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Don't Go! How To Have The Best Night In

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It's not old age, a need for interesting activities, or even a lack of motivation — it's just the sheer desire and enjoyment of staying in. We all feel it sometimes, and hey, these nights at home (alone) often trump the raucous dance-till-dawn moments you have out with your friends — that is, if you're doing it right. So, in order to add some TLC to that "me" time, we put together our editor-approved checklist for the ultimate night in. No annoying midnight cab rides, no aching feet, and certainly no hangover (well, that last part is up to you). Click through for our favorite zen accessories to 13 perfectly relaxing evenings at home. It is, after all, where the heart is.
Night_in_Slide_11. "Bourbon. Does that count as a tip? The one I'm really into now is actually a rye." - Andrew Abshere, Director of Product Management

2. "For a night in, being as comfortable as possible is essential. So, I make this insanely good blackened-chicken alfredo for dinner, slip into my Nike track & field sweats, and queue up as much guilty-pleasure TV I can stomach — ideally, a variety pack of Say Yes to the Dress, Toddlers & Tiaras, and Bridezillas." - Holly E. Thomas, Washington D.C. Editor

3. "Finally getting around to organizing my Mac! Download new music and make new work-out, chill-out, mellow playlists on my iTunes. Finally put together online iPhoto albums to not only send around to family and friends, but also create albums to then send to a printer and give as gifts (photos from a friend's wedding in Tuscany that will be sent as part of the wedding gift for example)." - Aisling McDonagh, Director, Key Accounts

4. "My ultimate night-in involves the "This American Life" radio podcast to listen to while cooking (yes, I'm a nerd), a stack of '80s DVDs, ideally featuring Coming To America and Die Hard, and some "rapid roastini" to munch on. This is a Nigella Lawson recipe that puts a slightly posher spin on popcorn, no forks needed. Just buy a bag of gnocchi from the refrigerated section at the grocery store, and, rather, than boiling it, fry it on the skillet with a dollop of olive oil. The trick is to add just a cup or so of the gnocchi at a time, continuously stirring and flipping them over to ensure a nice golden brown (not burnt!) color; estimate about four minutes per side. Once done, plop them in a bowl, sprinkle some sea salt on top, and grate parmesan cheese over it. Serve to friends, and don't get too miffed when it all vanishes within minutes." - Erin Donnelly, London Contributor

Mitcher's Single Barrel Straight Rye Whiskey, $44.99, available at K&L Wines; Nike Track & Field Vintage Read Women's Cuffed Pants, $63.97, available at Nike; Apple iPhoto, $14.99, available at iTunes; Die Hard, $4.99, available at Amazon.
Night_in_Slide_35. "I'm one of those people who thinks they'd have a much better time at home when he's out, and get a serious case of FOMO when he doesn't go out. It's a terrible condition I don't wish on anyone. When I do decide to stay in, it usually involves embarrassing sweatpants, a bottle of Dearly Beloved (it's not Two Buck Chuck, but it ain't a French delicacy either), popcorn, and a casual viewing of Moulin Rouge (a good tearjerker mixed with over-the-top extravagance gets me every time). Sometimes a face mask comes out to play, too. To curb my FOMO, I leave my phone on silent in my bedroom, and "unplug" as best I can for the night. It usually does the trick till my morning Instagram crawl." - Hayden Manders, editorial assistant

6. "Getting together with friends and making dinner is one of my favorite ways to hang at home. Everyone brings ingredients and we create the meal together. Real Simple's "Pasta with Spicy Shrimp and Tomato Sauce" has been my go-to recipe for years. It's quick, easy, and seriously delicious." - Samantha Yu, editorial assistant

7. "Since my fiancé and I have recently found a new appreciation for staying in on Fridays, our favorite thing to do is make up a platter of cheese (preferably at least three different types), McClure's pickles (cut up all nice and cute), and yummy crackers. His drink of choice is any sort of small-batch whiskey, whereas mine is usually a yummy glass of wine or a Hell Or High Watermelon Wheat Beer (no judgements). Paired with some sort of Netflix marathon and we aren't leaving the couch until Saturday a.m.!" - Caitlin Komora, senior fashion sales manager

8. "More often than I would like to admit, my night involves me wearing pajamas, ordering Chinese food, and watching the same movie — Practical Magic. It was my mom's favorite movie growing up, so as a child I watched it a million times. I can quote the majority of the movie, including the lyrics to the songs (great soundtrack!), and blame it for the disappointment I felt when I realized I wasn't going to get magical powers. Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman are great, but baby Camilla Belle and Evan Rachel Wood really steal the show for me. It always leaves me inspired, happy and ready for a midnight margarita with my own kooky family. And how can you not love the tag line, 'There's a little witch in every woman?'" - Rebecca Smith, SEO editor

Dearly Beloved Red Blend, $9.99, available at The Wine Spies; McClure's Pickles, $96, available at McClure's Pickles; Practical Magic, $1.99, available at Barnes & Noble.
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