Sometimes the simplest summers are the best. Yes, epic vacations are a wonderful way to make memories and fill up your phone’s camera roll. But there’s something pretty special about peaceful days at home, enjoying time with family and friends.
In the spirit of savoring your summer, here are 6 simple ideas.
1. Watch movies outside
You’ll need a projector, portable speaker and a screen. But don’t over complicate your setup. Check out the CINEMOOD 360, a Wi-Fi cube projector with streaming service. Use an inflatable screen or even a large white sheet or cloth. If you want something you can reuse, here’s a DIY project for a screen made from a white sheet and PVC pipes.
Don’t forget the snacks! Popcorn is a must (obviously). Create some candy goodie bags with everyone’s favorite movie theater sweet treats.
Now it’s time to choose a movie. Let everyone put their favorite movie into a hat and draw one. Or, go old school and show your kids a favorite movie from your childhood (think “ET,” “Back to the Future” or “Karate Kid.”)
2. Picnic in the park
Round up the kids for lunch at the park. Choose your favorite local spot or be adventurous and pick a new park to visit. Keep the food simple – PB&J, fresh fruit and cookies. No need to get fancy!
Or, plan a romantic evening picnic with your significant other. Pick a less-crowded park, a favorite hiking trail or spot on the beach to watch the sunset. You could even set up your picnic in the backyard.
Pack a picnic basket or cooler with finger foods – cheese, crackers, dips, fruit, small sandwiches, rollups or even sushi. (Check out these romantic picnic recipes from Food & Wine.) Don’t forget the wine and glasses! Our personal picnic favorite is [here’s where you could mention one of your wines with a link to the shop page].
If you have little ones at home and can’t get away for date nights often, avoid spending the entire picnic talking about kids or work. Instead, share stories from your childhood (you’d be surprised what you learn even if you’ve been married for years!) or talk about your goals and plans for the next few years.
3. Gather 'round the fire pit
Leave all the phones and devices in the house and pull a chair up to the fire pit. What a wonderful opportunity to tell stories, laugh and really connect as a family. Wondering if everyone is going to go mute without their phones to keep them occupied? No judgment – happens to all of us! Try this list of 100 conversation starters for families (it’s a good mix of simple and more thought-provoking questions in case you have a range of ages).
Don’t forget to grab all the ingredients for s’mores – a fire pit must!
4. Camp in the backyard
Surprise the family with an impromptu backyard campout. Sure, your teens might roll their eyes, but hand them a s’more and they’ll be happy. Cook hotdogs, tell ghost stories and sleep under the stars. [Bonus; you have easy access to bathrooms!]
5. Host a neighborhood potluck
Even if you’ve lived in your neighborhood for a few years, you may not know all your neighbors. Put an old-fashioned flier on everyone’s door and host a neighborhood potluck. Keep it simple – a string of lights and a couple of candles will do. Who knows, you just might meet a new BFF!
6. Invite your pals over for wine tasting
Turn that group text into IRL conversation. Host a front porch wine tasting for your friends. Everyone brings an appetizer, kicks off their shoes, and enjoys an evening of laugh-until-you-cry fun.
Open a bottle of our most popular wine, the non-vintage Aphelion Cabernet Sauvignon, to enjoy with friends. Be sure to take a photo and tag us on Instagram @sakurawinery with #savorthemoment.