In this photo I'm relaxing with my husband and dad, while my sister snaps the photo. We had just finished an hour hike and rewarded ourselves with some peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. You can't see the rock dome we hiked around. It's a well-known Texas image that never photographs well in guide books, but makes you gasp to see it in real life. A one hour hike is really no reason to be rewarding ourselves so proudly, but we were rather giddy with relief as I recall. My dad had taken a shortcut back at one point. The 3 of us spent the next 45 minutes fretting over whether he would find his way back. There were no shortcuts for us as we raced around the base of the dome until we finally found him sitting in a chair, reading. Happy Ending.
The meal was forgettable, but the azaleas and tulips and dogwoods were not! Tulsa was always beautiful in spring and having an April birthday, means this could have been a birthday picnic. Although I surely would have wanted something besides Subway! Too bad Heidi and I didn't have Cardinals baseball caps to hide under, like Scott. We seem to be sporting some of our best hair-dos!
Galveston in 2000
My kids (and friend, Diana) looked a little bored as they sat nibbling snacks on the jetty while my husband fished nearby. You can see our very fine Styrofoam cooler was working well as a table, but it also worked as an artist's canvas if you had a ballpoint pen. My brother is the one who started the tradition back in the 1970's when he, my mom and I picnicked frequently. For years, David put his cartooning skills to work documenting our picnic adventures until the dirty and crumbled cooler needed to be put to rest. I wish I had taken a photo before it was tossed in the trash. David's cartoons and drawings were quite a bit more entertaining than the ones that ended up on our cooler!
Camp Counselors in Maine - 1976
A storm delayed our lakeside picnic, but we got the water boiling again for 90 dollars worth of lobster. That was a lot of money in '76, but there were about 20 of us. We hardly knew each other. We had just completed a few days of orientation at Camp Waziyatah and we were celebrating before the campers were to arrive the next day. I wasn't sure yet whether I liked these fellow college students from all over the country. I knew I should try not to be so critical. After all, I would be spending my summer with them. I wasn't sure I was going to like lobster, either. I'd never eaten any and suddenly someone who thought I needed a proper initiation slapped a steaming, butter drenched hunk into my mouth. Soon after the somewhat barbaric feast, I remember the sun starting to set over the misty lake and the giddy, happily bonded group headed off to skinny dip. I seemed to be the only introvert who stayed back and sat on a rock, where I remember being approached by two curious children who came from nowhere. They questioned me, with their sweet Maine accents. "What kinda pah-ti is goin' on here?"
Tulsa, OK in 1995
Here is yet another Mother's Day picnic. We spent part of the afternoon in Hunter Park, not far from our home. As I recall, we didn't do a lot of sitting during this picnic. We had plastic balls and bats and Frisbees and a Nerf football. I have to give myself some credit for dressing for the occasion with my very fine nylon pants. I like the way the polo shirt is carefully tucked into the gathered waistband. I'm glad I have a very cute little Scott climbing on my shoulder to distract your eye from my fashionable outfit!
We thought we'd start the year off with a picnic on January 1! The little park with a nice view of the hills (near Longhorn Caverns) had two tables, but they were too shady. The wind was whipping away as we rushed our feast of sandwiches and left over Christmas cookies. I had hoped to start a book I got for Christmas, but I was the first to say. "I'm ready to go!" We finished up and jumped into the sun warmed car. So much for a New Year's Picnic!
Mom's Picnic List
In honor of my mother on the first Mother's Day since she has passed, I dedicate a new list... Mom's Picnic List!
Mom loved picnics and she raised her kids to appreciate the simple pleasures of food, family and friends in the great out of doors.
I will spend a year reflecting on as many past picnics as I can remember. But, I'll also
appreciate the here and now by creating new picnic experiences. My goal is to share at least 60 picnic memories, since that's how many years Mom was a mom!
Let the picnics begin!