Giveaway: A Year of Picnics by Ashley English

When I turned ten, my mom’s best friend Maria gave me a wicker picnic basket. Inside, it was stocked with sturdy, reusable plastic cups, plates, and utensils. I was completely thrilled and spent the next couple days packing and unpacking those wicker walls.

So powerful was the pull of the basket that I even made temporary peace with my sister (it took us growing up and living in different places to finally become friends) so that she would accompany me on trips to the neighborhood playground, where I’d plate up peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in order to make best use of my picnic gear.

While I’m not quite as enamored of picnics as I was in 1989, I still believe that there’s no better way to make an ordinary day special than to pack up lunch or dinner and take it to the park (and when there’s something to celebrate, an outdoor gathering is my favorite way to make merry).

Thanks to Ashley English‘s gorgeous new book, A Year of Picnics, I am once again filled with picnic inspiration (in the past, Ashley’s books have also motivated me to bake pies, blend my own tisanes, and gather up friends for seasonal celebrations).

Organized by season, this book makes an excellent case for the concept that dining well and beautifully in the outdoors is possible all year round. During spring and summer, some of the picnics Ashley suggests include those for breakfast, while seated near the water, and for a movie night gathering.

Some of the fall and winter picnics are those to celebrate the falling leaves, for tailgating, and for when perched on a rooftop. Each picnic includes suggestions for choosing your picnic site and activities appropriate for all ages, as well as tidbits tailored specifically to theme.

You’ll also find between three and five recipes for each picnic. I’m particularly looking forward to trying the Cardamom, Rose Water, and Berry Coffee Cake (page 24), the Moroccan Apple Salad (page 93) and the Mason Jar Apple Cardamom Crumbles (page 187).

For those of you hoping to be inspired to pack a picnic, I’ve got two copies of this book to give away. This giveaway is open to everyone (though it is void if giveaways are prohibited where you live). Please use the widget below to enter.

PS – As you enter the giveaway, please do take a moment to send Ashley and her family good thoughts. She recently gave pre-mature birth to a sweet but tiny baby named Alistair. Everyone seems to be healing and growing, but well wishes are never unwelcome. May they all picnic as a family together soon!

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Disclosure: Roost Books sent me three copies of this book for review and giveaway purposes. No additional funds were provided and all opinions expressed here are entirely my own. 

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136 Responses to Giveaway: A Year of Picnics by Ashley English

  1. 101
    Peter T says:

    I’m always looking for romantic dates to surprise my wife with. This book looks like it can lead to many surprises!

  2. 102
    Rose W says:

    I adore picnics and love going to beach on Lake Michigan to eat al fresco! 🙂 I’m sure I’ll be even more inspired for more menu options from this book!

  3. 103
    Sue D says:

    What a lovely idea for a book. We like to picnic on our own property–going to a location by one of our ponds.

  4. 104
    erin oscarson says:

    We visit Oregon Coast every year. I have so many fond memories of picnics on the beach with fun in the water all day and bonfire nights.

  5. 105
    Amanda Brandenberg says:

    I adore picnics!

  6. 106
    Amanda Riley says:

    I love Ashley’s books and her other work, and am lucky to call her a friend. I particularly love her pie book, and think pie makes a darn good picnic menu, but would love to get my hands on this book as well because it’s good to broaden one’s horizons 😉

  7. 107
    melissa says:

    i love a good picnic! i like to keep it simple and just stop by the natural foods co-op near my house to get yummy things at the deli. i might pair that with some strawberries and maybe a homemade cake, and call it good!

  8. 108
    Debbie Landry says:

    I love eating outside! Less mess from the kids too. My basket is a bit small for a family of five though. Need to pack more efficiently!

  9. 109
    Kristina M says:

    My kids love picnics! And I agree, a picnic makes a beautiful day even better.

  10. 110
    Kathleen says:

    Summer picnics are fun even, winter ones too. A cookbook on picnics could easily become a favorite.

  11. 111
    Margarita says:

    We started Camping last year, and I just love being outside. It is so good for our whole Family!

  12. 112
    OWB says:

    Hmmm. Yes, I AM a picnic person. Sadly, it seems that they are now mostly taking fast food to an interesting location to consume it.

    Best picnic ever was while on a road trip some years ago. We stopped in a local grocery, picked up suitable items and had a picnic at the next rest stop. Our dog was able to join us on a little hill away from traffic. It was lovely and just what we all needed at the time.

    Come to think of it – all my best picnic memories are of impromptu picnics.

  13. 113
    Valerie McCarthy says:

    I love picnics! Such a fun way to spend time with family and friends outdoors.

  14. 114
    Kim says:

    Nothing like a sweet picnic. My daughter and I have a couple a year, usually involving a hike or bike ride to arrive at our location. What a great theme for a book.

  15. 115
    Kathy says:

    We do picnic as a family and with friends. It’s a great idea for a book.

    I’m always particularly for a thermos of tea on a chilly picnic outing.

  16. 116
    Handful says:

    Picnics are best in the fall IMO. But I do love spring planting and summer baling and surprising the guys in the field with food.

    Blessings for the new baby.

  17. 117
    Y says:

    I came late to the idea of eating outside (never even tried it growing up) but I’m now a convert. Impromptu picnics are my favorites.

  18. 118
    Marsha says:

    I love the idea of picnics but always struggle to figure out interesting, portable, and vegetarian options for them.

  19. 119
    Jennifer says:

    I would love to be a picnic person… but I can’t remember the last time I was actually on a picnic, so this book would be great inspiration. 🙂

  20. 120
    Kim Henrichs says:

    My fave picnic spot used to be at Tanglewood, but now that I’ve moved i will have to find a new spot! A good bottle of wine, great fruit, it’s so fun to put together a great picnic.

  21. 121
    Mona says:

    A local winery hosts concerts on the lawn. Blanket, special picnic, and a bottle of wine…music. Perfection!

  22. 122
    Steven Peterson says:

    We’re trying to get our young girls excited about picnics so this cookbook sounds great.

  23. 123
    mandy says:

    Oh, I am a picnic person. I was raised with my grandma who always had a full icebox in the bed of our truck. I’m lucky she’s taught me most of her tricks. Our family spends alot of time outdoors. We picnic on the tailgate during hunting season. And in the spring and early summer we do weinie roasts by the creek.

  24. 124
    Linda Bick says:

    I have a beautiful picnic basket made by a dear friend, we love to use it at the beach and on our boat!

  25. 125
    Heidi Nawrocki says:

    I looking forward to start going on picnics with my kids. Lots of love and hugs to Ashely and her family <3

  26. 126
    Devon Hernandez says:

    Oh my, I am such a picnic person and fantasize about Barefoot Contessa-level picnics. None of my friends have seemed to be interested in the past but I guess I’m going to have to start bribing them with jars of (more) jam, since they respond to having a good jam supply LOL. I would LOVE this book to plan my bribe-picnic at our local Buchanan Park! It’s the perfect setting. Thanks for the giveaway!

  27. 127
    Mrs. Z says:

    I have never been on a picnic….but it always looks sooo wonderful! And now that I am pregnant, the love of my life, and I NEED to start making these memories not only for us (my husband and me) but also for them! 🙂

  28. 128
    Liz says:

    Lately our favorite picnic spot is a blanket (towel) on the kitchen floor with my 3 year old and some popcorn, but I’m looking forward to some inspiration!

  29. 129
    lynn ucci says:

    My Mom turns 88 this year and one of her favorite things is to “go on a picnic”. We do the “traditional” w/potatoe salad made with olive oil etc. The shortest and one of the best was in late fall/early winter 2 yrs ago. While sitting outside at a picnic table in a rural area we had hot chocolate and Saltines! It is what we always had after slogging through the snow looking for a tree to cut for Christmas.
    We are just discussing where to go for her 88 birthday picnic with her lady friends.
    Blessings

  30. 130
    Lauren says:

    A year ago, I bought a house two blocks from one of the biggest and best parks in town. I dreamed of lazy Sunday picnics on the grass. I have vivid, happy memories of childhood birthday parties and graduate school friendsgivings in the park. So far, we haven’t made it over once for a picnic, but maybe this book would help provide motivation.

  31. 131
    Sarah says:

    Last summer we squeezed in one tiny picnic during an afternoon hike, I am determined this summer we will figure d time for more, especially since there is a great land trust right down the street from our new house

  32. 132
    Eileen says:

    Picnics are the best! I definitely hear you on the allure of the nice basket filled with delicious things. A container of raw vegetables with dip plus a bunch of egg salad sandwiches and some cold rose is my idea of the best picnic ever. Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

  33. 133
    Ali says:

    I just recently moved to the Oregon Coast – can’t wait to have picnics and watch the ocean!

  34. 134
    Brenda C says:

    I’m ready for picnics

  35. 135
    Mary Osborne says:

    I’m in!
    Prayers for baby Alistair
    MaryO1230

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