Do you ever have those days? The kind of day where you mess up dinner (and cooking is literally your job.) And the pipe busts underneath the sink while you’re angry-washing the dishes. And your camera battery dies when you’re in the middle of shooting a recipe. And you’re working on a deadline and you have a severe case of writer’s block. One of those days.
Really, it was one of those days on top of one of those months. We helped Clark’s brother and girlfriend move into a new place the first weekend of April. Clark’s parents stayed with us the following week. My parents arrived the following weekend. Clark traveled home for a funeral. And all of the sudden, April was gone. Life is like that sometimes. A blur.
My remedy? Take a step back, get out of the house, do something out of the ordinary. Something like a picnic. I’m ashamed to think about how many times one of us has said “we should go on a picnic soon.” It’s been years since we’ve actually followed through with it. Back in high school, to be exact. Why is that? Life. Weather. Busy. Excuses.
There’s really no good excuse, though. We live in one of the most beautiful cities in the US (my humble opinion.) Pike’s Peak is visible from anywhere in town and there are plenty of grassy parks with million dollar views. I’ve got a super fun dude to picnic with. I know how to pack a mean picnic lunch. Spring is the perfect time to picnic. And the other day, I just so happened to have my favorite Voveti prosecco chilling in the fridge and a recipe idea for chickpea salad sandwiches. Picnic mode: ON
Five Must-Haves for a Relaxing Picnic
- Choose good company. Whether that’s your love, or your bestie, your mom, or just good ol’ you.
- Proper beverages. You know, like prosecco. Bonus points for finding individual-size Voveti bottles. But if not, that’s ok because real talk –– Is there anything sexier than watching your man open a bottle of bubbly? I think not. Could I open it for myself? Sure. But it’s just so much better to watch Clark do it instead. Side note: I like to keep things simple, but you could always step it up and make a batch of cocktails if the inspiration strikes.
- SNACKS. We packed berries, apples, celery, radishes, bell pepper, hummus, crackers, and mini chickpea salad sandwiches. I picked flavors that I knew would pair well with that bottle of Voveti I was talking about. It’s a brut prosecco with fine bubbles – the perfect balance of dry and fresh sweetness. You’ll pick up on notes of subtle green apple, pear, and ripe peach in each sip. The best part? You don’t have to be a wino or break the bank to enjoy their prosecco.
- A blanket! Duh. Preferably a thick one to keep the grass from poking through and tickling you. I speak from experience.
- Tunes. We flipped Pandora to The Grateful Dead Radio because it’s perfect for relaxing on a warm, sunny day.
That’s it. Just a few simple necessities are all you need to escape for a few hours. Throw down a blanket, soak up the sunshine, sip prosecco, appreciate your picnic-mate, and laugh the afternoon away. If you let your mind wander, you might even forget you’re not on a European vacation.
I’m starting to realize that “those days” happen when I’m too busy, rushing around, and stressed out. Everything piles up and problems compound and then I’m standing in a puddle in my kitchen. “Those days” happen when I’m not taking the time I need to breathe.
Cheers to listening to yourself. Cheers to balancing hectic schedules with simple pleasures. Cheers to mid-week picnics, just because you deserve a break. Cheers to snacks and music and good conversation and fine prosecco.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
- Serves: 4
- Serving size: 1
- Calories: 248
- Fat: 9.3g
- Saturated fat: 1.2g
- Unsaturated fat: 8.1g
- Trans fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 22.7g
- Sugar: 3.2g
- Sodium: 299.3mg
- Fiber: 7.3g
- Protein: 8.2g
- Cholesterol: 0g
- 1 - 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained, rinsed, and dried
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
- 2 Tablespoons red bell pepper, finely chopped
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
- 2 scallions, sliced thin
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder (optional, for color)
- In a large bowl, mash chickpeas using a fork or a potato ricer. Mash thoroughly, but leave the consistency chunky. We're not going for hummus, here!
- Add all other ingredients and stir to combine, mixing well.
- Serve on your favorite sandwich bread, on crackers, or on baguette slices!