Summer is all about relaxing, enjoying time in the sun, and making the best of the short time you have. It’s also about bringing simplicity into your life, whether it be in what you wear, what you cook, or how you celebrate during the summer months. While we can’t help with any personal stress that comes this summer, we can help try and prevent a few things that can add to your stress level.
To help you simplify and have an easy and carefree summer, we’ve provided a list of some of the best ways to ease your burdens and help you make the most out of the season.
With summer comes warmth, and with warmth comes a serious lack of desire to cook. Especially on those extra hot days, turning on an oven is the last thing we want to do. Our bodies naturally begin to crave light, crunchy, and citrusy foods as the summer months hit. Some believe this is due to our natural and biological inclination to foods that are ripening and in season, but it could also be simply that fresh, crisp foods taste great in the heat.
When cooking this summer, especially for those big parties and barbeques, make sure that you’re making it easy on yourself by choosing simple, easy to bulk cook recipes. Try some of these quick and easy recipes to get started. Focus also on foods that are in season, and try to shop locally at a farmers market to get cheap, bulk, and in season items that are fresh.
If you’re still craving those hearty meals but aren’t looking to turn your whole kitchen into an oven, consider a homestyle takeaway place, such as a rotisserie chicken restaurant, where you can pick up a roast, lamb dinner, or other hearty meal to bring home, satisfying the craving without breaking a sweat.
For backyard and beach celebrations, make sure that you’re delegating rather than taking on all the work. One idea is to have a list of different types of food, such as starters, mains, desserts, drinks (alcoholic and non), as well as cutlery and the like. That way you can easily check off who is assigned to what, and avoid getting six of the same dish and no dessert! If you’re attending a potluck, use these potluck rules to help guide you in your decision making.
Celebrations in the summer often call for formal or semi formal wear, which can be the exact opposite of what you want to wear on those hot, sticky days. To help you stay cool no matter what the occasion is, try some of these fabrics when choosing a dress or outfit.
Attending a BBQ or beach gathering can be a bit tricky to dress for, as you’re now contending with not only the heat, but also the outdoors, which can wreak havoc on your new sundress. Not only that, but there’s always the chance of rogue tomato sauce on that white linen blouse. Wear clothing that can take a beating, hot sauce and all. You can even go so far as to purchase some stain resistant clothing like these options.
Summer is short, school breaks are even shorter, and any leave you take will often feel like a split second. Why is it that summer feels like it goes by so fast? They say that time flies when you’re having fun, and this is never more true than in summer. While you can’t stretch out time to have more, you can organise your life to make the most use out of the time.
As mentioned above, buying bulk can really help cut down on the time you need to spend indoors grocery shopping. Try buying your bulk coffee beans in NZ online, or think about purchasing cases of wine instead of a bottle here and there. If you’ve got the freezer storage, think about buying large cuts of meat to freeze for use throughout the summer. If you’re thinking about buying a quarter, half or full beef cow, use a guide like this one to help you decide. If you’re planning a summer celebration at yours, having these items ready to go will help cut down dramatically on what you’ll need to purchase before the party.
When prepping food or drinks, think large scale for the easiest party. Make a batch of cocktails the morning of the celebration, using one of these easy recipes. Try using a slow cooker for big batches of pulled pork or beef brisket, as Here’s some more great ideas that will help feed your crowd.
Have the right tools
Celebrating in the summer is usually going to involve being outdoors, so make sure your outdoor space is ready to handle the crowds. Have an entertaining space that you enjoy being in, and that you can easily maintain for guests. If you don’t love being outside and grilling, barbecuing, or maybe having a bonfire, then consider what place in your house will suit for guests. For the outdoors, make sure to outfit your area with a proper BBQ that can handle a crowd, appropriate seating, and nice lighting for when the sun goes down.
Large groups of people will require more tools as well, such as cutlery and plates. Try and stay away from using plastic and paper and move towards reusable containers and plates to help reduce waste. Make sure that you have obvious labels on your rubbish and recycling containers so your guests know where to place their waste. Encourage guests to bring their items in reusable containers as well. This site has some additional tips for reducing waste overall as well.
With a little pre planning, your summer can be not only joyous but also easy with all your friends and family!