A Perfect Picnic: Vision versus Reality

When I saw that the Review Crew was talking about the perfect picnic this week, I had to laugh. Our family loves picnics and when the weather is nice we often eat outside at least a couple times a week. We also tend to picnic a lot when we travel to save money and allow everyone a chance to move around and stretch their legs. However, I find that our picnics are never perfect and often do not fit the vision that I have in my mind.

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A Perfect Picnic

In my mind a perfect picnic involves delicious homemade food, a soft blanket on the grass, cooperative and happy children, sunshine, and quiet fun.  There would be a variety of delicious sandwiches with lots of tasty toppings, chicken salad, pasta salad, deviled eggs, and all sorts of other tasty treats.

Real Life

My real life picnics rarely look like that. Some days we plan to eat in our own yard on the grass, but then the ants want to join us. Other days we plan for a sunny picnic and it rains so we have to reschedule or eat on the porch. Other times, the drinks fall on the sandwiches and flattens them.

Eating outside is normally fun for children, but there are also the times when the toddler is having a meltdown because he no longer likes his favorite food. 

Often, I don’t have the time to make a homemade picnic and so it ends up being tuna salad kits or summer sausage with cheese and crackers. Nothing like the fancy lunch in my perfect picnic vision.

Enjoy Your Reality and Make Memories

Years ago I would get so frustrated because the perfect vision in my head never seemed to be our reality. However, through the years I have learned that the ‘perfect picnic’ is the one we do together as a family. It will probably never look the same way in real life as it does in my head, but I can still make wonderful memories with my children.

When they look back on their childhood, it won’t be the ants and spilled drinks that they remember. It will be the time spent together, talking and laughing. It will be the sights and sounds of the places we stopped to picnic as we hiked or traveled.

If you are tempted to not do have a picnic (or insert some other memory creating event) because you know they never turn out quite like you planned, I encourage you to go ahead and do it anyway. It may never be perfect but it can still be good and worthwhile.

What do you think of when you hear ‘perfect picnic’? Be sure to hope on over to the Review Crew blog and see what the other Crew Members had to say about a perfect picnic.

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