I’m an Illinois girl, born and bred. That doesn’t mean I don’t like the heat (I do). On a side note, I also hate the cold (which is why I’m excited about moving to North Carolina). Right now we’re living in Pennsylvania. Growing up in Illinois, our summers were rather hot. Good thing we had air conditioning. I always assumed everyone had air conditioning. Why wouldn’t you? Let’s just say that when we moved to Pennsylvania and I found out that no one had air conditioning, it was huge culture shock for me! I had never heard of such a place, especially not in the United States! I couldn’t believe it! I’m told that most New England states don’t have air conditioning! Shocker! I’m also told that it usually doesn’t get that hot up here (not true). It was a squelcher last summer. This summer it’s been cooler, but the temperature is beginning to rise. Being a stay at home pet mom/housewife, I’ve had to find ways to stay cool.
- Put container of water in the fridge, and drink plenty of water! The cold water will help you chill off and drinking lots of water will keep you hydrated. I’m not a huge fan of ice, so I like this option better. Just be disciplined enough to refill it every time you use it, otherwise you will run out of cold water.
- Find local rivers to hike. Just look up local waterfalls and rivers on the internet. You can probably find some good places that you can visit for free. About 5 minutes from where we live is Salt Springs State Park. This park consists of a multi-tiered waterfall. I love hiking up the waterfall with my feet in the water. If you’re really adventurous you can actually swim in the water. I personally don’t swim because I think the water is gross.
- Go hang out in the shade. A shady park is probably a lot cooler then a non-air conditioned house during the summer.
- Have a water balloon fight. These cost less then just running your hose continually, and they are super fun. Head to the local dollar store and pick up a bag of water balloons (these usually come with a nozzle). Fill them up and start the fight. I like to play games with them before the actual fight starts. By playing games with them you can have fun for a longer time.
- Give the dog a bath. If your dog is anything like mine then she hates the water. Trust me I almost always get wet giving Charlie a bath (usually not soaked, but hey wet works).
- Wash the car! The car needs a good washing and you need to get cool. Put on a swimsuit, get the hose out, and have fun!
- Window fans! These pipe in the cool air from outdoors. I recommend using these at night to cool off your house.
- When you wake up in the morning take the window fans out of the window and shut the window. Keep doors to rooms closed throughout the day. That way you aren’t losing the cold air. Your rooms will stay relatively cool throughout the day. Only do this in rooms that can be closed off.
- Cover your windows! Why not invest in those cute curtains that you’ve been dreaming about. During the day keep your shades down and your curtains drawn. By keeping the sun out of your house you’re keeping your house cooler.
- On a really hot day skip the hot meal. Try making a cold soup (I promise they do exist) or subs! How about a salad? Or try eating a meal consisting of fruits and veggies! Or try cooking a bunch of meat on a cooler day, then when it’s hot you can just warm-up the meat in the microwave or eat it cold. Instant taco salad, chicken salad, fajitas, etc. . .
- Make smoothies! In the summer consider substituting frozen yogurt for regular yogurt! Your smoothie will be colder and taste like a healthier version of a milkshake.
- Dance in the rain! Rain cools things off and it can cool you off. Take the opportunity to enjoy just running around in the rain! It’s tons of fun and also refreshing. If you have a trampoline, I highly recommend bouncing on it in the rain (although it’s probably not the safest thing to do, jump at your own risk).
- Cold showers! Not only do you save money by not using the water heater, but you can cool off. These are amazing right after a sweaty workout. Added bonus: it’s better for your skin to take a cold shower.
- Find a local park with a pool! Since I’m an adult, I would have to wade through when there are no kids around, otherwise I might upset parents. But if you have kids feel free to take a dip along with them. If you’re desperate to cool off just borrow somebody’s kids for a couple of hours (the parents will love having a couple hours kid-free).
- Most amusement parks provide ice cold water free of charge. Look into this while planning your next trip. Not only will you save on bottled water, but you won’t have to carry a back-pack into the park. Hershey Park is one of the parks that provides cold water. All you have to do is ask a vendor for a glass of water (no purchase necessary).
- If you have a beach nearby, then use it regularly! Most beaches don’t charge admission, so it’s a great way to swim for free.
- Wear less clothing (but only in the house)! There is nothing inappropriate about running around in a spaghetti top and short-shorts during the summer (in the house). Just remember to keep another pair of shorts and a shirt near the door in case of company. BTW your husband will love seeing you run around the house like this!
- Be lazy! At least during the hotter hours of the day. Try reading a good book or watching a movie! Or if you insist on getting things done, sit down and write thank you notes, reply to e-mails, or take care of computer business during the hotter hours.
That’s my list! What are some of the ways you’ve come up with to stay cool in the summer? I’m always looking for new ways to cool off.