Thursday, June 10, 2010

Party: Backyard Birthday Picnic

After the big "Fiesta Forty" birthday celebration (post forthcoming) I wanted to have an intimate family celebration on my actual birthday. The girls and I went to the zoo in the morning and in the afternoon I pulled together some of my favorite things for a backyard picnic. Audrey had been saying she wanted to have a picnic on a blanket and I thought what better way to spend the evening as a family on my birthday!

For our picnic blanket, I pulled out the bandana quilt tablecloth I made a month or so ago for Audrey's birthday--works great as a picnic blanket! And I still love the colors...

I went to a new Italian deli in the neighborhood and got sandwich fixings--they make the best sandwich bread and have a good selection of meats. For our picnic dinner I made turkey and dry salami sandwiches (dressed up just a little bit festive with scrapbook paper wrappers), my Italian Picnic Pasta Salad (recipe below), grabbed chips, and stocked a new drink caddy I received as a birthday gift with Simply Lemonade (one of my favorites) and Izze sodas.

And, for dessert, Audrey helped me bake Banana Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting. Though it was a casual family picnic I put a little party around these too with this great cupcake paper template (which I first saw on UCreate) and some scrapbook paper I had on hand. So easy to use pretty papers to quickly dress up the food! And for some reason I can't get enough pink and orange...

The best ingredients at the picnic though were my family--of course!

The backyard family picnic: the best birthday celebration yet!

*Recipe for Italian Picnic Pasta Salad*

Combine the following in a bowl and toss with dressing; chill until ready to serve.
  • 1 ½ lbs Campanelle pasta cooked & cooled
  • 12 cherry tomatoes (quartered)
  • 1 large broccoli crowns & 1 bunch asparagus blanched and cut into 1” pieces
  • ½ cup toasted pine nuts
  • One large ball fresh (buffalo) mozzarella cubed into ¼” pieces
  • ¾ cup roasted red peppers cut into 1” pieces
  • ¼ cup chopped black olives
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Bernstein’s Restaurant Italian dressing to taste (I used about ½ a bottle


Anonymous said...

Ohhh, that pasta salad looks SO incredibly good! Thanks, I am going to try that recipe this next week. :-) Glad to see that you had a good birthday.

The Cottage Mama said...

Love, love this! I'm thinking of doing some sort of casual garden party for Matilda's 1st birthday. This looks like so much fun! Wonderful pictures :-)


Joanne said...

What a beautiful birthday!

Jessica F. said...

That food looks AmAzInG! Happy 40th!

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