August has come, and the heat is settling into the south. By this time in the year, I am dreaming about living in a more temperate climate! Instead of complain about the heat though, I thought I’d count the ways to make the most of the last month (or two or three) of summer. Some of these things we have done, others I intend to do to help me make the most of the end of summer!
Host a Potluck
There’s absolutely nothing easier than a potluck! The last three summers, we’ve hosted a 4th of July Potluck Party at our house. Potlucks are the perfect way to have a dinner party without all the pressure of a DINNER PARTY! So, invite some friends to bring food and drinks to enjoy at your house! And have a good time in the A/C or in the backyard!
Simple enough – pure summertime refreshment. I made raspberry lemonade for Benji’s birthday party in April that was so tasty and super simple. I added frozen raspberries to already prepared lemonade. If you love tart tastes, you will enjoy raspberry lemonade! But if I’m not wanting to go to all that “trouble”, I squeeze a few lemons, add a little sweetener, and stir. Voila, lemonade! Whether in a single serving or a big batch, it’s always refreshing.
Create a Bouquet of Fresh Flowers and Herbs
We have daisies and black-eyed susans growing in our flower beds so lately I’ve made a few bouquets. It’s fun to use flowers from the yard! I added lavender for greenery. Maybe you don’t have much growing in your yard but you can use more than you realize! Go ahead, see what you can find. Or, grab an assortment of flowers from a grocery store – Trader Joe’s and Publix always have a good selection – and make your own bouquet.
Weed in the Morning
A friend mentioned that she weeds in the morning before the day gets hot and that saved my life – when I was trying to keep weeds out of the yard. I’ve let the yard go lately and the flower beds are overgrown with weeds, but weeding in the morning is the best way to get it done!
Visit the Beach
I love love love the beach, and South Carolina has some great ones! We visited Edisto Beach for a week in June with Jesse’s family. It was divine! Walking on the beach and hearing the sound of the ocean. I instantly feel at ease. I hope you get to visit the beach this summer!
Water, Water, Water
If not the beach, then at least find some water nearby! Lake, pool, ocean – I’m not picky. Any water will do! We live near a few lakes, and have access to a couple nearby pools so I’ve been trying to get in the water on a weekly basis. As a kid, I spent my summers by the pool every single day. I always thought I loved summer, but I’ve since realized, I love summer when I can easily cool off in a body of water. There’s no better way to stay cool than to jump in for a refreshing swim!
Keep the heat out of the kitchen and prepare dinner on the grill! I’d do this if we had a grill. But, sometimes we go to the lake with my family and grill hot dogs and hamburgers for lunch. It’s fun to be outside and enjoy that summertime food! This past weekend, we went over to a friend’s house and grilled hamburgers and veggies. The meal came together quickly and without the house getting hot. It was the best!
Visit Somewhere New
Whether a restaurant or a completely different place in the world, visit somewhere new!
Read a Novel
Summer and novels go hand in hand, especially when your poolside or at the beach. This only happens for me during nap time now or when the grandparents are with us! But, even if you can’t get out of town, read a novel that takes you somewhere new and exciting! During June and July, I read a handful of novels that helped me relax, enjoy a story, and get inside the mind and experience of someone else for a while.
Salads, salads, and more salads. I forget how refreshing a cool meal can be at the end of the day. But I try to incorporate salads and smoothies into meal time, especially during the day. I recently made a “pasta” salad that used zucchini noodles (zoodles) instead of pasta. I loved being able to use a vegetable in season in a way I don’t normally use it. Give it a try!
Add a Touch of Whimsy
As the days get hotter, I need a little more whimsy to draw me outside. I added a garland to our porch last week and spruced up the plants so that it again feels like an inviting place. We still haven’t sat out there as much since it is still very hot and humid, but I feel happier when I look at it because it’s clean and whimsical!
For some reason, toward the end of summer, I feel the urge to clean out. To rid the house of excess and have everything be still and quiet for a little while. If you get the same sort of cabin fever, try simplifying a space or even a tabletop, clean out that closet, donate a load of stuff. It feels so good to lighten the load!
Have a Yard Sale
While you’re cleaning out, make some money by having a yard sale. It might be hot, but start early enough and close up shop before noon. You could even sell that lemonade you made earlier! We decided to make our second bedroom into Benji’s room, so we are going to have a yard sale soon. Now with a second baby on the way, we’ve got to make room.
I have been meaning to make popsicles for Benji to eat this summer! I keep forgetting to buy the molds. But, I would love to try some watermelon popsicles and other fruity treats.
Do you have any other ways you’ll be staying cool?