Did you and your mate have more good intentions to be productive this summer than summer days? There’s still enough summer left for the two of you to enjoy a joint project that is fun, fills that productivity quota you set for yourselves, and has benefits that will extend into the seasons ahead. Here are 5 that can fill the bill!
1. Create a Little Lending Library. These mini treasures are popping up everywhere! The small structures are often found at the end of a driveway with a sign that says “Free Books: Take one now, leave one later!” Library kits can be purchased, or you can use what you have on hand to build your own. Or re-purpose cabinets and shelves. The designs can be as basic or complex as you like – the creative options are endless. Google “little lending library images” for oodles of inspiration. Creating a book exchanges is a fun way to promote literacy, share books you’ve read, find books to read, and get some conversations started!
2. Organize a Progressive Dinner. Invite as many other couples/friends as you want dinner courses. Each takes one course and the invitees move from house to house enjoying a course at each. Appetizer, soup, salad, entree, cheese, desert, after dinner drink – add or subtract to fit your group. This is a fun way to have a get-together before everybody gets into their fall routines while sharing the workload. This works especially well in neighborhoods and apartment complexes where the group can just walk from one residence to the next. You can add a rebel twist – totally defying the old notion that there will be no dessert until you eat your dinner – by having a reverse progressive dinner. As in starting with dessert and working backward to the appetizer. Bon apetite!
3. Paint Chairs. Whether some tired kitchen chairs you already own, $5 garage sale finds, or folding chairs that could use some perking up, slapping a little paint around will leave you smiling. You can make your chairs match, contrast, or speak for themselves. Check out Pinterest or Google “painted chair patterns” to generate ideas and find “how-tos.” Then, let the creativity begin!
4. Get Your Garden On. Your spring garden, that is. Now’s the time to gather and plant the bulbs for flowers you want to enjoy in the spring. You can dot crocus throughout your yard for an early-in-the-year pop of color, fill a bed with vibrant tulips-to-be, or orchestrate weeks of color by planting bulbs that bloom at different times. Don’t have garden space? If you have room for a large planter, you can still get in on the fun now to enjoy the fragrance of spring later. For simple ideas and planning tips, check out this This Old House link.
5. Create a Classic Board Game. Jumbo-style. Here’s a version of Scrabble you may not have seen before! It makes a great project to work together on, and results in entertainment you can enjoy for many seasons to come! Click the picture for the how-tos.
Don’t let all those “Back to School” ads mess you up. Summer is not officially over until September 23! So grab your mate, pick a project, and go outside and play!
Hi Shel! These are really lively and colorful projects and activities! As you said in a comment, one can find a friend or family member to participate with. I love crafts and hikes. 🙂 Hope you have a lovely Fall.
Hi Robin – good to hear from you! They really are fun for anyone – I’m pretty smitten with the mini-library concept. Now that I think about it, that could be fun for a small business, too! I hope you have a lovely fall, too – it’s definitely my favorite season!
I’m with Luanne!! I’ve got the wrong mate for painting chairs and any other outdoor activities!! But then 95* is 95* in the sun or in the shade!! But I love the ideas!!
Well, I guess it doesn’t have to be married couples, Judy – maybe a mother daughter project when it cools down a bit?!
What a colorful, inspiring, fun post, Shel! We just did a “progressive hike” dinner with three other couples. We began and ended at our house near the Garden of the Gods (Colorado), having lemonade or coffee to begin. Then we walked through the south end of the Garden of the Gods (1 1/2 miles) stopping to take pictures, and ended up at the next house where we had squash and wild rice soup with flat bread. The dessert course was 2 miles away, but less than a mile back to our house where we had coffee and conversation. It was a great get-together.
That is awesome, Marylin – good company, good food, AND good exercise! Not to mention great view – inspired!
Where do I find the husband that goes with these beautiful ideas? I picked up the wrong one 40 years ago if I thought he would paint chairs with me. Sigh. He might watch the stock market go up and down and annotate the notes I would take about it.
Maybe you could paint chairs with bulls and bears on them?
Hahaha, that would be great!!!