Summertime is just around the corner, and we all have a little prep to do so that it can be a summer to remember. Here are my top tips to get your house, yard, and body summer-ready!
1. Pack up those winter clothes and store them out of sight. I don’t personally have many winter clothes because it doesn’t get very cold here in southern California. But I do have relatives all over this country and it is crazy to see how much room those coats and scarves take up in the closet! If possible, keep a few of your favorite items out for chilly nights, and store the rest in a coat closet, garage, spare room, or even under the bed.
2. Give the kitchen a good wipe down. If you’re like me, you make a lot of sweet tea and cold sandwiches, and you cut up a lot of fruit and veggies on those countertops all summer. You’ll need a clean work space, and scrubbing down the kitchen is not something that you’ll want to be doing in the heat of July. Dampen a towel in this magical mixture of kitchen cleanser and then start at the top of the cabinets and work your way down, wiping every inch of cabinet and counter space thoroughly. You might also want to clean out the fridge and organize all of that tupperware, throwing out anything that is broken, expired, stinky, or lid-less. Don’t ask me where tupperware lids sneak off to, I’m still trying to figure that one out.
3. Refresh the whole house with clean sheets, open windows, and clean floors. I always try to wake up early on cleaning day, open up all the windows, wipe down all counter tops, and sweep and mops all floors. Silk sheets are my favorite for keeping cool in the heat of summer, so I keep a few sets on hand to switch out weekly. I also clean all fans and hanging fixtures with a damp towel to keep them functioning well and keep the dust down, but be sure to do this before you sweep and mop!
1. Clean that grill! I wrote an article awhile back about cleaning your stainless steel grill, and that article is one of my most popular. Hubby and I grill all summer long, at least a few nights a week. It’s fun to have friends over and sit around the back yard sipping beer and listening to music. My husband is the KING of the grill, and I’m not just saying that. Everyone raves over his grilling skills, and I’m secretly really impressed by them myself. Grilling is also a great way to make delicious healthy meals that don’t heat up the whole house in the dead of summer. So follow these tips to get that grill clean for the summer.
2. Get rid of the weeds. If you want the back yard to be summer ready, you’ll have to clear out the weeds, the brush, the trash, and anything else that is taking away from your prime summer real estate. We have a small yard, a patio set, a grill, and a kiddie pool for the baby. That’s it, but it still takes maintenance. So wipe down the patio furniture, pluck the weeds, trim the grass; whatever it takes to get the yard looking pretty for those fun summer cookouts!
3. Repel those pesky bugs. We have a major bug problem around here, and if you have the porch light on, you are going to have bugs swarming the yard all night long. On top of that, mosquitoes love me, they tear me up like I’m their favorite holiday dinner. I read somewhere that essential oils can help repel bugs, so I looked in my stash for something useful. I only had peppermint oil and orange oil, so with a hopeful heart, I mixed 12 drops of peppermint oil with two cups of water in a spray bottle and I went crazy spraying the yard. To my absolute surprise, there were no more bugs! And the bugs haven’t come back since. I have no idea if this was a fluke or not, but I’m convinced that most of those pesky warm-weather bugs are not fond of peppermint oil, and I’ll keep spraying my yard with it every weekend all summer long.
1. Drink water. If you want hydrated skin, and you want to avoid overheating in the sun, you’ll need to drink tons of water this summer. 8-10 cups of water are recommended, but don’t stop there! Eat lots of watermelon, make your own fruit-infused water, or add a few splashes of water to the top of your lemonade or sweet tea. My summer goal is to skip soda altogether and bring a big bottle of lemon water with me everywhere I go. If you’re traveling with your own arsenal of fresh fruit and ice water, you will be less likely to stop at a drive-through for salty junk food and soda. If you do splurge on junk food, drink a little extra water to flush out all that salt and sugar.
2. Get plenty of rest. A lot of us are on-the-go all summer long, but vacation can be a lot of work! It can be tiring, and we get so busy that we forget to rest. Remember to take care of yourself this summer. Take a nap by the pool, snooze in the sand, rest when your baby naps etc. If you’re like me and you work during the week, make sure that you take a few minutes on Sunday morning just to rest by yourself. If you’re rested, I promise you will be a lot more interesting to be around during your waking hours.
3. Exfoliate that skin. Summertime is all about shorts, flip flops, and suntans, so most of us want soft skin to showcase. Buy your favorite exfoliating moisturizer or make your own! Here is a link to my favorite DIY all-natural sugar scrub.
If you haven’t picked up on it yet, summer is my absolute favorite time of the year, and I’m so excited to be sharing my daughter’s very first summer with her! If you follow my summertime tips, and remember to have fun and enjoy that sunshine, this can definitely be a summer to remember.