I published this list in August last year but I think it’s worth republishing at the beginning of summer, as a reminder that sometimes you need to set aside your to do list and live in the moment, especially when the perfect season for doing so has arrived.
Summers fly by and if we don’t slow down to enjoy them, they’re gone in a blink. I’m posting this as a reminder to myself too. I’ve been busy sourcing materials and coordinating contractors for a summer of renovation in Florida. But nestled between projects and productivity, there should be presence. There will be much to do, but there will also be much to taste, and see, and feel as well.
I came up with this list of outdoor activities last year. I like to think of them as spontaneous, playful, and good for the soul. Consider incorporating a few of these outdoor activities into your summer this year. :)
1. Bring pillows & blankets outside to listen to nature without distraction as day turns to night.
2. Gather wildflowers and weave them into a wreath or crown.
3. Bring a lantern or flashlight on a twilight walk, choose dirt paths instead of city streets.
4. Dry clothing outside on a line so they are crisp and smell like sunshine.
5. Go berry picking or to a farmer’s market for fruit and make a dessert that night.
6. Set up a tent in the backyard for reading books or napping.
7. Remove shoes on grass, sand, or dirt to feel the earth beneath your feet.
8. Visit a local botanical garden in full bloom.
9. Go on a nature scavenger hunt with friends or family. Award prizes!
10. Meet friends at a local park on a weekday for a potluck or picnic lunch.
11. Let your kids be the boss for a day and do whatever they want to do in town.
12. Go on a last second road trip and stay overnight in a place you’ve never explored.
13. Host a summer cocktail party on your porch or patio for your favorite people.
14. Try a local restaurant you’ve never been to and people watch while sitting outdoors.
15. Drive away from city lights to stargaze on a clear night.
16. When it’s quiet, count sounds you hear in nature and keep score: birds, breezes, anything natural.
17. Set the dinner table outside every night for a week.
18. Invite a friend on an evening walk where you each share your summer highlights so far.
19. Find a local lake or river to float in the water and look up at the clouds.
20. Watch a sunset from the highest point you can find nearby.
What outdoor activities do you make part of your summer every year?