Raise your hand if you haven’t done nearly as many things this summer as you thought you would back in January. It might not feel like it outside since it’s consistently 110 degrees outside in Phoenix, but summer is coming to an end. The release of the pumpkin spice latte was the first sign that fall will be quickly rushed in at the start of September. Before you jump into pumpkin patches and scary movie marathons, let’s squeeze out what we can from the summer that we missed out on!
Cancelled vacations and parties made it feel like our summer wasn’t put to good use. But there are some ways we can modify typical summer fun so that we can still enjoy these last couple of weeks during an ongoing pandemic. Some of these aren’t unheard of ideas but you might just need one more little push to get you to actually plan it. Hello, I’m your push!
See what I mean, it’s not some grand idea I’ve made up, but did you actually do it yet? That money from your cancelled vacation should still be used from some TLC. This year has been incredibly stressful and you deserve it. The kids might be back in school but you can still make this a nice weekend getaway and since it’s shorter than your vacation would have been, you can be a little extra indulgent!
I’m not gonna lie. I haven’t actually gotten mine on the schedule yet either. That’s because we are turning it from a staycation to a babymoon, maybe you’re in the same boat! But it’s important we allow ourselves these breaks. We are worth it. We made it. We deserve time to take care of ourselves and not just the house, bills, work, favors we owe friends.
There are so many staycation options, especially if you’re local to Phoenix. In fact, you can win one if you click HERE from Scottsdale Resort and McCormick Ranch thanks to ALT AZ!
We have so many luxurious resorts around here and if you book while it’s still hot, they are very reasonably priced and as long as you’re following protocols, it’s pretty safe to do this- Take advantage of room service!
Maybe you weren’t lucky enough to get your deposit back on that cancelled vacation, AirBnB’s are a great option for this! Ask about cleaning procedures first and then book one of these nice houses on the side of a mountain. Private pool, little cabana, maybe they even have a gas fire for roasting s’mores!
Drive-Ins are growing in popularity and popping up everywhere. Movie theatres are about to open up again but most people are hesitant to rush back to those. Whether you want to watch a classic or something newer, you’re bound to find a local drive-in playing something you like and more reasonably priced that going to the theatre! Bring your own snacks, get a car full with the family and enjoy a double feature.
It gets you out of the house without upping your exposure too greatly. Lately we have been seeing more than drive-in movies. Drive in concerts with local bands and even drive-in comedy shows are starting to pick-up steam. Do a quick search and see what new drive-in attractions are opening up near you!
Virtual Food-Exchange Party.
Okay you’re probably thinking, “What on earth is this?”
This is something of my own invention! It’s a spin-off of something my husband and I did when we were doing long distance. Get together a group of friends. Everyone is in charge of getting a different person involved in the exchange (best if everyone knows each other) dinner delivered. Plan it so everyone is getting the food around the same time and set up a Zoom or Skype dinner date! What’s great about this is that you don’t even have to be near each other and you can surprise your friend with their favorite meal or something you two would traditionally get together. With services like DoorDash and GrubHub, you can get virtually anything delivered– even margs to-go!
Make the most of summer with what you’re eating! Summer recipes are a great way to soak up the rest of the season and there are so many to pick from. Strawberry Rhubarb pie, fruit salad, fruit cookie, blueberry cobbler, BBQ pineapple from the grill to make a delicious Hawaiian burger, this list goes on.
Take advantage of the things that are still in season because you will miss those massive, juicy fruits when they aren’t around for months!
I love this one. Gets you out of the house and possibly even to a whole new place! Being socially distant was never so fun! There are lots of these great little spots around the valley and even more as
you drive a little more ways up north.
You’re going to need a blanket to lay down, some pillows for your booty, a cooler for cold drinks and possibly to keep your food cool and last but certainly not least, you’ll need the food. You can grab take out from somewhere or make some food to-go.
I recommend the kind of traditional picnic food that travels well. You don’t want something that was supposed to be crispy from a restaurant be soggy on your romantic picnic. Also if you’re driving a good distance, it will end up cold with no way to heat it up!
Stick with foods like sandwiches, potato or pasta salad, fresh fruit and cookies!
If you time it out right, you could enjoy a sunset picnic while the temperature drops outside. Have a truck? Go after dark and set up a comfy spot in the bed of the truck to make an evening of star gazing!
This idea was inspired by Mo! She recently took a camping trip and talked about it on The Mo Show, however hers was full of mishaps and I’m hoping yours won’t be.
Camping always reminds me of summer- even the bug bites! You might not be able to get a campfire going safely in Phoenix right now, but drive a ways up north and some places will let you. Do a little research before deciding.
Campfire or not, you can get your friends or family together in a circle and tell campfire stories, play spotlight tag, sing along to some songs, play a drinking game and bust out the old card deck. You don’t have to sleep on the ground for camping anymore so really it’s for everyone! Glamping has really broadened the horizons of a camping trip. Whether it’s an RV or a blow up mattress with a portable AC, there are a million ways to get socially distant and get in bed with nature.
Combine the idea of a staycation and glamping by renting a remote cabin! Flagstaff has some great options for this.
This is probably as summer as you can get! Soak up the last bit of summer air by renting a boat. Get a tube attached or maybe a jetski to ride along beside you and enjoy a day on the water! Just make sure you remember the sunscreen.
If you get a couple friends to split it with you, it’s decently reasonable. If it’s just you and the family the best deal is honestly to splurge for the whole day so you don’t have an eye on the clock the entire time.
Not up for a full day of boating or forking over $200+ ? Peddle boats at Tempe Town Lake are for you! They run at $30 for a little rental that is plenty of fun. Bring some drinks, a peddle partner and you’re good to go. They have other nearby rental options that are just as fun and keep you 6 feet apart too. Paddle boarding gets you active and away from others. I advise you to always ask about cleaning procedures before doing stuff like this.
Summer is ending… and maybe the world, but you don’t have to completely miss out on normal summer fun! Just BOOK IT! Make the reservation. Get your plan on the calendar. Make a friend or family member join you. Take the time to reward yourself for the work you’ve put into keeping yourself together this year. It’s okay to have some responsible fun during a pandemic. We shouldn’t all be miserable all the time! Here’s to the end of summer and closing the book on being pent up indoors. Hello, to finding safe ways to still enjoy life!