Fun in the sun!
That’s the motto for this summer 2021!
While the global pandemic has left many feeling confused or uncertain about the future, it is time to finally enjoy the warm weather again with great friends and family.
That is why we have curated a summer bucket list that everyone can appreciate! From hikes, day trips, backyard adventures and refreshing homemade treats, we have enough ideas to keep you and your loved ones entertained all season long.
Walk Scenic Hiking Trails
Wherever you may be in the world sounds like just the right spot for an adventure! Grab your closest group of friends or family members and enjoy a scenic trail near you. For beginners, start with a trail that suits your fitness level while you familiarize yourself with the new surroundings. Check for the weather, to avoid any rainy days, wear the right shoes (and socks of course!) and dress for success. Some other handy-dandy hiking essentials include a camera to snap pictures, refreshing water and light snacks to keep you energized, sun-protective gear, first-aid supplies, a compass, and an extra map to keep you and your loved ones heading on the right path!
A Road Trip To Visit Grandparents
Everyone loves surprises! Why not plan a surprise trip to visit the grandparents? If your grandparents live just a road trip away, plan ahead to visit the leaders of the family and bring along some treats with you. If traveling with younger kids, invite them to create special and personalized paintings for grandma or grandpa in advance for them to hang up in their homes. Like a painting of grandpa himself or grandma’s favorite flower. Or have the kids write a unique card, poem, or song to perform for them on the visit. There does not need to be any specific holiday in place to give your time and love to grandma and grandpa and enjoy the warmer weather in their wise company. While visiting, try exploring their neighborhood as they tour you around on a leisurely stroll. What new sights will you discover near their home?
A Day Trip To The Beach
Check the weather forecast ahead of time for some clear skies and sunny temperatures as you plan a trip to the beach! Whether it be for a holiday weekend or a quick visit out of the office during the week, hitting the beach is a blast for all! Pack your bathing suits, sunshades, sunscreen and picnic baskets for a full day out in the sun. Choose from endless beach activities including building sand castles, a beach treasure hunt, volleyball, kite flying, swimming, tanning, leisurely reading, beach dancing and/or barbecuing. Bring your best pals and enjoy the day in the sand.
A Backyard Camper
If a camping trip seems a little too out-of-reach for your adventurous family, why not recreate a camping trip in your own backyard? With young ones, plan ahead with all the same camping essentials including a tent, sleeping bags, bug spray, firewood and of course s’mores! Keep adventure in the air as you assemble the tent and prepare for the night as if you are really spending the night away from your home. To add to the realism, state a rule that the “campers” cannot venture back into the house for the entire duration of the “camping trip”, (unless for bathroom breaks and emergencies of course!).
With family and friends in the great outdoors (aka the backyard), get a fire started, as you roast delicious s’mores in the moonlight. Prepare for some spooky fireside ghost stories to share while the flickering flames keep you toasty under the stars. Don’t forget to bring extra socks and hats as temperatures tend to drop quite significantly overnight, even in the summer months!
Backyard Obstacle Courses
Having summer fun can be as simple as heading to the backyard if your imagination is up for the creative task! With young ones involved, help them transform your backyard into an obstacle course of their dreams with common backyard equipment including hula hoops, skipping ropes, balls, spare tires, water guns, buckets, and balloons. If in need, many of these items can be purchased for relatively low prices as well.
With the items, set up a creative course in the backyard, lawn or neighborhood green area close-by. Set a timer and have fun challenging your competitors to see who can complete the course in the least amount of time! Don’t worry, the game can be played multiple times too.
For the course, try filling water balloons, setting targets for the water guns to shoot at, spare tires to hop over or crawl through, and buckets to fill with water to race over to the next checkpoints. Have a predetermined finish line and celebrate the winners with small prizes for their athletic achievement. How does a watermelon donut for the Ultimate-Obstacle-Course champion sound?
DIY Watermelon Donuts
With all the time that will be spent outdoors, it is important to keep hydrated. Did you know that watermelons are made of about 90% water? What a better way to keep refreshed than with this tasty summer treat. All you need will be:
- 1 small watermelon
- 1 14 oz. can of coconut cream chilled overnight
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- sprinkles of choice
- a round biscuit cutter
- a mini fondant circle cutter
Cut up large, flat watermelon slices and use the biscuit cutter to make watermelon circles (aka the donuts). Then use the mini circle cutter to cut out the middle donut “hole”. Chill coconut cream in the fridge overnight and separate the solid cream from the liquid. Using only the solid cream, use an electric mixer to fluff up the cream and add in 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
Place your watermelon donuts on a tray and layer on the cream. Complete with sprinkles of your choice or other fun toppings such as blueberry pieces, cocoa powder or dried mango!
DIY Frosty Watermelon Ice
If you just can’t seem to get enough of the refreshing watermelon treats, try making frosty watermelon ice too! All you need will be:
- 4 cups of watermelon
- 2 tablespoons of honey
- 2 tablespoons of lime juice
- 2 tablespoons of water
- 1 teaspoon of unflavored gelatin
Put the 2 tablespoons of water in a bowl with the gelatin over the top of it. Let the mixture stand for 1 minute then microwave it on high for 40 seconds. Once heated, stir the mixture up and let it stand for 1-2 minutes until the gelatin has completely dissolved into the water.
Once dissolved, place the gelatin mix in a blender and add in the lime juice and honey. Using 1 cup of watermelon at a time, blend the mixture until smooth. Once all 4 cups of watermelon have blended, transfer the mix from the blender to a shallow dish and turn the mixture with an electric mixture until it is a nice bright pink color. Place the dish in the freezer, let it cool, and remove from the freezer only 15 minutes prior to serving to enjoy the sweet, hydrating watermelon treat!
Refreshing Lemon Creamsicle Recipe
Yum! A winning combination - lemons and cream! If this dessert sounds like music to your taste buds, all you need will be:
- 1 banana
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon of lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons of honey
- 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Using all the ingredients, blend them into a smooth mixture and pour into popsicle tray slots into the freezer for a few hours to cool.
That’s it! After only a few short hours, savor the cool treat as you sit by the pool, or relax in the sun. To spruce it up, try using fresh orange juice (instead of lemon) or blend in your favorite choice of berries prior to freezing the creamsicles. Your sweet tooth will be sure to thank you!
With hours of sun shining above this summer, these are the perfect months to spend time doing the activities you love with the people you love! Or perhaps trying out some new adventures too. Whatever suits your fancy over this summer holiday, make sure to make the most of it.
- Watermelon donuts: https://www.forkandbeans.com/2015/04/20/watermelon-donuts/
- Watermelon Sorbet: https://eatthegains.com/watermelon-lime-sorbet/
- Lemon Creamsicles: https://www.liveeatlearn.com/lemon-lime-orange-creamsicles/