Our Chilled Out Summer Valentine’s Day



Not the most flattering picture ever – but oh well… 😛

This was us on Valentine’s Day.

We don’t do the whole commercial Valentine’s Day shebang anymore…

Sorry, but forking out triple what you’d normally pay for a nice meal out – and then being forced to eat a set menu – doesn’t sit well with either one of us. Neither does buying overpriced roses or chocolates just because the rest of the world is.

So we don’t.

We’ve got a really cool tradition though – well, I think so anyway.

Each year we take turns surprising each other with a Valentine’s date. It can be anything really. One year we had a fondue in the living room, another year it was a picnic at Rickity Bridge. 

I know Valentine’s Day is just one day in the year, and even though we have date nights (which we’ve both been terrible about doing lately), this is just one other day to get creative and show your special someone what they mean to you. The way I see it, life’s too damn short not to. Who knows what tomorrow will bring? So celebrate the small things!

This year was my turn and I was stumped.

I thought we’d end up watching a movie and having take-aways – which is all fine and well, but that’s something we do every weekend. I wanted to do something different this year. 

So I bought a couple of cheap candles to put around the house. When I was at China Town a few weeks ago, I found a cool box of fake rose petals for under R15 and I scattered those around for fun too. I put my pen to paper and got creative with a few things that I can’t mention here – because certain eyes will be reading this post. They’ll be saved for another day…

Here’s a snippet of Valentine’s Day at our house this year. Pooh in the middle there was my Valentine’s surprise. Totally unexpected since we never give each other presents on this day, and I’ve wanted this little guy for years!


Our Valentine’s Date started at 5pm… Off we went to a “secret” destination. Well, no – not so secret because Geoff guessed where we were going as soon as I said it wasn’t the beach, 

Oh well… Maybe if I was more adventurous with my driving. Maybe next time.

I packed up a mini picnic of chips, caramel popcorn, grapes and berry juice and off we went to the Helderberg Nature Reserve. It’s so pretty there. A few other couples had the same idea, but they all sat on the grass as you came in. (Boring…)

We ventured a little further inside the reserve until we found a gorgeous spot on a small deck overlooking the lake.

It was absolute bliss…

Helderberg nature reserve3

We made homemade gluten-free gnocci when we got home with a sort of tomato and mushroom marinara sauce. It was so good. Just a little lumpy and I forgot to take pictures, so I’ll have to make it again soon. What a refreshing change to pasta!

The music was pumping, we had on our black aprons from last year’s Nederburg MasterChef challenge, and we were full of potato and flour. It was awesome.

Dessert was homemade chocolate ice cream I’d made the night before. Of course. With chocolate cookies, peppermint crisp, whipped cream and chocolate sauce thrown with for good measure. And why not?

(P.S.The picture was horrific quality so I’m not posting it here but I promise I’ll put up that triple chocolate ice cream recipe soon!)



4 Replies to “Our Chilled Out Summer Valentine’s Day”

  1. am glad your valentine was amidst nature and with a fine menu 🙂
    I loved those earrings Mel…looking pretty!

    Yes, I shall wait for that chocolate ice cream…its started to warm up a bit here and might as well make something home made 😉
    ruchira recently posted…Wordless Wednesday #24My Profile

    1. Melanie Chisnall says: Reply

      Thank you Ruchira! 🙂 They’re red and silver and I love them. I’m trying to start wearing more red these days, never have before and I think I’ve been missing out!

  2. Sounds exactly like the kind of date Bev and I have….lovely idea and location, Mel. You two are our kind of people. 🙂

    1. Melanie Chisnall says: Reply

      Thank you Bill! If by some miracle we ever get out that way, we’ll definitely be stopping in to see you both 🙂

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