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As Ned Stark of the popular HBO series used to say: Winter is coming! Indeed, it is, but it doesn’t have to be long and dark, though! Here’s to winter picnics and adventures!For many, winter can be a pretty miserable season. There’s only so much rain, cold days and gloomy weather one can handle and planning anything outdoors can be an absolute mission. But it doesn’t have to be a fun spoiler – in fact, winter can be a highly romantic season.
Giving you the perfect excuse to snuggle up with your loved one or create a winter date spectacular, this blue month offers oodles of unique options you’ll never be able to appreciate in summer. From ice skating to hot tubs and spa dates, warm weekend getaways to snowboarding trips or winter picnics, there’s a lot you and your boo can indulge in.
The warmer months are renowned for doing practically everything outdoors, including eating and entertaining. But, it gets old – why not plan a winter picnic to spice things up a little? With proper planning, warm gear and an adventurous attitude, a winter picnic can be just as fun as a summer one – if not more! Here’s a few tips to consider when planning a romantic winter picnic.
If picnicking is your thing then it’s a wise idea to invest in the ultimate picnic hamper. From basic baskets to fancy hampers that includes almost everything you can think of, there’s a lot of variety out there to find the best one for your needs and budget. Most standard picnic baskets will include the basics like cutlery, plates and drinking glasses stored away in one easy to carry hamper that can be reused for future picnics too.
The more extravagant ones on the other hand will come complete with insulated cooling sections, cooking utensils and better quality eating tools – all very useful things for a good picnic. If you don’t have the right picnic set yet, consider a picnic hamper that comes complete with wine and nibbles to really kick start your romantic winter picnic. Check out these suggestions for gourmet picnic hamper ideas or something smooth to set the mood with your partner.
Whilst the right picnic hamper will most definitely come loaded with edible (and drinkable) goodies, you’ll need to bring some extra additions for your winter picnic date. Because it’s winter, think warm! Steamy stews and soups are perfect for heating you and your significant other up, with just-out-of-the-oven cookies to tempt you for dessert too.
The idea with any romantic picnic is to take foods that don’t need assembling and of course, you want grub that’s good! Because you’re most likely going to be wearing gloves or mittens too, it’s a great idea to opt for foods that are easy to eat. Sandwiches and burritos are ideal for this and hot soup or creamy chowder can be served in a thermos with a spoon. Other great winter picnic food options that are easy to bring include homemade meatloaf sandwiches, cheese / antipasto platters or anything with chilies and spice in it to give you a heated kick. No winter picnic is complete without a sizzling fire to set the mood too, and it’s perfect for toasting marshmallows and other treats.
If you do build a fire it’s a given you’ll be set for warmth but make sure you dress for the occasion also. Keeping you and your food warm is essential to comfort on your picnic date so planning in advance is necessary. Whilst a winter picnic can definitely be romantic with a light drizzle of snow or a little cold snuggle weather, you don’t want to get caught in a thundering hail storm.
Bring plenty of preparation for the weather to turn bad. Just because it’s winter, it doesn’t mean it’s going to be freezing rain every day so try and pick a time that is simply chilly, not a snow storm and be weary that it may change. Umbrella, blankets to sit on (and curl up in), matches or lighter and a flashlight if it’s dark are all winter picnic essential you’ll need. Don’t forget the camera too!
Now you don’t have to get super mushy or anything like that, but adding a little intimacy into the picnic won’t hurt – after all, it is a date! Winter is known for being the sentimental intimate season so consider what’s special for you and your boo and implement it into the occasion.
It could be something as simple as selecting the perfect music playlist for the date or bringing some candles to set the scene. If you’re planning the winter picnic for a big anniversary or a day that’s of significant importance, be sure to include something that’s meaningful to the both of you.
Nothing can top of a romantic winter picnic quite like the perfect drink. Whilst the summer season brings with it icy cold ciders, chilled wine and tropical juices, winter comes complete with warmed mulled wine and hot coco – bliss! Mulled wine is an absolute classic for a winter-warmer and can be easily made ahead of time and stored in your thermos for the perfect picnic top off.
Loaded with cinnamon and spices, red wine and all things delicious hot mulled wine goes well with any picnic treat. There’s heaps of different recipes and it doesn’t matter if you haven’t made it before either, most are very easy to do. Whilst it’s definitely not as awesome as warm mulled wine, a nice bottle of red wine or homemade hot coco topped with toasted marshmallows will most certainly be a hit for your romantic winter picnic too.
This article is written by Jayde Ferguson, who recommends Just in Time Gourmet for the perfect winter picnic additions – offering a diverse range of picnic hampers and gourmet food products. You can catch her on Google+.
Featured Image Credit: VeLvet OwL Photography