It’s sad. Check-out time from the rented beach house really is at ten tomorrow morning and then I will only have a few more weeks to wear my flip-flops and white capris before someone calls the fashion police.
The barn swallows have gone and are winging their way to the Florida Keys and the leaves of our tulip popular tree are beginning in earnest to spread a yellow patch-work quilt on the lawn. It really is:
Photo by Hilary Farr of Love It or List It
While heat-haters celebrate the advent of cooler days those of us who will miss the smell of suntan lotion and the end of locally grown tomatoes can begin to feel a bit blue… But take heart!
HERE ARE THREE CURES TO BEAT THE SUMMERTIME BLUES
1. THE CROCK POT CURE
Long shadows – That wonderful time of day when the sun begins to set and the long shadows of buildings and trees appear on sidewalks and lawns – are my trigger to begin preparing dinner. In the lazy, crazy days of summer lingering sunlight can make for late dinners with starving kids and husbands grabbing graham cracker stacks while the pasta boils.
In winter it is quite different. Long shadows are often long gone by the time I close the windows on my computer. Days are short and popping up out of the subway along with other work-a-day meerkats to the gray skies of winter dusk does little to inspire the joy of cooking in me. Add an empty nest to the mix and the end of summer blues can kick in hard!
The cure: Crock pots! Seriously. Now, while the days are still long and before those mean people who impose Day Light Savings Time upon us have their way, begin putting a little more structure into your dinnertime routine. Toss some fixings’ in a crock pot before you leave the house for the day. When you return, even if long shadows still linger through the kitchen window, it will be time to eat. The new routine will help ease you into autumn when kids return to their daily back-to-school routines and prevent the family from experiencing what has been referred to as the “September Crash.”
To begin, try this easy, yummy Greek Chicken from the Fix It And Forget It cookbook:
You will need:
4-6 potatoes, quartered
2-3 lbs. chicken pieces
2 large onions, quartered
1 whole bulb garlic, minced
3 tsp. dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1. Place potatoes in bottom of crock pot. Add chicken, onions, garlic and olive oil.
2. Sprinkle with seasonings.
3. Cover and cook on High 5-6 hours or on Low 9-10 hours.
SERVE WITH A RAINBOW :
Ginger ale with Cool Aid Ice Cubes
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2. THE CHRISTMAS CURE
When we lived in Hawaii there was an advertisement for a tire company that used the catchy slogan, “Go now Hawaii! Why pay more?” We heard that advertisement so often that it became ingrained in our psyche and part of our everyday language. Now, after many years of living on “the mainland” we still repeat the words when we see a great buy or head out to hit the “red dot” sales at the mall.
So, “Go now! Why pay more?” Shake off the summertime blues with a touch of the Christmas spirit and engage in some creative shopping therapy. Check out some of those deeply discounted racks and bins while humming “It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas” under your breath. Summer sweaters work just as well indoors in December as they do on cool summer nights and a framed Legend of the Sand Dollar is just as poignant at Christmas when accompanied by a sand dollar ornament. You will soon be on your way out of the end of summer blues when you begin thinking “Christmas” each time you see something red, green, silver or gold marked down to 75% off!
3. THE CONNECTION CURE
My end of summer blues often centers around having to say good-bye to family members living far away. My natural tendency is to pull-in, withdraw and avoid being around other people. I don’t even want to talk on the telephone when I’m feeling this way.
I have found the way to bounce-back from the end of summer blues is to choose to quit moping around feeling lonely, re-connect with the other year-round people in my life, and get out there and DO something! Here are some ideas that have worked for me:
- Join a Jazzercise class
- Explore a volunteer opportunity
- Go to an evening painting session
- Sign up to attend a hands-on cooking demonstration
- Begin attending a weekly Bible study with other women
- Make a Mary Kay or Pampered Chef consultant’s day and book an in-home party
- Take my bike and go on a trial ride…
Another great way I have found to feel more connected with far away loved ones is to download the free app, WhatsApp, on my iphone and have my friends and family do the same. I can quickly and easily chat, share photos and even send short videos to them on a daily basis.
BONUS – THE ULTIMATE CURE!
The ultimate cure for summertime or any-other-time-blues is to consistently read and remember the words of God and what He has to say about coping with times of change and spending time in prayer.
No one knows you better, cares more about you or has more power to help you than your heavenly Father. As the words of the hymn, What A Friend We Have In Jesus say:
“What a Friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and grieves to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit,
O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!”
So, who says, “There ain’t no cure for the summertime blues?”
Click here, join the conversation and share your ideas for beating the blues!
Next Tuesday there will be a contest – with prizes!
Hint… Begin now thinking of other women who would enjoy being included in our blog group.
Blessings, your friend,