DIY Date – Valentine’s Picnic

Valentines Picnic Date

Most of us are looking for something fun to do for Valentine’s Day tomorrow.  However, there are a lot of people who maybe waited too long to get that dinner reservation, maybe you don’t even want to be in such a crowded restaurant, or maybe you’re on a budget.  Whatever your situation is we have a great idea for you.  It is the perfect way to spend an afternoon or an evening with your Valentine.  It works if your Valentine is your significant other, your best friend, and even your kids.  It can also be adapted for any location.  Take your Valentine on a picnic!

We set up a cute picnic with a few items we picked up at the dollar store and a little DIY work.  We are lucky enough to live in Arizona where the weather is absolutely perfect at this time of year so we were able to take the bikes out and have our picnic in a perfect location by the lake under a gorgeous blooming tree.

Valentines Picnic Date - Location

It was wonderful to be able to relax outside and look up and see this –

Valentines Picnic Date - Under the trees

We just did a simple picnic with a few essential that you can easily pack in a small cooler or picnic basket if you are venturing out like we did.  If you love the outdoors and hiking pack up your picnic and hike to an amazing spot to enjoy a lunch.  If you are living anywhere where you do not want to go outside because it is covered in snow then you can set up this picnic in your living room if you want.  It will still be just as fun.

We picked up a couple of Valentine’s items at the Dollar Store to add a little love to the picnic.  We used a couple of balloons that we staked into the ground.  Indoors?  No problem.  Just use helium balloons or even some flowers will help set the mood.  We also used some heart shaped doilies, some Valentine napkins and our red picnic blanket.

Valentines Picnic Date - Lets Eat

For the food we brought along one of our wooden cutting boards and made a simple cheese plate with a couple of cheeses we love and some crackers.

Valentines Picnic Date - Cheese Plate

We made a couple of simple sandwiches to eat that were oh so delicious (and we have included the recipe for them at the end of this post!).  To wrap the food we cut out some tissue paper hearts and ironed them between two sheets of wax paper.  It gives a fancier feel to the sandwiches and keeps with our Valentine theme.  This is also a great way to wrap food gifts for the holidays.

Valentines Picnic Date - Sandwiches

And lastly no picnic is complete without dessert.  Of course you can make something homemade, but if you are looking to keep this simple then just pick something up at the store like we did with this red velvet cake we have to share.

Valentines Picnic Date - Dessert

That is all you need to plan a special Valentine’s picnic for your fabulous Valentine, whoever that might be.  Like we said, if the weather is awful, who wants to go out in that anyway.  Just set up a blanket next to the fireplace or in the middle of a room in your home.  It’s who you share it with that makes it really special anyway.

Now here is our favorite Sandwich recipe with an Italian Dressing courtesy of our very own Robin.

Italian Dressing
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 tbsp. garlic (preferably minced but can substitute powder)
1   Tsp sugar
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp ground mustard
1/4 tsp basil
Freshly ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients, shake or stir (depending on your given container) and serve.
Can be refrigerated, but be aware that the olive oil will congeal in fridge, just take the dressing out half hour prior to use, shake to mix well and serve.

Italian Submarine Sandwich – serves 2-3
1 French bread loaf (not baguette)
1/2 lb. honey baked ham, thinly sliced from deli counter
1/4 lb. genoa hard salami, thinly sliced from deli counter
1/4 lb. provolone cheeses, thinly sliced from deli counter
1 head of iceberg lettuce, shredded thinly
2-3 tomatoes, sliced thinly
1 sweet onion, sliced thinly (really only need 3 or 4 slices)
Mezzetta hot chili peppers or golden Greek pepperoncini, sliced thinly.
Mayonnaise

Cut bread loaf long ways in half, spread thin layer of mayonnaise on bottom half of loaf.
Spread thinly sliced hot peppers or pepperoncini over mayo layer
Layer honey baked ham, then salami, and finally the provolone cheese.
Next, layer the sliced tomatoes and onion slices.
The final layer is the shredded lettuce, topped with the Italian dressing and the top piece of bread.

Don’t forget some napkins, because this can be messy and enjoy!

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