Picnic with friends!

The days are getting longer and the breeze outside is fresh and crisp. The perfect excuse to enjoy nature before the chocking Florida summer heat rolls in.  About a week ago I found a beautiful wetland preserve right in the middle of town. Mead Gardens is a park that has dedicated its grounds to preserve a piece of nature for all of us city dwellers to enjoy.  The trees are abundant and the lush gardens foster a great variety of colorful butterflies that flutter for our eyes to enjoy! I had to share this with my friends! So we planned a little lunch, got in the car, and headed out to our little picnic.

I packed a Tomato & Mozzarella salad. To share your fresh mozzarella and tomatoes with friends, simply cut up mozzarella balls into 1/2 in cubes, quarter some grape tomatoes, quarter some large queen green olives (or any other variety you like), and pick some basil leaves. I grow my little basil out on the porch, it’s purple basil but any kind will do. I then make a simple vinaigrette made by mixing grated garlic, dijon mustard, and white balsamic in a mixing bowl and slowly adding olive oil until it reaches creamy consistency. Toss all ingredients together and enjoy under a tree, with friends and a nice conversation.

A delicious pita stuffed with black beans, avocado, and cilantro prepared by Dayhanna, tomato salad, and salmon salad on the plate!

Blueberries by Rhea! I can not believe how juicy and sweet these were.

Sweet and tangy Florida oranges

Friends ❤

Pink Petunia for the butterflies

And of course, we could not forget the wine… Thanks Rhea!!

As we walked the trails, we noticed how serene everything seemed. We were suspended in a time and place where all that mattered was the chirp of the birds and the breeze against our faces.  The rest of the world was forgotten if only for a brief moment. A beautiful way to relax indeed. I am grateful for nature, good food, and great friends!

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