Monday, March 9, 2009

Very Romantical...

I realized that I never did post about our Valentine's Day. Traditionally, Aaron and I have never done very much, since we prefer to focus on our birthdays and anniversaries. And we figured that buying gifts for each other is kind of silly, since it comes out of the same checking account. We usually go out to dinner, and that's really about it. This Valentine's, we decided to do something a bit different. Dinner, a movie, and a babysitter can wind up costing close to $100 if you eat somewhere nice and get a popcorn and a drink. Yikes! And really, isn't Valentine's about celebrating and strengthening your relationship? Aaron and I both follow several financial blogs that are aimed towards saving money, and they had several great ideas for celebrating Valentine's Day. So we decided to give it a whirl.

First, we picked out a menu from the Food Network that we could prepare together. We fixed the kids a simple dinner and then sent them upstairs to watch a movie. We both got dressed formally; I wore a dress from Preference (the girl's choice dance at BYU) and Aaron wore his black suit and tie. I created a playlist of romantic songs and together we made dinner. Here's what we made:

Caramelized Pancetta and Fennel Salad
We were hesitant about making this, but it was our FAVORITE. It was so amazingly delicious, I think I could eat it every night.

Roasted Asparagus
This was an easy and elegant side dish.

Shrimp Scampi with Linguini
Aaron's thrilled anytime I agree to make seafood!

Chocolate Covered Strawberries
These were so much fun to make together! And, surprisingly, they turned out exactly like the photo!

We made sure to set the table properly so that we had a restaurant-like atmosphere. I even picked up some Martinelli's and champagne glasses and scattered the table with rose petals.

After the food was prepared, we put the kids to bed so we could eat in peace. We ate by candlelight. (Can you believe that I have no candlesticks? I had to improvise with a hurricane lamp.) We let the music play while we were eating, and then afterwards danced in the kitchen. Cute, huh?

It was honestly the most fun and romantic Valentine's we've ever had. And one of the least expensive!