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Category:  Family Fun

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Fun and Frugal Picnics

By Nikki Willhite

www.allthingsfrugal.com

Picnics are one of the great fun and frugal summer activities you can do with your whole family in the warmer weather. It is a great way to get outside and enjoy nature and the fresh air.

In our area beautiful lakes surround us, where you can fish and swim. Our scenery is nothing short of breathtaking when the sun is shining. When one of my sons was younger, he would take me out in his rubber boat and just row me while I just lay back and enjoyed the ride! What great memories.

While beautiful lakes may not surround you, there is usually some place you can go that your family will enjoy. If you haven't done it yet this summer, don't miss out. Here are some ideas to make your picnic special!

*Food seems to be the key to success in any activity :-) In the same way that you set your table to look nice, plan your picnic setting. Make your food more appetizing by displaying it attractively. Food always tastes better outdoors. Nothing says picnic like a bright gingham tablecloth and a picnic basket.

*Think about making picnic place mats. They are just big rectangles with pockets sewn on them to hold the silverware and napkins. They also have ties/ribbons on the end so that they can be rolled up and easily stored and carried. They are easy to sew and a great convenience. Pick up some used silverware at Goodwill and have them ready to go.

*Invest in a large cooler to protect your food, and to serve refreshing cold drinks. It's only a one- time expense and will pay for itself when you consider the cost of higher price entertainment, and how much you will use it.

*Remember the tip about filling up empty plastic jars with water and then freezing them. Pack them in the cooler and take them out to melt at the park. You will have some deliciously cold, economical water.

*Invest in some inexpensive toys that you and your children can have fun with. If you sent for the Frisbee Freebie in Tightwad Tidbits, that should have come by now. Plastic buckets and shovels for sand, balls, and other toys can often be found at thrift stores. You can also improvise, recycling things like large plastic containers for buckets.

*Only bring as much food as you plan to eat. Then you don't have to worry about the safety of leftovers, or waste. Bring something special like finger Jello

 If you make it easy, you will do it more often. Get organized, and be ready to go with minimal preparations. Summer is short. Enjoy it!



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