The sun is shining, veggies are planted in the garden, flowers are in bloom, serotonin levels are up… I can smell it and feel it on my skin… summer is in the air!

I’ve grown a new appreciation for the heat and the sun, as well as the great and beautiful “outdoors.” As we tiptoe into June, I get excited looking ahead in my calendar wondering what unexpected adventures are in store, and what experiences I can intentionally plan for. I have lots of fun plans for Mommy and Son time, but if I’ve learned anything in the past year… it’s that we need to nourish and love ourselves in the journey to becoming our best – the greatest version of ourselves.

Often this means, grown-up time! Although we’d all LOVE a nice tropical vacation for a week or two, sometimes we have other priorities. We can make the most out of summer close to home, if we look around and see what’s there for us.

Hopefully, you have at least one of these things available to you. So leaving plenty of room for surprise and serendipity, here are a few ways to make sure you stay in that nourishing self-love zone through the summer months:


Reconnect to Green Spaces – taking a Saturday, or any day off, and roaming through a green, wooded trail is great for our well-being. Under the canopy of trees, listening to the birds, far from the busy streets… whether you prefer your hikes slow and easy, or fast and heart-pounding, the experience can ground you. Good for the heart and spirit. For wheelchair accessible trails in the US, see Rails-to-Trails Conservancy:


Beach or Lake Days – this should be a given. Many of us naturally associate days at the beach or being at the waters edge with summertime. Lounge on a towel, replenish Vitamin D, bury your toes in the warm sand, and read a sizzling romance or another book that suits you. Pop in your earbuds and zone out to music. Let the sun warm you, inside and out. Don’t forget to go frolic around in the water to cool off!

Take care of your skin while out in the sun… and always rehydrate… whether you tan or burn, always moisturize. Your skin will thank you. And if you don’t care for the beach during peak sun hours, a quiet sunset stroll does the trick, too.


Do-it-Yourself Spa Day – (If you can’t get to an actual spa.) So, if you can imagine it, take over the bathroom. I prefer the light off; candles lit. Play soothing spa music. Fill the tub with warm water and a few drops of your favorite essential oil, and any other healthy add-ins you enjoy.

Let the aromatics fill the space, breathe them in. Make or buy some products to rejuvenate and soothe your sun-drenched body: sugar scrubs to exfoliate and refresh your skin, healing moisturizers to replenish suppleness (if you can score a massage from a friend of significant other in the process… all the better.)

Later on, place your favorite chair outside, gaze at the stars, sip your favorite drink, and breathe in the stillness. Carry the tranquility with you as long as you can. Let it heal you, from the inside. Intentionally set aside time to relax your mind, nourish your body, and connect with your soul. We can all get stressed out from time to time, which is why taking time out for yourself is always important. Maybe you have a friend who needs to self-care day. Knowing that something like spa gift cards austin exists could be a nice little surprise for you and a friend, just so you can be looked after for once! Who wouldn’t love that?


Enjoy Seasonal Food – this is a great time of year to reap the harvest. Skip the grocery store and support the farmer’s markets; take home some fresh and local fruit and vegetables. Try some new ones! Yum, yum! Eating local and sustainable food is not only good for your body, but it’s better for the community and the planet. Win-win.


Try New Things – Challenge yourself! As important as it is to relax and nourish… sometimes self-love means getting past fears and reinventing ourselves. Make a list of 5 or so new things you will learn or do this summer: ride a jet-ski, go out on a boat, learn to surf, go camping under the stars, do yoga on the beach, do something alone, go to parties, make new friends, go on dates, frolic under a waterfall, go salsa dancing, go fishing, ride a horse, swim with a dolphin… the possibilities are endless! Have fun!


Have fun! Write a new story, experience new things, it’s your life! Live it now!

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Stacie Hammond loves serving her community as a public librarian, which she’s done faithfully for the past ten years. But her passion lies in writing. A long-time intermittent blogger, Ana J. Awakens is her first published book.