When I think of summer, these are the little summer sugar plum fairies that dance in my head:
Hammocks. S’mores. Fire pits. Gardening. Ice cream cones. Pool days. BBQs. Farmer’s Markets. Fourth of July parties. Summer vacation. Lemonade. Street fests. White Claws. Beach towels. Pride parade. Water slides. Great America. Slushies. Music fests. Freshly cut grass. Hot dogs. Fireworks.
As we know, this summer is going to look a bit different than year’s past. Pools may not open. Summer camp is canceled. Professional sporting events have been put on pause. Music fests are momentarily a thing of the past. Must we go on?
Yeah, it stinks, but you know the saying about when life gives you lemons…you make a freaking lemonade stand!
It’s time to think outside the box and go a little old school this summer. Those are some tried and true ways to have a really fun season.
Think vintage summer. Recreate what you loved about summer while growing up.
Here are some ideas for you and the kids to help get you started.
Start a club.
Growing up we had a club on our block called The Little Ball Muffins. To this day, Ball Muffins are lifelong friends with cherished memories. Think about what type of activity you wish you had a group of people to dive into. A sidewalk art club. A cocktail club. Garden club. Anti-racist book club. A 500 rummy club. Anything goes!
Don’t forget to name your club!
Explore your town with photography.
Discover the details of the neighborhood you live in using photography. Look closely at the buildings and homes for the structural aspects you never noticed before. Walk around and choose a winner for the best garden in town. Write them a letter about how much you love their green and floral displays and pop it in their mailbox.
Another idea: create a scavenger hunt for your kids! Gather a list of ten items or so, create teams, and get those kids off their devices and onto their bikes.
Pack up your stuff and go on a road trip.
This very well may be the summer of road travel. Traveling by air may not be as convenient this summer and depending on comfort levels, everyone’s summer vacation may look a little different.
Pick a state and go for a ride. Get an Airbnb or hell, rent an RV!
Set up camp in your backyard.
Set up a tent, get a bonfire going, roast some mallows, tell some ghost stories, and sleep under the stars. This is like a summer rite of passage for the little ones.
Here’s a great lantern to really set the mood.
Host a pie-eating contest.
Bake some blueberry pies, gather some contestants, and on your mark, get set, GO!
Think Stand by Me….well, minus the aftermath. lol
Have an outdoor movie night.
Create an outdoor movie experience using a projector and a bedsheet. Don’t forget to make the ambiance extra cozy with plenty of popcorn and Twizzlers.
Get off of social media.
Once a day, give yourself and your loved ones the gift of one hour free of social media. Play cards, cook dinner together, get outside, pick your nose. Literally, do anything but be on social media.
Make a granita.
A granita is basically the Italian version of a slushie. Grab some berries from your local farmer’s market for the perfect summer frozen treat. Here’s a recipe to get you started.
Read something you’d never considered reading.
Or, reread a book you loved as a kid! This can go for films too. Go beyond your usual go-to and dive into something that is completely unfamiliar or nostalgic. Go on an adventure!
Here’s our most recent book list to get you started.
Pick an organization and get your hands dirty. Feed the homeless, get out in a community you wouldn’t typically go to, clean the local park, get active at an animal shelter, you know the drill.
Teach the kids some old school outdoor games.
You know the ones. Kick the Can and Ghost in the Graveyard are two of the best games we played growing up. I remember we would spend hours and I mean hours, running around our neighborhood yelling, GHHHHOOOOST IN THE GRAAAAAVEYARD! God, I miss those days.
Did you know that there are so many different techniques to create some badass, one of a kind tie-dye?! This is such a classic summer throwback. And it’s fun for all ages.
The best part is that you don’t have to stick to just t-shirts. Tie-dye a pillowcase, socks, and or even underwear!
Here’s a kit to help get your tie-dye on.
Make a lemonade stand, create a small business, or start a big project.
Many of us, especially the kids, are going to have a little extra time on our hands. In an effort to avoid total and utter boredom – think BIG!
What is something that will take up time? Perhaps it’s time to tackle that project you’ve been avoiding. Or maybe the kids can start a mini business and make a few bucks this summer.
The next few months will be the perfect opportunity to get moving on something you’ve been thinking about doing. Get er done.