Romance Isn’t Just for Valentine’s Day

Enjoy these books, movies and music year-round.

Ideas for Date Night at Home

Dress up and have a fancy dinner. Have predinner cocktails, light candles, find a “romantic dinner music” playlist on the streaming service of your choosing or check out one of the music cd’s below. Have a “night out” at home.

Pick from the bowl of secrets. You and your partner each write down 20 things the other person might not know about you, cut each of them out, fold them into tiny squares, and put them in a bowl. Thinking of 20 secrets may seem hard if you’ve been together for a long time, but they don’t have to be big secrets — things like, “This is my favorite pen to use in the apartment.” “This is the last interaction I had with a neighbor.” It may sound boring, but nothing is really that boring if it’s handwritten on a small, folded-up piece of paper. Take turns picking. There is only one bowl of secrets, so if you pick your own secret, just fold it up again and toss it back. (You do lose a turn, though.)

Have an indoor picnic. Set up a blanket on the floor, put nature sounds on the television or computer. If you have a picnic basket, pack it with whatever is in the fridge and maybe a chilled rosé. Unpack your basket on the blanket, eat your picnic dinner on the floor.

Have a yoga night. Queue up a yoga video, burn some sage, put on some relaxing music, and stretch. You’ll feel like you did something good for your bodies and your spirits.

Bake an insane cake. Find a recipe for the sort of cake you’d never make ever, let alone for two people, because it seems complicated and insane and like it would just be too much cake. Then: Attempt to make that cake.

Other ideas: cook dinner together, have a spa day, watch a romantic movie, dance in the kitchen, make fondue, look at old photos, watch your wedding video, take a virtual trip somewhere, make a couple’s bucket list, play cards or a board game, make a craft.

Some ideas courtesy of www.thecut.com

Books to Set the Mood!

P.S. I Love You

Cecelia Ahern

The story is about Holly and the way she copes after the death of her soul mate, Gerry. Just when she is starting to believe that she cannot move on, she finds a bundle of notes Gerry wrote before his death. These notes were for Holly – one for each month, lasting a year. It is so amazing to read how Holly reads those notes and learns that love, life, and the pursuit of happiness is a never-ending journey.

Pride and Prejudice

Jane Austen

The importance of second chances is key to the story of Elizabeth Bennet who faces the prospect of marriage along with her four sisters. It tells a lot about the dating game back in the 19th century and highlights how important it is for prejudice to disappear when you are in love.

Duncan’s Bride

Linda Howard

Reese Duncan lost half his ranch and all his dreams to his ex-wife, so when it came time for a family he did the logical thing: he advertised for a bride. She had to be willing to work, to bear his children and to settle for lovemaking in place of love. It sounded perfect--until Madelyn Patterson arrived. One look and he had to have her. Never mind that she was New York and nightlife to his own plain-spoken Montana ways. She was willing to herd cattle, wax floors and bake biscuits by the dozen. She was even willing to bear his children--but at a price he couldn't pay. She wanted love--and he was a man who thought he had no love to give.

The History of Love

Nicole Krauss

Who would not want to read a book that promises to tell you the “history of love”? The story is even more beautiful than the title is and unfolds in a breathtaking way. Do not expect it to be a boring “history” book – it is something way beyond that. It tells the story of Alma and Leo who are years apart but still find a connection between them.

More Books!

Me Before You

Jojo Moyes

The story is about Lou Clark who believes she knows everything about how the world works and Will Traynor who has no desire to live after being paralyzed in a motorcycle accident. It all changes when Lou loses her job and agrees to take another one – a job that involves taking care of the paralyzed Will.

The Time Traveler’s Wife

Audrey Niffenegger

The story of a time traveler, Henry, whose relationship with his wife, Clare, evolves whenever he revisits his past.

Doctor Zhivago

Boris Pasternak

The story of the rich son of an industrialist who has to make tough life choices between family, career and the woman he meets during the Russian Revolution. Thanks to all the twists and turns, you just cannot put it down until you finish it.

The Notebook

Nicholas Sparks

The touching story of Allie and Noah, pulled apart by social class. The 2004 film adaptation is a classic.

Shanna

Kathleen E. Woodiwiss

Shanna seals a pact behind the walls of Newgate Prison with a prisoner, Ruark Beauchamp. She ties the knot with Beauchamp because she only needs a husband in name. It doesn’t work out quite the way she planned!

All books available at the Library.

Romantic Movies

Casablanca

An old flame. An exotic location. A familiar tune on the piano. If you haven't seen Casablanca, you know you'll regret it. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon and for the rest of your life.

Dirty Dancing

The story of Baby and her fateful trip to the Catskills where she meets resort worker Johnny. Their relationship sparks scenes that are still fresh in the mind of every '80s kid, from "the lift" in their dance scene to the great, "nobody puts Baby in a corner" moment.

The Notebook

This romance spans decades, flipping between a couple's first blush of love in the '40s and the present-day reality of how that relationship has transformed in old age. And while that may be moving, we sometimes forget everything that happens after Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams' rain-soaked kissing scene. Based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks. (See above)

A Star is Born

If you're looking for a story about people brought together by talent and torn apart by fame, you can watch a number of takes on A Star Is Born: There's the 1937 original with Janet Gaynor and Fredric March, the 1954 version with Judy Garland and James Mason or the 1976 remake with Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson. But only the most recent one, with Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, has a performance of the heart-rending song "Shallow."

Titanic

This has all the makings of a boilerplate love story: Jack is from the wrong side of the tracks, Rose comes from high society, and they meet by chance and fall in love. But set against the spectacle of the sinking of the historic ship — and with a great love song "My Heart Will Go On" in the background — like Jack, this movie moves beyond its seemingly plain origins.

The Vow

A young couple has a car accident that puts the wife in a coma. After she wakes up with severe memory loss, her husband sets his sights on winning her heart again.

All movies available at the Library.

Set the Mood with Music

The 50 Greatest Love Songs (Elvis Presley)

Greatest Hits (Al Green)

Love Songs (Miles Davis)

The Love Songs (Billie Holiday)

Love Songs (Roy Orbison)

The Love Songs (various artists)

Rock & Roll's Greatest Love Songs (various artists)

Time in a Bottle: Jim Croce's Greatest Love Songs

All cd’s available at the Library.

Valentine’s Day Activity for the Kids

"Paint Chocolates" with CreativeBug

Painting chocolate with kids is a fun way to get creative when making gifts for classmates and friends. Courtney Cerruti shows her friend, Ava, how to create pretty painted Valentine’s Day candies in this quick class. These candies are a guaranteed crowd pleaser—not only will you experiment with mixing color, but you also get to play with food.
Learn how to:

  • Melt and color Candy Melts

  • Paint a chocolate base in the candy molds

  • Add lollipop stick

What you’ll get:

  • Learn how to use the candy molds to create painted chocolates

  • 3 HD video lessons you can access online anytime, anywhere

  • Detailed supplies list

  • Step-by-step expert instruction from Courtney Cerruti

  • The ability to leave comments, ask questions, and interact with other

Visit our website www.randolphnj.org/library and click on CreativeBug. You will need your library card number.

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