Pick a Nic!

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Just over the weekend, J and I headed to the park for an open air screening of Despicable Me. Can I just digress and say that it is one of my favorite movies, with so many funny and awwww moments that I’ve watched it twice this year and was not sick of it at all. We decided to pack with us a simple meal, which included ham&cheese (grilled of course), egg mayo, and a slice of carrot cake. Everything but the cake was homemade by us, which was easy to accomplish. I’ve had a couple of picnics with friends in the past, and I absolutely enjoy them! Let me share a couple of trade secrets of a picnic-er with you, since its summer all year round in Singapore and almost always a good time for one, unless its pouring out.

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First off, where to have a picnic?
A park, some sort of a garden, by the beach, by the pool, or even indoors!

My favorite picks would be by the pool or Singapore’s Botanic Gardens (so cliche but it can’t be helped). The best spots are those with shade (think big big trees), soft grass, little to no buildings so that there’ll be a breeze, and if possible, some flower bushes by the side for aesthetic and smell purposes.
I’d say that as long as you have a picnic mat and basket, it’s officially a picnic. I’ve had a picnic indoors and the air conditioning can sometimes make it a lot more fun, especially when you can throw pillows around and spend some quality time watching a good movie.

Key point to note – never go for a picnic between breakfast and lunch. Always have it in the afternoon or evening or you’ll definitely end up regretting it after you’ve been burnt by the sun and/or meet with heat fatigue. If you’ve found a great shaded area and aren’t too bothered by the sun / or do not live in a tropical country, by all means have a brunch picnic!

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What to pack for a picnic (non-food items)
Picnic mat, and a picnic basket that can fit your yummies.
If you’re someone who doesn’t have that meaty of a butt (like me), I would suggest bringing a sleeping bag – an idea of J’s which I really loved! You should also consider the following: A box of tissues, a paper fan, a pack of wet tissue, mosquito repellant, and a garbage bag for you to dump your trash after for easy clean-up! If you have more than enough space in your boot or more than enough people to carry stuff, bring some pillows and flowers for some additional fun & comfort. You can consider some stainless steel cutlery and tin cups that are environmentally friendly and easy to wash if required.

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Food to pack
Here’s where it gets really interesting (for me at least).
Fresh fruits are always a must – strawberries, cherries, grapes, pears, blueberries and peaches are my favorite picks! Stocking more of these for your picnic is great when you don’t want to spend too much time preparing – even an all-fruit picnic would work.

Sandwiches – ham & cheese is a must, and I love putting cheddar cheese, emmental cheese, apple baked ham and soft white bread. I’ve a couple of favorite recipes pinned and shall share with you guys – 1, 2, 3,

Dips & Chips – the easiest things to put together, so grab your favorite baked chips and pair it with hummus or guacamole. (both of these are epic recipes.) For a healthier option, swap the chips out for cucumber or carrots.

Desserts – my favorite part. I’d pick a tart or a light cake for this, and here are a couple of recipes you can try – 1, 2, 3. A quick brownie recipe or tiny cupcakes work best, and you should bring some sort of icing to dip them in, yum! Click for 38 more healthy picnic recipes from The Greatist!

Drinks – as I am highly guilty of always having an Asian glow after drinking alcohol, I wouldn’t recommend much alcohol at picnics unless they’re bottles upon bottles of Somersby! I would also say a great lemonade or icy chilled juice would work. You can consider freezing your drink up into ice cubes, so that once you’ve arrived at your destination, you’ll have a lovely ice cold liquid to sip on. Other drinks to consider should include watermelon juice, iced honey lemon, iced blueberry or peach tea, or even just iced water with strawberries in them!

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Picnic Activities
Sure, it could be all about eating, but there are tons of other things you can do at a picnic. If its just you and a friend or your beau, you should each grab a book and read together, or you could read out your favorite parts to each other. With your smartphone by your side, you could also bring along a tiny portable speaker and share music with friend. Other activities you can consider include a game of frisbee, a card game (like Bridge or Saboteur or Cards of Humanity), hide & seek (if you’re in a park!), a game of five stones, kite flying, or even just snapping thousands of photos to commemorate your day out.

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Hope you enjoyed that and that this post inspired you enough to head out and spend some time at a picnic with the people you love. Let me know how it goes!

xx Kate

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