As the kids begin to head back to school and stores begin selling fall fashions, it is easy to wish away the remaining weeks of summer. After all, you can only handle so much sweating weather before you begin dreaming of brisk fall afternoons and pumpkin spice lattes.
Pass the time with some fall and winter prep work so you can make good use of your time and cooler temps.
Plan a Holiday
Cap off your summer with a getaway to somewhere new in a cooler climate to get your first taste of fall a little early. Head north to the mountains, where temperatures are often lower thanks to higher altitudes or head off the beaten path to a rugged international destination like Iceland.
The average temperature in Reykjavik in September is in the 40s, according to the Weather Channel, making it ideal for breaking in those new fall layers while exploring the stunning natural beauty of the countryside. Icelandic airline WOW Air offers surprisingly affordable fares from many major cities around the U.S., so getting there may be less pricey than you’d expect.
Rethink Your Holiday Decor
If a holiday isn’t in the cards for you, use this time to do some proper planning and preparation for the holiday season, starting with your decor. Scour Pinterest for inspiration for everything from outdoor displays to holiday tablescapes. The advance planning offers you plenty of time to shop around for holiday decorations. Planning ahead like this allows plenty of time to order things online, see how they look together and exchange or return different items as necessary until the final look is exactly what you want.
Having trouble finding exactly what you want? Since you are planning ahead, there is plenty of time to create the perfect item on your own. From autumn and Christmas wreaths to Halloween costumes for you and the kids, you can craft precisely what you want with a little DIY magic. And by starting now, the entire process can be less stressful without a time crunch to get it all done on short notice.
Sort Out Holiday Menus
It happens every year: you scramble trying to figure out a fresh way to spin your traditional holiday meals in a way that will be equal parts delicious and memorable. But as you normally don’t have more than a few days to sort out your menu, you usually fall back on the tried-and-true holiday staples of years past.
Instead, start meal planning for the holidays now. Use these final weeks of summer to flirt with the flavors of your favorite season and start recipe testing so you can get everything just right by the time that Thanksgiving and Christmas roll around. Search online for creative recipes that feature your favorite seasonal flavors or check out a few holiday cookbooks from your local library and get cooking until you have your entire holiday menu planned.
Do Your Christmas Shopping
Save yourself some stress in December by doing your holiday shopping now. Make your shopping list and create a budget to keep your spending in line. Take advantage of the summer sales and start checking people off of your gift list. Stock up on gift wrap as well so you can wrap and tag each item as you buy it and then store it all ready to go for December 25.