7 DIY valentines that you can put together last minute. These are perfect for your kids to take to school because all of these are candy-free and have printables you can easily print out!

SILLY GLASSES Print the greetings onto card stock; cut out. Use double-stick tape to attach the glasses onto the card stock, or punch holes for each of the temple pieces, thread them through, and fold closed.

JACKS SET Insert scrap cardboard into a small muslin bag (we found ours on papermart.com). Help your child stamp a heart onto the bag; let dry. Print the greeting; cut out and insert into the bag, along with a jacks set.

CRAYONS & NOTEPADS Place crayons on top of a notepad and wrap with a rubber band. Print the template onto plain paper; cut out. Wrap it around the bundle and tape in place in the back.

PARACHUTER Print greeting onto cloud-patterned paper (we found ours at officesupply.com); cut out. Adhere paper to card stock with a glue stick. Attach parachuter with a glue dot.

ZOO ANIMALS  Print greeting onto card stock; cut out. Trim a piece of sushi grass (we found ours on amazon.com) to the width of the card. Insert the greeting, grass, and zoo animal into a cellophane bag; tape it closed.

YO-YO Print the template onto 8½-by-11-inch sticker paper (at office-supply stores), and have your child trim it out using pinking shears. Stick it onto the yo-yo, and you’re good to go!

PLAYING CARDS Print the template onto 8½-by-11-inch sticker paper; cut out. Wrap a box of cards once with washi tape, then stick the greeting onto the box.

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Thanks to Family Fun Magazine for sending me these great ideas to share! Find all of the printables here (look under Feb/March 2016 No Candy Valentines).

10 Valentine’s Day Desserts

A few years ago I shared a post of 10 delicious Valentine’s Day treats and it’s one of my most read posts ever. I thought it was time to share another post with ten more of my favorites since the last one was so popular. Enjoy!

Valentine’s Day Cookies from Family Fresh Meals

Valentine’s Day Candy Popcorn from A Helicopter Mom

Strawberry Brownie Kabobs from Erica’s Sweet Tooth

Ice Cream Cupcakes from Bubbly Nature Creations

Hershey Kiss Cookies from Life Is Sweets

Valentine’s Day Patties from Mom on Timeout

Linzer Cookies from Cooking Classy

Pink Snowball Puffs from Pamela’s Heavenly Treats

Chocolate Dipped Strawberry Meringue Roses from U Try It

Cherry Cordial Cupcakes from Lemon-Sugar

10 Heart Shaped Crafts

With Valentine’s Day coming up I thought a roundup of heart shaped crafts would be fun to share. Not only do they make beautiful things to keep for years, they can be used to make your home festive during the February holiday.

The first one I wanted to share is one Lucas made in school a couple of years ago and it’s still one of my most meaningful pieces of art I have. It’s super easy to make. Find the directions for it here.

Here are some of my favorites from the amazing bloggers in the Kid Blogger Network.

Valentine’s Heart Fizzy Painting from Gift of Curiosity

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Tissue Paper Heart Wreath from Happy Hooligans

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Heart Sensory Collage from Crayon Box Chronicles

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String Heart Art from How We Learn

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Heart Suncatcher from Fun at Home with Kids

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Stamping Glitter Hearts from Buggy and Buddy

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Pipe cleaner heart

This is super easy and requires two supplies- pipe cleaners and beads. Add the beads on the pipe cleaner and form it into a heart. Jacob made this one a few years ago and decided just to use a small amount of beads but your child can decorate the whole heart with them!

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Salt Dough & Perler Beads Valentine Ornaments from Meaningful Mama

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Tissue Bleed Valentine Heart from Powerful Mothering

Which craft will you be trying first?

10 Valentine’s Day Themed Lunches

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10 Valentine’s Day Themed Breakfasts

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10 Valentine’s Day Treats

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{Update 2/2015: See the bottom of this post for 10 more Valentine’s Day dessert ideas!}

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Click on the below image for 10 more desserts!

DIY Valentines {10 Ideas}

Want to make Valentines this year instead of buying them? Check out these ideas found around the web!

{Click on pictures for directions}

Crayon Valentines

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Pirate Valentines

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Fishy Valentines

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Lollipop Valentines

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“I Dig You” Valentines

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Rockin’ Valentines

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Magnifying Glass Valentines

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Mustaches!

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“Make Your Own Paper” Valentines

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Glow Stick Valentines

8 Wreaths For Valentine’s Day

Time to start thinking about Valentine’s Day :) Enjoy this roundup of fabulous Valentine’s themed wreaths and click on the pictures to visit the sites they came from!

XO Wreath

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Heart Wreath

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Paper Heart Wreath

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Cockscomb Wreath

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Red, White, and Pink Wreath

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Button Wreath

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Valentine Book Wreath

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Double Heart Wreath