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Summer Fun by Suzanne Gaff

Take these cues to Elev8 your Summertime spirit.

Summer comes with its own set of problems. Kids being out of school and bored, coping with the heat and the desire to take time off are just some of what we all deal with during this season. Here are a few tips to help make it wonderful as well as warm.

1. Electronic babysitters should be fired. Letting the kids watch television, play video games, or hang out on the Internet is not the answer. Get your kids and yourself involved with other real-live humans.

2. Lemonade stands, garage sales, or car washes are great activities that bring the family together and perhaps bring in some extra cash. These activities are fun and teach your kids the value of money.

3. Dr. Bernie Siegel’s book “Love, Magic and Mudpies” is full of ideas for family fun. Bernie has helped millions of people get more out of life.

4. If you can’t afford to travel right now, try having a vacation in your own town. Spend time with those you love in your backyard, at a local park, or on the school playground. Many cities have community pools, and the YMCA has tons of summer activities for kids of all ages.

5. Spend some time volunteering. Giving back to the community will make you feel better about yourself, and the whole family can join in. Check with your local United Way ( to find opportunities.

6. If you’re at work, make sure you get outside at least twice a day, and not just when you’re on the way to and from the office. Sunlight is healing and lifts your mood, but just seeing it from inside an air-conditioned space won’t give you the full benefit.

7. Keep up your routines. If you stop exercising or go off your diet for the summer, you can lose what you’ve accomplished. It’s also harder to get back into good habits if you take months off.

8. Come home early at least one night a week to enjoy a meal with your family and have a little extra relaxation time. You don’t have to do or cook anything special; this time is about being together.

9. Make a plan to visit or invite over old friends you haven’t seen in a while or some new friends that you haven’t spent enough time with.

 10. When you get back from vacation, immediately start planning the next one, even if you can’t leave town anytime soon. It’s fun for the whole family, and we all need something to look forward to.

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