5 Ways to Feel Good This Summer

School is officially out for the summer. I am DONE with grading papers and staying late and hours of boring meetings for a solid 2 months. Man that’s exciting. There’s still a lot of busy happening over the summer, but I have a lot more choice in how it’s going to go. I like lists (just ask my husband about our house hunting list), so like many of my students, I have a list of things I plan to do to get the max value out of my summer.

5. SLEEP IN

This is a little difficult at the moment, because hubby and I get up for work at the same time during the school year (painfully far before sunrise for most of the year) and he does not get summers off like I do. However, he’ll be leaving to do the military thing for a while next week, and I will get a few weeks of blissful sleep in time then. In the meantime I’m trying to learn how to nap. I have a lot of (sleep) catching up to do.

bed

Oh bed, how I have missed you.

4. Road Trip!

I love to travel, and have been a lot of pretty cool places, but this summer planes are just flat out not in the budget. I’m completely okay with it though, because there are plenty of places I can drive to that I haven’t seen yet, and driving gives me the opportunity to slow it down and see a lot more of it. Hubby and I have already decided to drive to and around Ontario in late July, since somehow neither of us has ever visited our neighbor to the north before. It is a lot of hours of driving, but it’s also driving through more places I’ve never been, and I love the idea of being able to hop in the car and go wherever sounds interesting once we’re there.

car

This old beater and I have been a lot of places together.

3. Knit Summer Fibers

It took me a few years to discover this one. The idea of “summer wool” totally baffled me when I first saw the phrase in Bermuda. Linen and silk and bamboo were also new and strange to me, once upon a time. But ohhhhh, have I been converted. There’s nothing quite like the feel of something silky slipping through your fingers on a summer evening – and if I get to wear it when I’m done, even better! Cotton is a more recently acquired taste. For a while, I actively hated cotton. I found it stiff and unforgiving, and it dried out my hands horribly. Then I discovered that not all cotton is kitchen cotton. Since I’ve begun working with more clothing-quality cottons (I’m looking at you, Cascade Pima Silk!) I am definitely coming around though.

silk

It is absolutely impossible to look at this silk and not touch it.

2. Eat Fresh Picked Produce

This one was a lot easier when I lived in the country. There’s nothing quite so quintessentially summer as eating something that was still growing that morning. Even better if I just picked it myself 10 seconds ago. Eating berries straight off the bush is practically a ritualistic experience for me. I have so many fond childhood memories of discovering blackberries or raspberries growing somewhere and picking and eating them right there. It was pretty much unheard of for any to make it back to the house for washing, much to my parents’ chagrin. Since I’ve been living in a city, raspberry plants have become a bit harder to find, but as I make nice with the farmers at the local farmers’ market and slowly build my container garden, I’m increasingly excited about this summer’s produce. At the very least, I should have peppers and tomatoes and lots of herbs on hand this summer. My mouth waters just thinking about it.

tomatoes

These cherry tomatoes have my name on them in not too long…

1. Live Outdoors

All right, so I’ll probably come inside for that awesome indoor plumbing, and for sleeping as long as I continue to not have a back yard and a hammock. But seriously, if you could feel the breeze stirring out on the balcony right now, you’d understand why I own a laptop. The fact that I’m a redhead absolutely does not affect my need to soak up some serious sun every summer…it just means that I stockpile SPF 30 before doing so. Summer weather just begs for outside. Mornings and evenings are great for running, hikes, horseback rides when I can manage. That’s the time to tend the garden or sit outside with a glass of wine and the sunset. The hottest part of the day, when all the winter loves whine and stay inside, is also prime time for me. If you’re lucky enough to live near water (I am) or someone who enjoys swimming pools (I am not), midday is the perfect time for playing in it. There is also definitely something to be said for sitting under a nice, shady tree or on the balcony with a good book and an icy cold sweet tea. Nights spent watching the fireworks or counting shooting stars, or even just sitting in the garden watching fireflies, are also a crucial part of summer for me. Even bad weather in summer commands appreciation for the outdoors – who hasn’t sat in front of a window and watched a good, strong thunderstorm in awe? Or moaned with relief when a light rain finally starts up, bringing that precious breeze with it, after a suffocatingly hot, sticky afternoon? So yeah, I’ll probably be spending a lot of time outdoors this summer.

balcony

Because seriously, how could I resist?

 

What’s on your summer list?

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7 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by caityrosey on June 13, 2012 at 11:44 am

    I would add “play Frisbee and croquet” to the list. Also, “eat watermelon and have a seed spitting contest.”

    Reply

  2. My redheaded husband also loves our balcony. =D

    Reply

  3. Great list.
    I always love sleeping in. And I am the NAP queen.
    I spend tons of time on my screened porch May through october in Chicago.
    On my list:
    Make Gazpacho….I did this today. It is goooooood!
    Knit a shrug…I cast on today
    Swim….
    Bike more…..
    Keep fostering the kittens
    Learn to Skype
    Learn to use fax machine give me by neighbor
    eat better more vegetables. More breakfast.

    Reply

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