Gabby pool

Savor the last days of summer!

By Gabby Reece

It’s hard to imagine in all of this 100-degree weather that, yes, summer is coming to an end. I think it’s a great opportunity to charge up those body solar panels for the upcoming fall/winter season. So if you’ve been too busy and not gotten your fix, let’s talk about some things you can do to maximize this splendid time of wearing cotton T’s.

First off, just ask yourself, “What was I dreaming of doing in summer last February?” Did you do it? That trip? Consistent meeting with friends for an early evening run?  Softball league until 9 p.m.? Swimming at the pool? If time just slipped away, it’s not too late. Let’s all squeeze the life out of the last few weeks of our official summer. We’ll pretend we are from Chicago and go from dawn to dusk outside. Have you ever seen those people? They know how to enjoy summer activity, and they’re in a city. They’re on the lake, walking, running, boating, playing volleyball on North Beach. You name it, they’re going for it.

If it’s too late to take a trip because the kids are heading back to school, what about a last weekend hurrah? Something as simple as spending the night in the great outdoors camping with your friends or family-just one last chance to take in the warm night air before reloading for fall. It takes a little effort and planning, but I think trying to enjoy the season with the environment is such an energizing activity. Believe me, there’s time for the “same old, same old.” What’s one weekend?

If you can’t make it on a jaunt, then how about packing up the crew to spend an entire day at the beach or lake? Grab the cooler, food, towels, sunblock, your boogie board, and a football and get out there. How well do you sleep after one of those days? Plus, you can create a connection for the day with the people you love that can really carry you through those busy times. The kids will especially appreciate it.

What about something as simple as pledging that from now until it turns 60 degrees, you will go for a walk, run, or bike ride after or before dinner? It stays light until pretty late.

If you want to get really radical, then do one very memorable activity before the summer is over. Go with a teacher one day to do a small rock-climbing class. Head to the local pool and take a swim course where you have to swim for an hour a couple of times a week. Take the family to go bop around on the back of a horse for an afternoon. Join a bicycle club (they have all levels of experience and expertise) that may even get you to ride during the colder months. You don’t have to be a pro.

Come on everyone, time is ticking and let’s seize these warm days while they’re still upon us. When you look back at the photo album your mom made for you, what was it filled with? Birthdays. Holidays. The best shots? I’m guessing they all had to do with those few outdoor days sprinkled throughout your year when you hit the beach or slept in a tent. You probably won’t find too many shots of yourself talking on the phone or doing laundry. Create those enjoyable moments that really do stay with you for a lifetime.