What sets summer apart from the other seasons is that we participate in it with our whole bodies. We do more and we watch less. We taste more and we eat less. We clean out and we take off. Life gets stripped down to our bodies and the weather. The more we participate the less overheated we become and the healthier and better prepared we are to welcome all the seasons that follow with open arms.

Here’s to summer:

  1. Protect your skin from the sun
  2. Go to the park
  3. Walk barefoot in the grass
  4. Eat a popsicle
  5. Turn off the A/C, open the windows, wear next to nothing, and turn on as many fans as possible
  6. Get a pedicure or give yourself a good one
  7. Eat ice cream and fresh berries for breakfast
  8. Go on a walk with a loved one and hold hands
  9. Wear flat sandals to your corporate office job and bring a little summer inside
  10. Shop at the farmers market and linger over the offerings
  11. Eat corn on the cob
  12. Eat a peach – fresh, whole, and dripping down your chin
  13. Make fruit salad
  14. Buy flowers – one bunch for the table and one for your room
  15. Garden or tend to your houseplants – clean them, water them, take cuttings
  16. Take a long weekend with new friends you’d like to get to know better
  17. Get in the pool
  18. Eat less; eat more foods in their simplest state
  19. Dance outside; at a concert in the park, on the patio with the stereo playing, anywhere you can
  20. Work more slowly – make shorter lists and take your time doing what’s on them. No rushing.
  21. Kiss, hug, and hold the little ones in your life as much as possible
  22. Read aloud to someone
  23. Pick a classic to read aloud with someone – Travels with Charlie; Charlotte’s Web; To Kill a Mockingbird. Read a chapter every night.
  24. Instead of eating a chocolaty treat eat a slice of handmade berry pie or cobbler
  25. Walk as much as possible
  26. Ride a bike
  27. Play tennis early in the morning
  28. Spend an afternoon on the shore of a natural body of water – lake, river, or ocean
  29. Run through the sprinklers –  not around them
  30. Drink iced coffee
  31. Drink iced green tea
  32. Drink more water
  33. Lay on a lounge chair. With sunscreen and a hat of course.
  34. Clean or fix something outside – paint a fence, go to the park and pick up trash, bring a bag with you to the beach and pick up trash. Remember “ If you think somebody should do something…you ARE somebody.”  – Cheri Huber
  35. Clean out your closet; donate the clothes you never wear anymore
  36. Buy yourself a new pair of sandals or a sundress – Then stop. Go on a two month shopping fast.
  37. Sprinkle a few days off throughout the summer. Have no plans. Let the day unfold. Do a few things on this list.
  38. Eat a leafy green salad in place of a cooked meal
  39. Send someone a thank you card in the mail
  40. Create something – Color, draw, paint, write a short story, put up a bookshelf, refinish a bench, make lemon squares from scratch
  41. Start a bucket list or a list of all the places you’d like to visit
  42. Turn off the TV for 48 hours – play games together, work on a project, go to bed early, read.
  43. Make lemonade
  44. Have friends over for an afternoon BBQ
  45. Picnic
  46. Wear less makeup
  47. Make an appointment to see a dermatologist and have a full body scan. Melanoma is on the rise.
  48. Listen to your favorite music while you do chores around the house
  49. Clean out your files and purge all those documents that are way past the length of time you needed to keep them
  50. Make someone else happy. Think of one thing you could do to brighten someone’s day or lighten their load and do it.
  51. Cut up fresh peaches, grapes, nectarines, store them in the freezer and drop a few pieces into whatever you’re drinking
  52. Smile. Laugh. You are alive and it’s summer. Enjoy it.

What are your favorite ways to revel in the season? What are your fondest memories from summers past? Share them with us in the comments.

***Looking for some interesting salad ideas? Here is a great list from the NYT: 101 Simple Salads for the Season

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52 Ways to Enjoy Summer

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