By: Kate Wallin
“So, how was your summer?”
Coming back to campus in the fall, it’s the only conversation you’ll have for weeks. Maybe you’ve been working hard for the money up until this point at your job, internship, summer camp or seasonal employment. Maybe you’ve been enjoying the life of ease that comes with deferred interest student loans and little responsibility. Or maybe it’s been a long, hard summer. Maybe your plans fell through, maybe the money didn’t work out. Or maybe you’re like me – happy and summer lovin’, but still excitedly anticipating the coming school year.
In any scenario, with summer half over and the dry days of July looming on for what seems like forever, there’s always room for a little more spice in the routine. Take a moment to check out these sure-fire ways to beat any midsummer melancholy and make the most of what is (left of) your summer!
Dropspot is a kind of alternative mailbox. “It’s a hiding place in a public space, where people can leave things for exchange. Anything. It’s a weird and wonderful way to add personal character to the streets that we live in.” Adventurers of all ages visit the Drop Spots map, select the closest map marker and head out the door to discover the mystery. The only catch is that once you find your mystery gift, you need to replace it with something else, in order to keep the exchange game going. The website says “Stash something fun and see what you get back!”
With the summer bounty in full bloom, head out doors with family or friends to your local pick-your-own fruit and vegetable farms. Pickyourown.org has a full listing of U-pick or PYO (pick-your-own) farms in the United States as well as internationally in places like the UK and Australia, just to name a few. The site is also outfitted with crop calendars to help you figure out the best bounty at the time, so log on and get pickin’!
After you’ve collected some fresh food and spent some time as dirt-of-the-earth, there’s nothing better than coming home and sharing a good meal with good friends. But before you open the doors, make sure you’ve got some summer tunes that are play-worthy. Good news is that the creatives at Trntbl.me have done all the work for you! Log on, find a playlist that suits your event or mood, load and let ‘er spin. Also included: a tasty, eye-pleasing interface and design, so you don’t have to minimize the window like you did when uhh-Grooveshark-mm was playing.
It can be easy to feel overwhelmed by the thought of the future when the long hours, big bills, and entry-level jobs are all that come knockin’. But take heart! The Days of Yore is a website chalk full of “interviews with artists about the years before they had money, fame, or road maps to success” with the aim of inspiring you to work for, gamble on and eventually find your own. The stories are from creative people in diverse fields and are soul candy for anyone
Feeling the pinch of reality during these summer months away from hallowed halls of academia.
And last, but not least, get those endorphins flowing! It’s easy on breaks and vacations not to stick to a schedule but incorporating some regularity by exercising can be great for the summer bod, as well as the mind, soul and spirit. Logging on to Mapmyrun.org, you’ll find a community of runners and non-runners who “plan it, do it, share it.” Take the tour to learn how the site can make your fitness “easier and more fun” then find a new route, an event, or a group to run with. The site is packed with tools, tips and fun ways to spice up even the hottest of summers.