Mother’s Day Picnic Ideas | Beautiful & Inexpensive

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1 Hour

Mother’s Day is right around the corner, and I’m so excited to share these fun backyard Mother’s Day picnic ideas with you!

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Mother’s Day Picnic Ideas in May

In Ohio, our gardens are far from being in full bloom. In fact, my little garden is quite bare right now.

But just because the garden of May doesn’t look like the garden of July & August doesn’t mean that we should forgo a garden picnic.

I’ve found that one of my favorite places to plan and dream up garden upgrades/additions is in the garden itself.

Even when the garden has very little going on, I love walking the paths or sitting down and relaxing in its bareness. It’s still and silent.

I can think and plan.

It reminds me of my DIY pot rack wall. Remember how I left that wall empty for a while to figure out how to utilize the space.

First, I had it filled with a huge hutch, but when I decided it was time for a change I left it empty until I knew what I wanted to do.

The emptiness lets me visualize without the distraction of other things. It’s like it allows my imagination to run wild without being hindered.

An empty garden does the same thing. It lets me see different plants in different locations without the distractions of what’s going on.

All of that to say, a still and silent garden can be just as wonderful as a garden in full bloom.

Besides, who’s to say we won’t have another garden picnic later this Summer when everything is in full bloom?

What can I do for Mother’s Day with no money?

A Mother’s Day garden picnic is one of the most wonderful ways to celebrate without breaking the bank.

You get to create a special place for some quality time, and BONUS mom didn’t have to prepare the meal! She is being gifted a relaxing meal she didn’t have to cook (or clean up *cough* *cough*).

Seriously, almost everything I used here was something I already had on hand. The only thing I purchased was the cinnamon rolls, and that’s because I have never had a cinnamon roll as divine as the cinnamon rolls from Nickel & Bean.

Truth be told, you wouldn’t need to do that if you had the stuff to make Belgian waffles, muffins, or pancakes. (I just may or may not have an obsession with these cinnamon rolls haha!)

What NOT to do on Mother’s Day?

This year for Mother’s Day I will not be asking anyone to read my mind.

I’m going to use my big girl words (like I ask my daughters to do) and I’m going to express how I’d love to spend the day.

A backyard Mother’s Day picnic!

I’m also not going to assume that just because someone is doing something differently than me that it is somehow wrong.

Is my way better?



Okay, of course it is haha!

But for one day, I’m going to relax knowing that, I’m not the one doing it!

On Mother’s Day I’m not:

  • Loading the dishwasher
  • Sorting the laundry
  • Cooking the food

What I am going to do?

  • Enjoy my family
  • Celebrate the mothers around me
  • Celebrate the mother God created me to be

How to Set up an Elegant and Inexpensive Garden Picnic

1. Select a Table

This was easy for me.

Remember the pallet table I made last Summer? It’s the perfect table for our picnics.

Although I will be honest, my dog has been using it as a chew toy lately.

(If you don’t have time to DIY a pallet table, then you can use a folding table with the legs folded up under it. I did that for this picnic last Spring.)

2. Tablecloth/Blanket

I pulled out this tablecloth for a couple of reasons.

One because the dog has used this table as a chew toy.

Isn’t the view of the pond in the back beautiful?

Two because I think it adds a little bit of elegance to the whole setting. It creates a foundation that silently states this is more than your average run-of-the-mill backyard picnic.

This is a Mother’s Day garden picnic.

This is just a cute little tablecloth I picked up at a vintage shop, but you could use anything. You could even use a pretty blanket you have.

3. Bring a Basket (or 2)

I almost always use baskets when we do our backyard picnics.

They are perfect for transporting multiple things in one trip and I’m all about efficiency.

If you don’t have a basket, then a market bag or a crate would work great too. I’ve used all three for different picnics I’ve set up.

But they are also nice because they add some visual interest and character to your table setting.

4. Add Flowers

After the baskets are empty of all the picnic essentials it’s time to add the flowers!

These are not essential in the slightest, but I figured since we didn’t have anything going on in the garden, I could create whatever kind of garden I wanted with my faux florals.

I grabbed a mix of colors that reminded me of warmer, brighter days and added them to the baskets.

Then I used some of my vintage bottles we found in the barn for a few simple stems.

I wanted to create a casual yet elegant look and laying flowers in a basket and single stems in a vase are perfect for that.

5. Simple Dinnerware

I’ve done backyard picnic’s in the past that were a little more labor intensive as far as the dinnerware amount is concerned.

But for this backyard Mother’s Day picnic ideas I decided to keep it simple.

A charcuterie board with a few plates, and cups is more than sufficient to create this brunch.

I used these glasses because there were my great grandma’s glasses and she used to refer to them as her “fine china”. As far as I’m concerned there isn’t anything finer!

6. Keep the Food Simple

For this picnic I decided to go with a breakfast or brunch menu.

Mostly, because I love breakfast. Breakfast foods are some of my favorite foods.

But I also chose this menu because of how easy and inexpensive it is. Like I said before, everything, except the cinnamon rolls, were things I found in the fridge.

Blueberries. Raspberries. Hardboiled eggs. Strawberries. Oranges.

The meal is so easy to prepare and easier to transport. It’s seriously mess-free!

PS If you want to cut your hard boiled eggs and have them turn our looking perfect without little yoke chunks going everywhere use your cheese slicer with the metal wire! It makes perfect cuts like these!

Well, that’s it! Our backyard Mother’s Day picnic ideas all laid out for you! I hope this inspires you to create a beautiful and budget-friendly picnic for your mom this Mother’s Day!

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Have a great week! XoXo

Open Your Doors,


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4 of 7 comments
  • Lynn Wolf Lynn Wolf on Apr 29, 2021

    Very beautiful and I love picnics! Just a thought, but this idea seems great for a young mother. Some older moms might have a little trouble getting down to the ground and back up again!

  • Leslie Leslie on Apr 29, 2022

    When using pallets check the markings / stamps on them. Some are treated with poison and you do not want your animals chewing on them, using them for furniture or inside your home. You can research what the stamps mean by researching online. Your pallet appears to have a mark on the side corner and I would take the time to decipher the codes with your research which you can print out.