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Portable Picnic Lunch for the college grad

Picnic Lunch for the College Grad

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If I had  been better organized, we’d be dining in one of our favorite Bloomington, Indiana, restaurants, but instead we schlepped this Picnic Lunch for the College grad to eat after the ceremony. 
Portable Picnic Lunch for the college grad

Picnic Lunch for the College Grad

Meeting up with a girlfriend for tea sent this plan in motion. Granted, she’s the mom of a daughter graduate and my Nick might not even notice the paper plates in his school colors, coordinated napkins and kicked up lunch menu. But this event deserved a mini celebration. I packed up this picnic lunch and schlepped it down to campus to eat after the festivities!

One of Nick’s frequent responses when I inquire if he’s ready to eat is always, “I’m always hungry, Mom.” So I knew that sitting in an outdoor stadium for 2+ hours for commencement ceremonies would have him ravenous. Unlike his father, he inhaled his chicken salad sandwich laden with nuts, dried and fresh fruit and diced celery. It hit the spot!

College graduationThe Menu

I totally swiped Cecelia’s menu in exchange for a few shopping tips. She’s the mom of 4 daughters and has been through this 3 times before. Chicken salad in croissants wrapped in red and white parchment, a simple fruit salad, and oatmeal chocolate chunk cookies were packed in our cooler early on graduation day.

Napkins and paper plates were also in the school colors of “Crimson and Cream.” We didn’t dare eat off any plates in the boys’ kitchen as we saw the state of their housekeeping only the week before when they bragged about “swiffering” recently. Though “recently” apparently meant 2 weeks prior. Here are links to the lunch dishes if you’d like to borrow this menu for your upcoming celebration:

Fruity Chicken Salad | A Classic Chicken Salad jazzed up with dried cherries, grapes and pecans for a Picnic Lunch

Fruity Chicken Salad minus nuts and dried cherries for the guys and served on croissants

Honey Lime Fruit Salad | Scrumptious fresh fruit dressed with honey, lime juice, vanilla and poppy seeds for a Picnic Lunch

Honey-Lime Fruit Salad or Chopped Fresh Fruit

Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies | Packed full of chocolate, oats, nuts and dried cherries

Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Portable Picnic Lunch for the college grad

Here’s a snap of our actual lunch, decked out in Crimson and Cream! As I suspected, Nick was more interested in the food than the festive decor. He was starving!

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28 comments on “Picnic Lunch for the College Grad”

  1. You look fabulous, & of course the food too! Have an awesome week, babe! xoxo

  2. Congrats to all! Alex wanted to grill steaks with all his friends and you wouldn’t believe the state of that kitchen! Luckily he and a another mother took charge and I only had to bring pies from the farmer’s market. There is one benefit to living far away!You all look so happy, Liz!

  3. Congrats all! Loving your lunch and reckon it is the perfect way to celebrate. Loving the fruit salad, simple yet so dang pretty and healthy too. And those sandwiches… YARM! PS: Your son is a bit of a hottie! 🙂

  4. Hi Liz, first congrats to your son, what an achievement. Your picnic lunch sounds delicious, especially the cookies.

  5. Picnic lunch is the perfect way to celebrate! When I throw summer parties I always do chicken salad on croissants! It’s such a crown pleaser 🙂

  6. Wow…how special! You’re a wonderful, wonderful mother! Congratulations on Nick’s graduation.

  7. Félicitations on Nick’s graduation! You know I think I prefeer your picnic to go in a restaurant! It’s so nice 😉

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