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If I were to go on a PIKUNIKKU (Japanese romanization of the word picnic), I would vouch for a nice long hike underneath the sakura blossoms in March. There would be nothing more fitting than an ornate and delicately welcoming Japanese bento box, along with some seasonal mandarins. The "ben" in "bentou" comes from the word convenience, which shows in the cute and compact shapes of each food item. While I was growing up, I was fascinated by the creative ways people would dress up common ingredients, such as cutting up hot dogs into octopus shapes, or the "onigiri"- rice balls "molded" into different forms with a variety of seasonings. Now I can make my bento boxes however I want, but for this illustration I wished to satisfy my childhood fantasy with the picture perfect vegetables and octopus hot dogs, with full on Japanese headband and silly octopus face.
Here's my entry for the Let's Have a Picnic challenge :) Where I spend most of my summer, we take every opportunity to have a beach picnic. Lots of kids, laughter, a cool dip, whatever is in season at the nearby farms, bubbly and beer, cheese of course, and if we're lucky, the most gorgeous sunset.
All the best picnics I've been on have the same three ingredients - my favorite people, amazing views, and delicious food.
This scene depicts a typical picnic at this stage in my life - munching on a spread of olives, pita chips, hummus, veggies, almonds and cookies with my husband and three boys while taking in views of whatever beautiful mountain trail we happen to be hiking. Don't forget to wash it down with some summit seltzer and snap a few pics to remember the feast!
My entry for the Handpicked Picnic Challenge 🌄