Dinner & A Movie Is So…“Meh.” Here Are Some Creative Takes On V-Day Dates.

Dinner & A Movie Is So…“Meh.” Here Are Some Creative Takes On V-Day Dates.

A couple of weeks ago, as a friend of mine was talking about what kind of plans she was going to make with her man for Valentine’s Day, she said something that I think a lot of people feel — “Dinner and a movie are cool but they’re just so predictable. You got any creative ideas?”

Funny, because my editor here asked me the same thing. So, I’m taking all of this to be a sign from the universe that 2023 is the year when folks want to step a bit outside of the norm when it comes to celebrating the day when Cupid likes to make a special appearance.

Whether you’re in something new or something serious, you’re in the same town or miles apart, you’re sexually active or putting (physical) intimacy on ice for now — I hope I covered all of the bases below with these 13 date ideas so that this Valentine’s Day can be one of the best dates — and days — that you’ve ever had!

1. Play Your Own Version of a Dating Show on Zoom

Let’s start here. Have you ever noticed that when it comes to date ideas for Valentine’s Day, oftentimes they tend to be, well, a bit much if you’re in a dynamic where you and someone are just getting to know each other? You’re not close enough to do anything “deep” but it might be a little awkward to ignore Valentine’s Day altogether. If this is exactly where you are with someone, why not come up with your own dating show on Zoom?

For instance, it could be something like a guessing game where both of you come up with 10 or so questions about each other’s favorite things, pet peeves, and what makes you attracted to other people. If you both get a certain amount of answers right (the number is totally up to y’all), the prize can be a future fantasy date. If one of you does, the “loser” can agree to take the other out.

Listen, the rules are totally up to y’all. All I’m saying is this is a safe, fun, and creative way to learn more about each other, all from the comfort and convenience of your own home.

2. Have a Sexless Sleepover

I already know that this one might seem “odd” but going along with the theme of easing into the process of taking things to another level, if you’ve already been out with someone a couple of times, you’re clear that you want to get to know each other better butyou’re not sure that you’re ready for sex just yet, ask them how they would feel about a sexless sleepover. You can each pick a favorite movie, order some of your favorite foods and just…hang out.

If it leads to sex, okay. However, most people would agree with me that sleeping with someone (just sleeping) can also be pretty intimate. Plus, it can help you to understand one another differently. If he’s down and acts like a complete gentleman the entire time (as he should), it can also help to develop a sense of trust that you might not have had prior to him being in your space (or you being in his) for a significant amount of time.

3. Enjoy a Winter or Indoor Picnic Together

Last month, CNN ran an article entitled, “Inflation is killing the first dinner date.” Honestly, I don’t have a problem with that because that whole “A man should spend hundreds of dollars on me on a first date” just oozes entitlement — and if you want a good man who ain’t a sucker, he already knows that. Besides, a picnic ranks higher in my book anyway because it typically requires more creativity and thoughtfulness in order to pull it off. Also, it can be easier to get some one-on-one time in too.

Since it’s still cold outside, why not have a winter picnic with grilled cheese, soups, and hot cocoa or, if it’s not a first date, an indoor picnic at one of your homes? You don’t need to make anything — you can order takeout and just focus on the ambiance — pitch a tent out of blankets, string some lights on it, and play some of your favorite music in the background. Laid-back romance can sometimes be the best kind.

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4. Take a Day Trip to the Next City or Town

Valentine’s Day is on a Tuesday this year, so this might be something that you can do either the weekend before or the weekend following it. Either way, turnaround day trips can be a lot of fun because you’re able to get off of the grid and get some much-needed quality time in.

For instance, I live in Nashville, so I’m roughly four hours away from Atlanta. Even if I didn’t feel like going that far, believe it or not, Chattanooga and Huntsville are on the come-up and they’re both somewhere around two hours away. The bonding during the drive and then randomly choosing a restaurant and maybe even spontaneously staying over at a hotel can bring the free-spiritedness out of you both — and that can be really sexy.

5. Come Up with Your Own “Pick a Card” or "Index Card" Challenge

At this point, who hasn’t seen at least 10 versions of the “Pick a Card” challenge that’s gone viral on various socials? Another idea is to have you and your partner each choose a version to surprise each other with.

The thing that I really like about this “game” is it doesn’t require a ton of money (if coins are tight right now); however, you do have to be proactive and also think about things that your partner would really enjoy doing whether they pick the left or right card. Anyway, just something else to think about if you want to do something that’s a little out of the norm this year.

6. Theme a Date Around Each Other’s Top Love Language

By now, who doesn’t know what the five love languages are? They’re words of affirmation, physical touch, quality time, acts of service, and gifts. With that out of the way, even though it’s common for men to get women some flowers on V-Day, that doesn’t automatically or necessarily mean that it “scratched the itch” when it comes to making a woman feel truly seen and appreciated. And lawd, don’t even get me started on how many men get overlooked altogether (by the way, sex is not a present; both people benefit from the act. Do something tangible for him. He probably won’t see it coming and will profoundly appreciate your efforts).

A few years ago, I wrote an article for the platform entitled, “15 Date Ideas Based On Your Love Language.” When you get a chance, check it out and also send it to the person you’re seeing. Suggest doing something along those lines this year. You might be surprised by what you both come up with — activities that will truly speak to the way that you like to feel appreciated and/or loved.

7. Create a Dating Pinterest Board (for the Year) Together

When it comes to character traits that I personally adore in a man, at the very top of the list is proactiveness. It speaks to him moving with intention when he makes plans ahead of time instead of being reactive because he knows that he dropped the ball.

Anyway, if you and your boo thang would prefer to be somewhat low-key this year, something that you could do is create a dating board on Pinterest. If you’re wondering how that works, it’s basically just like creating a vision board, only the focus is to plan out different things to do together every month until December rolls around. The cool thing about this option is it works if you’re sitting on the couch together or you’re in a long-distance relationship and you’re sharing a screen on Zoom.

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8. Use Spotify Group Sessions Feature to Your Favor

Speaking of long-distance situations, if you and your partner are premium subscribers on Spotify, something else that you can do is have a music-listening party together online. Yep, you can either create a favorite music playlist separately or come up with one together and then share the music while you’re both in the same Spotify session.

Even though it won’t be the same thing as being together (I mean, nothing is), listening to the first song you danced to together, did “other stuff” together to, or hearing tunes that make the both of you think about the other person can be pretty romantic when you think about it. If you’ve never used this feature before, click here and here to learn how.

9. Engage in Online Video Game Stripping

Not too long ago, I was interviewing some men about the things that they like about going on dates and also the things that they kinda-sorta loathe. I’m sure it comes as no surprise that one of the things that they hate is being expected to damn near spend half of their rent money on one date; however, another thing that came up is they often end up doing things that only their partner truly enjoys.

Well, this idea most definitely has the fellas in mind. And before you knock video games, Google all of the benefits that come from playing them. They reduce stress. They stimulate creativity. They help with problem-solving skills. And that’s just for starters.

Anyway, if you and your man happen to be apart for Valentine’s Day, perhaps play a few rounds of online video game stripping. Play each other and whoever loses each round, they have to drop something. I can’t think of one guy who won’t jump for joy at the idea of doing this.

10. Cook Each Other’s Favorite Dish (Possibly Naked)

Something that can be a real form of quality time is cooking with your partner. The cool thing about this option is you can also do it whether you live in the same city or not. It can be a great way to get to know each other’s palates as you share some of your favorite recipes and approaches to food.

The twist here is, rather than making one of your own favorite dishes, you make your partner’s instead and vice versa (which also works well if you’re long-distance). If you want to make it sexy, do it in some lingerie or maybe — nothing on at all. #wink

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11. Come Up with a Signature Cocktail. And Dessert.

When you think of a signature cocktail, I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if wedding receptions are immediately what crosses your mind. But who said that you have to be married or that weddings are the only time when you and your boo thang can come up with a drink that represents the love that’s between the two of you?

If this idea is intriguing yet you have no idea where to begin, Vox has a cocktail test that you can take here and there are a few general instructions for how to make a signature cocktail here, here, and here.

While you’re at it, why not come up with a signature dessert as well? One approach that you can take for this is to discuss your three top favorite desserts each and then come up with a creative way to combine a few of ‘em. Could be a lot of fun!

12. Make a Sex Piñata

Now, when I say “make,” I’m not exactly being literal. LOL. I mean, if arts and crafts are totally your thing, my hat goes off to you. At the same time, there are places where you can purchase a piñata for a fairly decent price; some are even themed around Valentine’s Day like a red heart from Walmart (here) and this rose-colored one from Amazon (here).

Oh, and while you could just fill it with candy and call it a day, why not spice things up a bit and also add some travel-size bottles of lubrication, a couple of sex toys, some lace panties, and maybe even a handwritten note or two that are filled with sexual fantasies?

Each of you can put a blindfold on the other and whoever breaks the piñata first gets a sex-themed surprise — or reward, depending on how you look at it. #wink

13. Do a “Mind, Body and Spirit” Date (Well…Dates)

When you’re in a relationship with someone, your entire being is involved — mind, body, and spirit. So, let’s wrap this Valentine’s Day date ideas article up with the recommendation to break the date up into three segments. For the mind part, play a board game together, ask some never-before-asked questions, or vibe out together with some jazz and wine. For the body, do something exhilarating like ziplining, something relaxing like a yoga class, or schedule an intimate at-home couples massage. For the spirit, get into some orgasmic meditation, go shopping for some crystals, or commit to watching the sun set and rise the next morning together.

As you can see, there are tons of things to do outside of a restaurant or movie theater. Whether you go with one (or a couple) of these ideas or try something else, here’s to taking a more outside-of-the-box approach to Valentine’s Day this year.

Hey, you’re a unique couple, right? Let what you do exemplify that fact.

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