Anyway. If you're like us and need to spruce up the ol' date night, we somehow succeeded. Here are the key elements, as I see it.
Plan it in advance. Think back to your days of "Planned, Paired Off and Paid For." Even if it's simple, a little planning and scheduling in advance is the best. It's something to put on the calendar and look forward to.
(The Beard got tickets to this Jazz game in the Larry H. Miller Suite a few weeks ago. So fun.)
Make the transportation part of your date - whether that's taking a scenic route, parking and walking a few blocks to your restaurant, or listening to specific music in the car makes that time more memorable.
(We took the Trax from Sandy to Downtown - neither of us being big Trax users. Best people watching of all time. We also did a Backstreet Boys singalong on the way home, but that's pretty normal.)
Do something new, like a restaurant you've never tried or a store you've never been in.
(Z'Tejas was a last minute decision but the giant bowl of guacamole made right at our table was the highlight of my night. It's rare that I can weasel the Beard out of Italian and into Mexican food, so when it's yummy I rub it in.)
Positive Conversation is where it's at. Focus on things you love, things you're excited for and retelling old stories.
(We have been trying so hard to not complain about our jobs, and it's paying off. We talked about our families, Christmas plans, single girls to set our single guys up with, and of course Glen Coco.)
And finally, the best discovery I made was actually an unfortunate accident.
And the reason I have no pictures. Not even of my outfit. I wore a Star Wars graphic tee, blazer, cropped pants and leopard studded loafers. Definitely outfit-post worthy, but we missed it. Just imagine it, would you? Here's my outfit today anyways. Not as cute. Much more teacher-y. But I finally got a polka dot sweater! Blogger win!
Puppy: Heaven, sweater: Forever 21, chambray shirt: Old Navy, pants: Gap, boots: Forever Young
Turn your phone off, leave it in the car, silent mode, whatever you need to do. You become so much more mentally present and engaged when your phone/Twitter/Instagram isn't buzzing in the back of your mind.
At first I was bummed that I couldn't post a pic and live tweet the game, but it only lasted about a minute. Once I realized I didn't have to check my phone constantly and could give the Beard my full attention, the night just took off.
I realized that THAT is what a date truly is. Devoting your attention to one person for a few hours to show them you care and really want to know them. After 7 years of dating you would think I'd have figured that out by now.
Well I've figured it out now. And I'm super excited for more phone-less dates with that bearded guy I like.