I've had a couple of those terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days.
The weather had the audacity to be gorgeous, flaunting its prettiness in my misery. As much as I'd like to punch Spring in the face, I decided instead to use it as a much needed hole to crawl into. Since our house backs up against the Cleveland National Forest, there's really no excuse for not walking out my back door and leaving civilization and all its drama behind (forest in this sense is a strictly bureaucratic term, since there isn't much in the way of trees).
Not making dinner + laying on a picnic blanket with my husband, children and dog, sounded... better than wonderful. But could it be done for less than $5? Inexpensive recreation is sort of a must for us (it helps if we think of it as a game).
French Baguette (.60)
Dill Havarti Cheese (1.93)
Turkey Pastrami (1.50)
Total.................. $5.63 (so close)
Fruit, bread, meat and cheese. Life really doesn't get much better than that.
Things that made it possible:
1) Snatching the bread off the clearance shelf.
2) Buying the featured cheese Sprouts puts on sale (the nice thing about bulk cut cheese is you can dig around until you find the smallest...and therefore cheapest chunk)
3) Going with pastrami instead of salami (pastrami was on sale this week for $3/lb and a half pound fed our family just fine).
4) Buy 'in season' and local fruit. In this case...strawberries. Oranges and mangoes are also ridiculously inexpensive right now, but I went with strawberries.
Mostly because the boys are strawberry mongers.
And Charlie, who hitherto disliked cheese with a passion...
...seems to have finally connected with the 18% Italian blood he has. I'm pretty sure he and his dad are guilty of consuming the most cheese.
This dead Yucca got a brief moment of afterlife glory. Approx 20 seconds after this picture was taken, Jamie smacked me in the head with it, knocking my cup out of my hand, and sprinkling our picnic with a generous shower of strawberry lemonade.
Which speaking of... was my one cheat. I have all those frozen lemon cubes in the freezer from the week of lemons, and I may or may not have used those with some of the strawberries to make homemade strawberry lemonade. For the record, it was way way better than any of that stuff you get at Sonic or Chili's.
We also brought our personal rattlesnake guard (not me... but the one hiding behind the lemonade). You can see he's taking his job very seriously.
We had so much fun, I think we're going to make $5 picnics a permanent part of our menu rotation. (at least until it hits 100 degrees outside)
Any other ideas for what you could pack on a $5 picnic? Because really, at that price there is no excuse not to go for a hike and eat yummy food.