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Swing into Summer with this Fun Park & Picnic Night

Howdy, Kansas City! Becky, one of our Mom Squad Ambassadors, is sharing one of her favorite family summer traditions today with this picnic and park night. Kansas City has a wealth of fantastic parks, so why not pack up some food, and head out to the great scenery in the metro? Take a look at how Becky does it below.

Swing into Summer with this Fun Park & Picnic Night

 

Swing into Summer with this Fun Park & Picnic Night

 

This Summer, once a week, our family is going to make it a Park & Picnic night. That means after work/preschool/camp, we’ll all head to a new park each week to play, explore and eat dinner.

This is fun for our kids because dinner is always better when surrounded by slides and swings. This is fun for me because it means NO cooking and—even better—NO clean up required! Plus, big bonus: The kids burn up all their extra energy for the day so they go to bed like champs.

It’s a very easy and cheap family fun night. Below are lots of ideas to make your own Park & Picnic night a success.

 

Picnic Smorgasbord Ideas:

• Baby dill pickles
• Baby carrots
• Celery sticks
• Cherry tomatoes
• Cucumber slices
• Zucchini slices
• Cheese slices or sticks
• Pepperonis
• Salami
• Turkey or Ham slices
• Dinner rolls
• Pretzels
• Dried apricots
• Grapes
• Strawberries
• Blueberries
• Pineapple
• Cherries
• Watermelon slices
• Popcorn

Basically, anything that Charlie Brown would serve for Thanksgiving is perfect.

Pro Tips:

• Invest in a Tupperware-like container with individual compartments. That way it’s one thing to carry but the juice from the pickles won’t get on the pretzels (“GROSS MOM!”).

• Just set the spread of food out and give your kids the freedom to come and go from the picnic table to the playground as they please. If you try and force (sorry, “encourage”) them to eat first, they won’t eat much because they’ll be too excited about playing.

• Skip the paper products and bring heavy plastic plates or bowls instead that won’t blow away.

• Bring a container of baby wipes instead of napkins because, again, wind.

• Pack the kids’ water bottles. They are earth-friendly, you can add ice, and they hold more water than a plastic bottle of water so no one goes thirsty. Plus, there is no confusion (or mental breakdowns) over the owner of each water bottle. (Heaven forbid your little brother accidentally takes a sip out of yours.)

• Each week introduce a new fruit (mangos, kiwi or apricot slices) to mix things up and expand taste buds. It’s amazing what kids will try after they’ve built up an appetite.

• Save dessert for the car ride home. How else are you going to convince them it’s time to go home?

• If you aren’t up for finding new parks every week, take one new activity to the same park with you each week to mix things up: Balls, sidewalk chalk, bikes, bubbles, etc.

 

Becky Ervin is a creative director, mother of three, and blogs at PartyBoxKC.com/blog.

 

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

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