A gorgeous, balmy sunny day in a grassy park. A lovely evening concert under the stars. Along the sandy coast with the waves crashing near. Or wherever you are at this very moment. All perfect settings for a picnic in my book. In fact, one of my very favorite picnic experiences was quite spontaneous - on a stone wall along the Seine in Paris with my husband on our first visit there. Notre Dame loomed beautifully behind us. We were both starving after wandering the breathtaking city for hours, but on a strict budget. We could afford the loaf of french bread, a hunk of cheese, an apple and a knife, though!
How to Plan A Memorable PicnicGather just a few things and some great company, too. Get outside and make it an event. Here are some tips:
1. Enjoying a meal outside can be magical but sharing it with the gnats, the mosquitos and the bees isn't so divine! Here is a chemical-free bug spray to take along without the nasty chemicals or you could easily make your own as well.
2. If your heart is a flutter and this picnic is of the romantic variety, you could get some tips here on a few special food items to bring.
3. Romance or not, choose dishes that travel well like this edamame guacomole with spicy pita or asparagus and avocado springrolls or even these easy peanut noodles with various toppings.
4. Avoid packing tender greens as they can wilt. Instead try salads like this carrot with dried cherries or some baby new potatoes with yogurt and herbs. They would hold up well under the heat.
5. Did anyone say dessert? Uh, yes I thought I heard that. How about these beautiful vanilla, strawberry and raspberry coconut macaroons or these "don't mind if I do" chocolate pecan cookie bars?
6. If you picnic often enough, serve it up in style, save the landfill and invest in something fun like this enamelware plates trimmed in red.
7. Seriously, if you can't find a free playlist here for your picnic, then I don't know what to do with you!
8. Get up and move around a bit. Frisbee, beach ball, softball. Take your pick, but a cool kite like this one could be fun. too!
What have been your favorite places to picnic? Best dishes to pack? Go ahead and provide a link if you like. Help The Health-Minded readers plan their next best picnic!
basket: photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/stevendepolo/3587702454/">stevendepolo</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>
flowers: photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/tomtolkien/7736943504/">Thomas Tolkien</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>