ten end of summer challenges via laurenconrad.com

It’s hard to believe that tomorrow marks the first day of August, which means summer is almost halfway over. Are we the only ones who feel stunned by how fast it’s flying by?! We always begin this season with an ambitious amount of fun to-dos on our summer bucket list… And then, each year without fail, time flies by and most of those items go unchecked. Well, today we’re here to remind you that it’s time to make the most of the month ahead while the weather is still warm and the days are still long. Below we’re sharing 10 end-of-summer challenges that will inspire you to get out and enjoy what’s left of this season. Think of it as your weekend guidebook the next time you’re feeling in the mood to do something new and adventurous. And be sure to let us know if you have any additions in the comments below!

1. Avoid the oven.
In the heat of summer, who wants to eat a hot meal? Cold dishes are so much more refreshing, so go outside of your comfort zone and try something other than roasted meats and sautéed veggies. Set a dinner menu for an entire week’s worth of chilled meals—from this chilled chicken salad to gazpacho to shrimp cocktail to a delicious summer salad… Turning down the temps in the kitchen will have you feeling cooled off and inspired to whip up something new.

2. Shop seasonally.
Summer offers so much beautiful produce that grows seasonally—from berries to stone fruit to an array of delicious veggies. Take on the challenge of shopping just for what is in season. The easiest way to do this is to frequent your farmer’s market instead of shopping for out-of-season produce at the supermarket. Our ancestors ate this way hundreds of years ago, so you just might find that it feels natural and refreshing. Find our list of seasonal summer produce right here.

3. Go for a surf.
As kids begin to go back to school in August, this month proves to be one of the best times to head to the beach. And while you’re at it, why not take out a surfboard and try your hand at a surf session? Learning something new is always a fun challenge, especially when it’s one that gives you exercise and endorphins. Don’t live by the beach? Head to your nearest pool with friends or family and organize an afternoon of pool games. Anything that involves water and good company is always a win in our book.

4. Ditch your shoes.
Did you know that walking on the grass or sand barefoot can actually pass free positive electrons from the earth to your body? Studies have shown that this practice of walking barefoot on the earth, called “earthing,” can improve your quality of sleep, reduce stress, improve blood circulation, reduce inflammation, and reduce free radicals in the body. This time of year provides the perfect opportunity to get outside in the morning or evening and go for a healthy, leisurely walk sans shoes. Just be sure you do it on the grass or beach instead of pavement or asphalt, as that’s how you’ll reap the most benefits.

5. Pick up some poetry.
We love a good juicy beach read as much as the next bookworm, but there’s something to be said about reading a book of poetry this time of year that’s just so romantic. Poetry might not be the first genre of literature you gravitate to, but we challenge you to give it a try. You might become inspired in ways you’d never expected. Below are some suggestions!

6. Go a weekend without driving.
This one may be a big challenge for our fellow Angelenos: Try not to get in your car for one entire weekend next month. Walk to your coffee shop, walk to your gym, have friends over for a dinner party and walk to get groceries for your ingredients. Not only will you get in your 10,000 steps, but you will also enjoy the scenery around you.

7. Start a gratitude journal.
One of the easiest ways to get centered and stay happy is to practice gratitude… So, we challenge you to start a gratitude journal. Get a blank notebook and keep it on your bedside table. At the end of each day, write down 3-5 things you are grateful for. It is not only likely to improve your sleep, but it’s also a great opportunity to reflect back on your favorite aspects of the summer.

8. Attend an outdoor summer concert.
There are few things more joyful than dancing outside to live music in the summertime. So, we challenge you to find an outdoor summer concert near you and dance the night away. Many cities have free shows this time of year… A quick Google search using your city’s name and the phrase “free outdoor summer concert” should bring up some results. And, if you have to drive to find a fun concert, make a mini road trip out of it!

9. Give your tresses a touch of color.
Looking to spice up those sun kissed summer highlights but not in the mood for a trip to the salon? If you already have lighter colored locks, Kristin Ess’s Rose Gold Temporary Tint adds the perfect pop of pink to your tresses and washes out easily after a 1-3 shampoos. All of our Team LC editors are obsessed.

10. Whip up a no-bake dessert.
We mentioned avoiding using your oven earlier, and this applies to desserts too! Whip up a delicious ice box pie or one of our favorite no-bake vegan cheesecakes. This strawberry coconut one is our favorite, but this blueberry version is a close second.

Do you have any summer challenges to add to our bucket list? 

Leave them in the comments below—we’d love to read your suggestions!

XO Team LC

Photos: LaurenConrad.com
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