how to never stop dating

so you know what day it is.  monday.  specifically the second monday of february.

a very pink, heart and flower riddled, Cupid arrow in the nether regions, restaurant reservation Fight Club, He Went to Jared monday.

probably the biggest monday of 2011 to go on an overpriced date.  go figure.

there is some romantic value though.  in my never humble opinion, dating gets a bad rap.  or wrap.  it just depends on whether you’re single or a dude trying his hand at gift paper.  either way, there is a part of dating that is always happy making.  maybe even the entire reason for dating…

the flutters.

oh man, i do love the flutters.  that “this person seems to be really into me and i’m thoroughly enjoying myself” feeling.  does that feeling happen every time or last forever?  no to former, possibly to the latter…if you do it right.

a huge mistake couples make when they finally settle on the one they exchange “til’ death do us part” with, is to stop dating.  now before you join a swingers club, because that would clearly be the conclusion to draw from my last sentence and knowing i wield a god-like influence over your good judgment, hear me out.

just because you’re in a committed relationship, doesn’t mean that you get to stop wooing your chosen hottie.

the purpose of dating is to get to know the person you’re with.  this doesn’t change when you get all gussied up and sign some legal papers.  the person you choose for life, is going to change.  how boring would it be if they didn’t?  and surprise!  you’re going to change too.

dating helps you keep up with the new stuff.  it gives you an opportunity to talk, to flirt, to hang out and remember why you’re together in the first place.

how to never stop dating:

1.  get all tarted up – go out of your way to look good.  girls, get your hair did.  guys, do something other than throw a flannel over the t-shirt you’ve been wearing since yesterday.  making an effort makes the other person feel like you haven’t stopped trying.  that you still want to be attractive to them, to give them whiplash when you walk in a room.

2.  plan it – schedules can get crazy.  make sure there’s a time set aside just to date.  date nights are great.  keep them sacred.  again, it shows the other person their importance to you.  that you are willing to be protective of your time with them.  this doesn’t mean it has to be every tuesday (or monday), but just a commitment to time.

3.  be spontaneous – this doesn’t conflict with or replace number 2.  doing something fun, romantic or thoughtful just because it would be awesome, keeps things fresh and frankly, hot.  Craig bought me a pair of rubber boots as old as i am a couple of months ago and they’re so cool!  just a thing he picked up at thrift store because they made him think of me.  no special event, not my birthday, no anything that would cause expectation.  it was better than any of that because it was an opportunity that presented itself and was capitalized on.

4.  flirt – keep doing all those things that lets them know you are into them and want them to be into you.  tease, joke, touch….flirt!

dating is fun!  it’s the one thing that continually strikes a spark.  my parents just celebrated 50 years of marriage and still go out on dates.  sometimes my dad will even send my mom to buy herself something fabulous to wear as an excuse to take her out.  it’s freaking adorable.

it is really hard to take a relationship for granted when you are continually putting effort in to please the one you’re with.  going out on dates and always keeping a part of your mind open to watch for things that the other person would like is key to the longevity of any relationship.  and don’t confuse that with constantly having to work for approval.  that’s a completely different thing.  dating the person you love is about caring and maintaining the joy you found before the commitment was made.  aka, the flutters.

long story short…

never ever stop dating.

here’s what i posted on Craig’s facebook wall today:

ahhh love…

what are you doing on this particular monday?

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10 comments on “how to never stop dating

  1. My wife and I celebrated V-day on Saturday because she will be in class tonight. So I will be showing my kids love in a way that they understand–TACO NIGHT!

  2. Jenn says:

    I am celebrating by going for a run in our rain/wind warning weather and having a vegan gf dinner. A day of love to me. You shouldn’t stop dating yourself either….It doesn’t hurt/help that the bf is in another country at the moment and he’s been instructed not to do anything – he can send me flowers any day but today. I nearly fainted when I saw the price of bouqets at WF yesterday – $80 was the base price. I can get shoes for that kind of money!

  3. Matt Gates says:

    As I do not have a sweetie, I’m going to the gym for my Monday night hot yoga class possibly preceded with some running on the treadmill if I can get there early enough.

    However, if I was with someone I would have made her up a batch of my semi-famous Strawberry KAs (The KA stands for Kick Asses…seriously.) to take into work and share with her soon-to-be super jealous co-workers.

    For anyone interested in my recipe keep reading:

    Matt’s Strawberry KAs

    Ingredients:
    Strawberries; two cartons makes 40-50. I usually do 4 cartons for carry-ins/potlucks/parties because they go fast.
    1 lb. Chocolate Almond Bark/Generic chocolate candy coating
    1 small bar of white chocolate
    1 small bar of really good dark chocolate
    2-3 cups cookie crumbs. I’ve used Graham Crackers, Nilla Wafers, Pecan Sandies (really tasty) and occasionally Arrowroot Cookies for a Gluten Free version, but feel free to pulverize your cookie of choice.

    Filling:
    Use your favorite cheesecake filling recipe or buy the pre-made stuff, but that doesn’t taste nearly as good.

    Mine is:

    16 oz Neufatel Cream Cheese softened
    4 oz sour cream
    1 cup powdered sugar
    1 tbsp vanilla extract

    Mix the cream cheese and sour cream and then stir in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract until everything is a smooth, creamy consistancy. (This might not be exactly right on the cheesecake filling because I’m at work and the recipe is at home, but it’s close and I’ll make any needed corrections later)

    Prepare the strawberries by rinsing, removing the leaves, cutting off the top/hollowing out the middle and cutting off the tip to add some stability.

    Spoon cheesecake filling into a plastic Ziplock bag or pastry bag.

    Melt chocolate almond bark/candy coating in a double boiler. If you do it in the microwave it won’t stay liquid nearly long enough to dip all of the strawberries so don’t.

    Dip the strawberries in the melted chocolate (note: the chocolate sticks better if you let the strawberries dry after washing them or patting them dry with a paper towel) and then into the cookie crumbs and put off to the side. After all of the strawberries have been dipped and coated in crumbs, cut off the corner of the plastic bag filled with cheesecake filling (or use a pastry bag for a more professional appearance) and use it to fill the hollowed out strawberries.

    Take a clean vegetable peeler and use it along the edge of the white chocolate and dark chocolate bars creating chocolate curls. Do this over a piece of aluminum foil or wax paper so that when you’re done making the chocolate curls you can pick up the foil/wax paper without touching them with your hands (your body heat will instantly melt them) and gently shake them over the dipped and filled strawberries. You can also just melt some of the white and dark chocolate and drizzle it in turn over the strawberries, but that can get a little messy if you’re an overexcited fork flicker. Yep. Just said fork flicker because I’m awesome like that.

    Chill until ready to serve. I recommend serving them with a nice Prosecco, but that’s just me.

    Happy Valentine’s Day, y’all.

    • Jenn says:

      I think the name is very appropriate and if they wouldn’t result in someone having to hold my hair due to the dairy and possible gluten in the crumbs I would be all over them.

      For goodness sake why are you single?

      • Matt Gates says:

        Sheesh. That’s a loaded question. 🙂

        My grandmother asked me if I was seeing anyone when I went home over Christmas. When I told her that I wasn’t she said something along the lines of, “Well that’s okay. God doesn’t intend for everyone to get married.”.

        I think she meant it to be comforting… 8-0

        • Jenn says:

          Sorry yes that was a loaded question – I should have suggested if you are unsatisfied with your current level of attachment that you walk around with a plate of said Strawberry KA’s and you’ll have no end of marriage proposals. I’ve done that with cupcakes and other baked goods.

  4. Yay, an entire post that didn’t mention Venereal Disease! Oh wait, you didn’t mean that kind of VD?

    Today I spent several hours with the most important girl in my life — Sophie the Wonder Basset. Took her on a walk through campus (lots of awwws, no numbers though), then she rode in the truck with me to try and find a new tail light (she likes to go to sleep on my lap when we’re driving).

    Last night, I went out with just me and Jesus to eat Greek & Lebanese – because Jesus probably had hummus at some point…just makes sense, right? There’s a blog post describing the whole event. Tonight, I have a date with every person in Ponchatoula who wants pizza delivered to their house. I plan on making every pepperoni pizza laid out in a heart shape. If I could do the crust that way too, that would be a win, but I’m not that good yet.

  5. […] works for first dates all the way through long term marriages.  never stop dating.  dating is oodles of […]

  6. […] 4.  dating – don’t ever stop dating.  no matter what life throws at you, always make time for each other that is reserved and protected from everything else.  i wrote more about that here. […]

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