7 Easy At-Home Date Ideas

7 Easy At-Home Date Ideas

It's time to shake up your relationship and get a little creative.
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After being in a relationship for a while, it can be difficult to come up with new things to do together to keep the excitement alive. So it's time to get creative and do a little planning. If you're nervous that you're on your way to being stuck in the takeout and Netflix dating life, then it's time to try some of the date ideas below to add some fun back into your dating life.

In order to make sure that you actually try these dates out, and don't end up just laying around on the couch, make a plan! Doing a little preparing in advance and putting these dates on the calendar will help to ensure a successful date.

1. Wine/Paint Night

Ever see those Groupons for paint nights hosted by bars that a group of moms typically go to on nights out from their husbands? (Well, my friends and I enjoy them too but that's beside the point.) Have an at-home version for a cheaper and more relaxed date.

There's no pressure for your painting to be good in the comfort of your own home, it's just for fun. Get some canvases, paint and brushes from a local craft store and check out this site that has 30 easy ideas of what to paint. Oh, and don't forget the wine.

2. Homemade Pizza

This may come out amazing, or it may be a total disaster. The point of this date is to try cooking something new and have fun with it! Let your inner Italian chef out with this chicken broccoli alfredo pizza recipe.

3. DIY Dance Lessons

This is another fun one that is more comfortable to start out doing in the comfort of your own home. Hopefully, at least one of you has rhythm and can help the other, but regardless, this is an entertaining way to learn a new skill, or to just make some memories dancing together. Check out this salsa video or this one on line dancing. Good luck!

4. Indoor Campout

No campout is complete without s'mores. If you don't have a fire place, try this fun way to roast some marshmallows! Build a blanket fort and toss some pillows on the ground while you enjoy your delicious treats.

5. Home Improvement

Check out Pinterest for something fun you can make, such as this mason jar organizer, or this fun chalkboard coffee table.

6. Learn A New Skill

This is similar to the third idea, learning to dance (props to you if you attempted it!). But this option can include anything! Think back on conversations you've had with your partner; is there anything that he or she has mentioned they wanted to learn? Or something you have always wanted to try with them?

Perhaps, you're planning a trip abroad together and you want to learn the basics of the language of the country. Or maybe, he is really into photography but has had trouble figuring out his camera and you're interested in learning about it too. You can learn a lot from the internet, and doing these things together makes it more enjoyable.

7. Romantic Picnic

Spice up a typical boring picnic with some romantic ambiant lighting. Light some candles and use a string of lights to help set the mood. Grab some drinks, and make a nice cheese board to up the fancy level. Check this page out for tips on creating the perfect charcuterie boards to accompany this chic picnic.

Cover Image Credit: https://picjumbo.com/gentleman-holding-a-bouquet-of-roses/

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10 Beginner's Tips For Going Gluten-Free Like A Champ

Living a gluten-free lifestyle is easier than you think.
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Whether it's due to a diet fad or various health-related concerns, the shift to eating gluten-free has become commonplace. A couple of months ago, I found myself climbing into the same boat as all the other gluten-free dieters to help with my own health conditions. I already had experience cutting out dairy from my food repertoire, but banishing gluten is its own journey.

If you find yourself cutting out the grainy villain, it can seem overwhelming.Thankfully, there are a lot of accessible options out there. So, take a deep breath and check out these tips from someone who's been there.

1. Get to know your grocery store or market.

Publix has an entire aisle dedicated to (mostly) gluten-free foods. Unfortunately, even that glorious aisle isn't a one-stop shop. If you prefer to do your searching digitally, you can make a shopping list on their website and it will tell you where to find your products in-store. No matter where you shop, learn where your products are to curtail any market meltdowns.

2. Figure out if cross-contact matters for you.

Cross-contact happens when an item is gluten-free, but is handled or prepared with the same equipment used on gluten-containing foods. The reason behind your diet change is going to determine if you need to be mindful of this or not. It may seem overboard for some, but even super small amounts of gluten can cause harm to those with celiac disease and allergies.

3. CHECK THE INGREDIENTS LIST AND LABELS.

This can be tricky. Foods that carry a gluten-free label must meet FDA requirements, but the label is voluntary. That means foods that don't have the label may still be safe for you to eat. To make sure, you need to check the ingredients list for gluten-containing grains and their derivatives. Even if it passed the ingredients test, cross-contact is still possible unless otherwise noted.

4. Beware of common items that seem harmless, but are secret gluten ninjas.

Foods that are naturally gluten-free can become double-agents due to fillers, flavorings, or processes. Don't worry, this list has got your back.

5. Get all the recipes because if you weren't cooking before, you will be now.

Cooking your own meals gives you peace of mind and saves you money. Pinterest is a treasure trove of recipes for all kinds of dietary needs.

6. Gluten-free pasta and gluten-free bread is my life-saver.

Seriously, my mom's spaghetti is my ultimate comfort food and there's no way I'm giving up one-pot pasta meals or sandwiches. There's a pretty wide range of gluten-free pastas and breads available, so decide which ones favor your wallet and taste buds best. My favorite so far is Udi's frozen bread and Barilla's pasta.

7. Re-learn how to eat out.

One of the biggest struggles with eating gluten-free is figuring out what you can enjoy at restaurants. My best advice - research ahead of time (if you can) and don't be bashful about asking questions. Many eateries now offer gluten-free or allergen-friendly menus and are happy to accommodate you.

8. Find your go to snacks.

Some of your favorite snack foods may not be safe anymore, but it's just an opportunity to expand your second breakfast/elevenses/afternoon tea game. My favorite so far is gluten-free fig bars. It helps take a little bit of the pressure off of trying to decide what to eat.

9. Consider starting a food journal.

Food journals help you track down how gluten affects you, the amount you can tolerate, and determine if a gluten-free diet is helping or not.

10. Follow gluten-free lifestyle gurus on social media.

There are people who are collecting gold-mines of information and you can keep them right in your pocket. Their posts can give you new ideas and point you in the right direction for products and local restaurants. They're real-life superheros.


With some creativity, some constructive failures, and some patience, you will figure out what works best for you. While changing my diet certainly hasn't magically cured anything for me, it has given me the guidelines I needed to choose healthier food. Your body will thank you.

Cover Image Credit: Gardie Design & Social Media Marketing

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The Starbucks Arrest Is Here To Teach Us How To Use Our White Privilege

We all have to do our part in speaking up if we want to fight racism.
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Starbucks has been known for making equality one of the company’s core values, like in 2015 when they came up with the “Race Together” campaign where baristas would write the phrase on customer’s cups in order to encourage conversation on race, so it came as an even bigger shock when just this past month two black men were arrested at a Philadelphia Starbucks while waiting for their friend.

The men had not ordered anything while they waited, and this prompted the store manager to ask them to leave, which the men refused to do. The manager then called the police and had the men arrested and taken out of the store in handcuffs.

When I first saw Melissa DePino’s video of the arrest, I was furious, but upon rewatching, I saw a glimmer of hope. In DePino’s video, you can see Andrew Yaffe, the friend that the men were waiting for, asking the police why they were called, and if the reason was that they were two black men. Yaffe’s decision to confront the police about the arrest and call them out for their racism is crucial because it serves as an example for what other white people should do if they are faced with a similar situation.

Yaffe used his white privilege for good by demanding that the officers tell him why no one else was kicked out of the Starbucks for not ordering and by calling their actions discriminatory. Since he is white, it was clear that he would not be arrested for talking back to those police officers, so he seized the opportunity and attempted to have his friends freed.

DePino stated in the caption for her video that the other white people in the Starbucks were also wondering why they had never been told to leave a Starbucks for doing the same thing as those men. It is important for as many white people as possible to use their privilege to speak up when they see injustice because they are the ones that are given power in our society. Unfortunately, white people typically only listen to other white people, so they have a better chance of getting through to someone that is racist and stopping them from being discriminatory.

Even though the two men were still arrested despite the efforts of the other customers, the CEO of Starbucks, Kevin Johnson, has also taken steps to use his privilege to prevent the same situation from happening again. On May 29 Starbucks will close its 8,000 company-owned stores and provide racial bias training for about 175,000 workers. Johnson stated that “While this is not limited to Starbucks, we're committed to being a part of the solution. Closing our stores for racial bias training is just one step in a journey that requires dedication from every level of our company and partnerships in our local communities."

Starbucks is setting an example for other companies to make racial equality a priority and I think that is commendable. The public demanded action from Starbucks when the video came out of the men being arrested and the CEO heard their comments and took action quickly.

We should not be too prideful to take criticism in regards to race relations because there is room for improvement for all of us.

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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