Planning a Picnic

Planning a picnic is a fuss-free alternative to spending a day in the kitchen. Your guests will have fun in the sun and you won't be stuck behind a hot stove.

This is the perfect opportunity to use simple plastic or melamine plates and informal cutlery. Kids and adults will also appreciate the protection an oversized napkin (-lapkin') can provide. Many specialty and discount stores carry napkins that are 16' to 20" square. Buy a bunch in 100% cotton that you can use over and over. When you're cleaning up just toss them in the wash.

Even though this will be an informal occasion, send out invitations to give your guests time to plan.

Materials: Seed Packets (one per household)

Colorful Printer Paper

Glue Stick

Vellum Envelopes

Colorful Marker or Pen

To make simple but stunning invitations, gather the seed packets and vellum envelopes. Print out the invitations on colorful paper from your computer and trim to the size of the seed packet. You can probably get at least four invitations on each sheet. Use the glue stick to adhere the top ½ inch of the invitation to the back of the seed packet. This way the recipients can enjoy the invitation and still read the seed directions.

Using the colorful marker or pen, write the addresses on the envelopes and then place a seed-packet invitation in each with the photo side showing underneath the address. Your guests will be sure to enjoy an invitation that is both beautiful and useful.

The menu could not be simpler. Almost everything will be cooked on the grill, so clean-up is also made easier. When your guests arrive put out some chips and salsa to get their appetite going. You can also add some biscuits or cornbread to the menu and serve with the chicken.

Fun for the Gang
Set up some old-fashioned games in the backyard such as croquet, badminton, and horseshoes. If it really heats up, get the kids in their bathing suits and set up the sprinkler.

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