Fun Foodie Dates That Don’t Break the Bank

We all give and receive love in different ways.  In fact, Gary Chapman’s best selling book, The Five Love Languages states that we communicate our love through words of affirmation, acts of service, quality time, receiving gifts and physical touch.

After taking Chapman’s 5 Love Languages quiz, I discovered that my top love language is quality time.

“A central aspect of quality time is togetherness. I do not mean proximity. Togetherness has to do with focused attention…A husband and wife playing tennis together, if it is genuine quality time, will focus not on the game, but on the fact that they are spending time together.” -Gary Chapman, The 5 Love Languages

Quality time isn’t about money spent or gifts given, it’s about giving someone your undivided attention and engaging in meaningful conversation.  So I decided to come up with a list of cheap eats and fun activities to do for those who love to spend quality time, but don’t want to break the bank.  If you’re stuck on plans for Valentine’s Day, try these on for size:

Ice Skating and Brunch at La Pavillon Cafe 


Beat the winter temperature drop with this fun day date to La Pavillon Cafe.  They offer a jazz brunch for you to enjoy before heading out to ice skate and create figure eights in The Sculpture Garden.

Dinner & Mini Golf at H Street Country Club 

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Who doesn’t love tacos and margaritas?  H. Street Country Club has all your Mexican favorites.  After getting stuffed, head upstairs for a round mini golf with your beau. Extend this fun date, by dancing along H. Street at numerous locations.

Stargazing and Thai at Mango Tree


Okay, so maybe Mango Tree isn’t what you call a “cheap date,” but it evens out when coupled with free stargazing at the Kogod Courtyard.  Start at The Smithsonian’s American Art Museum and National Portrait Gallery and come into the Kogod Courtyard to watch the sun set at 5:43pm before heading over yummy thai at Mango Tree located in DC’s new City Center.

Bocce and Italian at Pinstripes


I’ve never played bocce before, but I hear it’s pretty fun.  If you’ve never played bocce, then learning to play this game with the one you love makes it all the more fun. They have a $28 brunch buffet with made-to-order omelettes, carved prime rib, fresh seafood, desserts and bottomless mimosas.  Sounds mm, mmm good!

Quality time is the way to my heart (cough: fellas if you’re reading this).  Curious to know your or your loves top love language?  Head on over to take Gary Chapman’s quiz here and craft a Valentine’s Day date that is everything he or she needs.




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Surprise Valentine’s Day Heart Desserts

If the way to a man’s heart is his stomach, then bake one of these and I’m sure he’ll get down on one knee. So ladies, grab yourselves a glass of wine (or a bottle) to sip while you make these surprise inside sweet treats.

Hot Chocolate Hit’s Heart Pinata Cookies

Eugenie’s Rainbow Heart Cake Pops

My Cupcake Addiction’s Rainbow Heart Cake

Cupcake Jemma’s Heart Inside Cupcakes

Eugenie’s Rainbow Heart Cookies

Let me know which one you want to make and then invite me to the wedding.



Darling Darla

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7 Must Have Super Bowl Party Appetizers!

We all have our reason to watch the Super Bowl.  Some of us (like me) watch for the halftime show.  Can we say ColdPlay plus Beyonce?  Score!  Then there are those who watch for the commercials.  And then you have the diehards who watch, root and cheer with their eyes glued to the screen.  No matter what’s your reason for watching the big game, we can all agree that good food is a must.  I’ve created this bomb list of appetizers that are sure to make your tummy scream for more.  Check out the list below:

Pretzel Pigs in a Blanket


Yummy! Put on a tray with melted nacho cheese in the middle. Recipe here.

Buffalo Chicken Sliders with Blue Cheese Dressing


These are smokin hot! Recipe Here

Deep Dish Pizza Bites


The perfect amount of ooey gooey goodness in every bite.  Here are the deets

Football Deviled Eggs


Well chilled and these deviled eggs are a score!  Get the recipe

Roasted Chipotle Wings

Thai ginger yam soup

What Super Bowl party is complete without wings?  These are sure to deliver a kick! Recipe here 

Slow Cooker Spinach Dip


Set it and forget it! A lazy cooks dream.  Snag the recipe.

Football Brownies in Mason Jars


And no Super Bowl party is complete without a sweet.  Find the recipe here.

BONUS:  Rooting for The Carolina Panthers?

This Carolina Punch is sure to be the talk of your party!


Drink it up!  Find it here.



Darling Darla





10 Snowman Snacks & Desserts

“Do you want to build a snowman?” I’m sure every little boy and girl across the northeast sang this song to their parents for hours as snowstorm Jonas pounded us this past weekend.  For many of us, the snowfall meant being locked up in our apartments and homes desperately trying to evade cabin fever.  I dug up some amazing snowman snacks & desserts for you to try with all your free time.  I’m sure they taste as good as they look! Check them out:

Snowman Skewers


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Who doesn’t love marshmallows? Find the recipe here!

Chocolate Covered Pretzel Sticks


For all you pretzel lovers, find the recipe here.

String Cheese Snowmen


Oh, cheese! We meet again! Get your hands on this recipe

Hot chocolate on a spoon with snowman marshmallows


This is sure to warm you up! Recipe check!

Snowman Brownie Bites


They’re little, but packed with flavor!  Here’s the recipe 

Frosty the Snowman Pretzels


Olaf, don’t be jealous! Frosty was here first. Check the recipe.

Hard-boiled Egg Snowman


Who said you can’t be healthy and yummy?  Try these

Red Velvet Melting Snowman Cookies


Is that velvet? It sure is! Snatch up the recipe


Frosty the snowman pudding pops.  Love this recipe

Snowman Nutter Butter Cookies


Peanut butter goodness! Find the recipe here

Bonus – Pay it forward:  Make these cute snowman hot cocoa bags and include a special thank you note for neighbors digging folks out of the snow.


I’m in love with the cocoa! (I couldn’t resist.) Here’s the recipe.

Enjoy! Xoxo,

Darling Darla