5 SUPER-LAZY WAYS TO WELCOME SPRING – PART ONE
Picnicking within arm’s reach of the lounge room…
And so it has begun. Spring has sprung. The air is jasmine-scented and all things green are tipped with lime. It’s as though the world has taken to its winter self with a bottle of eco-friendly Ajax – there’s an air of rejuvenation everywhere. Almost.
Me, I’m not so great with change.* In amongst all the bluster of cherry blossoms and the heady buzz of romance, you’ll find me clutching the cloak of winter like a well-rubbed blankie. The art of sloth is dear to my heart and winter provides the perfect excuse to surrender all activity and hunker down.**
** My apologies, Michelle Bridges.
Yep. While the rest of the world is busy finding four leaf clovers and picking wild strawberries from the country verge, I’m struggling to exit the chrysalis. It takes a while before I’m ready to cast off winter and frolic on the beach like an advertisement for feminine products.
Don’t get me wrong. I like spring: the new buds, Bambi, butterflies surfing the air, evenings spent sipping spring cocktails while the cicadas tune up, the latest harvest of hipsterchefs fresh from the cabbage patch, their it’s-so-good-you’d-trade-your-favourite-beret-for-just-a-taste-of-it fresh seasonal fare.
It’s just that a hint of warmth in the air is not likely to inspire in me much more than a stroll from my bedroom to the verandah. I’m not of the Bondi Icebergs’ mindset. I like to ease into things. So this year I’m spruiking a gentler response to the change of season.
A crisp spring morning delivers the perfect ambience for a picnic. Note: morning is used loosely in this case. Cultivating a closer relationship to noon is advised, even greeting the day mid-afternoon (this allows for the inclusion of bubbles or grape juice for adults in your spread).
SET THE SCENE
No picnic is complete without a picnic rug. Whether you’ve braved it out onto the lawn, or you’re parked on the verandah (or snuggled up in your living room), a rug marks the spot for pending decadence.
Exotically inclined? Set up camp on your kilim or hide rug. Turn up the boho heat and cultivate Parisian attitude with floor cushions, blankets and throws. It’s only spring after all – you gotta keep yourself cosy like.
Here’s where the benefits of being close to home really kick in. If you’re clumsy, we advise durable elegance (not an oxymoron), but otherwise the theme is go-to-town! Break out the crystal glassware and the fine bone china. Think luxe. Live it up in your living room! After all you’re only a step away from the kitchen (read dishwasher).
It’s a little bit romantic, if we do say so. Did someone say rose petals? This scene is practically begging for it.
Pack a feed of figs, fromages – smoked and soft, grapes, semi-sun-dried toms, olives and dips with accompanying crusty baguettes. (Your local farmers’ markets is where it’s at). Serve it up on rustic cheeseboards and tapas plates. A medicinal shot of caffeine is a must. If only baristas did house calls… *sigh*
Hankering for something more substantial? A warm salad is the perfect answer to the winter/spring transition: Greek chicken, watermelon and fennel with lemon vinaigrette or a good ol’ salad Nicoise all do the trick. Then finish up with ricotta mousse and berries, salted chocolate, macaroons and caramelised macadamias.
TIME TO BREAK THE HIBERNATION
That’s right. Step outside. Take your glass of Verve, tuck Ernest Hemingway under your wing and while away some hours in your hammock (why not?). Let the delicate perfume of citrus blossom and bergamot float over you courtesy of the maid’s most recent spring cleaning.
Don’t trust yourself to master the dark arts of hammock wrestling? Head straight to your bucket chair for some arvi respite. Tuck up your tootsies, take out paper and catch up on the news old-school style. A bit too smudgy? There’s only one thing for it – do as the Spaniards do and siesta.
It’s the definition of perfection, n’est-ce pas? No? Tell us how you like to celebrate spring.