Happy Summer Time

By Rachel Williams
Distinguished Young Woman of New Mexico for 2011
It’s summer time for most of us, and almost summer time for the rest of you! Some may already have summer plans with elaborate vacations or rigorous work schedules. Now is the time for those of you that don’t have plans to figure out how you’re going to pass these lovely sunny days. I have a few suggestions!
1.      Wake up at a reasonable hour
I know, I know, it’s summer time and you can sleep in all you want, right? WRONG. If you sleep in too late in the morning you’ll just end up feeling lethargic the rest of the day. Also your days will feel much longer if you wake up by 9 — making the summer last!
2.     Make a reading list
When I was in high school I tried to read at least 10 books a summer. (I’m working on accomplishing that goal this summer too!) It’s always fun to catch up with the favorites like Hunger Games, Harry Potter, Eragon, etc… but try to find some books that will broaden your scope. Look for books that are set in countries that you are interested in, or perhaps find books that are related to the field of study you are interested in.
3.     Establish a movie night with the family
Movies are a favorite during summer time, so how about combining much needed family time with a movie night? Whether it is on Monday nights or Friday nights, turn off those phones and put away the computers. Just enjoy a night in with the fam with some popcorn and a creative dessert. 
4.     Take weekly trips to the local pool
I’m not just telling you this because I’m a lifeguard, even though I am pretty partial to swimming, going to the pool is a great pass-time. Swimming works muscles that you don’t typically use, and you can exercise without it really seeming like you are. There are all sorts of water games and toys to be played with now that I wish I had when I was younger. Don’t you forget: if the pool is outdoors lather on the waterproof sunscreen!
5.     Visit National Parks or Museums in your area    
During the summer time, National Parks and Museums are really good with specials. Utilize the discounted admission prices (sometimes FREE admission) to learn more about your town/state/country, or simply admire the beauty of the National Parks. I am amazed by how much I learn from a trip to a museum, even if I’ve been there before.
I hope these quick tips get you inspired and excited for the summer! I hope you all have a summer to remember!
Remember: just because school is out it doesn’t mean learning stops! 

Rachel Williams is a college freshman at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, New Mexico majoring in International Studies. Originally from Kirtland, New Mexico, Rachel was a participant in the Distinguished Young Women program and was selected as the Distinguished Young Woman of New Mexico for 2011. Learn more about Rachel here!

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