Summer so far has been gorgeous. Good food and long walks, in all variations, have so far been the staples in my summer life. I was back with my family last week, who I adore. My life always seems a little brighter with all of them around, and my photos are more dynamic. I’ve been working a lot, as I will from here on out, but I am also making time to enjoy the flowers, cook and bake delicious things, sit out in the sun, have long talks with good friends, create some awesome new projects (at least two of them will be announced over the next couple posts!), and soak up summer as much as I can.
Last night, on a probably-unnecessary-but-very-necessary late night Skype catchup call with my BFF who lives about 10 minutes away, she said something very interesting:
I need to get back into the habit of reading for pleasure.
Booyah. There it is. Right there! Reading for fun is a habit, just like any other pass-time. The more you do it, the more you enjoy it, the more you work it into your daily schedule – the better it is. I am also of the opinion that reading the wrong things can bum you out and steer your clear of reading altogether. There’s probably some deep metaphor in there for life, but I’m a little out of it this morning so just bear with me.
I have a simple rule, most of the time: I read what I’m really, really excited to read. Choosing a book at random off my shelf can work in a pinch, but most of the time I try to read things that I can’t wait to get my hands on. This might seem like it’d be expensive, but I rely quite heavily on the libraries at my disposal (my school’s system and the Montreal library), which, among them, carry most things. Of course, for the brand-new ones that aren’t yet at the library, I can usually save $10-15 by buying them on Kindle. And sometimes I decide to be patient, and wait until I can get them for free.
All of this is to say: I believe in you! If you decide to make this summer the summer that you get back into reading for fun, you can do it. Let me help you by sharing my personal picks for the next few months! These are all books I’ve either read and enjoyed, am reading, or am psyched to get my hands on.
This is what my summer looks like. A little jar of colour, that I’m not allowed to open until May 1st. It’s like Pandora’s Box, I’m telling you!
I pinned a date night jar a few weeks back, but I thought it’d work well for summer plans. I realize that it’s not likely for us to be at much of a loss for things to do during the summer, because there’s always something happening that’s fun. I still kind of like the idea of emptying the whole jar before September 1st!
My best friend and I sat in my bed, scrolling through our brains and online summer activity lists to come up with all the most fun things we could think of. I scrawled them all onto multicoloured slips of paper with a black sharpie, and she folded them in quarters and put them in the jar. Teamwork!
We used a little colour-coding system (because I’m more of a nerd than you know) to keep track of which activities take more planning (ex. camping) and which take less (ex. making sangria). We ended up with:
Red = we can do it today! (ex. swing on swingsets)
Pink = we can do this in a day or two! (ex. throw a dinner party)
Orange = we just need to plan a little, but we can probably do it this weekend! (ex. go camping)
Like I said, I doubt we’ll ever be at a loss for what to do, and I’m sure a lot of activities listed in the jar will be ticked off without even having to look at the slip of paper – they’ll just happen naturally. But just in case we do need inspiration, my little colourful jar of summer will be there to offer it.
This is an amazing thing to do on a study break, because it makes you so optimistic about your life post-exams!
My father came to visit last week. And since I haven’t been posting anything of consequence, I would like to take this opportunity to blame my blog’s dry spell on my Dad. You see, had I not been touring contemporary art museums, imbibing tequila shots (yes, with my father), and generally being the best tour guide known to man, I would probably have been sitting alone in my apartment, writing useful content.
Instead, all I have to show for my lack of posting is this pie. This lemon meringue pie, which tastes of love and summer, that I specifically prepared for the arrival of my father and the remains of which have been heartily consumed by my boyfriend since the departure of said father. People, I whipped this meringue by hand. With a whisk. That’s love. Don’t tell me it’s not until you’ve reached minute forty-five of meringue whipping. It should probably be noted that I don’t own any manner of electric beaters, but that makes no difference. By hand! By hand!
You should make a pie for someone that you love. People love pie. People love the fact that you baked them something. People love you. (Are my daddy issues showing? Just kidding. Kind of.) Either way, here’s what happened.
My little housewarming party, complete with fruit-filled sparkling sangria and wonderful friends
Battling live lobster
Pints of cider at the perfect window seat, on Canada Day
The fireworks display from Major’s Hill
Remnants of outstanding nachos
An espresso at one of many Starbucks runs
Life has lately been a blur of picture-perfect scenes, not all of which I’ve been able to capture on film. Between work, moving into a new apartment, running errands and spending time with friends, my blog (as well as various other beloved hobbies) appears to have fallen by the wayside. I am experiencing severe blog guilt, but can’t seem to find an hour to just sit down and write. I hope you’ll accept my photo journal as a suitable replacement – at least until I get my act back together.
You might be happy to note that I’ve been ticking things off my summer bucket list, which, to me at least, indicates that I’m actually out there living, instead of just sitting around writing about it. Does that count for something?
This is the best summer of my life, by far. I hope that yours is equally wonderful.
What memories have you made these last few months?