Day 5 Perfect Picnic Hop

Hasn't this been a fun hop so far?  I have enjoyed seeing the quilts that my fellow participants have come up as well as the yummy food they have prepared and the scenery at their locale.  Some have gone with indoor picnics and hey, nothing wrong with that!  Fun is where you make it.  Many thanks to our head cheerleader Mary of I Piece 2-Mary and of course, all great ideas spring from our incomparable Mdm. Samm of Sew We Quilt.   Also a big shout out to our sponsors  Peterboro Basket and Riley Blake Designs.  

So when we were ready to sign up, it was with these directions:

  • #1 create a picnic quilt
  • #2 obtain some kind of picnic basket 
  • #3 plan a detailed menu and share your basket contents.
  • #4 take photos of your outing and share how your day went....
  • #5 what books or games did you bring along  ( no phones, no electronic gadgets...must be left in the car or better yet at home) 

Okey doke, I was in.  As usual I had a couple of pre-conceived ideas of what I MIGHT do.  When it came right down to it, I decided to that I had better employ the KISS philosophy as all the sudden I had two deadline projects to do.  My niece's first baby shower is this coming Sunday the 8th.  Great auntie (me) had promised a wall hanging (Storm at Seas) for the baby's nursery.  Not only did it need to be finished but it also had to be mailed to my sister, the nana to be.  (I'll share a finished up picture of that once I know Kristine and Andy have opened the package).   AND none of us want to wind up on The List for not fulfilling our hop obligations!  My picnic quilt needed to be done no later than Tuesday night (the 3rd) so I could fit in the picnic time too!  Whew, I was done on Monday and had Tuesday set aside for some binge cooking.

Here is the view from my neighbors fence though it is not hanging properly with those binder clips.

In keeping with the "Keep it Simple" I used a pattern from my FAB pal Pat for my quilt that I had long had in the back in mind if I found the fabrics I wanted to use in this manner, keeping the fabric intact and then using contrasting fabrics for the checkerboard.  Pat uses two different colors for the checkerboard in contrast with the border.  I actually had dug through my stash looking for the proper shade of green finally settling on an emerald green tone on tone that MAY have been a Christmas fabric but at the last minute stuck with the red lady bug dot.  The backing is a Debbie Mumm lady bug print.  The body of the quilt is a older Blank Quilting Print but I don't think that the selvage indicates the fabric name.

I think you can see the bug fabric with butterflies, dragonflies, ladybugs, floral stripes a bit better in the following photos.  There is my picnic basket as well.  I have two picnic baskets----an old larger one what came with the dishes but I went with this small Longaberger basket that might be their pie basket.  It has a small shelf that fits in it and it would work for carrying a pie.  Since it was just me attending, I didn't need the large one.  Also my picnic location was fairly close to home and didn't have to worry about hauling a cooler or worry about food being out of refrigeration long.   It was stuffed full but I was still able to get the lid closed, LOL.

I had thought about inviting a friend but it came down to which one (didn't want anyone to be left out) .Then too whichever one I might have chosen would have had really no notice about joining me.  I was binding right up to the last possible minute almost.  I had also thought about bringing Oscar, my lately acquired dachshund.  I rejected that thought as well as there would be no way to contain him with just the short leash I have for him.  You will see why that was a less than stellar idea in a minute, LOL.

Okay, #1 and #2 are met.  #3 was the menu.

I brought the following

  • I picked up the chicken fingers at Walmart.  I don't fry anything and I happen to like these every once in a while, hot or cold.  I added a choice of honey mustard or barbecue sauce for dipping.
  • I used my friend Beverly's recipe for Quick Corn Relish for a cool summery salad 
  • I made a half gallon of Freezer Slaw halving a recipe from a former co-worker Mrs. B, my mentor when I was a young, wet behind the ears nurse.  Key words, this stuff can go in the freezer which is where a lot of what I make ends up when I do cook since my DJ is not here to dine with me.
  • I made some Chef John's Tzatziki Sauce to go with the crudites but mostly that was for another meal because I finally found some gyro sliders in the frozen food section, LOL.  Still tasted good with the raw veggies
  • I made a fresh fruit medley of cantaloupe, white grapes, blueberries and strawberries.
  • For dessert, chocolate chip cookie brownies 
  • The beverage was a variation of Sparkling Grape Lemonade only I used Minute Maid White Grape Peach instead of grape juice.  That stuff reminds me of Communion and I don't really like the purple kind.  
I said I was binge cooking?  I also made a recipe of baked beans, fixed a BLT for my lunch and baked a batch of Pumpkin Muffins for the freezer and also a Creamy Blueberry Pie before I called it quits for the day.  I spent about 6 hours in the kitchen including clean up time by then and the hall thermometer read 82 degrees. Oh I took all but two pieces of that pie down to my neighbors to enjoy when it was still warm from the oven.  I only make it once a year but I sure don't need to eat a whole pie!

So here I am ready to eat----too much to eat so I saved most of the fruit and half the brownie for supper.  I think you can see the fabric a little better in this shot too.

Over the park bench in the shelter.  It had sprinkled a bit on the way over to the former Fort McClellan.  I plan on giving this quilt to my niece Amber and her fiance Greg as a shower gift so I did NOT want to lay this on the wet ground.  Right after I took this picture it really began to pour.  That bit of sunshine to the right was gone and then I worried about the rain blowing into the shelter and getting it wet.

I had considered going up to Mt. Cheaha 30 some miles or so away from here for my picnic.  It is the highest elevation in Alabama at 2407 feet above sea level.  I live in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains so it would have been appropriate.  DJ and I had made several trips up there with and without out of town guests over the years.  It is gorgeous in the fall so I may try a picnic then.  My other thought was go to back to Lake Guntersville where we had also spent some time when we first moved down here.  A bit too far to drive so I stuck with the fort, a few miles away and this just happens to be a spot I drive past all the time on the way to the recycle bin and to get to the Eastern Parkway.  (quilt meetings, the Oxford Exchange).  

This area is right across from the Aquatic and Fitness Center.  I took a few pictures of the ducks in the area.  Hardly any of them were in the water but it had just poured down rain.  There is also some play ground equipment and more picnic tables but I couldn't quite figure out how you got down there.

The shelter I used.  You see a bit of the hills in the distance.

Weird variety of duck up close

Mama with her babies heading back to the lake

Oscar would have been going nuts if he saw all the ducks.  Good thing he stayed home!

The Aquatic and Fitness Center

 This is a horrid picture but it is still the best of the ones I tried to take of the little bridge area.  I completely missed getting the swimming ducks in there, LOL.

I took this one to show the architecture of the buildings at McClellan, the old Army base that was closed by the Base Realignment plans back in 98 or so, shortly after we moved down here.  This happens to be the back of the little fire station at the traffic circle.  Most are  this Spanish type, stucco looking, red roofed style deal.  It is quite lovely out at the fort but parts of of it largely undeveloped after all this time.  A more direct route out to I-20 is needed for that but there is about 5 more miles of road of the Eastern Parkway that needs to be completed before that happens.  Each year that deadline is pushed back.  DJ was right when he said it would not be completed in his lifetime----but they are at least back to working on it again!   For now we wind around the back of the fort to reach an area that is about 5 miles away from where I live and directly behind it.  

I guess I covered criteria 4 with the pictures of my picnic site.  It rained obviously but I was in a protected area and didn't get too wet going back and forth to the car.  As always I miss sharing a meal with my DJ--and that is what would have been needed to make it a perfect day in my book.  

And # 5?  Since I couldn't take my e-book along with that no electronic gadget rule, I took Judy Martin's Log Cabin Quilts along with me but didn't crack the cover.  Often at meal time I am looking at a copy of Taste of Home magazine or one of my cookbooks but I didn't drag any of those with me.

I appreciate your stopping by my place today and hope you enjoy the remainder of the hop.  You can always check the overview on Pinterest.  The participants that share my day are listed below and I know you will enjoy what that they have to share today!  Till the next hop!  

(5:30 a.m. and I just realized I forgot to re-set my comment moderation status.  Going to take care of that for a few days)!

Friday June 6


  1. Love your post...beautiful pics....lovely quilt. Two thumbs up *wink*

  2. You made a wonderful quilt, and yes, you covered all the criteria on the list. It looks like you had a great picnic!

  3. Delightful stop on the hop, Linda. And complete with recipes to make every picnic special. Thanks!

  4. Beautiful quilt. Love the red and white checks in the corners. Looks like a great picnic, in spite of the rain!

  5. Your picnic quilt is great! Love the checkerboard border. I have never owned a Longaberger basket but had a friend who, I think< owned about 20 or more! I am on the search for the perfect picnic basket...

  6. Good Morning Linda...taking time out for yourself is a gift that keeps giving....I love your quilt, those corners ..."why did I not think of that" it is absolutely lovely....
    your menu is perfect and with leftovers you can do ti again....your setting soooo inviting...I could hear the quacks in the background...

  7. ok now you have my mouth watering, the quilt is so cute and perfect for a picnic? and the freezer slaw sounds interesting, would you share the recipe? AND pics of Fort McClellan, that is what is on my birth certificate, but I don't remember it, just an army brat. Sorry it rained on your picnic, maybe it helped cool off the heat a little. Thanks for inviting us along!

  8. Lovely quilt! I've never seen ducks with that coloring before; cool!

  9. What a wonderful quilt pattern - the checkerboard is perfect to set off that fabric. And your menu is right up my alley. I wish I had the other half of that brownie! blessings, marlene

  10. Linda ... I love your quilt! Keep it simple made it picnic perfect. I really like this pattern, thank for sharing the link to the original, too.
    Thanks for sharing your picnic and all the wonderful photos and lovely picnic food ideas. I feel like packing my personal picnic basket and taking a walk right now ... :) Pat

  11. I absolutely love the red and white checker board border Linda ! Nothing says picnic like that pattern, great quilt !

  12. You have been very busy, but you busted out a great picnic. Love the bright quilt and your niece will love it. All of your food sounds delish. Thanks for sharing a few of the sights and those odd ducks.

  13. Hi Linda! I just LOVE your quilt! Not only that, I also have that fabric!! It has been waiting around for the perfect idea :) and here it is. I just couldn't see cutting it up either, but I was thinking maybe a bug quilt. You had the perfect solution. I hope you are complimented if I say I am totally stealing your whole idea :) Thanks for giving the link to the pattern.

  14. The picture of your quilt with all the plates and dishes on it looks soooo great, as if they were made for being together !

  15. I love those bright fun prints and the border is perfect! Looks like a great day was had by all.

  16. Great job on the picnic quilt! Looks wonderful! Maybe, if you are still in possession of the quilt ~ the FAB's can have a picnic when we all visit! hugs to you...

  17. Lilnda, your quilt turned out darling. Love your idea of picnic food, right up my alley. Keep it simple is my motto, just forget that I need to do it!! Thank you so much for being part of this great hop.

  18. I love your "keep it simple" rule, but your picnic looks anything but simple. It looks fabulous! I love your quilt and pics!

  19. Your quilt is so pretty! I also made a dozen and a half of pumpkin-nut muffins to put in the freezer, but they were so good, we ate them all. None for the freezer ao need to get in the kitchen and do it again.

  20. Very pretty picnic quilt. Looks like a fun place for a picnic too.

  21. Love your quilt! The food looks great and inviting, too. I love the pictures and hope you enjoyed yourself while doing this. Great job!

  22. The light is so good in your photos I would never had thought it was going to rain! What a lovely present this quilt will be!

  23. Doesn't it always rain on a picnic day? Your quilt is amazing and I enjoyed reading your picnic quilt story.

  24. Love your little quilt. We had to plan around all the rain we have been having too. It looks like a beautiful place to have a picnic.

  25. Your quit iscsweet. I truly enjoyed reading your story. And your lunch you brought along sounded perfect.

  26. How pretty! I love all the colors. Your quilt would make even a cloudy day a great picnic day!

  27. Very nice. thanks for sharing.

  28. Love the ladybug fabric and checkerboard corners. Your quilt is lovely. Sometimes a picnic alone is the best company.

  29. Lovely spot. Nice that you have it so close by. Great quilt. Love all the happy color in it.

  30. Oh my gosh, I LOVE your quilt! And your picnic sounds like a lot of fun. I always enjoy being by water and watching baby critters. :)

  31. This sounds like it was one fun hop! I love your version of a picnic quilt--very cheerful! I love that you took us all along for the fun on your picnic. The food looks like it was incredible too!

  32. A quilt book on a picnic sounds like the perfect activity! Love your bright and sweet quilt and your niece will love it. Even with the rain, your picnic spot looks fabulous. Wow! Binge did that up spendidly!

  33. That will be such a nice gift for them. Looks like a beautiful place & a beautiful quilt!

  34. Very nice quilt and a wonderful gift.


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