Cheap Dates for Cool Temps

If you’re planning a wedding, or you’ve recently gotten married, chances are that finances are somewhat tight right now. Despite generous parental support, we coughed up quite a bit of cash for the wedding, not to mention the constant travel back and forth between Dallas and New York. Post-move, I wasn’t working anywhere near a full-time schedule, so we missed out on a couple of months of a dual steady income. And then, bam. Christmas!

Needless to say, the Gersons are in a time of financial recovery. But we are not letting this damper our spirits or limit our time spent together. Josh insists on a weekly date night to reconnect and enjoy each others’ company. It’s usually a swank dinner with wine followed by much-needed couch cuddles. This past weekend, we did a quiet Friday night dinner at our favorite fish restaurant in Old Town, followed by a viewing marathon of Damages. Sunday afternoon, Josh booked us a couples massage, because this pair was totally worn out and stressed. We needed it.

But there are so many other ways you can treat yourself and your honey to some quality time this winter without spending a fortune. Here are some ideas:

central_park_winter_snow_wallpaper-other

Snow day photo shoot:
My most poignant memory with Josh (minus the wedding, and before that, the proposal) was a snow day two years ago. It was actually his birthday, and a blizzard had wiped out Manhattan. Taxis were buried in snow, tourists were completely confused, traffic was at a standstill. But Starbucks was open. And of course, so was Central Park.

We spent less than ten dollars that entire day, but we wandered all over the city and created some beautiful memories. Instead of using our smart phones, we brought Josh’s fancy camera and snapped away. Create a winter wonderland photo shoot with your man in the snow. Frolic and play like kids. It doesn’t cost a penny to enjoy a snow day — and the memories, and documentation, will last forever.

67262282bea5607daef9cb3d4aefc597
It might seem silly to do DIY’s for your spring wedding now, but you’ll be grateful later that it’s done. Check me out on Pinterest for a ton more ideas: http://www.pinterest.com/jensysparkles/

Craft corner:
If you’re a DIY bride, get busy. You might not think your guy is into it, but he could just surprise you. When I was making elaborate shadow boxes as thank-you gifts for my bridesmaids last winter (to present while we shopped for their dresses the day after Christmas), I assumed my then-fiance would watch football the entire time and ignore me. To the contrary, he got his tools out to repair a broken frame and even weighed in on my color and pattern selection for each girl.

Put your man’s creativity to good use this winter. If you’re still in the planning stage, select a DIY project on your list and get his input. You’ll likely find he’s more receptive to helping you if he is asked for some insight. Or, if you’re married, get busy decorating your love nest. There’s so much you can make at home instead of spending a ton of money. More ideas to come in the weeks ahead! But in the meantime, check out DIY Bride.com for weddings and Martha Stewart.com under “crafts”¬†for home.

Cold weather picnic:
You’ll have to buy the food, natch, but a cozy picnic is a great, cheap way to spend an afternoon. Make grilled cheese or BLT sammies at home and wrap them in tin foil before packing them up to keep them warm without getting too humid. Pack a Thermos of soup or pasta with a homemade Bolognese sauce. I also recommend a delicious bottle of red wine — but don’t forget the corkscrew. On this note, I leave you a beautiful stylized picnic shoot from Style Me Pretty. As soon as Josh’s work lets up, this is the first thing on our weekend to-do list. Enjoy!