You may be saying to yourself “A picnic for breakfast?” Yep! And here’s why: My kids are spun up about having a picnic thanks to Minnie’s Picnic on Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. There should be a warning on the DVD: Watching this may make your kids nag you incessantly for a picnic (plate counting and Mystery Mousekatool optional).
I live in Virginia and it is already HOT and HUMID. My mom-body already resembled a melting candle even before summer hit. So once I accepted that a picnic was inevitable, I started planning how to I could avoid the hot sun beating down on me. I decided to aim for earlier in the day, and – Voila! – the Breakfast Picnic was born!
Although I am sure the idea was floating around before I gave birth to it, I had never heard of it, so much like Al Gore “invented the internet,” if asked I will claim to have invented the Breakfast Picnic.
Now that I have officially executed my first successful Breakfast Picnic, I wanted to offer some guidelines to help other parents venture onto their own front lawns at 8 a.m., hungry and confused.
1. Check the weather
It will be cooler in the morning, but check temps in advance to make sure it will be suitable. Make sure overnight rain won’t leave you with a wet ground, and of course make sure rain won’t threaten the actual event.
2. Build up excitement
Tell your kids the night before. I like to announce things in the form of a question using a sing-song tone: “Who wants to have a breakfast PICNIC tomorrow morning?” For some reason anything asked with “Who wants to…” and sung to a slight tune at my house is GOLD. Even “Who wants to walk across hot coals while eating spinach????” will cause my kids to act like a horde of teen girls when the Beatles first set foot on American soil.
3. Plan your menu ahead
Make a quick list the night before: food and beverage items, napkins, extra napkins, picnic blanket, utensils, paper plates and emergency napkins.
4. Add something special to the menu
Do your regular breakfast food(s) and then add something special. For us, this meant eggs, bacon and banana (because I actually do kick bum at making real breakfast every day, to make up for my general lacking in all other areas of parenting). My ‘special’ food was Pop Tarts. My kids are 2 and 4 and they have never had them. (What kind of mother am I?) I also dangled this little carrot in my ‘build-up-excitement’ talk the night before.
5. Let them go barefoot
This is very hard for me. I consider myself a pretty easygoing parent, but I hate being barefoot myself and for some reason it pains me to have my kids barefoot anywhere but on the beach. Just trust me, they’ll love it. If you can’t handle barefoot, at least let them wear their PJs outside. PJs and barefoot? Even better.
To wrap up, we had a great time! My daughter stated that “This is the best breakfast picnic EVER!” and set aside Pop Tart crust for a bee “so he won’t bother us” (and he didn’t!). My son suffered a scraped knee on the driveway, which caused an end to the festivities, but it was okay because I was starting to melt by that point anyway.
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ABOUT SUSAN: As mommy to 2 toddlers, wife to a work-from-home husband and CEO of keeping people in her house alive, Susan Maccarelli derives constant inspiration for her blog, Pecked To Death By Chickens, from life’s little annoyances. PTDBC is home to many humorous posts about life’s minor annoyances, a Friday series featuring hilarious (and often idiotic) Craigslist postings, and sometimes Susan even writes something to help other bloggers (because once you have been blogging for 6 months you are totally an expert and can start doling out advice to others). You will also find stories that are a bit more serious/poignant when Susan wishes to show her soft underbelly (sadly this is a euphemism AND a literal description), but most of the time she sticks some humor in there somewhere.
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