January 31, 2008

Set the night to music!

One of David and I's favorite things is to listen to music. Our poor computer's hard drive gets pushed to the max sometimes with the amount of music we store there. We listen to all different genres, from classical to rap occasionally. I always think to myself ooh I would love to share that song with David, but at the risk of him thinking I am more of a dork then he already does I keep the song to myself. Well no longer, Valentine’s Day is fast approaching; we normally spend it at home, make a fancy dinner after the kids are in bed and have some fattening sinfully delicious dessert. Well this year I am going to kick it up a notch and add a CD of all the different songs that remind me of why I married the wonderful guy that I did and that will be my gift to him this year. Not terribly expensive, a tad time consuming but worth it I think

43 Date ideas

http://lifestyle.msn.com/relationships/loveandromance/articlerb.aspx?cp-documentid=4959923 &ocid=B012MSN50A0301A

January 30, 2008

Anniversary Gift

A girl once said that for her wedding anniversary gift, all she wanted was a letter from her husband. This letter was meant to sum up the past year that they shared together. Kind of like a long glorified love letter to your spouse.This also plays into the keeping a journal idea. If you decided to keep these letters forever, then your children and grandchildren could share in your love. I thought this was an incredibly sweet and romantic gift idea. No worrying about what to buy your husband or wife, just worrying about what to write. This is literally a priceless gift.

*A cute idea is to send it in the mail, because who doesn't like to get a letter in the mail!

January 29, 2008

Hobby kit

What does your lover love? Baking, hiking, snowshoeing, biking, photography, scrapbooking, history, sports, weather, traveling, etc? For Valentine's day buy your honey something relative to their current or wishful hobby. For example if it's cooking buy a new cookbook , a cool serving tray and a gourmet spice. If your hubby is obsessed with snow and checks 4 different weather sites multiple times in a day, get him a book on how forecasts are determined and an outside thermometer.


christian took me to a super cozy restaurant called crave.
the menu is very unique... we ate there for dinner
(we suggest the Goat Cheese Gnocchi & Shiitake Mac & Cheese)
but i hear the brunch is to die for.
the kitchen is open to view and it is just a really fun atmosphere.

1621 12th avenue
seattle, wa 98122
contemporary comfort food
8am-11am daily

January 27, 2008


What is Seattle without some seafood? Our favorite fish and chips, by FAR, are served at SPUDS on Alki Beach. There are a couple other Spuds in the area, but we have found that this one is the best. They serve halibut fish, but they are more expensive and really not as good as their good ole cod! Josh and I will get their "Special" to share which is 3 pieces of fish with fries, a drink, and a large tarter. Their pieces of fish are really generous, so sharing this and getting one of their yummy coleslaws fills us up quite nicely.

A bonus about the Spuds on Alki is that it is located directly across the street from Alki Beach. During the warmer months, we like to get their fish and take it across to the beach and have a picnic. Even in September, when the weather starts to chill, we would do this on my birthday, in the evening, and make a fire in one of the designated fire pits. Some of my favorite memories with my family are of this. Alki itself is a nice date spot. Besides Spuds, it also has some other small spots for eats. We are addicted to Spuds, so we haven't made it to any of these places, except Pepperdocks. After our fish, we wander over there for a nice waffle cone filled with ice cream.

If you have already eaten, try watching the sunset from Alki. Pack up a blanket and some cards and just go there to relax with your honey! Josh and I brought our laptop there once and watched a movie on the beach like we were at a drive in. We just laid on the blanket with our backs up to a large log and snuggled... very nice!

1001 ways to be Romantic by Gregory J.P. Godek

In my recent travels to exotic Ogden,Utah, I picked up this #1 national bestseller at Costco ($9.99 in UT). I've barely begun flipping through the pages and already this book is truly genius! I dare you to flip to a page and not find a good date or love idea! I will be posting some of the sentiments from this book but I recommend you all go and attain a copy of your own!

Melt my heart!

Fondue, cheese and chocolate. Enough said, this place is really gooooooood! Tip- happy hour prices are cheap, cheap, cheap!

The Melting Pot

Happy hour in the lounge 7 days a week 4:30 pm - 6:30 pm and 9pm - 11pm late night. $$

Atlas Restaurant

Bro and I came across this great place for dessert on a date to University Village Mall last summer, we even ate outside. Quite delectable!

2675 NE Village Lane
Seattle, WA 98105
(206) 522-6025
$-$$ for dessert


I am a self proclaimed cupcake addict! I love everything about them - how little and cute they are, making them myself, the way the dense cake on the bottom tastes with the sweet and fluffy frosting on the top, but most of all I like eating them! And as my husband can testify, I crave them all the time! These places are popping up all over the place!

My favorite place to satisfy my craving is Cupcake Royale, of course they are not as good as the ones you can make yourself but definitely a second best!

4556 California Avenue SW, right across from Easy Street in West Seattle. The phone is (206) 932-2971. They also have shops in Ballard and Madrona.

There is also Trophy Cupcakes in Wallingford Center, not as good but close to the UW and the cafe decor is adorable!!! Like a 50s malt shop.

Mona's Bistro and Lounge

Voted Best Date spot 2007 by City search, Mona's Bistro and Lounge, is a great place to go for romance and desserts. The restaurant itself is quite expensive but the dessert is very reasonable, plus it's are to die for!
6421 Latona Ave NE
Seattle, WA 98115
Phone: (206) 526-1188
Near Greenlake
$$ for dessert, $$$$ for dinner

Serendipitous Chocolate

Has anyone ever seen the romantic movie, "Serendipity"? Dilettante cafe on Broadway is practically straight out of that film! Very romantic, low lighting, vintage mirrors on the walls and did I mention . . . CHOCOLATE!! A late night dessert can't get much better than this. They sell individual chocolate truffles made with their specially made trademark Ephemere chocolate but also have rich desserts and Dr. Sloans (English hot chocolate).

Click here for locations around the greater Seattle Area.
*Open till late, I think midnight on most nights, 1am on Friday and Saturday.

January 22, 2008

Washington's Coast: South Beach Campground

This is not a place to go to get away from people. At first glance, someone might think it looks like an unpaved parking lot with the occasional picnic table and fire pit, but looking past that, there is so much beauty that the rest just seems to melt away. With that said, and not being afraid to share the beauty of the ocean with others myself, I LOVE this spot!!! For the last couple of years, Josh and I have been dumping the kids on my grandparents' doorstep and running away to this place. And it's SO easy to do. We keep a camp box in our storage that has the essentials in it like unperishable foods, foil, utensils, soap, matches, etc... we grab that, pack a cooler with fresh yummies, pack up some clothes (only the comfortable and weather appropriate stuff), some games, a great book, blankets for the beach, a kite, the cameras, and we run away for a night or two. When we get there, we back the van up to one of the sites, set up our bed in the back of the van, start a fire (wood can be purchased at a local store up the highway if you can't scavenge enough drift wood) and get cozy as we drink in the fresh sea air mixed with the warmth of the campfire. During the day, we wander down to the round rock beach (just about EVERY rock on the beach would make a perfect skipping stone) and find a spot between the giant driftwood logs to make our own little fire pit on the beach. From there, we read, snack, and watch the sunset. Josh likes to make forts with the logs on the beach. The wind is perfect for kite flying. And it always amazes me how fun it is to feng shui the beach with a stack of rocks on a log. I get so relaxed here that I almost like doing this more than any big fancy vacation I have been on. I dream about going back during the cold months that the grounds are closed. Sites are under $15 a night. It can fill up pretty quick in the summer months. We have found that the trick is to get there at least an hour or two before the campground's check out time. This has worked out really well for us so that we can have our pick of spots right up to the beach, because some of them are back behind those spots and you have to look over someone's site to see the view. It's about a 4 hour (beautiful) drive if you leave from Seattle and go south through Olympia and over to Aberdeen. On the trip home, it's fun to make a loop and drive north up the coast through Port Angeles (where you will find my favorite Antique store ever and a very yummy Mexican restaurant... more on that someday in another post) and over to the ferry on Bainbridge. Fares for the ferry are MUCH cheaper if you go from west to east than if you go from east to west, and going either way takes about the same time for travel. If you want a little more seclusion, the Kalaloch campground is about 5 miles up the road... but it costs a little more per night, fills up even faster, and only has VERY few sites with views of the ocean from them. In between these two campgrounds is the Kalaloch Lodge. We have never stayed there, but if you have some extra money ($100+ per night, at least) it looks like a very nice place to stay.

The 5 Spot: One of Seattle's BEST restaurants!

No need to dress up for this place! The 5 Spot is my favorite restaurant in Seattle, located on Queen Anne. The menu there changes themes quarterly and so do the decorations inside. From the South to New England, the theme is always American, and always yummy. It's always fun to see what they have "cooked up" for their menu. For those who have a hard time with change though, they do have some staples on there menu that are always there. This is where I usually find myself in trouble. I LOVE their "brisket" marinated in Coca Cola and Knor sauce, served with mashed potatoes and the BEST shoe string onion rings you've ever tasted (and I am not an onion ring fan)! Pair that up with their botanical salad with their raspberry vinaigrette dressing, and I will salivate just thinking about it. Their house made dressings are so good, I often order a to go bowl of them to take home for my own salads. This place is a definite Seattle treasure. To check out their menu, or find out about the 5 Spot's sister restaurants visit: http://www.chowfoods.com/five/menu.aspx
1502 Queen Anne Ave N •
Seattle, Washington 98109 •
(206) 285-7768

January 21, 2008

Puppy love

Before I got pregnant, Bro and I seriously researched getting a dog. We both felt strongly that before seeing a breeder that we would do our best to find a rescue dog at one of the local shelters. Many a date night we would hop in our car to see these homeless cuties (and some scary ones). The absolute best place we found was the Seattle Animal Shelter, not only was it the cleanest and most humane but they have the biggest selection of animals. Long story short, I became prego and presto- the dog idea went on hold indefinitely. However, for a date, we still like to go visit these wonderful ragamuffins. Shelters located WHEREVER you live!

Boston Terrier

easy but effective

first of all, i L O V E this blog. yeah for shauna for such a great idea.
okay, romance has been the last thing on my mind since i have been spending most of my time hugging the toilet instead of my gorgeous husband, BUT i did this the other day and it was most effective and simple.
i wrote on our bathroom mirror with my lip liner a short sappy note and then put on lipstick and kissed by it. pretty corny but my honey loved it and when he was cleaning the mirror the other day he even saved it. pretty painless and it meant a lot to him.
lipstick on ur mirror

January 20, 2008

Weekend Getaway Ideas?

This summer, since I won't be nursing or pregnant for the first time in a while, Rob and I want to escape for a weekend while my mom watches our kids. I know there are good getaway places just a few hours drive or ferry ride from here, but I have no idea what they are. Do you have any suggestions? Details would be good - how to get there, where to stay, etc. Obviously, money is an issue.

One more thing - ask me every once in a while how the planning is going! Otherwise, I'm afraid we won't actually do it! ;)

January 18, 2008

Shake it!

Luna Park Cafe-
My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard . . . nuff said!

2918 SW Avalon Way, West Seattle, WA 98126

January 17, 2008

Moroccan cuisine

Sitting on the floor, eating with your fingers- every 2 year olds dream! Last night I went to Marrakesh Moroccan Restaurant in Seattle with some girlfriends. This would be a great yet unique date. If you get the 5 course meal it can be pretty pricey ($19ea.) but we stuck to the ala carte menu, where dishes range from $5-11. I was more excited about the experience so I wasn't expecting anything from the food but it surprised me with every bite! I now love Moroccan food! They have very different but yummy combinations.
2334 2nd Ave
Seattle, WA 98121
(206) 956-0500

January 16, 2008

They're Playing Our Song

Get out the tape or CD that has "your song" on it and set it up so that when your spouse starts the car the next time they get in it, your song will be playing. Leave a note taped to the steering wheel reminding them why you married them or the things you love about them. Remember to adjust the volume appropriately, there may be kids in the car too.

You've got mail!

Send a note, letter, or card in the mail- yes, you could save 41 cents, but where is the fun in that?
US postage stamp

Jai Thai

This is one of my favorite restaurants of all time. I like the one in Fremont, its creatively decorated, has a fish tank and Thai TV, plus the food is divine!
Atmosphere is romantic or fun and this is a great place to show off Seattle if you have visitors.
3423 Fremont Ave N • Seattle, Washington 98103
Click here for menu.

Sweet as candy

While you're out and about, jogging, shopping etc., pick up your sweetheart's favorite candy!

January 14, 2008

Nothing says "I love you" like . . .

Valentine's day is just around the corner. To the husbands who eye the teddy bear at the gas station, please don't do it. This is a shout out to post all of your Valentine ideas!

*Breakfast in bed or at a restaurant
*Gift certificate for a massage or manicure
*Make a candlelit dinner (a great store for gourmet ready made dinners is Pasta & Co at University Village and on top of Queen Anne Hill in Seattle, and in Bellevue and Redmond, Washington.)
*Rent an old romantic movie (ie. Pillowtalk- any other suggestions?)
*Re-create your first date

**Create a CD of all your favorite love songs (Jules)

A little asian flare

For those of you who haven't been to a fresh market for your produce, the difference is delectable! A fun date is to visit a local food market and buy fresh goods for your upcoming meal. A unique place to visit is Uwajimaya's located in the International District. A beautiful asian supermarket with a food court with anything from Vietnamese to Malaysian, my mom raves about their orange chicken.

While you are in the area stop by Liem's Aquarium & Bird shop (literally a hole in the wall) to check out the exotic fish, its a little hard to find but the fish are amazing!
511A Maynard Aly S
Seattle, WA 98104-2915
Phone: (206) 624-0537
No, the "Aly" in the address is not supposed to say Ave. You'll find this shop midway down Maynard Alley, one block East of Maynard Avenue. When you hear the crickets, you're almost there.

January 13, 2008

Grand Illusion Cinema

A small independent theatre featuring cinema classics and rarities.
1403 NE 50th ST. Seattle WA 98105

Volunteer Park

Volunteer Park, located on Capitol Hill is has a beautiful and romantic atmosphere. The Seattle Asian Art museum ($5, $3 w/ student ID and open until 9:00 on Thursdays) and Volunteer Park Conservatory (Free) are also in the park (has anyone been to either of these?)

Message in a Bottle... a very romantic gesture!

My husband surprised me with this one one day! I thought is was very sweet and thoughtful. Back in the "old days" we used to write each other "love notes" A LOT. But 7 years of school and two kids later, we call saying I love you before we hit the sheets a romantic gesture. So I was completely surprised one night when I was getting ready for bed (while my husband, who works until 11pm was at work) and I found this bottle sitting on our bed. My sweet husband had taken one of my decorative bottles, written a beautiful note and slipped it in the bottle, then tied a bow around the mouth of it and left it for me to find. He placed one of my old dried roses next to it. I still keep the bottle and the message in our room. It sits on the head board of our bed and is a reminder of the thoughtfulness of my sweet guy!

Flowers on a budget...

I always have fun daydreaming of ways I could surprise my husband... or maybe more visa versa. And I always give my husband a hard time because he rarely gives me flowers. One thing's for sure, he has never had flowers delivered to me. But I can understand that, it can be such an expense to have flowers delivered. Why not talk a willing, and hopefully good humored, friend or relative into doing it for you. The fun would be in the surprise and the knowledge of the thought and preparation that would go into it. There are many places that bouquets of flowers can be purchased at a very reasonable price. My favorite place for flowers is Pike Place Market where I always find amazing bouquets of seasonal flowers for $5 - $15. But even Safeway can have some very pretty, inexpensive bouquets. You can sometimes get 14 roses there for $14.99. If you already have a vase at home, use it and save the money on buying one. Have the flowers put together and then send your friend off to deliver to your wife, or husband, while you are apart. If your friend is feeling REALLY generous in spirit, have them sing a song, or read a poem that you send to go with the flowers. Then someday, pay your friend back by doing the same for them! In the end, your friend can tell you how your loved one reacted better than some anonymous delivery person. And your spouse will be surprised and grateful for the thought you put into it, and the desire you had to do something special for them!!

South Sound Surprises

The Putting Zoo
Everything from mini golf, batting cages and go carts can be found in this one little hot spot just outside of downtown Puyallup.
6326 114th Av Ct E
Puyallup, WA 98372Phone: (253) 841-1234

Sprinker Rec. Center & Ice Arena
Nothing but fun can be found here. Ice Skating,racket ball,rock climbing and tennis courts just to mention a few of the fun things that you can do here. http://www.sprinker.org

If sports aren't your thing,here are a few dating hot spots in the south sound.

Our Ram here in Tacoma is situated right on the water front. With great views of the Puget sound and a relatively inexpensive menu. This make for one great date.

The Thai Hut II
Great Thai food, inexpensive,and large portion sizes. So large in fact that David and I normally order one entree and share it. A plus-They are never ever ever busy!
1901 S 72nd St
Tacoma, WA 98408
(253) 475-1214

January 12, 2008

A Convenient "Pacific Place" for a Movie and Dinner

My husband and I love to go to the movies at Pacific Place. You do have to pay to park, but it is only $5 for all evening and pretty reasonable at other times. The theatre is situated on the top floor and is surrounded by a number of different restaurants. So we save gas money and time because we don't have to drive back and forth (nice when you are on the clock with a babysitter, or just don't have a lot of time)!

There are a number of different restaurants in the mall, but we like to go to Gordon Biersch for dinner. When we really want to splurge, it is a fun place to eat. But if we are strapped, there are ways to work around their menu and get a yummy dinner for a very reasonable price and still feel like we have treated ourselves. One example: their crab and artichoke bread bowl!!! My husband and I will share one of those bad boys for $10 and then get a wedge salad or some of their sides that are around $5 or less. We can usually get out of there for under $30 including the tip. To save even more, eat a bit before you go and then just get a bread bowl or some fun appetizers!

Another bonus is that the AMC theatre allows you to bring milkshakes in from the Jonny Rockets right next to it! If we get dinner somewhere there or eat at home, it is always fun to get a milkshake to go from Jonny's and take it in to sip on while we watch the flick!

Pacific Place is an UPSCALE mall in the heart of downtown Seattle. So depending on what time of day you go, there is always some fun window shopping available. Located on the bottom floor is a Barnes and Noble. My husband and I enjoy perusing the music and books after our late night movies, if we have time; they stay open later than the rest of the stores.

We find this to be a fun and very convenient "Place" for a date!! Here is their website if you want to check it out!!


Ah, finally, progress!

*"Be on the move. Instead of staying at one restaurant for a whole evening, plan a progressive dinner: have appetizers at one place, then move somewhere else for dinner and to a third place for dessert. Just be sure to scout out spots that aren't too far from one another; you don't want to feel like you spent most of the night in the car. If your stops are within walking distance of each other, all the better."

I remember as a teenager doing this same concept for a church activity, except going from house to house. Some good areas that come to mind for this in Seattle are: Fremont, Wallingford on 45th, Downtown, Broadway, and the new Bellevue Lincoln Square (adjacent to Bellevue Square mall).

*"10 Creative Dates," by Madeline Thomas

Bed Bath & Beyond

Bed Bath & Beyond is a great place for a date and let me tell you why:

1. There are fun doodads to look at like the As Seen on TV Ear Lift, As Seen on TV Hercules Hook, and LumaTweeze Professional Lighted Tweezers.

2. You can sit and have an intimate conversation while receiving full body massages from their display massage chairs.

3. For dessert, they conveniently have oodles of candy in the front by the registers.

4. And best of all you can buy that new shower curtain you've been doing without for almost a year!

You make my heart beat faster!

My hubby and I are going on vacation to La Mexico in a month, due to this fact, my husband has been spending an extra hour away from me at night to go jogging (like I don't already think he's the hottest thing since . . . since . . . well, I just can't think of anything hotter!) I recently borrowed Cindy Crawford's The Next Challenge Workout (Copyright 1993) VHS tape from a girlfriend and I begged him to stay home with me and try it instead. He thought it was going to be silly but it turned out to be really fun and I have to say that I have a whole new admiration for Cindy (wow!) and my buns are killing me this morning! I think the library carries workout videos so you could do this date for free in the comfort of your own living room and you don't even need a babysitter (preferably your kids are asleep but in our case Bro used our babe as an extra weight). Thanks Cindy for a great date- I owe ya!

January 11, 2008

Cheap Hot Spots

You all are probably well aware of the fried and greasy goodness Seattle has to offer... but here are a few jems that everyone should try for date night. This is my top 5 fast but quaint food for dates under $10:

$ - Great hamburgers, fries and shakes! It's not the customizing kind of place. So be prepared to get the options exactly how they are on the menu! Drive-in style, eat out side standing (no tables) or eat it in your car.

Kid Valley
$ - Another great place for hamburgers!

$ - I LOVE LOVE LOVE Ivar's. I always get the Halibut & Chips or the Baby Prawns & Chips. Christian gets the chowder (either salmon or clam) in a bread bowl.

$ - If you don't know about Ezell's you need to! Delicious chicken strips. We recommend going often and getting the spicy chicken strips. I also get the cole slaw or potatoes and gravy. As for Christian, he RAVES about the biscuits.

3 Pigs Barbeque
$ - This little spot is hidden in a strip mall across from Overlake Hospital in Bellevue and right by Whole Foods on 116th in between 12th and 8th Avenues. More like a little sports bar. Great BBQ sandwiches. Lots of sides to choose from. The corn on the cob, potatoes and baked beans have been great.

There you have it. Hot dates and great food for under $10.

**This is date tested & approved.

January 10, 2008

Oscar Wilde quotes:

* "How can a woman be expected to be happy with a man who insists on treating her as if she were a perfectly normal human being."

* "Women are made to be loved, not understood."


A lot better than cold cereal.

On some lazy Saturday morning, there is a knock on the door. You wonder - who could that be at this hour? Your spouse says, "Oh, it's the babysitter- we're going on a date, so get your sweats on." Then you get to spend an hour with the one you love eating a breakfast you'd never make for yourself. Here are some good moderately priced restaurants I LOVE around the U-district of Seattle:

Portage Bay Cafe
The Blue Onion
Louisa's Bakery and Cafe
Rusty Pelican Cafe


January 9, 2008

Rusty Pelican Cafe

Embellished by fake flowers and wicker furniture, this restaurant definitely has some comfy cozy mid-west charm but serves an amazing fresh fruit and pecan waffle. In Wallingford on 45th.
Click here for menu.

1924 N 45th

Seattle WA 98103


Louisa's Bakery and Cafe

This bakery and cafe has a very comfy and casual vibe. Colorfully tiled tables and art for sale on the walls, this Lake Union cafe has a Seattle coffee shop feel.


Click here for Seattle Times review.

2379 Eastlake Ave E;
Seattle WA (206) 325-0081

Blue Onion Bistro

Blue Onion Bistro is a quaint vintage cafe with some decent inexpensive menu items and fun atmosphere. Click here for menu.

5801 Roosevelt Way NE
Seattle, WA 98105

Portage Bay Cafe

Almost all of the items on this cafe's menu include organic or whole wheat ingredients. Don't let that fool you, this cafe is for tree-huggers and car kissers alike, as everything is mouth-watering! A plus for those who are health conscience. The staff was great but the restaurant is frequently busy, however, the tables are nicely spaced so it wasn't noticeable. Click here for menu.

4130 Roosevelt Way NE
Seattle, WA 98105

How to: Reviving Romance in Marriage

By Richmond Acheampong

Click here for article.

January 8, 2008