Fall is the perfect setting for a casual romantic picnic. The colors are beautiful, the air is crisp and the possibilities for an excellent adventure are endless.
- State parks are a good place to go hiking or just take a casual stroll enjoying the leaves crunching beneath your feet. When you find a spot you like, stop and enjoy your picnic.
- Go to your favorite picnic spot either before or after a trip to a gardening center to pick out pumpkins, gourds and other fall decorations. When you get home you can enjoy making fall arrangements together that will last though Thanksgiving.
If you do not have a favorite spot to picnic it is time you found one. Having a special spot, whether it is Central Park or a country wayside, it is your place. You will remember the last time you were there, what you did that day, if it started to rain or a cold front came though. Believe me, these will be some of your fondest memories.
- Instead of the gardening center take a ride though the countryside and you are sure to find rural places that sell pumpkins and other fall decorations in their front yard.
- Fall is a great time for arts and craft displays at churches, fairgrounds or community halls as well as open air arts and craft show. You can stop for your picnic and then continue browsing. Most on-line newspapers or community websites have a list of activities and events.
- Have your picnic in a park that has a playground. There is no rule that says only kids can enjoy the swings and slides. You might even enjoy making leaf piles or a leaf house. A leaf house is like a blueprint. Make an outline of rooms and doorways with leaves. You can spread out your picnic blanket in one of the rooms and eat in your leaf house.
A good fall picnic food is soup. You can make it yourself or buy canned or boxed soup and jazz it up. For example, tortilla chips go well with a southwestern spicy soup. You can crunch them in the soup (wait until you are ready to eat) or serve them on the side. Shredded jalapeno cheese goes well in the soup.
Keep the soup warm in a wide mouth thermos or put the soup in a coffee thermos. Most thermoses have a cup. Make sure to pack a second cup. Other good and hearty fall picnic soups are potato, squash, vegetable, and split pea. Pick a soup you both like and it will be perfect. Add crusty bread or rolls, a wedge of cheese and you are all set. If you also choose a hot drink such as coffee, hot chocolate, tea or cider take along some cold fruit. It is always nice to have something cool with a hot drink and soup.
Your lunch and beverages will be easier to pack and carry if you have picnic basket, backpack or tote with full service, meaning, all the needed accessories. It is convenient and will inspire you to get out, have fun exploring places you might not otherwise consider and get some exercise in the process. A bonus is you can pack your own favorite and healthy foods.
Febe Van Zanten
Photo: Vlada Karpovich