10 Budget Friendly Summer Date Nights

10 Budget Friendly Summer Date Nights

Date nights are one of my favorite things. I am such a quality time girl, and unfortunately, hanging out in groups with a bunch of people doesn’t fill up my quality time tank quite like it should. I’m more of a one on one kinda gal. My dad says I’m high maintenance in the attention category. . . and maybe I am.

As newly weds, we aren’t going to the fanciest restaurant in town to wine and dine, but we do like to do something fun at least once a week – whether that is cooking together, going on a walk, or setting up a legit date night. Today I’m going to share with you a few of my fav budget friendly summer date night ideas!

Hammock Date! 

I’m a huge fan of grabbing my double nested ENO, setting it up by a creek or a river, and snuggling and talking about our day. Or just snuggling and reading a book not saying one word to each other. . .

Picnic in your backyard

OK confession, Pai and I have had many picnics in our backyard because our dining room table was so full of wedding stuff/stuff that needs to go to Goodwill. . . six months into this whole marriage thing. Yup. But cooking dinner together or grabbing takeout and spreading out a picnic blanket in the backyard makes an ordinary meal *romantic*.

10 Budget Friendly Summer Date Nights

Stargazing

I always find it suuuper romantic to be out at night under a clear, velvety sky, looking at the scars. Extra points scored if someone thought to bring a yummy drink. Lying all cozy under the stars always leads to great conversations with your lover.

Trip to the Farmer’s Market

We don’t go to the Farmer’s Market enough, but I absolutely love it when I do go! Artisan bread, fresh flowers, herbs, succulents, delicious coffee – what more could you want on a Saturday morning?! Going to the Farmer’s Market with my boo is one of my fav things to do. Plus, I enjoy supporting local farmers.

Snocone Zone

Pai loves ice ceam, I love snocones. There’s a local food truck here that does ahhmazing snocones! First you get your snocone, then they put ice cream on it, then you can pick out a topping (I got pineapple once, and she poured sweet and condensed milk all over that goodness!) It’s pretty delightful. But if slushies aren’t your thing, milkshakes are equally fun.

10 Budget Friendly Summer Date Nights

Lake Day!

Recently we went with a group of people on a Sunday afternoon and rented kayaks for a couple hours. I got nice and light pink, was sore for several days after, but had the time of my life! Kayaking, paddle boarding, white water rafting – anything that gets you outside and moving under the summer sun is a great way to connect with your boo.

Slip-n-Slide

This is another great date idea where you can invite a lot of people to join in. On a super hot day, grab a tarp, find a hill, suds it down and get your bathing suit on because it’s slip-n-slide time. It is sure to be a hilarious and fun time.

Hot Tub Hot Date Night

OK this one may not be feasible for all. But if you don’t have a hot tub but have a friend with one who doesn’t mind you climbing over their fence to hang out in their hot tub late at night, then this could be a fun and giggly date night. Grab your favorite drink and enjoy a steamy evening with your boo (because hot tubs are steamy.)

Make Your Own Beach

When I see everyone else on the Instagram bummin’ it at the beach, I get kinda jealous. Because I want to be on the beach. But when life doesn’t give you a beach, make one yourself. Put a beach front image on your TV, the waves sound on your white noise app, lay out the towels on your living room floor. If it’s hot enough in your house and you close your eyes, you can semi-pretend you’re on the beach.

Camping

Nothing is more romantic than sitting out by a fire, eating hot dogs, roasting s’mores, and then sleeping on the cold, hard ground. While I’m more a fan of “glamping,” I don’t mind roughin’ it for a night with my boo.

Budget Friendly Summer Date Nights

What is your favorite way to spend a date night? 

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10 Signs It’s Finally Spring

10 Signs It's FINALLY Spring

Last month I was quite the bitter betty because it was the first day of spring and we were experiencing a frigid Dogwood Winter. This weekend, I spent a glorious Sunday by a river and walking around my favorite city in the East: Downtown Asheville. I wore a t-shirt and my floppy hat and I was in a good. mood. Y’all, it is FINALLY spring time and I could be none the happier. In case it’s not spring where you live, (I’m looking at you, Canada), here are the tell-tale signs it is finally spring time!

1 – Your car has a thick layer of yellow-green stuff allll over. Do you wash it? Do you wait for summer to arrive and the pollination season to cease? Who knows. My car is gold, so it practically matches the pollen anyway.

2 – Speaking of pollen, you can’t breathe and neither can your S/O. Invest in some ear plugs and allergy medicine instead of plotting how to best cut off his nose because he won’t. quit. snorting.

3 – Skies out, Thighs out. A couple of summers ago, I worked an internship with the epitomy of a frat boy who said this. I couldn’t sand the kid, but this phrase has been in my vocabulary since then. Who wears short shorts? We wear short shorts. Even though it’s only 67° out.

4 – And you know short shorts in April mean you need to put on your sunglasses just to keep from being blinded by those (me) who have hid their legs from any UV rays since September. Sorry, guys. My paleness will destroy your eyes.

5 – 1 word: Chacos.

10 Signs It's Finally Spring

6 – You discover you have a serious case of Officesitis. Officesitis (n): An illness brought by the onset of sun and warm weather. Similar to Senioritis. Used in a sentence: “Dear Boss, I cannot come into work today. Yeah, I’m really sick. . . with officesitis.”

7 – You actually feel like being a real person, who does real things past 5pm. Dinner on the patio at 7:30? Yes! Going for a leisurely stroll at 8? Yes!

8 – You are suddenly motivated to work out. Running outside sounds like fun again instead of something dreadful. Unless you hate running.

9 – Everybody is posting beach pictures. Half of them are probably from last summer. But still.

10 – Oops. You had to buy a new wardrobe. #Because Spring.

Grab the button below and come back here to link up with the Blogging Elite with any post from April!

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39 Questions I Have for Bloggers

39 Questions I Have for Bloggers

Every day week I come back to the laptop after a full day of actually living life (i.e. going to coffee shops, date nights with the boo thang, or just a Netflix coma) and wonder why. Why am I blogging? Why am I here? What is the point of it all? It’s an Internet existential crisis if I ever saw one. I’ve slowly developed my brand, and am still working into my brand/switching and refinding my new voice, and building my follower count slowly but surely. And then there’s some little whippersnapper who just pops up out of nowhere and “has only been blogging for six months!” and has 10k followers. Like, how?

How do you have so many followers when you’ve been blogging for four weeks? I’ve been here four long years. And I have to work for my 3-4 comments. And here you are, with your white background and your perfectly posed pictures.

 

Why don’t we use GIFS anymore? Is that a thing of angsty teens and Tumblr? I miss GIFS.

Is everyone an inspiring minimalist? Because I’m just an aspiring de-clutterer. Someone teach me to not be sentimental.

How do you have money to pay for ipsy boxes every month?

How do you have money to buy $150 ad spots, and does it work?

When do you find the time to take all your photos with your DSLR?

How do you know how to work a DSLR?

Did you paint a wall entirely white and install a floor length window just for your “blogging desk” and how do you keep that wall free of scuff marks?

Did you find a house with granite countertops just to take the perfect pictures of your perfectly proportioned strawberry/granola/overnight oatmeal for the Instagram?

Doesn’t it take 5 hours to cook dinner for your husband if you have to stop and take pictures of the whole process?

Does your boyfriend/husband/mom/co-worker get annoyed with taking OOTD pictures for you?

How do you look so stylish? Who pays you to wear their clothes? How do you afford to buy anything that isn’t from TJ Maxx?

How do you find the time to just sit down and write out 5 posts faithfully each week with great content

How do you get 312 likes on your picture of flowers? I got 22 on a picture of my family.

Why do staged pictures do better than real life pictures?

How do you “theme” your Instagram?

How can you afford all the blog seminars/webinars/conferences?

Do you have to drink wine to be a blogger?

Why do you have to say you have fur babies?

Where do you find all the white rugs/towels/shirts/sheets/bed comforters and how do they stay white?

How do you work full time, work out full time, and blog full time and still have time for a social life?

Do you buy your followers?

Do you buy flowers just for the ‘Gram or do you ask Kroger if you can walk outside with a bunch of flowers just to take a picture of them?

Do you get sad when people unfollow you?

How do you get so many sponsors?

How do you have time to do sponsors?

How do you get sponsored posts?

How do you get sponsored posts where people are still willing to pay you?

What the heck is SEO?

How do you SEO?

Do you hide from your Google Analytics like me?

How do you vlog without being awkward?

How do you Snapchat/Instagram in public without feeling awkward?

Are all the rings on your hands real or fake?

Do you pay for perfectly manicured hands for your pictures?

Doesn’t blogging exhaust you too?

How are your iPhone photos not grainy?

How do you have time to network?

Do you hide from your emails, too?

If the blog life confuses you too, raise your hand and lets all kumbaya together.

What It’s Like to Date a Blogger

As told by the blogger. . .

what it's like to date a blogger

I dated a guy my sophomore year of college who knew I was a blogger, but pretended the blog didn’t exist. He thought it was weird, and was uncomfortable with the notion that I bared my soul in words to the rest of the Internet world. I was already insecure about being a “blogger,” because yes, we basically write every week about ourselves on the Internet. I battled with whether or not I should tell my next boyfriend that I had a blog. And how do you know the right time to tell a guy that you blog?

1st Date: *lets it slip into conversation* Oh yeah so I have a blog and it’s a lifestyle blog and I have a significantish following and – Date looks at you as if you have a nubbin on your face. “So. . .um. . . are you gonna write about. . . this?” He proceeds to ask awkwardly. There isn’t a second date.

3rd Date: This is the date where, according to How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days you can kiss. *Date leans in for kiss, you start to lean in, put your hand on his chest, “Um, Tom, I have to tell you something. I have a blog.” Mood. Killed. “A blog?” He asks. “Like, you display your life on the Internet like you’re some kind of famous novelist?” Well. . . yeah. . . isn’t that what we all do? There is a fourth date, but no kiss.

1 Year into the Relationship: *You’re hanging out, eating pizza, watching The Bachelor, and your bae looks up from his computer, “Babe, I found pictures of us on this website. Weird, huh?” All time and space stops. “Oh, yeah I’ve been meaning to tell you about that. . .I’m a blogger. That’s my website. I wrote a post about our trip to the Hamptons.”***

*** Clearly these are all made up scenarios (I’ve never been to the Hamptons) just to show you it’s hard to tell a potential mate that you write a blog because it’s just weird. Thankfully, Pai already knew I blogged before we started dating. In between my sophomore and the spring of my junior year, I became more comfortable in my literary skin (if you call a blog literary) and began publishing different posts on my personal Facebook page. I was in the running to win “Sweetest Single Blogger” in a blogging contest and I asked my Facebok friends to vote for me and Pai commented on that post and said, “No.” I don’t know why I’m telling you all this. But I took that as a sign that he actually liked my blog, and liked me.

Since then, he’s learned a lot about what it’s like to date a blogger. But he’s really busy with work and grad school so I’m just going to tell you what I imagine it to be like from his perspective, which brings me to my first point:

–>Your woman speaks up for you. Maybe you’re in one of those couples where the man “wears the pants” in the relationship, but on her blog, she might occasionally speak for you even though you never said any of this.

–>She snapchats everything. You have to realize that bloggers have to stay current, stay consistent. They have to keep up with all the social medias and share their work on all the platforms. She’s exhausted. It’s exhausting. But her fans followers want to know the real her, not just the Internet her. Thus the Snapchat.

–>She stresses out about blogging. She hasn’t written a quality post in a while, her Instagram only got 23 likes (seriously guys?! Why is it that when  gram a picture of Doug the Pug you’re all like, meh but when Doug the Pug instagrams a picture he gets 17k likes? Seriously?!) and now she’s falling into a pit of irrelevancy.

–>She gets free stuff, but she has to take pictures of it and write about it. Don’t question why she spends 15 minutes arranging lighting and stuff on a white board.

–>She Instagrams a lot. Instagram is how bloggers connect these days. Don’t judge the above frame of her coffee, socks, and computer. Don’t judge the hashtags. Hashtags are what bloggers use to connect these days.

–>She wants to take lots of pictures of you two. You’ll thank her later when you’re old and grey and have all these beautiful memories surrounding you!

–>She drinks a lot of Starbucks. Part of it is taste, part of it is keeping up with the Joneses. Sometimes she may just get the cups to take pictures of it for a post. Because that’s what bloggers do.

–>She’s probably an oversharer. Oh, you mean you didn’t want all 800 of her followers to know about that one time you two almost got arrested? Oops. It’s fine. *My suggestion here is to set some boundaries. i.e. She can blog about your dates, but not about the really weird things you say that she keeps a list of in her phone.

–>She’ll want to take a picture. . . for the blog. . . for the gram. Just let it happen. If you tell her she’s too obsessed with social media she may break down and cry because blogging is hard and she may feel like you’re not supportive.

–>She has blogging friends-turned-real life friends. It’s weird, but it’s cool. Just accept it, bro.

–>She’s probably really good at writing you love letters because she’s really good at writing, so embrace her bloglife and maybe you’ll eventually start a blog too. . .

February Fun Link Up

hugs and lattes

Hello, friends. It’s “snowing” here in Tennessee again and everyone freaked out so I’m not working today, which I am 100% okay with because I’ve been enjoying a late, lazy morning turned into an afternoon full of good, brainless book reading (which we all need now and then) and three cups of coffee (which I probably don’t need, but oops, I did it again.)

Here’s the sad thing: after a fun dinner with friends from work (not a work sanctioned event), I ran home to take a shower because ew, Mexican food makes me smell disgusting but OMG it makes me so happy and I still have a food baby today, and then I packed up 3 weeks worth of laundry and 2 days of clothes to go stay the night with Pai’s family because I don’t have a washer and dryer, and I don’t like staying by myself when I get snowed in. #ExtravertProbs. But then when I got out of my car and carried my 7 bags in, I realized I forgot the bag with my laptop in it so then I had to borrow a laptop and I was too tired last night and then I slept too late today. But now I’m using Pai’s brother’s MAC and it is SO much faster which reminds me, I really need to buy a new laptop soon because my MAC is slower than my race pace, which is actually pretty slow right now because I’m out of shape. Thanks, Mexican food baby.

february fun

But The Blogging Elite link up goes live on February 23rd. Just pick a post from February, link it up, read/comment on the other posts, and share the love. Here’s a grab button if you want.

I named it February Fun, which, admittedly, isn’t the best title I’ve come up with. But what if you didn’t want to blog about love? Or a belated Valentine’s Day Date post? What if you hate February or Lent because that’s February is about this month? And it alliterates and as we all know, alliteration makes the world go round.

Please link up on February 23rd. You’d be the best in the whole entire world.

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