Things to do in January: a magical picnic at dusk

A picnic at dusk

Seeking out new experiences doesn’t have to be difficult, complicated or expensive. It can be surprisingly easy to transform an activity from mundane to magical.

Take picnics. I love them at any time of the year, but they can be a bit dismal in January – shivering while you eat your lunch on picnic rug in the biting wind. But why do we always have them in the daytime? Push things back by a few hours, and you create a completely different experience. A picnic at dusk is a rare and exciting thing.

As the light begins to fade at 3 o’ clock, pack up your picnic, fill a thermos flask and grab a blanket. The best picnics are often the simplest – our favourite thing is soft white rolls, filled with hot sausages straight from the oven (and a drizzle of chilli jam). This, plus a flask of tea and something sweet, is all you need.

Hot sausage baps

Then head to your chosen spot before darkness falls. We went to the riverside – normally a very familiar environment, but now curiously exciting in the fading light. Grey water became sparkly, narrowboats twinkled and the smell of wood smoke filled the air. The boys ran around like loons, fascinated by the blanket of darkness that was quickly covering us.

A picnic at dusk

We chose a bench by the river, wrapped ourselves up and sat and ate our sausages. We watched the early evening dog walkers go by, and soaked up the sounds and sights of the familiar, yet unfamiliar.

A picnic at dusk

As we finished eating the rain started, and we hastily made our way home – which only added to the sense of adventure.

A picnic at dusk

We spent nothing, we were barely a mile from home, but we experienced such a simple sense of adventure.  Try it this weekend!

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18 thoughts on “Things to do in January: a magical picnic at dusk

  1. Brigitte

    What a fab idea! I sometimes wish that my two strapping lads were still two little scamps to have adventures with. I could suggest a picnic at dusk with Mr R but he’s incredibly unadventurous and would point out the perils of picnics at dusk. Indeed, he points out the perils of picnics at anytime! Spoilsport! xx

    Reply
    1. marmaladepie Post author

      Thank you! I’m trying to make the most of it before my two are too cool to come on picnics with me! 🙂

      Reply
  2. Anna

    How lovely! It makes me quite emotional to think about the special moments of childhood, and how precious they are. I remember such moments with my mother and sister as a child, and look forward to sharing them more with my son as he gets older. Your boys are lucky to have such a creative and devoted mum!

    Reply
    1. marmaladepie Post author

      Thank you Anna! I’m aware of time passing so quickly, so I want to cherish all these moments and make lovely memories for my boys x

      Reply
    1. marmaladepie Post author

      Thanks Esther! We were lucky to find a rain-free window to do it – when it started at the end though it actually added to the fun though! x

      Reply
  3. Emma

    Ooh I love this idea, only the other day my daughter was asking when could we go for a picnic, so after telling her “when it’s warmer” I might have to surprise her. Just need the rain to stop!

    Reply
    1. marmaladepie Post author

      Hope the rain will stop soon where you are! Things are improving in the East – still lots of wet, but a few jewel-like days of sunshine too x

      Reply
  4. Rachel @ The Ordinary Lovely

    I love this!! I’ve done something similar with my eldest during the past two December’s. He loves all the twinkly lights, so we head in to town armed with hot drinks and biscuits and sit and marvel over the Christmas lights. It’s so magical and children think it’s the biggest adventure, don’t they? xx

    Reply
    1. marmaladepie Post author

      They certainly do! We took them for a few late night scooter rides before Christmas to see the light – tired them out nicely! x

      Reply

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