Summer. Growing up in a high-humidity area, it was the most dreaded season. Not only that, but I was forced to wear shorts and t-shirts which made it impossible to hide my body behind long sleeves and coats. This was back when I thought I was large. You know… the size I would love to be today. ~smile~ Unless I was heading to the beach, I was not a fan of summer weather. Spring and Fall were great and Winter was even good. Summer just brought suffering.
Well, that was the old me. The new me sees Summer as a time to get out of the house and enjoy the world. I still hate the heat, but I am willing to find ways to enjoy myself regardless of it. Plus, hot weather gives me excuses to go to the pool, spray my dog (and myself) with the water hose, and spend several days at the beach. Summer is a gift from God, after all. ~smile~
We have another several months of heat ahead of us, so how can we embrace it? What are some special ways to enjoy the summer with our sweeties? Below are seven ideas!
- Water, Water, and More Water!!! You may say I am just a little bit obsessed with large (or small) bodies of water. Ever since I was a little kid, lakes, oceans, and ponds have fascinated me! The Little Mermaid was (and is) my favorite Disney movie. ~smile~ I live for beach days. When I was twelve or so, my friend and I ended up wading in the ocean in our jeans. We did not mean to get so wet, but the ocean’s power led me ever deeper into its fold and my friend accidentally fell into a hole. Needless to say, her mom was not super thrilled when we showed back up soaked and towel-less. A few years later, the same friend and I could not resist the temptation to jump into a hotel pool in our pajamas. To this day, I find excuses to spray myself with the water hose. All this to say, swim, splash, and cool off with water on those especially warm days. Add hiking to waterfalls, warring with water guns, and water balloon fights to the list of awesome water activities!
- Get Ice Cream!!! Who can eat ice cream every day and stay healthy? Not many of us, that is for sure! Which is why certain treats should be saved for special occasions such as 100 degree weather. ~smile~ My beach friends and I almost always stop off for frozen yogurt after hours in the sun. It hits the spot! One of the most beloved places in my home town is the Dairy Queen The old fashioned kind where you park your car and walk up to the window (and where all they have is a window!). I do not know why, but I like it so much than eating inside a Dairy Queen restaurant. When it is extremely hot, treat yourself and your sweetheart to a yummy frozen treat! No guilt!
- Be a Tourist. Even though I spent the first twenty years of my life there, I still want to take a horse-drawn carriage ride through my hometown. And, even though I literally live a tenth of a mile away from a civil war exhibit, I still want to explore the area for all of its historical goodness. When the heat renders the day too miserable to do yardwork or other typical outdoor activities, throw on shorts and a t-shirt and find a local museum, bus tour, or shady haven and learn more about your fair city as if you were a tourist.
- Find a shady trail to walk or cave to explore. If you want to cool down, a cave is the place to visit. Obviously, make sure it is a cave that has already been explored and considered safe. No one wants to accidentally barge in on a bear or some equally terrifying animal. ~smile~ We have a lovely trail here which extends throughout the city; and, though the sun does peek through the trees, it is far more pleasant to walk on the trail in mid-July than on the steamy asphalt.
- Yard Sales, Street Vendors, and Farmers’ Markets. Go shopping outside! Yard sales are great for the early riser who does not like the heat of the day and is determined to find good deals. The early bird gets the drastically underpriced furniture and the once in a lifetime diamond ring find! Farmers’ markets are also abuzz, not only with quality produce and meats, but also with uniquely crafted items from local venders. It is also fun to wander through street fairs and check out other local art and crafts. When the sun gets too hot, duck into a tent! You may find some unique gift ideas!
- Embrace the Sweat. Decide you are going to enjoy being hot. Play basketball. Go for an outside jog. Enjoy the sun. But make sure to stay hydrated and not overdo it! Sweat out some toxins and soak in that Vitamin D!
- Take Me Out to the Ballgame! Summertime often means baseball! Enjoy a local minor league team, go to a little league game, or travel to see your favorite major league team. Enjoy peanuts, Cracker Jack, hot dogs, and the other ball park goodies. And if they have it there, be sure to buy a bag of kettle corn. Oh my goodness, it is the stuff dreams are made of! Somehow, being extremely hot at a baseball game does not seem as unbearable as being hot other places. Go figure. Okay, maybe that is not true. The excitement of the game just distracts us from the heat. ~smile~
Do not just stay inside and mope about the hot weather. Get out and find a way to enjoy it! Even if you go from your air conditioned home to your air conditioned car directly into an air conditioned movie theater, at least get out!
Spring just left and Fall will be here before you know it. Instead of wishing summer away, find something you appreciate about it and capitalize on that! ~smile~ Make some special memories this summer!
How will you make the most of the warm days ahead?