Summer Fun

By: Kelly York

Summer is the time of year when we feel lighter. Gone are the heavy coats of winter and, for many, the heavy hearts. Sunshine has a way of cheering us up. Warmth, Vitamin D and memories of fun summers past all do their part. Take a few moments away from grown-up responsibilities this summer to embrace classic seasonal pleasures. Here are a few of our favorites. Ice Cream! On a cone, in a dish, topped with sauce or fruit, ice cream is an American classic. Don’t like dairy? Indulge in sorbet or soy-based frozen treats. Are you one of those people whose favorite flavor was set in youth, or does it change from year to year? According to the Food Channel, Americans are ice cream traditionalists. Twenty-nine percent choose vanilla as their number one flavor. Chocolate trails behind at 8.9 percent. Rounding out the top ten are butter pecan, strawberry, Neapolitan, chocolate chip, French vanilla, cookies and cream, vanilla fudge ripple and praline pecan. What’s the difference between vanilla and French vanilla?  The French flavor is made with an egg custard base, giving it a richer, caramelized taste.
Seasonal Produce Tomatoes! Peppers! Zucchini! Maybe these are growing outside your back door. Nothing beats strolling into your yard and harvesting a few veggies just in time for dinner. And don’t forget to grow or shop for summer fruits. Raspberries, blueberries, blackberries and strawberries are delicious and full of antioxidants. Did we mention that even baked in a pie, the antioxidants are still practically bursting out of them? And don’t forget peaches, another pie-worthy fruit. Or delicious eaten as is. Watermelons are full of vitamins A and C. Summer Paperbacks Traditionally Americans read a certain type of book at the beach. It could be romance, mystery or thriller, but beach books are page turners by definition. These aren’t the classics you’ve felt guilty about avoiding for 20 years, despite believing they will somehow improve your character. No, beach books are ones where you can hardly wait to lay back on your towel, crack the spine and see what happens next. This summer, many book reviewers are recommending J. Courtney Sullivan’s “The Engagements,” which tells the story of the young copywriter who came up with De Beers’ tag line, “A diamond is forever.” Hurray, a book about gems! Summer Fashions It’s finally warm enough to show some skin! For a classic feminine summer look, slip on a pretty sundress and top it with a straw hat. Summer jewelry should be simple yet eye-catching. You don’t want jewelry that will get tangled or caught on anything during summer activities. Silver looks great with a tan. A simple silver bangle goes with shorts and sandals or a pretty sundress. If you’re wearing a wide-brimmed summer hat, hang some dangly silver earrings from your lobes. The ones below are long enough to be seen beneath your hat, and sparkle in the sunshine.