Ah summer… So close, yet so far. Winter offers its fair share of splendid treats like warm fires, hot cocoa, snow, and comfy sweaters, but with it also comes terrible driving, freezing rain, and ten layers of clothing when going for a run. I love winter, don’t get me wrong, but there’s something about summer that always gets the heart beating faster. Maybe it’s the brighter skies, the sun-kissed, tan skin, the excitement of longer days and warmer nights. It’s magical.
I, as I do every summer, make a bucketlist. My days whizz by and blur together and you don’t want to bundle up in November on that first, cold day and think, “Wow, I wish I had done that. Now it’s too cold…” You want to make the best of everyday, even if you just spend hours under the sun, staring at the clouds passing by. A good quote to remember: “Time you enjoy wasting, is not time wasted.” -John Lennon.
Thank you John Lennon for that wonderful insight that encompasses the spirit of summer so well. Now here are some great ideas to try out this summer before the cold days set in again.
No, not star-gazing, star-tripping. That’s right, it’s just as fun as it sounds, and no, there’s no drugs involved, I promise. All you need is a flashlight, a friend, and the sky. A favorite passtime of mine created from my summer camp which I must pay homage to for this strange tradition; it’s a hilarious and delirious spin on spending the night under the stars. My only warning, if you can’t handle spinning, then it may not be for you. I recommend you be the one to hold the flashlight and record a video of your friend who will be falling on their face. It’s unavoidable. To star-trip, you simply start by pinpointing a star. Look up and focus on that one point and start to spin. Spin, spin, spin! As fast as you can! (Sounds ridiculous yet? Wait. It’s gets better). Spin for about 20-30 seconds, focusing on that star above you, and when time is up, have your friend turn the flashlight onto your eyes. Try to look long and hard at that flashlight. From there, I promise you that up will feel left and down will be somewhere off to the upper right of you. All senses take a hay day. The only hazard I have found from this activity is hitting the ground with my face, so I recommend the “tuck and roll” maneuver. Good luck, be safe, and have fun with this one.
2. Frozen Yogurt Pops (and other tasty treats) via Women’s Day
One Word: Yum.
3. Make a Summer Playlist
Music makes everything better. Whether you’re into that summer lovin’ country vibe, or want to relax to the lovely ukulele tunes that bring you back to the islands, or get revved up with the newest rave hits, I personally recommend some of these sweet artists. With these songs, I came to be the main DJ at more than one bonfire, so be rest assured, these songs have been tested and approved by yours truly.
- The Dirty Heads. They rock the PNW rap/reggae vibe with their lyrics and beats. Highly recommend their album “Cabin By the Sea” and “The Sound of Change.” They range from easy ukulele tunes to bass drops.
- Aviccii. He has hit the top charts more than once and stays consistent for an great party playlist. I love the song “The Nights” as it reminds you to carpe diem.
- Zac Brown Band. Alright, who can sum up summer in one beautiful sound more so than these guys? Especially with Jimmy Buffet, the legend of Margaritaville? That’s right, don’t fight it. No one.
4. Read More Books
Did you know that the average number of books people 16 and older read a year is 6? Only 6? What is this? Off the top of my head I can instantly name 6 must-read novels you must buy. And after you read these 6, go read some more. And more. Keep your mind young, and read.
- Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
- The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown (currently reading. It’s emotional, but I can’t put it down).
- The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
- Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
- Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
- Yes Please by Amy Poehler
And after you read these six books currently on the NY-Times Bestseller list, read these awesome tales:
- 11/22/63 by Stephen King
- Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James (yes..guilty…)
- Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
- The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks
And and and…the list goes on. I’ll stop myself now before I even mention classics like Harry Potter, Catcher in the Rye, The Things They Carried, The-
5. Get That Summer Body
Every year it takes you by surprise. Like animals rising from hibernation, when we take those first, few, hesitant steps into the sunlight after months of hiding away under layers of wool and cotton, staying warm with buttered toast and hot cocoa… and it can a bit humbling. Don’t get left behind and rock these awesome styles this summer with confidence!
- feelgoodfoodie seems to have quite a few tasty summer treats. See what you can make.
- Runner’s World never disappoints with their workouts. Your muscles will hate you for it, I promise. Roxy even has great workouts for toning up and working those muscles when you’re not up to running 7 miles at a time. Victoria’s Secret workout from pop sugar even leaves you feeling sore, which when the goal is to get in shape, that’s a good thing.
If motivation is lagging though, try these little tricks to get you up and moving. I’ve used them myself and they work! All it takes to make it a habit, is to start in the first place.
- A motivation board. It helps to surround yourself by your goals.
- New gear. My new Garmin Forerunner 15 and Roxy leggings got me out the door more than once, because hey, you bought it – you might as well use it.
- Last but not least, the best way to complete your summer body, is happiness. That’s a given.
6. New Bikini
Because why not? It’s a new year. Time for a new bikini. You can never have enough! Try these awesome sites:
For now, that’s just the start! Summer may be a few months out, but it’s coming back around that corner, and I just can’t wait.