Or, An Agenda for Date Night.
The whole purpose of "forced couple fun" is to connect. Like many of you, Jason and I live busy lives. Yet connecting through the good, the bad and the ugly ignites the chemistry and reminds us why we're together.
Life happens, making it easy to avoid talking about the things couples naturally sidestep on a daily basis. Date night is the perfect night for those discussions, in our case. And having an agenda prior to the date eliminates any awkward pause in the beginning.
Yes, I typically go into our date night with an agenda. Don't laugh! It's the truth—and it works for us.
Jason is known for saying, "Everything's good." His modus operandi: Push down anything that is eating at him and NOT communicate about it. He started a new job three weeks before Christmas, Trump was elected to office, interest rates went up and have continued to rise ever since ... Jason is in the mortgage business. If you've ever met him, you get that he's the most easygoing person I know. But even he can't completely hide all that comes with the changes affecting him.
We decided to grab a drink at Divani on Ionia, which has a great wine list and a charcuterie board! This is a perfect location to chat over a great glass of wine and a good snack. Let me be honest: Talking about the shore excursions we're going to take on vacation is way more fun than pulling out "real feelings" from your husband. But making the time for this is so good for your relationship—and makes your dinner experience that much better.
And we tried a new restaurant: Luna GR.
We arrived, after deep conversation, looking for a casual restaurant. As with most venues, you look around and create an initial judgement based on the ambiance and clientele. The brick walls and quaint bar provide a simple atmosphere for the local Mexican cuisine. The clientele seated at the bar provided a hipster feel to the overall experience.
Yes, we were among the oldest people sitting in the restaurant. NOTE: I did say "among." There was someone who appeared to be older than us.
Per a suggestion, I started with the margarita flight—with an exchange for the jalapeño version. (Unfortunately, I have no tolerance for spice.) It did not disappoint. The flavor was great and there was no shortage of tequila. We also added the salsa flight, ceviche and guacamole. Everything was made from scratch and delivered with incredible promptness. The salsa flight provides a little something for everyone and the guacamole was completely authentic. The ceviche, though, isn't something I would order again. While I'm a simple person, I like my ceviche with a bit more pizazz than what was presented.
We both decided to keep it simple for dinner, and ordered tacos. The fish tacos were fantastic, with distinctive sauces for our own tastes, and the beef tacos were unique and flavorful.
In a nutshell: I would go to Luna when headed to a concert or an event at Van Andel Arena, or when looking for a great quick meal. The food is local, high-quality and made from scratch—including the tortilla chips. The drinks hit the spot. Be sure to give it a try!
Kasie Smith is the president and publisher of West Michigan Woman. She and her husband, Jason, are fans of food, travel and golf—and their twin sons, Jackson and Spencer. Watch WestMichiganWoman.com for more stops on their Foodie Tour! And click here to learn more about Forced Couple Fun.