Ah, summertime! Remember when you were a kid and you lived for summers? As we grow older, summer may lose a bit of its luster, because it doesn’t signal an immediate change in our daily routine and scorching heat can make our daily chores seem that much more arduous.
Six Ways to Increase Your Summer Fun
Well, we’re here to help make this summer your best one yet! We are coming up on July, which is National Anti-Boredom Month, so we’re providing you with some tips to stave off those summertime “blahs.”
Read a good book
There’s nothing like a good book to help you escape the daily routine of life. In just seconds you could be embroiled on a mystery in post-war Barcelona (The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafron), follow the exploits of a retired English actor living in an isolated village by the sea (The Sea, The Sea by Iris Murdoch), or head up Mt. Everest in an ill-fated journey (Into Thin Air, by Jon Krakauer). If these titles don’t strike your fancy, visit Amazon’s list of 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime. Or browse your local library—in person or on their website—to find books, or e-books for your e-reader.
Go to a movie
Similar to a book, a good movie provides a wonderful escape into another world, as well as the summer heat. There’s nothing quite like sitting in a quiet and cool movie theater (take in the first matinee of the day to help ensure the smallest crowds) to lose yourself for a couple of hours.
Pretend you’re a tourist in your own home town
If you live a fairly good-sized city, there’s almost certainly something you haven’t done that many tourists have. Seek out the things that have been right in your backyard, but that you simply haven’t had the inclination to explore. If you live in a small town and it seems like you’ve done it all, go into a restaurant you haven’t been to for a while and treat yourself to a fancy lunch with friends.
Take a road trip
If you can get around and are able to get out of the house comfortably, consider taking a road trip to a nearby town, park or national landmark. Go to your state fair or just go shopping in a nearby quaint town. Breaking one’s routine goes a long way in beating the summertime blues.
Learn a new language
Taking a class at a local community college or university is a great way to meet new people, open up your world to new ideas, and exercising the brain. Learning a new language is one of the ways to strengthen the brain. According to the American Academy of Neurology, being bilingual can protect against Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia—even if you study the new language later in life. If you live in a more remote area without access to summer courses, you can learn a new language on your own or with a friend, from audiobooks.
Redecorate your living space
Finally, to shake things up a bit, redo your living room or bedroom. Even rearranging existing furniture can make your home seem brand new. For those who are more ambitious, paint the walls a new color and order new window dressings or a new bedspread. Sometime the smallest things can ignite a creative spark that can lead to even more creative changes.
A summer vacation is a beloved family tradition. But what if you are a family caregiver who finds it hard to get away, or you spend most of your vacation time visiting your elderly parents? Have you thought of combining travel and senior care? Read “Five Tips for Traveling With Senior Loved Ones” in this issue of Hand In Hand for some ideas.