Episode 87 Let’s Talk About Picnics
Picnics are one thing we can still do this summer. They take a little work and a little planning, but it can be a nice change of pace. There are lots of ways to have a picnic. In this episode Marie talks about some of the gear you will need and some easy ways to manage the menu.
Where are you going to picnic? What is available at the picnic site?
-Are there restrooms? (Park restrooms rarely have soap so bring your own.)
-Are there picnic tables? I always recommend bringing a tablecloth. You can bring fabric tablecloths or get inexpensive plastic disposable ones at the dollar store.
-If there aren’t picnic tables bring a blanket. It is nice to have one with a water-resistant backing like this one.
-Bring your own trash bag.
-Bring hand sanitizer and baby wipes or a wet washcloth for cleaning little fingers.
-Picnic baskets are lovely and nostalgic but not practical. A cooler works much better. I even have an insulated bag that works great for picnics. It has straps and I can put in over my shoulder and still have my hands free.
-What are you going to drink? If you use plastic water bottles, label them with names before you put them in the cooler. I prefer to have everyone bring their own water bottle. Everyone in my family has a Simple Modern water bottle or tumbler and we take them with us anytime we leave the house. My sister tried dozens of water bottles for her younger kids and has been really happy with the Yeti Jr Water bottles because they are dishwasher safe, have a handle, and are insulated.
-Do you need plates and utensils? If you are serving sandwiches and chips you won’t need them, but if you are making fruit salad and fried chicken you will want plates and forks. If you use re-usable plates and utensils be sure to bring a bag for the dirty dishes. You don’t want sticky plates loose in your cooler or picnic bag.
-Are you going to pack individual servings or serve the food family-style. If you are making sandwiches, I recommend writing names on the baggies before adding the food. I sometimes get the XL sandwich bags because they are big enough to hold a sandwich made with wide pan bread. The regular sandwich bags aren’t big enough for sourdough or artisan breads.
-Other ideas besides sandwiches include cold fried chicken and “snacky lunches” made of meats and cheeses with crackers and other condiments like olives and pickles. Be sure to take things like olives and pickles out of their cans and jars and put them in bags or plastic containers. You don’t want a broken pickle jar.
-We like to bring cut up veggies and cut up fruit. It is so much easier of the fruit and veggies are prepped and ready to eat.
-The easiest way to have a picnic is to get takeout and bring it to your picnic site. This can be fancy or fast food. I still recommend bringing a tablecloth or picnic blanket and your own trash bag.
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