Wicker Park Picnics, Wine, and Cheesecake In a Jar

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Believe it or not, with all of my creative planning blessing suffocating people around me, I hadn't yet started a creative date night tradition. Shame on me! 

It finally hit me last week when Justin and I realized that, after a week long vacation with my whole family, a work Summit, and a visit from my girlfriend, we hadn't been able to have lovey time focused on each other in weeks. I'm not a fan of this way of life, friends. Where is the love?!

So, I decided to plan a Date Night. A secret one (of course!). I made Justin a picture frame and started a Composition Notebook in which I wrote him a letter about the things I love about him and then explained our date... which started with a VERY heavy Under Armor bag that I needed him to drag to Wicker Park.

Why?! Because it was picnic time, of course! Enter beautiful paper plates from Target, some plastic silverware wrapped in napkins wrapped in leftover tissue paper from my Birchbox arrivals!

And this guy. Look how happy :)

Oh, right. And a bottle of Kendall Jackson Chardonnay that we pre-corked and brought in mason jars. You see, apparently (I should have thought of this but didn't), you can't just haul alcohol into public parks. You have to be sneaky. And since a wine bottle and wine glasses were obviously out of the question, I was still determined to find a classier, more romantic way to guzzle that KJ. A way that didn't involve Red Solo Cups.

And so, in these times we live in, it seems that everything is more romantic with mason jars. Thus, it was the perfect way to go! Sneaky sneaky. Looks like apple juice, doesn't it?

The entertainment, so to speak, consisted of a fairly lively baseball game. Here's how Wicker Park goes: before dark, baseball. After dark, basketball. Despite the fly balls, I'm a fan of the baseball crowd. If you catch my drift. Hipsters sitting on blankets with their shoes off. I'll take it.

I'm also a fan of diagonal pictures. Diagonal pictures of my cute as heck boyfriend with his cute as heck Target plate, his cute as heck mason jar chardonnay, and some to die for picnic dinner.

Quinoa salad. This one is delish. Quinoa, red pepper, corn, black beans, feta, onion, avocado, and a hefty serving of spicy as heck pico de gallo. Mix it up and serve. It's pretty perfect for picnics because it's not too temperature sensitive and can be prepared entirely beforehand.

Plus, it's darn filling.

As was dessert. This delicious cheesecake in a jar. Blueberry cheesecake. Mason jar. Agave toasted granola.

I know, you're drooling all over your keyboard. It's okay, I am too. We're in this together! And don't fret, because I'll hook you up with the recipe tomorrow! I know the girl ;-)

She happens to be a mason jar aficionado (seriously, read the About Me page on her blog. It's on there). She fills them with Kendall Jackson and Blueberries and Cheesecake, Oh My!

She also happens to be semi obsessed with reading. And feels exactly the opposite way about bugs. Which is why she ran all over town the day of the picnic looking for a big tarp to lay down at the park. Because having a blanket between the ground and you just isn't enough. You need a tarp, people, a tarp!

Back to speaking of myself like a normal person would. I also bought us some reading and writing materials. The Composition Book, with Justin's name on it, is now the official Date Night book. We started with the letter from me to him, an explanation of our date and geocaching (which we tried - and I met the hugest rat I've ever seen in an alley), and a challenge to each draw one scene we saw at the park. Hopefully we'll keep the tradition alive and end up with a whole book of letters, dates, and random pen sketches of people and things around us.


  1. This was so sweet. I LOVE IT!.

  2. I love this! And yes, I'm going out to buy mason jars for carrying wine to "particular" places. :) The salad looks & sounds divine and I'm waiting on the dessert recipe now. So glad you two did this...and thanks for sharing!


  3. Like the wine in a mason jar trick!!!


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