As a romance writer I'm always weaving dream date scenarios. Living on an island, I'm constantly inspired by the scenery and solitude. Between a nature preserve, state park, marshlands, and the Niagara River, I never have to travel far to find a spot for the perfect date. Here are just a few:
© A. Marino, Photographer 2013
1.) A picnic by the river. There's an overlook on "my island", hidden from the view of a seasonal road. Nothing more than a patch of grass and a couple of trees, it's a perfect place to share a picnic. The breeze off the Niagara River wafts cool air on a hot summer day. Pair this with the man you love, a bottle of wine, and an assortment of finger foods…ah heaven.
© A. Marino, Photographer 2013
2.) A walk through nature. Wander off the trails. You don't want to miss the perfect opportunity to discover something out of the ordinary. This place was way off the beaten path at a nature preserve on my island…what magic! Nothing more is needed than bottled water, a couple of granola bars and (sigh) a man's helping hand to move branches from your path to lead you into this marshland. After you catch your breath, he takes you in his arms…I will leave the rest to your imagination.
© Hart Photography 2013
3.) Winter strolls through a park. Summer months at Beaver Island State Park, down the road from my house is beautiful. However, warm weather brings company picnics, Frisbee throwers, dog walkers, beach goers and golfers. Though the influx of people from off island is welcome, it's not the most relaxing place to have a dream date. On the other hand, in winter months, (which is about half the year here) the park is virtually empty except for the wildlife and people brave enough to venture out. So, bundle up with the man you love, and take a stroll through the park, and along the beach. Conversation, blended with snow boots crunching through the snow on the boardwalk is a happy mix. The biting air is the perfect excuse to snuggle and share soup or coffee from a thermos. What makes this date downright perfect? The kisses under one of the many shelters to warm up even more.
|© Holger Kortz | Dreamstime.com|
4.) I don't know why, but flames— be it a bonfire, a fireplace in an outdoor shelter or even a fat candle on a picnic table— brings romance into any date. My favorite is a bonfire. Something about the sweet smell of wood smoke in a man's hair makes me want to nuzzle his neck. Your favorite may be different, but the point is to add some flames to a date. Feed each other marshmallows at a bonfire; cuddle in front of a fireplace and share a bottle of wine, or enjoy conversation with one you love over a candle-lit picnic. It doesn't matter what you do, as long as you're near flames on the date…and stoking a fire of your own.
|© Hart Photography 2013|
Though February boasts of Valentine's Day and thoughts of love, we need to weave lighthearted dream dates into our lives throughout the year. Life can quickly fill with work and other responsibilities, but we need to make the time—steal it if we must—and dream up a perfect date. Then make it reality.