Day Trips

Breaking Out of a Date Night Rut

I don’t have to tell you how great or important date nights are for couples. But, sometimes it gets easy to fall into a date night rut…dinner, Target run, coffee, done. So we decided to change it up this week and we had an amazing night of fun and spontaneity. 

The first thing we did was head over to the coast. We decided on Capitola…well technically Santa Cruz…41st Street, to be exact. This place is home to one of our favorite coffee places…which is where we stopped first. Verve Coffee has a few locations in Santa Cruz and even one in Palo Alto. We each got a Missile, which is cold brew with half and half and house-made turbinado sugar syrup…it’s amazing. Then we walked around some of the 41st street shops, gawked at prices and smelled beachy scented  candles. We were stalling dinner until sunset so, we threw in a random Target run…it’s not date night without going to Target. We had a plan to watch the sunset and eat tacos on the beach. As we were leaving Target I started getting directions to the taco place we were going to go to…it turns out, they close at 7:30pm…it was 7:38! Well, change of plans. 

I Yelp’ed a few taco places and we found one just down the street. Taqueria Vallarta is on 41st street and open until 11pm every night. We got pastor tacos, fish tacos and chips, salsa and guacamole. We ordered to go and drove down to the parking lot at the end of 41st and E Cliff Dr. there are a few benches and picnic tables over looking the ocean and surfers down below. We snagged a table and huddled together for warmth (it was pretty windy and chilly)and we ate our delicious tacos and chips. They didn’t skimp on meat and toppings in the tacos and the salsa tasted really fresh. The sky turned all kinds of pink and orange as the sun sank behind us. Not a bad view for dinner. After we ate, we walked some of the footpath along Cliff Dr. playing PokémonGo and watching the surfers and looking for seals. 

It was getting dark After the sun set so we warmed up in our car and decided to grab some ice cream at The Penny Ice Creamery. This is another local favorite that you should definitely try, their flavors are funky and locally sourced and super fun. The stars of the show are their cones that are made right in front of you and the marshmallow fluff that they top your ice cream with and then blow torch it. I got the bitter caramel flavor topped with toasted marshmallow fluff and Erik got the Verve coffee with chocolate almond praline in a waffle cone. I recommend getting the mini size…it’s a perfect after dinner snack. 

We usually don’t go this big on date nights, and we won’t every time. But once a month we are trying to push ourselves out of the norm and do something fun together. I’m thinking The Boardwalk arcade and corn dogs on the beach, or maybe a hike to watch the sunset for our next one. We love being together so that’s the easy part and stepping out of our rut takes just a little bit of effort. That little bit of effort makes all the difference, we feel so refreshed and seen after date nights like this. We talk and laugh and remember just how freaking much we like each other. Life gets busy and difficult and stressful, and these fun date nights are just one way of remembering how great life is and how much fun we have together. So, grab your partner and go do something different and fun and remembered just how great you are together!

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