Contributed by Info Guru Terri Wallace
Summers come and go, and are often thought of as lazy time.
With the dog-days of summer looming ahead, it is tempting to curl up in the hammock and snooze away the afternoons, but summer is the perfect time to learn something new. When it comes to Fall and time to look back on your summer break, it feels good to be able to say that the lazy days of summer were actually spent doing something productive, like learning.
Here are the top ten things to learn during summer:
Learning to knit is a relaxing pastime that can help while away those hot, humid nights as you sit in front of the air conditioner and watch reruns of televisions shows you have watched countless times before. Sure, knitting warm woolens might not be what you normally think of as a summertime endeavor but, if you start now, by the time the frost is on the pumpkin you are likely to have a warm pile of woolens to keep you toasty all winter long. As an added bonus, your handmade creations also make lovely gifts for the holiday season.
Gardening is one of those rewarding hobbies that, once mastered, can provide more than just relaxation or entertainment. Digging your hands in the earth and planting glorious fruits will fill your kitchen as well as your heart. And if your counters start to spill over with zucchini, you can generously share the bounty with neighbors, co-workers, or anyone else who hasn’t already learned the joys of gardening for themselves.
Your grandmother probably knew how to do it, and you can, too. Canning! Since you already learned how to garden and grow all those fabulous fruits and vegetables, you might as well put some up for the winter. Whether you prefer picked peppers, spiced cauliflower, apple butter, or tomatoes, learning to can saves time and money. Another benefit of canning food that you grow yourself is that you know exactly what is in it!
Let’s face it, archery is hot! The Hunger Games kindled a renewed interest in all things archery and this summer is the perfect time to learn this timeless sport. Katniss Everdeen did it, Robin Hood did it…so can you! Bulls-eye!
When the heat passes the century mark, there is nothing like a cool stream to chase away the summer heat, which makes fly-fishing the perfect sport to take your mind off the summer heat. Standing thigh deep in a river, battling a trout, with the spray rising around you in the early morning light, it is like a scene from A River Runs Through It.
5. Musical Instrument
The sticky summer nights take on a rhythm all their own, and once you take up a musical instrument you can share in that rhythm. Instructional videos and books can help you get started and then hone your skill. No matter what kind of music you prefer, the ability to play an instrument also gives you to the ability to transport yourself with song…like maybe somewhere cooler.
4. Stained Glass
When the blazing sun scorches the grass and causes the garden to wilt, it is time to spruce up the arid view from the living room window… with a new stained glass window that you craft yourself! Gone is the view of your fuzzy-backed neighbor sunbathing; instead, you can craft a work of art to help mask the less-than-ideal world waiting on the other side of the window.
3. Brew the Perfect Cuppa’
Unlike coffee, tea has a certain ceremony around it. There is a proper way to enjoy a cup of tea, and this summer is the time to learn it! Whether you enjoy a nice Darjeeling, English Breakfast, or Earl Grey, it is time to learn the proper way to brew, pour, and enjoy.
The time to save memories is while the details are fresh in your mind. That’s why scrapbooking is so popular, because it goes way beyond photos in a box. Scrapbooks also include things like tickets, programs, pressed flowers and other special bits of our lives. But even more importantly, they include titles and journaling that fill in the details.
Years down the road, your scrapbooks will be a treasure, reminding you about the best long-forgotten days.
1. Dig into your family tree
We are more than just the experiences we’ve had. We’re also the sum of our heritage. So learning how to do family history is a great way to discover that side of yourself. And who knows… you might finally learn where you got your artistic talent, your love of the outdoors or your really intense blue eyes.