Getting out of the house for exercise in a safe way is beneficial for health and wellness. While that is a good enough reason to head out and explore nature, it is also helpful to motivate your family to bring enthusiasm by creating missions or goals as part of the adventure. 

We created scavenger hunts (outdoors or at home) for our little ones a few weeks back, and they were very well received. Camping (inside or out) was also a featured activity and really lifted the kids’ spirits early in our quarantine (it may be time for a repeat actually, so join us and break out the tents and forts!)

Another wonderful option is planning a picnic!! There are a million reasons why picnics are special but here are my top three.

  1. Like camping, there’s a whole new level of family focus and purpose that happens naturally during a picnic because generally, it’s more leisurely when out in nature. Everyone is more likely to take their time, and converse a little more like during dinnertime.
  2. Food tastes better! While this is not scientifically proven, I’m always impressed with how much more I enjoy even the simplest lunch when sitting on a picnic blanket. Generally, because they are relaxed and not in a hurry to get back to their toys, our kids are more likely to try new things and even seem to eat more of their meal.
  3. It’s a classic way to mix things up. Since it is an acceptable excursion with respect to physical distancing, it gives the whole family a heartwarming sense of normalcy at this very isolating time.

You can easily do nearly any style of food for picnics, but no need to get fancy. Here are a few of our favorite picnic treats that travel well.

  1. Wraps. Warm-up a tortilla and add your favorite fixings such as turkey, ham, veggies, pesto, Duke’s mayo, peanut butter, and jelly or Nutella. 
  2. Grab your favorite fruit! Strawberries, peaches, apples, oranges, and grapes are all nutritious foods that are portable.
  3. Freshly baked cookies. Take time in the morning to whip up some cookies with your little ones. Following baking fun with a fresh air hike and picnic out in nature is a wonderfully well-rounded day! The cookies may even still be warm when it’s time to enjoy them.

If you’d prefer, make leftovers into something new, get super creative with a Fairy Tea Party or picnic like the royals and make it a fancy feast. You can even incorporate costumes or bring cards or a board game to play after your meal. 

For ultimate comfort, bring along a picnic blanket, wipes, hand sanitizer, and a trash container because you’ll likely need to travel off the beaten path and you must be prepared to manage your garbage. 

If secluded trails and meadows aren’t an option in your area, you don’t need to go far. You can simply make a picnic in your own yard or on the living room floor and create your own magical forest!