The simplest things are what make summer so enjoyable—feeling our feet in the grass, hearing insects hum, enjoying the shade of a wooded trail. Seize the moment by taking your family out to enjoy the natural world with these ideas.
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Suit up: Even if you aren’t close to the seashore, everywhere has a place where locals wear their bathing suits, whether a river, reservoir or community pool.
Swim time: Spend some time floating in the water, just enjoying being buoyant (and cool).
Cool down: Whether it’s homemade popsicles (find recipes at 3 Easy and Delicious Herbal Popsicle recipes) or a trip to the local ice cream parlor, a cool treat is the perfect way to wrap up a beach day.
Lunch on a blanket: Follow the tips in “Pack a Perfect Picnic” later in this article for a perfectly portable lunch.
Cloud watching: Kick back to see what everyone envisions in the clouds while lunch digests.
Nature walk: A leisurely walk along a wooded trail is even more fun with a nature scavenger hunt—make a list of interesting items to search for such as smooth stones, feathers, flowers or shapely branches.
Try these tips for an enjoyable meal eaten in the park, on the beach, on a boat or wherever strikes your fancy.
To-go tales: Whatever food you pack, it must be easy to both transport and eat while sitting on the ground. Try salads or rice bowls packed in Mason jars.
Bring on beverages: Be sure to plan for a refreshing beverage: Easy ideas include homemade lemonade in Mason jars (see Turn a Mason Jar into a Spillproof Cup with a Straw!) or herbal iced tea in a big steel bottle.
A tisket, a tasket: If you need a picnic basket to hold all these goodies, Boxsal offers reusable ones complete with compostable utensils and plates. Just need utensils? Check out the reusable bamboo ones in The Dangers of Plastics: 25 Ways to Eliminate Plastic in Your Home, specifically made for on-the-go.
Sit pretty: Don’t forget to toss an old blanket in your picnic basket—one big enough for everyone to fit on.