Relationships

Creative Date Ideas You’re Underestimating

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Any sort of date should be a fun date, but why not consider something a bit unconventional? Here’s a quick list of creative date ideas that you and your partner shouldn’t underestimate. The less well-worn the path of your date is, the more memorable it will be!

Try a new recipe

Find a recipe that you’ve never tried before and cook it together. The results may not be perfect, but working together on something like this will definitely create interesting memories! Besides, it could be argued that a recipe that doesn’t come out perfectly can actually make the whole thing a bit more fun. Try looking for recipes in diets that you don’t follow – for example, if you eat meat, then be adventurous and try a vegan dish.

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Watch a strange film

A lot of couples go out and watch the latest blockbusters or romantic comedies. But why not find an independent cinema in a less obvious location and watching some arthouse flick or documentary film? You may discover new areas of cinematic interest for the both of you. These sorts of films are also more likely to produce engaging conversation afterwards. As fun as I’m sure Thor 3 will be, how likely is it that you’ll both have anything much to say afterwards other than “that was awesome!”?

Go to a jazz bar

Most cities these days have a jazz bar hidden away somewhere, even though many people think that jazz bars are long-forgotten relics that are nowhere to be found these days. A jazz night is a classic date night idea, but it’s in no way antiquated. Some bars will play old-time stuff, but many will feature musicians playing new and original material – and modern jazz still continues to be as fun and adventurous as it always was. Get some formal wear ready – find a nice suit or a long evening dress online – and search for a nearby jazz bar for a truly different evening.

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Have a games night

People are always underestimating the power of board games. Of course, it could be argued that board games are best played in a group. But there are actually a bunch of board games out there that are perfectly fun with two people. Try out the best board games for couples – or, if you’re really not into the board game scene, consider taking turns with a video game.

Have a picnic

Sure, you could have a nice lunch indoors. Or you could go to a restaurant, which is where most couples will go if they want to have a date that features food. But why not save a bunch of money (those restaurants are not kind to your wallet, after all) and have a picnic? The season is right for it, after all. (Or, at least, it’s getting there.) Be careful about your wine selection, though – you don’t want to end up drinking too much in a public field! If you really feel like having a wine-heavy picnic, then even a back garden picnic can be amazing.

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Walk the dog

A lot of dog owners tend to see walking the dog as a pretty banal daily duty. Sure, when you first get the dog it can be pretty exciting, but over time it tends to be something just one person in the household does, with people often taking it in turns just like any other chore. But consider actually going on a long walk together with your dog. And if you don’t have a dog, offer to walk your friend’s dog, or consider searching for people online who need the occasional dog walker.

Go for a hot air balloon ride

Not for those afraid of heights! This is another ‘classic’ date idea that seems to be grossly underused these days. As long as there’s a big enough field nearby, you can probably find a business nearby that offers hot air balloon rides for couples. Remember that there will probably be someone else in the basket with you, though, unless one of you happens to be a licensed air balloon pilot!

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Recreate your first date

Assuming that you’ve been with your partner for some time, it may be a good idea to try recreating your first date. Go to the same restaurant or watch the film you first saw together. You can recreate this at home, too – cook the same meals you ate that night and rent the same film you saw, or see if you can find it on Netflix. A trip down memory lane can really bring back some sparks.

Life

Marvelous Tips for Dating In Your 40s

over 40 datingIf you’re in your 40s and single again, you may be wondering whether or not you have made the right choices in life. Perhaps you did, perhaps you didn’t, but let’s face it: the past is something that cannot be changed. So, there’s no point regretting over what has been done, and better to focus on moving ahead in your life.

You can still find the right person for yourself, joining online dating site Maturedatinguk.com and while it can be hard for you, once you find ‘the one’ it’s likely that you will stay in that relationship for the rest of your life. Now, isn’t that something good to look forward to? Indeed it is! Below we have discussed some effective tips that will help you date in your 40s:

Be Happy With Yourself

You can hit the gym, shed some pounds and buy new clothes to create a new and different you, but is it really worth it? Don’t get us wrong here, being healthy and looking good can definitely separate you from the crowd. However, there really isn’t any point of doing so if you don’t stick to it. If you believe you can’t, you’re much better off sticking to what you already know and being happy with it. Once you’re able to embrace who you really are, you’ll be able to gather the confidence required to succeed in today’s dating scene.

Accept The Chemistry

If you’ve ever met someone and felt that instant attraction, you might be asking “what are pheromones?”. They might not be what you thought was your “usual type” but sometimes that’s for the best. If the attraction is there, see where it goes, even if you’re stepping out of your comfort zone.

Leave Your Baggage at the Door

If you still live in the past, nobody would like to start a relationship with you. While you might share some similar experiences (such as health issues or a failed marriage) if you are looking for someone your age, bonding on negative issues won’t get you anywhere. In much the same way, you should also leave behind the anger you have for your ex.  Assuming that the person you’re dating has hidden motives will only result in another relationship wreck. Relationships thrive on trust, so trust yourself and the person you’re dating.

Know What You’re Looking For

You’re in your 40s now, so forget about what you used to think about when you were in your 20s, and be a bit more realistic. Everyone wants their perfect match (who doesn’t?), but guess what? Most of them are still looking. If you really want a meaningful and lasting relationship, it’s about time you get rid of your list of ‘must-haves’ and replace it with some consideration of how a potential partner will make you feel and treat you.

Take it Slow

Lastly, you should take things slow. There’s no need to jump into a new relationship immediately after you have gone through a failed one. You’re looking for the right person, not the right now person to give you something you cannot provide yourself: companionship. Therefore, make sure you don’t rush into a relationship if you believe there was no honesty, sincerity and not to mention chemistry in the first dates.

Relationships

Dating in 2014

love-online-datingOkay, so I’m probably not the best person to comment on the dating scene in 2014 – I was lucky enough to meet Husband when I was 21, get married at 22 and have been happily with him ever since (8 years last Saturday, in case you’re interested!). However, Husband and I have had the “what-if” conversation plenty of times, and the thought of getting back onto the dating scene as it was when I was in my early 20’s fills me with dread.

When I met Husband, I may have been a bit of a social butterfly, but these days, bars and clubs are SO not my scene, not to mention the fact that I’m probably 10 years too old to be going to the places I used to frequent. The thought of doing the “eye contact over the bar, is he looking at me, is he smiling or does he have wind?” thing all over again is not appealing in the slightest, so I totally understand why internet dating has become so popular.

There are some great sites around, such as iwantu.com which allow you to meet people, engage in free adult chat, and make a connection without having to drag yourself to places in which you don’t feel comfortable. The other good thing about free adult sites is that everyone knows why everyone else is there. You won’t approach someone in a bar, only to find they’re married or taken, and feel completely embarrassed – if someone is on one of these sites, like upforit.com, they’re there because they’re available and looking for love, which will remove the potential for awkwardness.

Of course, because we’re all grown ups here, you might be looking for something a little less commitment heavy and a little more fleeting, so a site like shagaholic.com might be more appropriate for you. Everyone needs a little…companionship…from time to time and seeking out other people with the same intentions can be really fun and empowering, if done safely.

Several of my single friends have tried internet dating, some with more success than others, but I think it all very much depends on your expectations. If you keep things light and fun, there’s a lot of potential for a good time to be had by all and it can mean that you can engage with people without having to even leave your living room – what’s not to love about that?!

Have you had any dating successes by using an online site? I’d love to hear from you.

Rant

Take Me Out – Misandry Gone Mad?

A few months ago, I became aware of the programme ‘Take Me Out’, mostly because of a million tweets with the hashtag #nolikeynolighty every Saturday night, so I decided to check out what is was all about. For those of you who have never seen it, Wikipedia explains it a lot better than I can:

The objective of the show is for a man to gain a date with one of thirty single women. The women stand on stage underneath thirty white lights, each with a button in front of them. A single man is then brought on stage via the ‘Love Lift’ and tries to woo the women in a series of rounds, playing a prerecorded dating video, displaying a skill (such as dancing or playing a musical instrument), or playing another video in which the man’s friends or family reveal more about him. At any point during the rounds, the women can press the button in front of them to turn off their light (their area of the stage will turn red if they do so). If, at the end of three rounds, there are still lights left on, the bachelor will turn off all but two of the remaining lights himself. He will then have a chance to ask one question to the last two women, before choosing which woman he wants to go on a date with by turning off one more light. If the man is left with 2 lights at the end of round 3, then he will just ask his question to the two remaining women and if there is only 1 light left at the end of round 3 then he will go on a date with that girl without asking them his question.

For a while, I really enjoyed watching it. I got involved with the Tweeting and even had something I said retweeted by Leah (one of the 30 girls at the time) when I said she had a head like a fifty pence piece. I was being bitchy, but she seemed to take it in good humour, so it’s all good. I loved seeing the dates, mostly because (as was the curse of Blind Date) they’d usually get to their date destination and realise they had NOTHING to talk about (I have a morbid fascination for awkwardness, I think) and I even started to get to know the contestants who’d been hanging around dateless for a while. It seemed like Saturday night telly from when I was a kid – all that was missing was an hour of Gladiators beforehand!

 A couple of weeks ago, though, Husband made an small, innocuous comment that really got me thinking about the show and I’ve not watched it since because of it.  He said “Imagine if this show was the other way around?”

What he meant was, imagine if there were 30 blokes and one woman choosing instead.

At the moment, they have one lad come on at a time and the girls make salacious comments, pass judgement on the bloke, watch him perform like a circus animal in some cases and basically treat him like a piece of meat.

So. Imagine if it was the other way around. 30 men, sizing up a single girl, making her jump through hoops deciding whether or not she was good enough for them. Would you still watch it? Or would the whole situation not seem a bit intimidating, belittling, degrading?

Maybe I’m taking it all a bit too seriously – most of the people on the show are young, single, out for a good time and just want a chance of a free short break and to be on telly. In that respect, I get it, I do. But there is a real issue of inequality going on here. The format of the show is obviously very deliberate in that the man has to do the hard part so that it doesn’t seem distasteful or misogynistic, but what is it they say about the goose and the gander? Why is it okay for men to humiliate themselves but not women? Isn’t it funny how most people know the word ‘misogyny’ but far less know about ‘misandry’. **

I’ve written before about how equality goes both ways, or at least it should, and I think in this case the bosses of ITV need to drag themselves out of the dark ages. I can’t watch the show any more without having hallucinations where there’s 30 lionesses on stage fighting over one gazelle in a clown costume, it’s just too cringe-worthy.

What do you think? Am I taking it too seriously, or is this type of sexism a button-pusher for you too?

**Ironically, the WordPress dictionary didn’t even recognise that word…

(I’m linking this up with Mummy Barrow’s Ranty Friday Linky)

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