Summer starts early in South Florida. With temperatures in the mid 80's in May it feels like summer to me. Seasons do change in Miami, subtle yes, but changes just the same.
I know it is summer when...
1. My pool is warm enough to swim in. Not just splash around my big toe, but a real swim especially just before bed. There is nothing like a moonlit swim when my gardenias bushes surrounding my pool are in bloom.
2. My garden becomes a tropical paradise. The heliconias start shooting out blooms twelve inches high and the Royal Poinsettia trees burst into an explosion of red. Color is alive and vibrant everywhere, an artist’s dream. (See photos: http://twitpic.com/photos/ecoartist)
3. The smell of sunscreen is everywhere. My oldest son starts complaining because he hates the smell of sunscreen. Why can't we make a sunscreen that smells good and doesn't burn when you rub your eyes? I would make my life so much easier. What Miami mom hasn't chased her kids around with the sunscreen bottle trying to get out the door?
4. The days are gloriously long. It's light out when I go to work in the morning and somehow I have more energy to go for a bike ride or a swim with the kids before dinner.
5. The bay is flat and perfect for kayaking, my favorite sport. I don't mind getting wet when the water is warm and refreshing and because the water is calm I see more wildlife. I still get startled every time I hear a loud “whoosh” next to me: dolphins.
6. The heat slows everyone down. It seems like the whole city relaxes. Sure everyone complains about heat, but the balmy nights are heaven.
7. I don't care how clean my house is. I can't explain it, but the mess just doesn't bother me like it does during the winter holidays.
8. All you need is a bikini, sandals, sunscreen, cover-up and a hat. You can go anywhere like that in Miami… or at least any place you would want to go.
9. Mangoes are in season. There are over 250 varieties of mangoes. Fairchild Tropical Botanical Gardens has a mango Festival every year. This year it is the weekend of July 11th. I never miss it. I even plan my vacation around it. They have mango tasting, mango workshops and even sell the mango trees. I always recommend tasting a mango before you purchase the tree. The taste and texture varies from super sweet to a bland cooking variety and from smooth to stringy. My favorites are: Ice Cream, Haden, Kent and Carrie.
10. There are no excuses needed to go on an adventure. That is what you are suppose to do during the summer: go places, try new things, explore.
The part that I love most about summer is I get to reunite with my family. My kids will be grown before I get another change to chase them down the beach laughing all the way. I like just hanging out with them pondering over a big decision of the day like: what type of cookies we should bake.
Hope you summer brings you joy and tell me about your next adventure...