Topher and I just celebrated our 'dating' anniversary. We celebrate all of our anniversaries...the day we met, our dating anniversary, engagement day, and of course the biggie, the wedding anniversary. We don't usually do gifts or big dinners, but we do take a little extra time to say I Love You.

And to honor this special day...I wanted to share with you a recent date night of ours in State College (Penn State). You can do this anywhere, and it is tons of fun!

It's what I like to call a Venetian Date Redux!

Allow me to explain. One of our groomsmen gave us 20 Euro for a wedding gift with the following instructions - "Have a pizza dinner on me. Take a picture of the pizza dinner for my fridge!" 

So while we were in Venice we enjoyed a romantic pizza dinner for two. Our hotel room had a private balcony, so we went with the take-out route and enjoyed our pizza in privacy. If you are going to Venice in the future - email me and I'll share the hotel name and room number. 


For 20 Euro we enjoyed two of best pizzas ever created, two canoli, a gerber daisy, and a bottle of champagne...all for 20 Euro! Here's the picture:


Don't you love our flower vase?

Toph set up his laptop with a slideshow of our wedding pictures and played our favorite cd. We played cards and talked about our future as Mr. and Mrs. Yorks. It could possibly be one of the best nights of my life!

Recently, I decided to surprise Topher with a similar date here at home.

I looked up the exchange rate on 20 Euro and we had exactly $25.40 to spend.

I waited until we got to town to explain to Topher our date plan. We started mapping out our dinner.

Our first stop, Bell's Greek Pizza for a few grapeleaves (6 to be exact) Yum!


This was our appetizer. I think Bell's has great pizza too. But we just wanted grapeleaves.


Next we worked on drinks. Since I was planning a surprise picnic on Penn State's campus, we had to keep it non-alcoholic. We decided on McLanahan's for San Pelligrino Water and Ginger Ale. 


We walked around for a bit longer discussing our main dinner options. We just couldn't decide. So we skipped to dessert. We knew we wanted cupcakes from *ndulge. 


But because we were on a budget, we decided to just get one and split the cream soda float cupcake.

This made me happy.

To balance the rich cupcake, we decided to go with salad from Crisp for our dinner.


We had eaten there once before and really enjoyed the fresh, healthy atmosphere. Yum. I was really in the mood for a good salad.

But we were greeted with this sign. *sad face*


Ugh. A wrinkle in our plan.

Look in the reflection of the door window. Do you see that bench? We sat there for a long time discussing our new plan.

We agreed that pizza would be a great option. Once of our favorite places is Rotelli...so we strolled over to see what they had in our budget.


Here is our photo at Rotelli. We tried to get the sign in the photo, but I couldn't get the angle right. Oh well. Cheese!!

Thankfully Rotelli offered a take-out option. We ordered the Caprese Salad and the Artichoke and Chicken Pizza. That finished off our budget. We had pennies leftover. 

It was time to tell Topher the secret location of the picnic...the pond at the Hintz Alumni Center. Romantic and full of great scenery. The entry gate...


The white gazebo with the pond in the background.


We saw a mommy duck with 16 babies!!!


We set up our blanket and unpacked our goodies we had collected.

The grapeleaves


The Caprese Salad.


The Artichoke Chicken Pizza.

I packed two champagne glasses and some pink heart 'sprinkles' to dress up the glasses. I also packed a flower vase and two gerber daisies.


(You might remember, I also used these pink hearts on these cupcake cookies.)


These were just as good as our cupcake from *ndulge.


And since we love playing games...I packed our official Hangman Journal, Mad Libs, and deck of cards.


And to set the ambiance, I created a new Pandora radio station - Snow Patrol. I put it on my phone and set it to speaker. It wasn't too loud to disturb anyone around us, but it was nice to have a little dinner music. We loved it! Perfect!


We did have an encounter with a pesky squirrel. Topher frightened him away with my pink polka dot flip flop. 

We had so much fun and it only cost us $25.40 - not bad for a night on the town!

So here's a challenge...if you're up for it. 

What date can you create with $25.40? If you take this challenge, I would LOVE for you to go on your date and create a guest blog post!! It doesn't have to be in State College, I just want to know how creative you can get with your date plans? I hope you try it out and then I really hope you write a blog post about it! Email me at anne@flourboxbakery.com if you're interested!!

Have a sweet Labor Day Weekend!

Anne