The Stress-Free Days of Summer
Its 6am and I am sitting at the kitchen table drinking my first cup of coffee. The sun is coming up and I think my favorite part of living, in my little Vermont house, is watching the rays of sun bounce between the leaves. The reason I enjoy it so much is it reminds me of the lazy days of summer back when I was younger.
Those days are gone for me. I think I lost them somewhere between high school and college. Then I became a mom and things began to move at warp speed and days blended together and I began saying “where has the time gone?” Sometimes, it’s hard to slow down. Our schedules, our obligations and responsibilities need us to go fast. I read somewhere, “slow down to speed up.” I was going a fast between work, home, and friends. At the end of the day I was exhausted and I had to get up and do it all over again.
Managing Stress: Slow Down
Slowing down, enjoying the small things that Vermont has to offer has helped me breathe a little more—reduced anxiety and stress at the end of the day. Since, I have kids I try to find things that can double as a twofer (1 to exercise my kids and 2 to help me become more mindful and grounded). But, you don’t need kids to do these things. These activities are easily adaptable to someone flying solo, with a partner, or a group of friends.
4 Favorite Activities
The Burlington Bike Path has been great for us this summer. Sometimes we pack a lunch or dinner and eat at the waterfront and then walk the path in the evening. Walking helps reduce stress and anxiety. My kids like it because there is always something new to check out and my youngest really enjoys looking at all the dogs walk by.
Swimming is another activity that we incorporate—either a pool or at the lake. Recently, we camped down in Button Bay and it was great for the kids. The park has a nice pool, with lifeguards, and I love the walking trails. If you don’t want to camp, you can just go for the day.
Working in my garden has been exciting this year. We put in raised beds and likely will need to add some more for next year. We planted lots of stuff… probably too much for the beds….but watching it grow and weeding it has been a source of excitement for the kids and myself. I’m excited to be able to can and make some of my summer favorites: dill and bread and butter pickles, and dilly beans. I’ve heard some pretty good things about SummerVale on Thursdays but I haven’t checked it out yet.
I’ve kayaked this summer without the kids. When we moved back to VT we promised ourselves we would buy kayaks and we did. We’ve kayaked with both kids and while its exciting—it’s a lot of work because they are so young. It’s nice to be able to kayak without them and enjoy the quiet. You can rent kayaks for a reasonable price at most local state parks and beaches.
What am I missing? Share below.