The last time I posted, I had summer on the brain. I still do, and now that Memorial Day has passed, summer fever is off the charts. There’s just a little over a week left in this school year and then I’m going to throw some MLK in my life and “Let freedom ring!” Wrapping up a school year for me is one of those times that I find myself refreshing my to-do list and evaluating my goals. In the summer, I like to make a bucket list to get me to do some things that I don’t take advantage of during the busier times of the year. This month’s blog post is full of some of the things that can check off a few things on many readers’ to-do list, help solve problems, or just make life a wee bit better. Let’s dive in…
In April 2012, I ran the Boston Marathon in one of the hottest years on record. That year I’d had a really good lead up to the race and came prepared to run my way to a new PR, but Mother Nature had other plans. My coach at the time waited until the last minute to give me a race plan because he knew that surviving was the only race plan that I realistically needed. Stubborn me thought that, while it wouldn’t be the pace I’d trained for, I could totally pull off an 8:00 minute pace. I did… until about the 10k mark when I had goosebumps. That was a huge clue that I would need to run by feel and have fun from that point on. Mission accomplished… I high-fived every hand in the air, ate popsicles, accepted hugs, and actually read more signs than ever before. It was fun… except some of the helpful spectators used their hoses to cool down racers, but they often aimed at feet. By the end of that marathon, I could have ran the next day but my feet were a total wreck… blister after blister was the result. The fashionista in me only had cute ballet flats for the after race outfits and those were out of the question. Cue an appropriately placed Walking Company store and in I walked to find a better selection of footwear. Now… if you’ve been in The Walking Company, they have lots of functional footwear, but fashionable???? Not so much. I ended up grabbing a pair of Birkenstock Gizeh sandals and holy cow did I get more than I bargained for. They ended up being some of the most comfortable shoes I’ve ever owned, and for one reason or another, Birks have made a comeback. I’m now up to my third pair of this style and I continue to get compliments on them. They look cute with a pair of cutoffs, boyfriend jeans and even a maxi dress. Oh… and they are always perfect to slip into after a run.
Okay… I am going to take a minute here to tell the world a little secret about teachers. We love gifts, but… not everything must scream “I’m a teacher.” I know it’s the end of the school year and many parents are wanting to thank the teachers that mothered their child from 8-3ish and helped them gain knowledge and skills during the past school year. Gifts are welcome and I’m going to share some of the gifts that I’ve received over the years that have added value to my summer. If you are giving a gift this year (which you totally don’t have to either), I can almost guarantee that you’ll find a very grateful teacher as the recipient. In no particular order, here you go:
- We love coffee. Coffee gift cards to local coffee shops are always a win. Want to up the ante… put the card in a cute mug or attach it to a breakfast treat.
- Pampering. Who doesn’t love to be pampered? If there is a nail salon near the school (or you know the neighborhood the teacher lives in), stop in and grab a gift certificate for a service. Want to dress up the gift certificate? Toss a fun nail polish color in a cute bag and you will have a very happy and polished teacher on your hands. Want to find the 2018 Summer Polish trends? Go here!
- Wine… there are so many really cute ideas on Pinterest, but teachers really can’t accept wine in a public school setting. But… we can accept a gift certificate to Bevmo or someplace similar. And… tossing that gift card into a cute wine glass will do. **There are some funny “teacher” wine glasses out there and these can be an exception.**
- Pool days & beach days… Bring. Them. On. Grab a fun beach towel, a magazine (Real Simple is my most favorite magazine of them all. It’s a great mix of life hacks, fashion, make-up, book recs and problem solving all in one place.), and a bottle of sunscreen and your teacher is ready for the beach.
Summer running (and running in pretty much any weather) can lead to blisters. I don’t know about you, but once I get a blister in a spot it takes a bit for the skin to toughen up again. Leading up to the Mountains2Beach marathon, I did a few races and wound up with a blister in the same place week after week. **Side note… no matter the shoes, socks, Body Glide, etc. I have one spot that believes any race over 13 miles warrants a little blister souvenir. I can run 20 miles and not have a problem. Ask me to pay to run anything over 13 and I get a blister as a reward. Mind boggling.** Heading into this marathon, I had a raw spot that I knew wouldn’t be ready by race day. I’d heard of runners using NewSkin on blisters so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to try. And you know what??? IT WORKED! That spot that I thought was sure to have a huge blister was perfect. I’m sold.
Sunscreen is always a good idea all year long, and to add an extra layer of protection a hat is a good idea as well. It’s hard to find a hat that is functional, stays put, and looks cute too. BOCO Gear has put all these factor into their hats. They have hats for all seasons, but the visors and trucker hats are my summer favorites. Another bonus… Melissa and her team are fans and the SIB Shop has a BOCO hat that looks great, protects your face, and also sends positive vibes to those that read the messages on the hats. Another fun fact about BOCO… it was started by a female and my dear pal Hillary works for BOCO. Hillary is rad. Female backed companies are rad. BOCO hats are rad. Get one and be more rad too!
With all of these current favorites mixed in one way or another, I’m going to start checking things off of that summer bucket list. As of right now, the list includes:
- Ride a roller coaster that scares me.
- Beach days!
- Eat at the Silver Spur (This is nothing fancy, but I think I’m the only person in Santa Cruz to have not eaten there.)
- Beach cruiser rides.
- A few weekends away where my husband and I have zero plans. Going with the flow is quite relaxing.
- Run on trails at least once a week.
- Watch fireworks.
Hopefully by June’s post I will have been able to cross some of these off the list and added some more. What’s on your summer bucket list?