The economy is falling and your mood may be too when your weekend plans seem to be limited by your thin wallet. But you don't have to go out and spend $200 to have fun. In fact, all it takes is a few of your friends and some creativity to update your favorite activity when you were a little girl: a slumber party.
Not only will you save some dough; you'll also finally have a cool excuse to get into your comfy clothes on a Friday or Saturday evening. Here are four ideas that will cover you from food to fun at your next girl's night in.
Wine: Every girls' night has to start with the right menu. Start with the beverages: Want to try a wine tasting but don't have the cash to travel? Host a tasting room in your own living room with The Traveling Vineyard.
A wine consultant will come to your home with a selection of five high-quality, affordable wines for you and your friends to sample.
They'll also offer tips on food pairings and the steps of wine tasting, including evaluating the color, body, and bouquet of each wine. At the end of the session, the wines that you enjoyed can be ordered from The Traveling Vineyard through a form provided by the wine consultant.
Appetizers: When the wine starts to kick in, it's time to serve up the appetizers. The last thing you probably want to do on a Friday night is spend hours cooking in the kitchen — here are a couple dishes that are easy and quick to prepare.
Dessert: End the night with chocolate covered strawberries for dessert, or try this recipe for chocolate-strawberry ice pops — a decadent treat packed with nutrients from the soy milk and fruit.
Added bonus: These dishes are light and guilt-free, so you'll feel great for Saturday night when you slip on a pair of skinny jeans and hit the town.
2. Booty Parlor Party
Now it's time to get the evening started with a special party for your closest girlfriends: a Booty Parlor Party.
Think of this as the new, sexy Tupperware party. Have a bootician come to your house to reveal the latest romance enhancers and bedroom accessories. It's the perfect opportunity for women to gather, shop, laugh and chat about one of their favorite topics: their sex lives and relationships.
Click here to read about some of the best sex toys of 2009.
Looking for the products you saw on TODAY? You'll find the "Don't Stop" massage candle ($36), Massage a Trios ($32) massage oil trio, Luminizing Body Butter with Pheromones ($26) kit, and "Tickle Me Intimacy" Love Kit ($30) at Bootyparlor.com.
3. Beauty swap
A slumber party is not complete without some sort of beauty component, but to be safe, leave the makeover memories of your childhood slumber parties in the past. A fun alternative: Ask your girlfriends to bring their favorite beauty products under $15 and try each of them out.
This beauty swap is the adult-friendly makeover exchange, and a fun way to share your latest beauty obsession and try friends' recommendations. It's a win/win for all!
Looking for the items you saw on TODAY? Here they are: Victoria's Secret PINK Body Lotions ($15) from the organic Pink collection; CoverGirl's Outlast Lipstain ($7.50, drugstore.com).
4. End the night right
Next — we've got the ultimate game selection to keep the conversation heated and the laughter going all night — our favorite game is Table Topics: Girls Night Out Edition which is available at Barney's, Barnes & Noble or online. This edition was made for a "girls only" night — find out what your friends really think when they're put on the spot; there's no telling where the conversation will go with these questions.
Girls and women at any age are notoriously known for watching movies over and over — and there's no denying it, we can’t get enough of our chick flicks. Our favorites are “The Breakfast Club,” “When Harry Met Sally,” “The Way We Were,” “Breakfast at Tiffany's,” “Thelma and Louise,” “Pretty Woman,” “The Notebook,” and “Ghost.” Stick one in the DVD player, make some popcorn and snuggle up for the perfect way to end a night.