A Change of Scenery: Casual Outdoor Dining & Other Al Fresco Ideas
If cabin fever is starting to set in, it’s time to change up your scenery. Now the weather’s looking brighter and the temperature’s rising, it’s the perfect excuse to head outside and make the most of your garden. And because house guests are off the agenda, there’s never been a better time to enjoy a more casual approach to al fresco living…
Bring the Kitchen Outside
Gone are the days of wheeling out an old barbecue and settling for a burnt burger; cooking al fresco can be so much more than that. Grill up some seafood over hot coals, host your own family pizza night with an outdoor pizza oven, or take inspiration from the Swiss and enjoy a raclette dinner how it’s intended: outside in the open air. Whether you choose to keep it simple with a fridge-foraged picnic on the grass or want to separate the weekends from the week days with a full al fresco family feast, shake off the cobwebs and enjoy all of your foodie favourites outside.
This isn’t a time for your finest table and glassware. Casual outdoor dining calls for melamine plates & bowls in a carnival of colours, large jugs of homemade lemonade and even larger serving platters brimming with your favourite foods. Forget etiquette for an evening and get stuck in with foods that can be eaten with your hands, and ask the little ones to help set the table with flowers they’ve picked from your daily walk. They’ll love to get involved, and you’ll love the breakables-free family dinner.
Create an Outside Living Area
Spending time outside doesn’t mean you have to forgo your home comforts. Spruce up your patio with an outdoor rug, make your garden furniture a little more fabulous with outdoor cushions and accessorise with tealights and lanterns to create a cosy glow once the sun goes down. The perfect finish to your al fresco living space? An outdoor speaker hooked up to your favourite playlist, we promise you won’t want to go back inside.
With the days seemingly blending into one, who says we can’t indulge in a little afternoon nap? Find a shady spot and settle down for an hour or two. Whether you use this time to read a book, listen to a podcast or get a couple hours of shut-eye, forget about the to-do list you’ve made yourself and enjoy some peace and quiet. The world has slowed down and there’s no reason you can’t either.
Recharge & Refocus
When the sun goes down the fun doesn’t have to stop. Throw on some cosy clothes, get comfy and settle yourself next to a roaring fire. Toast marshmallows, swap stories, make future plans with your household and enjoy some much-needed time away from the screens. Mixing up your evening activities to include a night under the stars can help you to switch off from the uncertainty and refocus your mind. Brighter days are coming, but for now let’s make the most of our new normal.