"Limited Time" Outdoor Experiences - Don't Miss them Before they are Gone!

Summer is fleeting but it feels even more fleeting if we don't find the time to get outdoors and really enjoy what it has to offer.  It's a time that seems to be begging to enjoy a slower pace but in these modern times, slowing down isn't something that most people make a priority, even when we have these warm days and extended daylight hours.

And yet time waits for no one and for those of us in the northern hemisphere, here we are with summer days ticking down and Labour Day looming and the opportunity for warm outdoor adventures waning.

So if you want to take advantage of what summer has to offer before it's too late, see if you can schedule some of the following activities like you would your next work task.  Put this "Nature Time" in your day timer and don't cancel for any reason.  And/or when you find that you have a few moments outdoors, let it all sink in.

Use as many senses as possible:
  • what can you hear (both near and far), 
  • what do you see, let the colours of summer saturate your view, 
  • what do you feel - heat, air, a breeze... 

Set reminders in your calendar like you would for a very important meeting.  Make nature your most important client!

Savouring & Sinking into Summer List

Relax on a park bench with a water view rather than parking yourself on your couch in front of the TV.  Water is a magnet for activity whether it's a quiet stream or pond with some possible wildlife appearances or a bigger lake or river with people out on the water.

- Forget the dishes and get outside after dinner.  By mid September the sun will be setting around seven thirty and not long after that, it will be day light savings time.  Take advantage of the extra light.

Seek out some mammals before they hibernate.  Remember the more you go out, the more chances you have to see wildlife.  Best times are early morning or close to sunset.  (I just saw a fox at an urban pond where I enjoy a morning swim from time to time.)

Go for a bike ride as this is a great way to cool down if there is a slight breeze and choose a route that allows you to enjoy some coasting!

- Patios, patios, patios.  If you like eating outdoors, consider this a friendly reminder to enjoy every al fresco dining experience you can.  Including those quick coffee breaks!  :  )

- Pack a blanket in your trunk or bike bag and schedule some time in a park.  Bring your favourite book, some snacks and possibly even a frisbee or ball if you can entice someone else out also.  When was the last time you spent a few lazy hours outdoors?

Expand your bird call knowledge and get to know what birds are close by.  I find that I enjoy the outdoors more when I know that's a blue jay behind me in that tree or there's a gull flying by down the street.

- Take off those shoes and walk barefoot while you still can.  Find a grassy spot at lunch or seek out one last visit to a local beach to feel the sand in your toes.

Find a large field that you can wander through and enjoy some butterflies (I've seen lots of Monarchs this year - yay!), dragon flies and even moths and lightening bugs if you stay after sun down.

- Another way to benefit from these warm nights (while they last) is to check out the starry night sky.  Try to get to the edge of the city or just enjoy the stars you can see in a large park or from a greener vista.

What are your favourite summer activities that you want to double down on 
before the warm weather is gone?

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