When April turns to May, I realize that my favorite season is coming around. I love summer. I love it because it means that my family will spend more time together, either outside at home or on a vacation. It is the time of year where invitations to barbecues and impromptu get-togethers spring up. A season when neighbors and friends make more time to connect by sitting outside and laughing over shared memories and everyone slows down a bit to enjoy each other.
Being from New Jersey, I love taking day trips to the shore. As a child, we always visited the beach but it was for a week as a vacation. Now that I live closer, I can make a day trip out of it. On Saturdays or Sundays, we get up and put the chairs and beach towels in the trunk and start the short drive to our favorite sandy spot. The familiar smell of sunscreen and the delicious salty sea air restores me and I feel more like myself than at any other time of the year. I love to travel but some of my favorite memories have been right in my own backyard (so to speak).
My family and I soak up the sun and the dive into the waves. If I feel energetic, I take walks along the water’s edge or if I feel less inclined, I love reading a great book under a beach umbrella, all along taking in the sound of the crashing waves. And, after a few hours of idyllic seaside relaxation, we make plans to get provisions for dinner. The first stops always include dropping by our favorite soft-serve ice cream stand. Then, the route is always the same, the seafood market to purchase fresh fish to grill, the farmer’s market to select softball-sized Jersey tomatoes and ears of delicate, sweet, white corn as a side dish for dinner, and juicy peaches for dessert.
It is an idyllic time and I cannot wait for the warmer temperatures and my summer routine. I love to travel, but staying local in my corner of the world ranks up there as a great get-away and one I long for as April turns to May.