Lazy Afternoon Picnic

The forecast calls for sun -- what better incentive than to spend the day enjoying a lazy afternoon family picnic?

By FamilyTime


Is the warm sunshine calling you outdoors? Would your kids have fun on a picnic? Of course!

Enlist the family's advice when deciding where to go for the outdoor meal-- and then ask them to help with the preparations.

Choose a Site
National, state, and local parks provide a perfect setting, and may even provide some handy tools to make your preparations less bulky. Picnic tables, grills and umbrellas aren't mandatory, but if a park has them, all the better.

A picnic in your backyard ensures you'll have everything you need to make the afternoon enjoyable.

Picnic Fare
A picnic menu should include a variety of simple and satisfying foods that can be cooked in advance and eaten hot or cold.

The quintessential picnic fare includes deviled eggs, potato salad, baked beans, BBQ Chicken and ribs (always a crowd pleaser) and fruit salad.

Be sure to prepare deviled eggs and potato salad in advance and pack them in airtight containers. Keep them cold in the cooler. Remember that egg and mayonnaise based foods must be kept cold. BBQ chicken and ribs can be prepared in advance or grilled on site. Either way make sure the meat is packed in airtight containers and kept cold in the cooler, too!

Save Time
To cut down on preparation time visit local grocery store's salad and fruit bars and utilize theprepared food. You can pick up a crusty loaf of fresh bread and perhaps some brownies or chocolate chip cookies, too.

Delegate Tasks
Select a spot in the kitchen as a central work station. Assign the children the job of collecting the paper plates, cups, and utensils, beach towels and sun block.

Ask someone to search for coolers and chairs. A hibachi grill, charcoal, lighter fluid, matches and cooking utensils are handy. Make sure you check with the park ranger before building an open fire.

A red-checkered tablecloth is a nice touch, but an old blanket or sheet will work just fine. And don't bother packing ants, they're sure to find you wherever you go!