75 Tips for Summer Fun

By Woman's Day Staff

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Summer Love

Hello, summer! To make the most of it, read our best advice from over the years for every sunshiny-day activity, from backyard cookouts to fun getaways. Photo credit: Thinkstock









For the King of Cookouts

1 | Simplify the menu. Try to make everything ahead so you have only one last-minute food to prepare, in addition to grilling. July 1991 Photo credit: iStock

2 | Charcoal is ready for cooking when it's covered with white ash. September 1979

3 | Space food evenly on the grill and two to three fingers' width apart. About a quarter of the grill should be left empty, so you have room to move food away from any flare-ups. June 2011

4 | Find and remove all standing water. A few flowerpot saucers can produce enough mosquitoes for the whole neighborhood. July 2010

5 | Barbecued foods are messy; balancing plates and glasses is hard. Make sure every guest has a seat at a table. July 1991

6 | Figure a little more than a pound of meat for four average-size burgers. Shape patties up to one day ahead, refrigerate with wax paper between each layer, and cover completely with foil or plastic wrap. July 1985

7 | Wait until the last 10% of grilling time to slather on glazes. If applied too early, they'll turn your food into a charred mess. June 2011

8 | A hinged wire grill basket makes turning fish steaks and fillets easy. It's also great for sliced veggies, onions and mushrooms. August 1988

9 | Though it may be tempting, don't press down on meat while it's on the grill. Flattening food with a spatula causes the delicious juices to run out. June 2011

10 | Be sure to stock up on iced tea, beer, soda and chilled white wine. June 1964

11 | Soak a paper towel with olive or vegetable oil, grasp it between a pair of tongs and lightly lubricate the grill surface. No sticking! June 2011

12 | If you're eating late in the day, bugs will probably be joining you, so have plenty of citronella candles and bug repellents on hand. July 1991

13 | Have a backup plan in case of bad weather. If you live in a rainy area, consider investing in a shade canopy to protect food while guests run inside. July 2011

14 | Place your grill in a protected area so gusts of wind won't smother your party in smoke. July 1984

15 | To butter corn on the cob quickly and evenly, spread butter thickly on a piece of bread and roll the hot cob in it. July 1965
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For Happy Campers

16 | Lace your boots tightly to prevent rubbing and blisters. July 1971 Photo credit: Thinkstock

17 | Bring a teakettle, rather than an open pan, to heat water for washing dishes or drinks. Water will boil faster and you'll have fewer spills. August 1991

18 | Wear pants, long sleeves, socks and a hat in wooded areas to protect against mosquitoes, ticks and poison ivy. May 1997

19 | Drink plenty of fluids, even if you're not thirsty, to replace the water you lose through perspiration. August 1979

20 | To avoid poison ivy/oak/sumac rash, know what the plants look like. They tend to be oval-shaped and have three leaves per stem. July 2011

21 | Your backpack shouldn't weigh more than one-quarter of your weight or it will wear you down. July 1971

22 | Pack plastic bags to keep belongings off the ground, hold wet laundry and more. July 2011

23 | Dig a hole in the ground and line it with a plastic bag. Presto! A dishpan. (Remember to remove the bag and fill the hole up with dirt again when you leave camp.) August 1991

24 | Don't wear or bring any scented body-care products, which attract wildlife. Store food and toothpaste in a bear-resistant canister away from your campsite and in the shade. July 2011

25 | A bandanna in your pocket or tied around your neck makes for a handy towel, hair covering, flag...you name it. July 1971

26 | Pitch your tent way from trees on a flat, even spot. July 2011

27 | The surest way to prevent intestinal problems from bad water is to bring water from home. Never trust a mountain stream, no matter how pristine. June 1981
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For Water Lovers

28 | Don't dive off rocks, piers, etc., without testing the water depth first. Check even if you've been there before--water levels can change. July 2010 Photo credit: Thinkstock

29 | Stay out of the pool if the water is cloudy. There might be bacteria or fungal growth. July 1988

30 | Pack PB&J rollups (peanut butter and jelly spread on tortillas) for lunch. They're less messy and bulky than sandwiches. July 2010

31 | When shopping for a swimsuit, really move around in it--sit down, jump up, bend over. Dressing room gymnastics can prevent a costly mistake. May 1988

32 | Lay off the alcohol. Drinks and swimming don't mix. July 2011

33 | Bring a wide-tooth comb and spray-on conditioner to combat post-swim tangles. June 1994

34 | Keep kids out of the water if they're tired, cold or overheated. May 1997

35 | Feel more confident in your swimsuit by minimizing bloat. Up your protein, cut your carbs and stay away from foods that are hard to digest, including sugar-free desserts. August 2011

36 | If you get a leg cramp, massage it with both hands while you do the "jellyfish float": Hold your breath and put your face in the water as you reach for your leg. Bob up for air as needed. July 1986

37 | When someone's been rescued from drowning, call 911 immediately, even if he's coughing and breathing. He needs to be checked out, because loss of oxygen and water in the lungs can cause organ damage. August 1973
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For Pedal Pushers

38 | Always ride your bike with traffic and come to a complete stop at red lights and stop signs. May 1988 Photo credit: iStock

39 | Keep an eye out for cars pulling away from the curb and car doors suddenly opening. April 1953

40 | Make sure your helmet fits. It should sit level on your head, one or two finger-widths above your eyebrows. The side straps should be just under your earlobes and the chin strap should be snug. May 2010

41 | Store helmets in a cool place. Heat damage makes them less effective. May 2006

42 | Be sure your bike is the right size. Sit on it and touch the balls of your feet to the ground. If they don't reach, the bike's too big. May 1988

43 | Keep to the right and ride single file, in a line. April 1953

44 | Be alert! Hybrid cars can be so quiet that you can't always hear them coming behind you. May 2006

45 | Walk when necessary. At busy intersections, it's safest for kids to walk their bikes across. May 1988

46 | Turn your cell phone to silent mode. Loud rings can startle and distract you from the road. May 2006
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For a Great Escape

47 | No matter how many beautiful, impractical shoes you take with you, be sure to bring a low-heeled pair that you've already broken in. July 1969 Photo credit:

48 | Consider off-season destinations. Not only will you save money, but the merchants will also be happier for your business. May 2006

49 | Bring a small backpack for sightseeing trips. It's perfect for stowing a sweater, guides, maps and souvenirs. June 1994

50 | On the road, take rest stops as often as you need to. Your kids (and you) will get antsy if you don't stretch your legs. June 2003

51 | Distinctively mark your checked luggage with stickers so you can easily identify it--and others don't mistakenly think it's theirs. July 1973

52 | Pack like a pro: Roll clothes to fit in more, and stuff underwear and socks in shoes. August 2010

53 | To minimize jet lag, reset your watch to the new time zone. It helps you adjust psychologically. July 1985

54 | Don't leave home without your insurance ID card, an extra supply of any medication you take, copies of essential prescriptions and your doctor's phone number. July 1982

55 | Wear your bulkiest clothing, such as a sweatshirt, on the plane. It can double as a pillow. June 2006

56 | For a low-cost vacation, trade homes with a friend in another part of the country. July 1991
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For a Perfect Picnic

57 | Chill foods and beverages before you pack them in the cooler to keep them cold longer. June 2006 Photo credit: Fotolia

58 | Don't bring half-cooked foods to be finished up on a grill. They're a target for bacteria. August 1985

59 | Fill a plastic jug with water to about three-quarters full and freeze overnight. At the picnic, as the ice melts, you'll have cool drinking water. June 2006

60 | Use dishtowels as napkins. They're more absorbent than paper and won't blow away. July 1991

61 | Pick a spot under a leafy shade tree, such as a maple, oak, sweet gum or sycamore. Their leaves protect you from the sun and give off moisture, which lowers air temperature as it evaporates. August 1978

62 | Pack foods in the reverse order that you'll serve them to minimize how long the ice chest is kept open. August 1985

63 | Remember that perishable foods should not be left out at room temperature for longer than 2 hours; make it only 1 hour if it's above 90°F outside. July 1989

64 | To discourage ants, spray picnic table legs with insect repellent. July 1985

65 | Keep sandwiches dry by spreading mustard or other condiments between the meat and cheese, not directly on the bread. June 2006

66 | Put the cooler in the shade and place a wet towel over it to keep the ice packs cold as long as possible. August 1985

67 | Don't forget the tablecloth! No picnic table is properly set without one. July 1939



For Kids on the Block

68 | When school's out, do your kids insist that they're too old for a babysitter? Tell them she's the Entertainment Director. They'll love her. August 1969 Photo credit: Thinkstock

69 | Hold a talent night. It's a great way for kids to show off their singing, dancing and more. May 1994

70 | Turn a coffee can into a time capsule. Have your children put things inside that will remind their future selves of what they were like this year. Then bury the can. August 1997

71 | Set out a bucket of water pistols for a water-gun fight. June 2006

72 | Let them bowl! Fill empty soda cans or bottles partway with dirt or sand. Find a soccer (or similar) ball and set up your "pins." July 1985

73 | Hold a junior Olympics. Award gold, silver and bronze ribbons to the fastest by foot, in a sack, three-legged style or in a relay. July 1985

74 | Spread an old shower curtain or vinyl tablecloth on your lawn and let kids finger-paint on it in the open air. August 2003

75 | Everyone loves a parade. So arrange an end-of-summer procession around the block with kids in the neighborhood. August 1997

Original article appeared on WomansDay.com.

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