Create a Picnic Basket
by Amy Schamburek
Memorial Day is just around the corner, the official start of the picnic season. Following a few simple tips, you will have the ability to have a spur of the moment picnic. Putting a kit together is very simple and will save time when the thought occurs!
Choose a deep, lined wicker basket or even a deep clean, sturdy cardboard box. I have even found that those $5 plastic containers with a lid from Wal-Mart work well and is a great place to keep your supplies together.
Include a brightly colored plates, cups, eating utensils and napkins that can be washed instead of the thrown-away type. A plastic tablecloth and an old bedspread or blanket can provide a table or cover the ground. I always by a supplies at the end of the previous season for the next season to say a few bucks.
For keeping hot food hot and cold food cold, choose an assortment of vacuum bottles and wide-mouthed jars that suit your family needs and will fit into your picnic kit.
Store them with the picnic kit so everything is right where you need it. Keep reusable ice blocks frozen in the freezer. I have found that empty an 32 oz. soda bottle frozen 3/4 of the way with water works well and is cheap. The frozen bottles also work for having cold water on hand.
Odds and Ends
Having a sharp knife with sleeve (Pampered Chef has great self-sharping knife with plastic cover that work great for any size needs), matches, bottle and can openers, salt and pepper shakers, flashlight, and paper towels in your kit are a must. You may also want to include bug spray (stored in a plastic bag), and a simple first aid kit. Freeze wet sponges in plastic bags for extra ice pack and re-use for clean up. For easy salt and pepper shakers, fill plastic straws and tape the ends for easy mess-free travel.
Food and Drinks
Remember that coolers are designed to keep cold food cold and hot food hot. Do not use the same container for both. At our house we have one small cooler that is red for hot food and a blue cooler for cold items.
If you are using a charcoal grill, remember charcoal, pot holders, cooking utensils, and platters for after the food is cooked. Never put cooked food back on the same container wher the raw food was.
Take clothing appropriate for the outing. Include sunscreen, lotions, hats and cover up clothing. I also bring along warm clothing for at night, it will seem much colder out after spending a day in the sun.
Bring along things that interests your family; balls, kites, Frisbees, fishing poles, and towels for the beach.
Pack moist towelettes or dampened towels in plastic bags for clean up. Never leave your picnic area dirty, keep it clean for the next family.
Date: Sat Jun 29, 2002 1:01 pm
Subject: 4th of July: Gift Idea: Create a Picnic Kit Basket
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