Move over, Doctor Phil. I’ve got love and relationships in the bag.
I’ll be frank. After 5 and a half years of being with Will, sometimes we get lazy about going on dates. Our dates start to consist of a lot of nights eating takeout Thai food in our sweatpants while watching episodes of One Tree Hill or Friday Night Lights. We are getting closer and closer to Hermitdom. Now, while I love those nights well enough in moderation, I also love when we go on real live dates outside the house like going to a show outside, walk around the city, go to a flea market, etc. I like to get all pretty for the occasion and, damn it, we have a good time together. Sometimes it feels like we are falling back in love. AWWW, look at me getting all mushy gushy on y’all. It’s the wedding hormones talking.
But guys, sometimes I put my lazy pants on because I don’t FEEL like planning a date for us nor does he. Then I go read books and I’m all SWOON SWOON SWOON that sounds like a perfect date. WAH WAH WAH.
So I decided to take some inspiration from books and plan a few dates for Will and I to go on soon (or perhaps after the wedding since our dates seem to now consist of stuffing envelopes and talking about flowers). Now go forth and have epic dates.
The Inspiration: The, um, EPIC ROAD TRIP they went on, sillies!! This one won’t be as LONG as Amy & Roger’s but it will be every bit as EPIC.
Step 1: Make sure you have a car. Hot wire one if you need to.
Step 2: On your own, both of you should create the most epic, road tripping mix. There should be songs that bring the dance party, songs that you can belt out like a mofo, songs that you pretend you can sing really well too but totally can’t, etc. etc. This will be interesting for Will and I as our musical universes do not often overlap. Sample of My Mix: MGMT, The Naked & The Famous, Florence & The Machine, Journey Will’s: RAP, RAP, RAP.
Step 3: Purchase a map. You know, that thing made out of paper. Leave your GPS at home. It’s explooooring time. You are allowed to get lost.
Step 4: Pick your radius for how long you are willing to travel and then pick a place on the map as your final destination. Research places to go on the way (a cool diner, a state park, a funky museum) or just freaking wing it and see what random ish you find on the open road. You might run into a house that is in the shape of a SHOE or an Elvis shrine.
Step 5: Pack the goodies to eat, have your camera handy, fill up your tank, check those tires (thanks Dad!) and YOU ARE OFF.
Step 6: Roll the windows down and commence car dancing and loud singing. Bonus points if you don’t care about the wind in your hair. Take lots of pictures of everything you do. AND FOR GOD SAKE, JAMIE, DO NOT FIGHT ABOUT HIS DRIVING! It will only ruin the epic and memorable road trip you are about to have.
The Inspiration: Ok, my IDEAL date inspired by this book would be for Will and I to go to Paris but that’s just not going to happen anytime soon with the wedding. But one of the places I loved so much is the cute theater that Anna would go to escape and watch old movies — sometimes in English and sometimes in French. I’m a SUCKER for cute little theaters and really loathe the big multiplexes. I loved the old man who walked his dog that owned the theater. BUT MOST OF ALL. I loved the first time they all went to the theater together and there was that tension between St. Clair and Anna. It was so reminiscent of my first “unofficial” date with Will. Sitting there feeling the proximity of his elbow to my elbow, my knee to his knee. Sneaking glances throughout the movie. I LOVE IT. It’s funny that was our first kind-of-sort-of date because I can count on my hands the number of times we’ve gone to the movies in the past 5 1/2 years.
Step 1: Get on the Google machine and find the nearest theater that either 1) shows older movies or 2) is a cute old-time theater. Fortunately for me, I have some really great options nearby. They are playing Breakfast at Tiffany’s this summer and An American In Paris. I’m so going to get my Gene Kelly on!!
Step 2: To really add that Anna and the French Kiss touch, enjoy some crepes beforehand either by finding a fabulous little creperie or go all Betty Crocker and make them yourselves. Will and I found a fabulous recipe for Nutella and banana crepes I’d be willing to share for the occasion! Bonus points if you make them because you still have money to buy concession candies.
Step 3: During the movie, while perhaps taking in a little Gene Kelly, hold hands. Steal glances at one another. Share your Sno Caps. DOUBLE BONUS POINTS if you try to sneak a kiss but no makeout sesh please and thanks. You aren’t ACTUALLY a teenager again.
The Inspiration: The notebook full of crazy dares left by Lily at the Strand that Dash finds and plays her game which results in some gut busting, hilarious moments!
Step 1: Have a sense of humor and a sense of fun. This one is going to be super silly and possibly make you turn fifty shades of red. Possibly have a flask with you for liquid courage. BUT DEAR HEAVENS, don’t drive nor should you get sloshed in public.
Step 2: Come up with 5-10 fun dares/challenges for the other person (nothing too illegal or too crazy unless you can handle it) that can be done in the span of an afternoon. I would DEFINITELY be making Will jump in a fountain with his clothes and pretend to drown for a minute or make him, a la Anna style, scream “I LOVE KISSING BOOKS” in a bookstore. Or maybe I’d make a gross concoction and make him drink it or make him sit on Santa’s lap like Lily does to Dash! Get creative!
Step 3: One by one do the challenges. Document them. Laugh your ass off. And remind yourself of how fun it is to be in love.
Be on the lookout for more book inspired dates because I’ve got a whole lifetime of dates to have come August 17th. I’ve got a whole list of them! What did you think? Which date would YOU be more likely to go on?