The Dating Divas Strengthening Marriages, One Date and Anniversary Idea At A Time2015-07-06T05:15:25Z http://www.thedatingdivas.com/feed/atom/WordPress Megan http://www.thedatingdivas.com <![CDATA[Date Night on the Fly]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=68315 2015-07-05T14:21:41Z 2015-07-05T12:00:15Z Date Night On The Fly

Busy Night, Date Night

When you feel like you just can't make time for date night, check out our easy solutions!

If you and your spouse are constantly battling time and busy schedules to fit in date night, then we’ve got another fabulous Diva Central EXCLUSIVE round up just for you! It's full of date night ideas for couples who feel overwhelmed at the idea of making time for each other!

Because today we’re going to share…

Date Night On The Fly

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image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Date-Night-On-The-Fly.jpg" description="These ideas are amazing! I'm always looking for quick date night ideas I can use anytime. www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

The Dating Diva Community Exclusive

Diva Central is the one place online that’s dedicated to YOUR marriage, where you will find exclusive information tailored to YOUR specific relationship needs, with ideas, advice, and TIPS galore. When you become a full member of Diva Central, we’ll deliver this full post plus all the printables you see below! You’ll also gain access to many other exclusive posts, articles, printables, and more that are created with your marriage in mind! You get all of this for only $9.97 per month. If you want to join or simply try it out, get started for FREE with our Diva Central 7 Day Love Quest Challenge – just click the link at the bottom of this post!

Nowadays both spouses in a marriage are busy with work, kids and just life in general. Making date night a priority despite hectic schedules can be a real challenge and a total stress on your marriage, that's where Date Night on the Fly comes in!

We’ve provided 25 super easy and super quick ideas that are so fast to prep, you could even do them on a weeknight! This list features only the best date night ideas, especially for working parents!

This exclusive Date Night on the Fly post includes:

  • 15 Printable Date Nights
  • 5 Date Nights with Materials You Already Have
  • 5 Absolutely NO Prep Date Nights
  • 5 Ideas for Staying Connected at Work

Forget busy schedules, you and your spouse will have no excuses for skipping date night!

For more ideas to get your date nights going, scroll through our 45 At Home Date Night Ideas.

Already a Diva Central Community member? Click HERE for the full post.

Sign up for a FREE trial of Diva Central today to get our 7 Day Love Quest Challenge! Once you become a full member for just $9.97 a month, you'll have access to every one of these great ideas you see above. 

Make date night a reality anytime!

Ready for a date TONIGHT? Surprise your spouse with almost no effort!

Diva Central Signup!

The post Date Night on the Fly appeared first on The Dating Divas.

]]>
Date Night On The Fly

Busy Night, Date Night

When you feel like you just can't make time for date night, check out our easy solutions!

If you and your spouse are constantly battling time and busy schedules to fit in date night, then we’ve got another fabulous Diva Central EXCLUSIVE round up just for you! It's full of date night ideas for couples who feel overwhelmed at the idea of making time for each other!

Because today we’re going to share…

Date Night On The Fly

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url="www.thedatingdivas.com/just-the-two-of-us/date-night-on-the-fly/"
image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Date-Night-On-The-Fly.jpg" description="These ideas are amazing! I'm always looking for quick date night ideas I can use anytime. www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

The Dating Diva Community Exclusive

Diva Central is the one place online that’s dedicated to YOUR marriage, where you will find exclusive information tailored to YOUR specific relationship needs, with ideas, advice, and TIPS galore. When you become a full member of Diva Central, we’ll deliver this full post plus all the printables you see below! You’ll also gain access to many other exclusive posts, articles, printables, and more that are created with your marriage in mind! You get all of this for only $9.97 per month. If you want to join or simply try it out, get started for FREE with our Diva Central 7 Day Love Quest Challenge – just click the link at the bottom of this post!

Nowadays both spouses in a marriage are busy with work, kids and just life in general. Making date night a priority despite hectic schedules can be a real challenge and a total stress on your marriage, that's where Date Night on the Fly comes in!

We’ve provided 25 super easy and super quick ideas that are so fast to prep, you could even do them on a weeknight! This list features only the best date night ideas, especially for working parents!

This exclusive Date Night on the Fly post includes:

  • 15 Printable Date Nights
  • 5 Date Nights with Materials You Already Have
  • 5 Absolutely NO Prep Date Nights
  • 5 Ideas for Staying Connected at Work

Forget busy schedules, you and your spouse will have no excuses for skipping date night!

For more ideas to get your date nights going, scroll through our 45 At Home Date Night Ideas.

Already a Diva Central Community member? Click HERE for the full post.

Sign up for a FREE trial of Diva Central today to get our 7 Day Love Quest Challenge! Once you become a full member for just $9.97 a month, you'll have access to every one of these great ideas you see above. 

Make date night a reality anytime!

Ready for a date TONIGHT? Surprise your spouse with almost no effort!

Diva Central Signup!

The post Date Night on the Fly appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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0
Megan http://www.thedatingdivas.com <![CDATA[4th of July Summer Photo Booth Props]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=74027 2015-07-04T15:05:40Z 2015-07-04T12:00:24Z Summer-Photo-Booth-Props

Independence Day and Summer Photo Booth Fun

Aren't photo booths just the MOST fun?! I love how easy they are to set up and put together and that absolutely everyone can have fun and create memories. We included some fun 4th of July props as well as quite a few to help you capture your favorite things about summer!

Summer Photo Booth Props

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url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=74027"
image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Summer-Photo-Booth-Props1.jpg" description="Summer and 4th of July Photo Booth Props that are FREE - the perfect idea for any neighborhood block party, birthday party or end of school celebration! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

Aren't they just adorable? I seriously love the bright and fun colors she used for these photo booth props! Kensie Kate knows exactly what we want and she totally knows what you want, too - so take a quick sec and pop over to check out her bright and colorful prints - they're PERFECT for summer!! Ready to celebrate and make summer memories? Get to printing! {Once you have these amazing printable all cut out attach them to these wooden skewers and you are ready to go!! Want them to last for holidays to come? Use this laminator and these wooden dowels and they are sure to be around for a long time!}

Patriotic Summer Photo Booth Props

Your first page of printables is filled with fun Uncle Sam inspired ideas. Mix and match to make some silly {or serious} Independence day fun! I love that the bow tie can double as a hair bow and the glasses are perfect for Independence Day or any fun in the sun!

Fun Beach Photo Booth Props

Try out some of funky sunglasses and imagine you're headed to the pool!

Summer Photo Props Beachy Drink

Sip on some lemonade and try on a new beach hat!

Summer Sayings Photo Props

I can't get enough of these text bubbles either - "Hello Summer!!"

Patriotic and Summer Photo Props

Start making memories right now by grabbing your
Summer and Patriotic Photo Booth Props!

If you love these, be sure to pin or save our favorite photo booth printables for other seasons. We've got Valentine's Day, St. Patty's Day and Easter, Thanksgiving covered for all your photo booth props.

The post 4th of July Summer Photo Booth Props appeared first on The Dating Divas.

]]>
Summer-Photo-Booth-Props

Independence Day and Summer Photo Booth Fun

Aren't photo booths just the MOST fun?! I love how easy they are to set up and put together and that absolutely everyone can have fun and create memories. We included some fun 4th of July props as well as quite a few to help you capture your favorite things about summer!

Summer Photo Booth Props

[pinit count="horizontal" always-show-count="1" url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=74027" image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Summer-Photo-Booth-Props1.jpg" description="Summer and 4th of July Photo Booth Props that are FREE - the perfect idea for any neighborhood block party, birthday party or end of school celebration! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

Aren't they just adorable? I seriously love the bright and fun colors she used for these photo booth props! Kensie Kate knows exactly what we want and she totally knows what you want, too - so take a quick sec and pop over to check out her bright and colorful prints - they're PERFECT for summer!! Ready to celebrate and make summer memories? Get to printing! {Once you have these amazing printable all cut out attach them to these wooden skewers and you are ready to go!! Want them to last for holidays to come? Use this laminator and these wooden dowels and they are sure to be around for a long time!}

Patriotic Summer Photo Booth Props

Your first page of printables is filled with fun Uncle Sam inspired ideas. Mix and match to make some silly {or serious} Independence day fun! I love that the bow tie can double as a hair bow and the glasses are perfect for Independence Day or any fun in the sun!

Fun Beach Photo Booth Props

Try out some of funky sunglasses and imagine you're headed to the pool!

Summer Photo Props Beachy Drink

Sip on some lemonade and try on a new beach hat!

Summer Sayings Photo Props

I can't get enough of these text bubbles either - "Hello Summer!!"

Patriotic and Summer Photo Props

Start making memories right now by grabbing your Summer and Patriotic Photo Booth Props!

If you love these, be sure to pin or save our favorite photo booth printables for other seasons. We've got Valentine's Day, St. Patty's Day and Easter, Thanksgiving covered for all your photo booth props.

The post 4th of July Summer Photo Booth Props appeared first on The Dating Divas.

]]>
1
Megan http://www.thedatingdivas.com <![CDATA[101 {MORE} Genius Camping Ideas]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=73761 2015-07-03T13:40:37Z 2015-07-03T12:00:17Z Camping-Ideas

Hacks and Tips for Your Next Camping Trip

Remember Diva Becca's post filled with 101 Camping Tips & Ideas? It turned out to be a super popular post, because it was filled with some of the most brilliant tips and tricks for the perfect camping vacay! Well, we decided that since everyone loved that list so much, we'd dig even deeper and find even MORE camping hacks to make your next outdoor adventure absolutely flawless. So we've searched high and low in order to bring you the Ultimate List of Camping Ideas {Round 2}!

101 Absolutely Genius Camping Hacks and Ideas

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image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Camping-Ideas.jpg" description="So many perfect camping ideas for getting packed, what to bring and saving money!"]

Scroll on down to find the most useful tips and tricks for camping, including:

-20 Clever Camping Packing and Planning Tips
-20 Useful Camping Tools and Supplies
-20 Camping Ideas for Families
-10 Tips for Inexpensive Camping
-30 Delicious Camping Recipes

20 CLEVER CAMPING PACKING AND PLANNING TIPS
Getting ready for your next outdoor adventure is about to get SO much easier thanks to these brilliant camping ideas!

20 Camping Packing and Planning Ideas

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image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Camping-Packing-Ideas.jpg" description="Love these camping hacks and ideas - getting everything packed up for the next trip will be SO easy! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]
Camping Pack Hacks

1. Roll Your Clothes: Save space by packing your outfits rolled together. Also, a brilliant idea for kiddos!
2. Family Packing List: A great way to stay organized as you're packing your whole family up for a trip!
3. Personal Packing Lists: These individual lists are perfect for letting the kids get packed themselves - saving YOU time and giving them some responsibility they can handle.
4. Mini Medicine Cabinet: Taking tons of bottles takes up tons of space - what a great way to be efficient!
5. Shower Cap Covers: Use this packing idea especially on the way home, to keep all of the camping dirt in its place.
6. Packing T.P.: An essential that no one really wants to discuss - keep your toilet paper dry with this trick!
7. Eggs in a Bottle: Instead of worrying about breaking eggs along the way, crack all the eggs you'll need into a bottle!
8. Straws: Pack medicine (or spices) in straws and seal the ends with heat!

Camping Hacks for Easy Packing


9. Cooler Racks: Keep your food dry by keeping it away from melting ice.
10. Pack Spices: These containers are perfect for pills, condiments or spices!
11. Packing Condiments: Instead of tons of bottles, keep the small packets from restaurants.
12. Pack Dryer Sheets: Stick them in your bag to prevent weird smells and stick them underneath the tablecloth to keep bees away!
13. Camping Notebook: Create a notebook with EVERYTHING you need stored in one place.
14. Menu Planning: Printables perfect for helping you organize each meal at the campsite.

Packing and Planning Ideas for Camping


15. More Packing Ideas: Check out all these additional ideas for packing - everything from packing the car to back up rain gear!
16. Snacks to Pack: Tips on what to bring and what to leave at home.
17. Sleep Warm: Everything you'll need to bring and need to know in order to sleep at night. Plus, try out this Warm Water Bottle Hack.
18. Wildlife Knowledge: It's important to plan ahead and stay informed about what to do if you encounter wildlife.
19. Duct Taped Water Bottle: Pack it by attaching it to a water bottle. We used to always say 'Duct tapes fixes everything.' Not totally true, but there are a TON of Duct Tape Hacks.
20. Mason Jar Dispenser: Perfect for down-sizing any liquid, this mason jar hack is EASY to make and saves so much space!

20 USEFUL CAMPING TOOLS AND SUPPLIES
These camping ideas will make your trip so much easier!

Great Ideas for Camping Tools and Supplies

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image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Camping-Tools-and-Supplies.jpg" description="Brilliant hacks and ideas for all the supplies you need to bring camping!"]
Essential Camping Supplies

21. Belt Tool Holder: Since table space is always at a premium, use a belt as a place to store kitchen essentials.
22. Picnic Blanket: Not all campsites are equipped with a picnic table. This blanket is PERFECT for camping - it stores nicely and has a strap and sewn-in insert to make folding easy!
23. Shower Caddy: Keep everything you need for a trip to the bathroom in one handy place!
24. Super Dry Towel: Regular towels take up SO much space, but these little ones are space-efficient and fast drying!
25. Crayon Fire Starters: Got old or broken crayons lying around? Make use of them at your next camp outing!
26. Trick Candles: Pack trick candles for windy camping trips so that if the wind blows them out, they'll relight themselves! You can get some relighting trick candles here.

Clever Camping Hacks for the Best Supplies


27. Bowls for Pets: Camping is the perfect pet-friendly trip and we LOVE that these bowls come complete with portable storage!
28. Storage Cart: Even if this is supposed to be for the beach, it's really ideal for any outdoor adventure!
29. Unbreakable Cups: Cups that don't crack or break when they're dropped (and they WILL get dropped).
30. Self-Cleaning Washcloth: It seems odd and totally contradictory but it seems to work!
31. Tin Can Luminaries: The CUTEST way to light up your campsite. It feels kind of vintage too, dontcha think?!

32. Collapsible Bucket: Buckets are a necessity, but it's not necessary to try to awkwardly fit them into the car.
33. Wax Fire Starters: Homemade and simple technique for helping your fire to get going, using some cotton facial pads like these.
34. Mason Jar Tiki Torches: DIY torches - you can even fill them with oils that will repel insect, like this stuff. Don't you love when things are dual purpose?!

Brilliant Hacks for Camping Tools


35. Pool Noodles: Bring pool noodles cut into smaller sections with a slit down one side. They're perfect for storing cords, hanging towels and holding cards.

36. Pencil Sharpener Fire Starter: Use a shavings to create the perfect kindling.
37. Solar Lanterns: No electricity needed to keep your campsite well-lit.
38. Spork: Cut down on the utensils you need to bring - this is an all in one tool!
39. Campfire Sage: Sage is a natural insect repellent - use it to make a more inviting camp atmosphere.
40. Match Mason Jars: Keep matches together and essentially water-proof so your fire is ready right away. 

20 CAMPING IDEAS FOR FAMILIES
Camping with the little ones has never been more fun - use these tried and true camping ideas to make sure everyone (including YOU) is having the time of their lives!

Camping Ideas for Families

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Camping Hacks for Trips with Kids

41. Fitted Sheet Over Crib: Just bring an extra fitted sheet and keep your little bit safe from sun and bugs.
42. Activities in the Dirt: Let the kids completely embrace the outdoors - let them play in the dirt!
43. Activity Bags: Because somehow, boredom always seems to creep in with the littles.
44. Color Fires: As if fire wasn't cool enough... make it glow in fun colors!
45. Road Trip in a Box: Unless you're camping in the backyard, you'll definitely want to create this entertainment kit for the trip TO the campsite!
46. Camping Kid Bed: You'll totally use this even if you're not camping. Envision trips to the grandparents or even hotel rooms without enough beds. What kid wouldn't love their own, private tent?
47. Nature Hike Bracelet: There is really no way that this craft could be any easier. PLUS you don't have to carry all of the things they pick up along the way!
48. Camping Charades: The classic and hilarious game, with an outdoor/camping twist!

Camping Ideas with Families


49. Toy Tub: The kiddos' go-to place for entertainment. Ready, so that you don't have to come up with fun on the spot.
50. Nature Names Craft: A super creative craft that's personalized!

51. Ladderball: A family-friendly game that absolutely EVERYONE will love. Ladderball is perfect for camping because of its compact size, but you love lawn games you'll get a kick out of our Yard Olympics!
52. Camping Notebooks: So many other cute ideas to make camping adorable, too!
53. Cool Off Necklace: I cannot believe how simple this is! When function and fun meet - everyone is satisfied!
54. Glow Bowling: What do to when the sun goes down? Glowing games, of course! All it takes is some glow sticks like these, and some other simple supplies. If you'd like even more ideas like this to take camping, check out the ideas from our Glow-in-the-Dark Game Night!

Family Camping Ideas


55. Geocaching: Think of it as a treasure hunt with a map that gets you to the exact location. If you've never tried, during a camping trip is the perfect time to start!
56. Glow Jars: These'll provide a little ambient lighting, some science fun and are just generally cool-looking!
57. Parent Survival Tips: The TOP hints for making family camping more manageable.
58. Outdoor Play Pen: A clever way to make sure the littlest members of the family are safe.
59. Scavenger Hunt: This scavenger hunt is SO fun because of the little carrying case for all your treasures.
60. Marshmallow Catapults: Marshmallows and camping go hand-in-hand, it just so happens that with this activity you're flinging them across the campsite instead of eating them. {Don't worry, plenty of ideas for eating them later on!}

10 TIPS FOR INEXPENSIVE CAMPING
Going camping is already a great budget idea, but if you're trying to make vacations happen without breaking the bank, you'll love these articles and ideas to save even more!

Tips for Making Camping More Budget-Friendly

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Budget Camping Hacks

61. Dollar Store Camping Supplies: Head to your nearest dollar store and stock up on great deals, perfect for your next trip!
62. Milk Jug Ice: Instead of buying ice, use milk jugs filled with water!
63. Toothpaste Dots: Baking soda turned toothpaste, these dots mean you won't have to argue over the one tube of toothpaste either!
64. Simple Camping for Real Foodies: Creating yummy meals while camping doesn't have mean you have to sacrifice your family's health. Check out these tips for eating real food on a budget!
65. Camping on Zero Budget: When you really can't spend a dime, use these tips to make your next camp-out even more inexpensive.
66. Yoga Mat Sleeping Pad: Instead of purchasing an expensive sleeping mat, try a yoga mat. It's especially cheap if you already have one lying around!

Camping Ideas on a Budget


67. Thrify Camping Ideas: Unique ideas for collecting supplies without going over-budget! 
68. Tips for an Inexpensive Trip: Great thoughts on food storage and meal planning!
69. Camping Hacks Breakdown: Check out the must-haves and don't-needs in this list with some great alternatives to help you save!
70. Camping on a Budget: Ideas for finding inexpensive gear and free campsites!

30 DELICIOUS CAMPING RECIPES
Isn't the food the BEST part of any trip? Everyone is going to be excited to try these campfire goodies!!

Camping Recipes to Drool Over

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image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Camping-Recipes.jpg" description="The BEST easy ideas for camping foods that will help make for quick clean up and still taste good!"]
Quick and Easy Camping Recipe Ideas


71. Campfire Hashbrowns: Fully loaded with all the works these hashbrowns make the perfect side dish or could even be a complete meal.
72. Cereal in a Bag: A quick and mess-less breakfast with SIMPLE clean up!
73. Breakfast Burritos: Make ahead burritos that just need to be warmed by the fire.
74. Omlette in a Bag: Breakfast made SO fun - scramble your eggs in a bag!
75. Campfire French Toast: This is the most gourment campfire meal I've ever seen!
76. Bread in a Can: LOVE how compact and simple this bread is - total win!
77. Camping Quesadillas: Quesadillas are such a versatile option. You could have the kiddos fill them with whatever they want.
78. Individual Coffee Bags: Can't stand the thought of camping without your daily cup of joe? Use this hack to create dippable coffee bags!

Dinner Recipes for Camping


79. Steak and Eggs Pack: A foil packet makes this meal easy to clean up.
80. Breakfast Burgers: Create the best breakfast sandwich over a campfire!

81. Pizza Pockets: Portable and PIZZA. Need we say more?!
82. Campfire Chili: Serve chili for any group camping trip - it's so simple to throw together and you can make a ton without having to wait around for individual portions to cook.
83. Camp Crescent Dogs: Grab your s'mores stick and get dinner going. 
84. Slow Cooker Camping: Here's another spectacular option for a crowd. She's got great tips for making this work!
85. Onion Bombs: Meatloaf inside an onion, wrapped in foil and baked over the fire. Simple and full of flavor. How cool is that?!
86. Oatmeal Energy Clusters: If your husband's anything like mine, he's always hungry. It's best to have some easy to grab snacks on hand.

Camping Snacks


87. Cheesy Broccoli: Now this is how you get the kids to eat their veggies!
88. Grilled Foil Cheese Fries: There is nothing I love more than cheese fries. I can just imagine that smokey, cheesy flavor right now!
89. Campfire Potatoes: Potatoes are the perfect, fail-proof side dish. They go with anything and everyone loves them!
90. Campfire Doughnuts: Oh my gosh - I'm drooling over these sugar-coated doughnuts!

91. Campfire Spinach Dip: Give me a dip and I'm happy. Spinach means it's healthy, too -- right?
92. Dip Snacks in a Jar: Celery and peanut butter, hummus and carrots...
93. Watermelon Popsicle Sticks: A simple little hack to make snacking even more fun!
94. S'mores Trail Mix: Add this to your list of snacks that will be gone before you know it.

Yummy Camping Desserts


95. Baked Apples: On a cooler night, warm apples with a pinch of cinnamon will totally hit the spot.
96. Less Mess S'mores: A bag of s'mores is the perfect way to get this camping classic without all the clean up.
97. Strawberry & Nutella Sandwich: I can't imagine anything more delicious than gooey nutella with summer strawberries.
98. Ice Cream in a Bag: This would be the perfect cool treat on a hot summer night!
99. Oreo S'mores: Who knew that s'mores could be so much better?!
100. Blackberry Cobbler: A comfort food in the great outdoors. Maybe I'll just try this at home, too ;)
101. Camping Cookbook App: We're not counting this as a recipe, but it IS the perfect tool for helping you come up with even more great ideas for camping food!

BONUS: Let's Sleep Under the Stars Print: Okay, so this one isn't a tip or a hack - but how CUTE is this print?! We just couldn't leave it out!! Perfect inspiration for your next camping trip!

And don't forget to check out all of the ideas from our first round of Camping Tips and Tricks! If you need some ideas for WHERE to go camping, try looking through these 101 Places to Travel with families. You could even plan some camping time for just the two of you with this Camp Out idea!

The post 101 {MORE} Genius Camping Ideas appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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Camping-Ideas

Hacks and Tips for Your Next Camping Trip

Remember Diva Becca's post filled with 101 Camping Tips & Ideas? It turned out to be a super popular post, because it was filled with some of the most brilliant tips and tricks for the perfect camping vacay! Well, we decided that since everyone loved that list so much, we'd dig even deeper and find even MORE camping hacks to make your next outdoor adventure absolutely flawless. So we've searched high and low in order to bring you the Ultimate List of Camping Ideas {Round 2}!

101 Absolutely Genius Camping Hacks and Ideas

[pinit count="horizontal" always-show-count="1" url="www.thedatingdivas.com/megan/101-more-genius-camping-ideas/" image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Camping-Ideas.jpg" description="So many perfect camping ideas for getting packed, what to bring and saving money!"]

Scroll on down to find the most useful tips and tricks for camping, including:

-20 Clever Camping Packing and Planning Tips -20 Useful Camping Tools and Supplies -20 Camping Ideas for Families -10 Tips for Inexpensive Camping -30 Delicious Camping Recipes

20 CLEVER CAMPING PACKING AND PLANNING TIPS Getting ready for your next outdoor adventure is about to get SO much easier thanks to these brilliant camping ideas!

20 Camping Packing and Planning Ideas

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Camping Pack Hacks

1. Roll Your Clothes: Save space by packing your outfits rolled together. Also, a brilliant idea for kiddos! 2. Family Packing List: A great way to stay organized as you're packing your whole family up for a trip! 3. Personal Packing Lists: These individual lists are perfect for letting the kids get packed themselves - saving YOU time and giving them some responsibility they can handle. 4. Mini Medicine Cabinet: Taking tons of bottles takes up tons of space - what a great way to be efficient! 5. Shower Cap Covers: Use this packing idea especially on the way home, to keep all of the camping dirt in its place. 6. Packing T.P.: An essential that no one really wants to discuss - keep your toilet paper dry with this trick! 7. Eggs in a Bottle: Instead of worrying about breaking eggs along the way, crack all the eggs you'll need into a bottle! 8. Straws: Pack medicine (or spices) in straws and seal the ends with heat!

Camping Hacks for Easy Packing

9. Cooler Racks: Keep your food dry by keeping it away from melting ice. 10. Pack Spices: These containers are perfect for pills, condiments or spices! 11. Packing Condiments: Instead of tons of bottles, keep the small packets from restaurants. 12. Pack Dryer Sheets: Stick them in your bag to prevent weird smells and stick them underneath the tablecloth to keep bees away! 13. Camping Notebook: Create a notebook with EVERYTHING you need stored in one place. 14. Menu Planning: Printables perfect for helping you organize each meal at the campsite.

Packing and Planning Ideas for Camping

15. More Packing Ideas: Check out all these additional ideas for packing - everything from packing the car to back up rain gear! 16. Snacks to Pack: Tips on what to bring and what to leave at home. 17. Sleep Warm: Everything you'll need to bring and need to know in order to sleep at night. Plus, try out this Warm Water Bottle Hack. 18. Wildlife Knowledge: It's important to plan ahead and stay informed about what to do if you encounter wildlife. 19. Duct Taped Water Bottle: Pack it by attaching it to a water bottle. We used to always say 'Duct tapes fixes everything.' Not totally true, but there are a TON of Duct Tape Hacks. 20. Mason Jar Dispenser: Perfect for down-sizing any liquid, this mason jar hack is EASY to make and saves so much space!

20 USEFUL CAMPING TOOLS AND SUPPLIES These camping ideas will make your trip so much easier!

Great Ideas for Camping Tools and Supplies

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Essential Camping Supplies

21. Belt Tool Holder: Since table space is always at a premium, use a belt as a place to store kitchen essentials. 22. Picnic Blanket: Not all campsites are equipped with a picnic table. This blanket is PERFECT for camping - it stores nicely and has a strap and sewn-in insert to make folding easy! 23. Shower Caddy: Keep everything you need for a trip to the bathroom in one handy place! 24. Super Dry Towel: Regular towels take up SO much space, but these little ones are space-efficient and fast drying! 25. Crayon Fire Starters: Got old or broken crayons lying around? Make use of them at your next camp outing! 26. Trick Candles: Pack trick candles for windy camping trips so that if the wind blows them out, they'll relight themselves! You can get some relighting trick candles here.

Clever Camping Hacks for the Best Supplies

27. Bowls for Pets: Camping is the perfect pet-friendly trip and we LOVE that these bowls come complete with portable storage! 28. Storage Cart: Even if this is supposed to be for the beach, it's really ideal for any outdoor adventure! 29. Unbreakable Cups: Cups that don't crack or break when they're dropped (and they WILL get dropped). 30. Self-Cleaning Washcloth: It seems odd and totally contradictory but it seems to work! 31. Tin Can Luminaries: The CUTEST way to light up your campsite. It feels kind of vintage too, dontcha think?! 32. Collapsible Bucket: Buckets are a necessity, but it's not necessary to try to awkwardly fit them into the car. 33. Wax Fire Starters: Homemade and simple technique for helping your fire to get going, using some cotton facial pads like these. 34. Mason Jar Tiki Torches: DIY torches - you can even fill them with oils that will repel insect, like this stuff. Don't you love when things are dual purpose?!

Brilliant Hacks for Camping Tools

35. Pool Noodles: Bring pool noodles cut into smaller sections with a slit down one side. They're perfect for storing cords, hanging towels and holding cards.

36. Pencil Sharpener Fire Starter: Use a shavings to create the perfect kindling. 37. Solar Lanterns: No electricity needed to keep your campsite well-lit. 38. Spork: Cut down on the utensils you need to bring - this is an all in one tool! 39. Campfire Sage: Sage is a natural insect repellent - use it to make a more inviting camp atmosphere. 40. Match Mason Jars: Keep matches together and essentially water-proof so your fire is ready right away. 

20 CAMPING IDEAS FOR FAMILIES Camping with the little ones has never been more fun - use these tried and true camping ideas to make sure everyone (including YOU) is having the time of their lives!

Camping Ideas for Families

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Camping Hacks for Trips with Kids

41. Fitted Sheet Over Crib: Just bring an extra fitted sheet and keep your little bit safe from sun and bugs. 42. Activities in the Dirt: Let the kids completely embrace the outdoors - let them play in the dirt! 43. Activity Bags: Because somehow, boredom always seems to creep in with the littles. 44. Color Fires: As if fire wasn't cool enough... make it glow in fun colors! 45. Road Trip in a Box: Unless you're camping in the backyard, you'll definitely want to create this entertainment kit for the trip TO the campsite! 46. Camping Kid Bed: You'll totally use this even if you're not camping. Envision trips to the grandparents or even hotel rooms without enough beds. What kid wouldn't love their own, private tent? 47. Nature Hike Bracelet: There is really no way that this craft could be any easier. PLUS you don't have to carry all of the things they pick up along the way! 48. Camping Charades: The classic and hilarious game, with an outdoor/camping twist!

Camping Ideas with Families

49. Toy Tub: The kiddos' go-to place for entertainment. Ready, so that you don't have to come up with fun on the spot. 50. Nature Names Craft: A super creative craft that's personalized! 51. Ladderball: A family-friendly game that absolutely EVERYONE will love. Ladderball is perfect for camping because of its compact size, but you love lawn games you'll get a kick out of our Yard Olympics! 52. Camping Notebooks: So many other cute ideas to make camping adorable, too! 53. Cool Off Necklace: I cannot believe how simple this is! When function and fun meet - everyone is satisfied! 54. Glow Bowling: What do to when the sun goes down? Glowing games, of course! All it takes is some glow sticks like these, and some other simple supplies. If you'd like even more ideas like this to take camping, check out the ideas from our Glow-in-the-Dark Game Night!

Family Camping Ideas

55. Geocaching: Think of it as a treasure hunt with a map that gets you to the exact location. If you've never tried, during a camping trip is the perfect time to start! 56. Glow Jars: These'll provide a little ambient lighting, some science fun and are just generally cool-looking! 57. Parent Survival Tips: The TOP hints for making family camping more manageable. 58. Outdoor Play Pen: A clever way to make sure the littlest members of the family are safe. 59. Scavenger Hunt: This scavenger hunt is SO fun because of the little carrying case for all your treasures. 60. Marshmallow Catapults: Marshmallows and camping go hand-in-hand, it just so happens that with this activity you're flinging them across the campsite instead of eating them. {Don't worry, plenty of ideas for eating them later on!}

10 TIPS FOR INEXPENSIVE CAMPING Going camping is already a great budget idea, but if you're trying to make vacations happen without breaking the bank, you'll love these articles and ideas to save even more!

Tips for Making Camping More Budget-Friendly

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Budget Camping Hacks

61. Dollar Store Camping Supplies: Head to your nearest dollar store and stock up on great deals, perfect for your next trip! 62. Milk Jug Ice: Instead of buying ice, use milk jugs filled with water! 63. Toothpaste Dots: Baking soda turned toothpaste, these dots mean you won't have to argue over the one tube of toothpaste either! 64. Simple Camping for Real Foodies: Creating yummy meals while camping doesn't have mean you have to sacrifice your family's health. Check out these tips for eating real food on a budget! 65. Camping on Zero Budget: When you really can't spend a dime, use these tips to make your next camp-out even more inexpensive. 66. Yoga Mat Sleeping Pad: Instead of purchasing an expensive sleeping mat, try a yoga mat. It's especially cheap if you already have one lying around!

Camping Ideas on a Budget

67. Thrify Camping Ideas: Unique ideas for collecting supplies without going over-budget!  68. Tips for an Inexpensive Trip: Great thoughts on food storage and meal planning! 69. Camping Hacks Breakdown: Check out the must-haves and don't-needs in this list with some great alternatives to help you save! 70. Camping on a Budget: Ideas for finding inexpensive gear and free campsites!

30 DELICIOUS CAMPING RECIPES Isn't the food the BEST part of any trip? Everyone is going to be excited to try these campfire goodies!!

Camping Recipes to Drool Over

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Quick and Easy Camping Recipe Ideas

71. Campfire Hashbrowns: Fully loaded with all the works these hashbrowns make the perfect side dish or could even be a complete meal. 72. Cereal in a Bag: A quick and mess-less breakfast with SIMPLE clean up! 73. Breakfast Burritos: Make ahead burritos that just need to be warmed by the fire. 74. Omlette in a Bag: Breakfast made SO fun - scramble your eggs in a bag! 75. Campfire French Toast: This is the most gourment campfire meal I've ever seen! 76. Bread in a Can: LOVE how compact and simple this bread is - total win! 77. Camping Quesadillas: Quesadillas are such a versatile option. You could have the kiddos fill them with whatever they want. 78. Individual Coffee Bags: Can't stand the thought of camping without your daily cup of joe? Use this hack to create dippable coffee bags!

Dinner Recipes for Camping

79. Steak and Eggs Pack: A foil packet makes this meal easy to clean up. 80. Breakfast Burgers: Create the best breakfast sandwich over a campfire! 81. Pizza Pockets: Portable and PIZZA. Need we say more?! 82. Campfire Chili: Serve chili for any group camping trip - it's so simple to throw together and you can make a ton without having to wait around for individual portions to cook. 83. Camp Crescent Dogs: Grab your s'mores stick and get dinner going.  84. Slow Cooker Camping: Here's another spectacular option for a crowd. She's got great tips for making this work! 85. Onion Bombs: Meatloaf inside an onion, wrapped in foil and baked over the fire. Simple and full of flavor. How cool is that?! 86. Oatmeal Energy Clusters: If your husband's anything like mine, he's always hungry. It's best to have some easy to grab snacks on hand.

Camping Snacks

87. Cheesy Broccoli: Now this is how you get the kids to eat their veggies! 88. Grilled Foil Cheese Fries: There is nothing I love more than cheese fries. I can just imagine that smokey, cheesy flavor right now! 89. Campfire Potatoes: Potatoes are the perfect, fail-proof side dish. They go with anything and everyone loves them! 90. Campfire Doughnuts: Oh my gosh - I'm drooling over these sugar-coated doughnuts! 91. Campfire Spinach Dip: Give me a dip and I'm happy. Spinach means it's healthy, too -- right? 92. Dip Snacks in a Jar: Celery and peanut butter, hummus and carrots... 93. Watermelon Popsicle Sticks: A simple little hack to make snacking even more fun! 94. S'mores Trail Mix: Add this to your list of snacks that will be gone before you know it.

Yummy Camping Desserts

95. Baked Apples: On a cooler night, warm apples with a pinch of cinnamon will totally hit the spot. 96. Less Mess S'mores: A bag of s'mores is the perfect way to get this camping classic without all the clean up. 97. Strawberry & Nutella Sandwich: I can't imagine anything more delicious than gooey nutella with summer strawberries. 98. Ice Cream in a Bag: This would be the perfect cool treat on a hot summer night! 99. Oreo S'mores: Who knew that s'mores could be so much better?! 100. Blackberry Cobbler: A comfort food in the great outdoors. Maybe I'll just try this at home, too ;) 101. Camping Cookbook App: We're not counting this as a recipe, but it IS the perfect tool for helping you come up with even more great ideas for camping food!

BONUS: Let's Sleep Under the Stars Print: Okay, so this one isn't a tip or a hack - but how CUTE is this print?! We just couldn't leave it out!! Perfect inspiration for your next camping trip!

And don't forget to check out all of the ideas from our first round of Camping Tips and Tricks! If you need some ideas for WHERE to go camping, try looking through these 101 Places to Travel with families. You could even plan some camping time for just the two of you with this Camp Out idea!

The post 101 {MORE} Genius Camping Ideas appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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Becca http://www.TheDatingDivas.com <![CDATA[101 Summer Slimdown Hacks]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=74839 2015-07-02T14:53:20Z 2015-07-02T12:00:15Z 101 Health Hacks- a Summer Slimdown Guide

101 HEALTH HACKS

There's just something about summer that makes you want to get more active and healthy.  Maybe it's the warm weather (or maybe it's because everyone wants to feel confident for swimsuit season.)  Whatever it is- summer is the perfect time to slim down and shed some pounds.  So today we're sharing...

101 Health Hacks- The ULTIMATE Summer Slimdown Guide

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Consider this your ULTIMATE 

Summer Slimdown Guide!  

 

From healthy snacks and meals to workout tips and weight loss tricks- we've included it all.  We're even sharing our favorite fitness products and gear.  Since this is such a comprehensive list, we've divided it into categories to make browsing easier for you.  Below you'll find...

 

  • 10 Healthy Summer Smoothies
  • 20 Healthy Summer Snacks
  • 10 Healthy Summer Salads
  • 10 Healthy {Oven-Free} Summer Dinners
  • 10 Healthy  Summer Treats
  • 10 Healthy Food Prep Tips
  • 10 Summer Workouts Tips
  • 10 Weight Loss Tips & Tricks
  • 11 of Our Favorite Fitness Products

 

So stop what you're doing and pin this sucker right now.  (That way you'll be able to find it easily whenever you need a healthy meal, a quick workout, or just some fitness motivation.)  Then come on back and start scrolling through the different sections to find your favorites.

Ready?!  First up...

 

Healthy Summer Smoothies

10 Healthy Summer Smoothies

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My "health journey" started with smoothies.  After all, it's a lot easier for me to sip on a yummy, cold drink than to try to make myself eat veggies that I don't love.  I started with fresh fruit smoothies and then started trying different variations of green smoothies.  That was over 5 years ago and I've grown to love my salads and veggies- but I still love my smoothies!  My kids do too.  In fact, whenever we run out of spinach they are quick to remind me that we need to pick some up for our smoothies.   I discovered a long time ago that when I let them help me pick the ingredients or even the color of the smoothie- they are excited to drink it.  Sometimes they even ask if they can create their own smoothie recipe.  You can follow the "green smoothie formula" to make your own recipe, or try one of these ten tried and tested smoothie favorites.

Healthy Summer Smoothies

1.  Pink Power SmoothieThis is my girls' favorite smoothie because it's bright pink! They don't even care that they're drinking beets and celery because all they taste is the strawberries and apple.  Who said healthy smoothies have to be green?

2.  Apple Peach Carrot Smoothie- This smoothie is delicious and loaded with nutrients.  It's a great way to sneak some veggies into your family's diet too.  If your kids have a hard time with green smoothies, you might start with this one- since carrots are sweeter than greens.

3.  Golden Glow Elixir- This smoothie is one I've been wanting to try.  Doesn't it just look so bright and happy?  It's like drinking a glass of sunshine.  (You'll need a high powered blender to get a good texture and consistency- otherwise I recommend juicing this one.)

4.  Mean Green MachinePack some power greens into a delicious smoothie.  This recipes calls for 4 cups of spinach and my kids slurp it right up!  All you need is pineapple juice, baby spinach, pineapple chunks, a granny smith apple and some ice.

5.  Blueberry Banana Smoothie- This tasty smoothie only calls for four ingredients:  blueberries, frozen bananas, almond milk, and almonds.  I love making this one during blueberry season.

Healthy Smoothie Recipes

6.  Sunrise SmoothieThis tropical tasting smoothie is a great way to start your day. All you need is frozen mixed berries, a frozen banana, an orange, and some vanilla greek yogurt.

7.  Strawberry Banana Smoothie- Strawberry Banana is a tried and true classic!  I love switching things up and trying new and different recipes, but I always come back to this original as one of my very favorites.  (And of course it's my girls love it too- because it's pink!)

8.  Healthy Peanut Butter & Chocolate SmoothieThis smoothie doesn't have any processed sugar (in fact it has a whole cup of spinach) but it still tastes like a Wendy's frosty.  I use almond milk instead of water and the banana gives it a great consistency.

9.  Pineapple Mango Vitamin C BoosterThis Vitamin-C packed smoothie is sweet, creamy, and citrusy.  Plus pineapple and mango is a fruit combination that I never tire of.  All you need is frozen pineapple and mango chunks (I like to buy the big bags of pre-cut frozen fruit), a banana, vanilla, and milk of your choice (I use almond milk).

10.  Protein Packed Blackberry SmoothieThis vibrant colored smoothie was the perfect way to use some of our blackberries this week.  And you don't even need to throw in any protein powder if you don't want to because there's plenty in the greek yogurt.

Healthy Summer Snacks

20 Healthy Summer Slimdown Hacks

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With the kids home from school sometimes the summertime snacking can get out of control.  But snacking doesn't have to be a bad thing.  In fact, eating small snacks throughout the day is good for your metabolism- as long as you're picking healthy, nutrient-rich snacks.  So stock your fridge and pantry with lots of healthy ingredients and options.  After all- it's hard to eat junk food if it's not around, and it's a lot easier to eat healthy snacks when the fridge is full of them.  Here are 20 great ideas to get you started.

The first ten snacks are savory and the last ten are sweet.

Healthy Snack Ideas

11.  Meat & Cheese Cucumber Sandwiches- Super easy and super yummy.  Just put slices of lunch meat and cheese between slices of cucumber.

12.  Avocado ToastMy husband grew up eating avocado toast but it was a new discovery to me when we got married.  We use whole wheat bread and it's super filling.  (Sometimes we add sliced cheese on top too.)

13.  Zucchini Pizza Bites- These zucchini rounds are great for portion control and a fun & healthy finger food for the kids.  Plus they're about a million times healthier than those frozen pizza rolls.

14.  Healthy Microwave Popcorn (Without the Bag) Did you know you can make your own microwave popcorn- without all that oil and butter?  You won't believe how simple it is!

15.  Skinny Green Popcorn- These soya beans are so much better for you than regular oily popcorn or potato chips, but you can still enjoy a bowl of cheesy, salty munchies to nibble on without guilt.

Healthy Snack Ideas

16.  Zucchini Parmesan ChipsThe next time you have the urge to eat something savory, crispy, and crunchy- let these baked zucchini chips curb your deep-fried cravings. You won't believe these easy crisps weigh in under 100 calories.

17.  Carrot ChipsThese carrot chips only require three simple ingredients and are so easy to make.  Plus, they're so much healthier than potato chips.

18.  Garlicky Parmesan & Rosemary Roasted ChickpeasThese are so easy to make and taste delicious.  And the best part is that you can use the same method with almost any flavor combination you want.  This recipe makes cheesy, garlicky, herb-roasted goodness.  But you could also do plain salted, cinnamon sugar, or even a spicy buffalo flavor.  The sky's the limit.

19.  Veggies & Dip in a JarThis is a great, on-the-go snack option.  Just fill the bottom of a mason jar with your favorite veggie dip or dressing than add in your veggie sticks for snacking.

20.  10-Minute Restaurant-Style Steamed EdamameYou won't believe how easy it is to make your own steamed edamame.  All you need is a bag of edamame, salt, and water.  Nothing fancy, but it tastes divine.

Delicious Healthy Summer Snacks

21.  Almond Butter Banana SandwichWhen a banana alone won't cut it, try making an open sandwich using your favorite nut butter, agave or honey, and toppings.

22.  Peanut Butter Banana RollAll you need a whole wheat tortilla, some peanut butter, a banana, and mini chocolate chips for this yummy snack.

23.  Frozen Yogurt Covered Blueberries- These are really yummy, plus they're low calorie and high fiber.  Add in the protein from the greek yogurt and it's a great option for a sweet treat.  (You can even leave out the berries and just make frozen yogurt dots.)

24.  Frozen Grapes or Cherries- My kids eat these like candy.  The iciness gives the fruit a sorbet-like consistency, and the sweetness will satisfy those sugar cravings.  Perfect for a hot, summer day.

25. Smoothie PopsiclesTurn your favorite summer smoothies into popsicles!  Whenever we make smoothies, we always seem to have a little leftover in the blender.  Instead of wasting it, we like to pour it in our popsicle molds for a cold dessert treat later in the day.  (Healthy chocolate smoothies make great fudgesicles too!)

Sweet Healthy Snacks

26.  Yogurt PopsIt doesn't get any easier than this.  Just stick popsicle sticks into the tops of individual yogurt containers.  Then simply freeze for easy frozen yogurt pops.

27.  Chocolate Raspberries- Sometimes you just need a little chocolate fix, but you don't want to sabotage all your hard work by making (and eating) a whole batch of chocolate chip cookies.    These chocolate chip raspberries are a perfect healthy option to satisfy that chocolate craving!  And it doesn't hurt that it's a super quick and easy either.  (Another option is to melt a small handful of chocolate chips in the microwave for dipping strawberries.  It's one of our favorite, easy date night treats.)

28.  Chocolate-Dipped Banana BitesYou can use any kind of nut butter that you want to make these banana bites, and the frozen factor makes them perfect for summertime!

29.  Apple Cookies Just load up slices of apple with you favorite toppings- peanut butter, nutella, chocolate chips, and slivered almonds all work great.  My girls love making these with me.  Their favorite thing to do is stack up the slices to make "triple-layer" cookies.

30.  Healthy, Baked Cinnamon Apple ChipsThese baked apple chips are easy to make at home, plus they're healthy, cheap, easy, and totally delicious.

Healthy Summer Salads

10 Healthy Summer Salads

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When we started changing our eating habits we started eating a LOT of salad.  Don't get me wrong- I love salad- but I also get bored really easy.  So I started searching Pinterest to find fresh, new salad recipes to add some fun and variety to our healthy menu planning.  I was amazed at how many different, delicious variations there are to choose from!  Eating healthy doesn't have to be bland or boring!  Have fun with it.  Try combining different fruits, veggies, meats, nuts, cheeses, and dressings and see what new concoctions you can come up with.  Here are ten of my "gotta-try" favorites to get you started.

Healthy Summer Salads

31.  Rainbow Chicken Salad with Almond Honey Mustard DressingThis is one of my kids' favorite salads.  It's full of lots of juicy fresh fruit, tangy feta cheese, and the salad dressing is finger-licking good.  It's made with almond butter so it's super smooth and creamy too!

32.  Asian-Style Cobb Salad with a Sesame VinaigretteMandarin oranges, hard-boiled eggs, green onions, avocado, carrots, chicken- what's not to like?  It's basically an Asian-style party in your mouth.  The sesame vinaigrette completes it perfectly too!

33.  Harvest Cobb Salad with a Poppyseed Dressing-  From the crispy bacon to the crunchy apples, pears, and pecans- I love everything about this salad.  The creamy poppyseed dressing is pretty decadent too!  The sugar and bacon make this salad a little bit of a splurge, but I decided that I'd rather eat some extra calories to help me enjoy my veggies and fruits than on junk food or baked goodies.

34.  Pomegranate, Pear, Pistachio Salad with Pomegranate Dressing -   This salad is SO addictingly delicious! Sweet pomegranate arils, pears, apples, crunchy cucumbers and peppers complimented by salty roasted pistachios and pepitas all topped with a creamy pomegranate dressing.

35.  Broccoli Apple SaladNow this is how you enjoy your broccoli!  Pecans, cranberries, carrots, onions, and apples- there are so many delicious flavors and textures!  Did I mention the creamy dressing on top is to die for?!  If you couldn't tell yet- I'm all about the dressing.

Favorite Healthy Salads

36.  Spinach Strawberry Salad with Balsamic VinaigretteSummer is strawberry season and the perfect time to make this delicious salad.  I love the flavors of the berries mixed with the gorgonzola cheese and toasted pecans.  You can use fresh bacon or even bacon bits will work in a pinch.  (I always have a bag of real bacon bits handy for salads.)

37.  Southwest Pepper Jack Salad with Avocado Salsa Dressing-  This recipe will get you craving salad!  It's loaded with black beans, red bell peppers, tomatoes, fresh corn, pepitas, Pepper Jack cheese, and topped off with a creamy avocado salsa dressing.  You can add in some tortilla strips for a little something extra or leave them off if you prefer.

38. BBQ Chicken Ranch Salad-  This is my favorite salad to order when we eat out and it's even better when you make it yourself.  (Then you can add extra your favorite ingredients.)  This is the recipe I used to get my oldest daughter to love salads!  I let her help me make it and it worked like a charm.

39.  Blueberry Chicken Chopped Salad with a Dijon Vinaigrette- We went blueberry picking this summer and so I had to give this recipe a try- it was a hit.  It's a great mixture of savory, sweet, and tangy and it held up great in the fridge after a couple of days- even with the dressing on top.

40.  Quinoa & Berries Barbecue Chicken SaladIf you like BBQ sauce on your salad you've got to try this version.  The added berries and quinoa give it a totally new and delicious flavor.  This post even has vegan options you might want to check out.

Healthy {Oven-Free} Summer Dinners

10 Healthy Oven-Free Summer Dinners

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I don't know about you, but on really hot summer days the last thing I want to do is turn on my oven.   So I'm always on the hunt for oven-free dinners that are both healthy AND delicious.  When I'm not making a salad, I especially love using my slow cooker in the summer.  These are ten of our favorite, healthy oven-free dinners!

Healthy Crockpot Dinners

41.  Slow Cooker Enchilada Quinoa BakeIf you haven't jumped on the quinoa bandwagon yet, you really ought to give it a try.  It's a great wheat-free alternative to starchy grains and it contains all nine essential amino acids making it a complete-protein source.  We eat a lot of quinoa these days, but this is one of my very favorite ways to eat it.  It's super easy to prep and with all that enchilada flavor, the kids gobble it up.  

42.  Crockpot Seasoned Chicken, Potatoes, and Green BeansThis one is a classic and super easy to throw together.  With very little prep-time you can have a complete, healthy meal cooking in the crockpot and waiting for you when dinner time arrives.

43.  Slow Cooker Sweet Potato, Chicken, and Quinoa SoupThis healthy soup is SO easy to prepare. The only chopping is with the sweet potatoes. But once those are peeled and chopped into small pieces, it’s pretty much just throwing the rest of the ingredients into the slow cooker and waiting for it to do its magic!

44.  Slow Cooker Chicken FajitasThese chicken fajitas are full of flavor and the slow cooker really makes the chicken tender.  You can serve them with whole wheat tortillas or pour it over rice or quinoa to make a delicious fajita bowl.

45.  Slow Cooker Asian Chicken Lettuce WrapsThese lettuce wraps are like the ones you can order at P.F. Changs, and you won't believe how simple the recipe is.  It makes a lot so you'll even have leftovers for lunch or dinner the next day.

Healthy Summer Dinners

46.  Slow Cooker Stuffed Bell Peppers- These peppers are stuffed with quinoa, black beans, corn, and salsa for tons of flavor.  Just put them together in the morning and forget about them until dinner.

47.  Stuffed Sweet PotatoesNo need to turn on your oven for this quick dinner!  Just cook your sweet potatoes in the microwave, then slice them open and stuff them with this Chipotle Black Bean & Corn Salad.  If that’s not enough, you can whip up a very quick and delicious vinaigrette with lime juice, lime zest, honey, and chipotle and pour it over the whole thing.  Yum!

48.  Southwestern Spaghetti SquashIt only takes about 15 minutes to cook the spaghetti squash in the microwave.  Then you can top if off with chipotle peppers, cilantro, and quest fresco cheese.  Sometimes we'll even heat up some spaghetti sauce in the microwave to top it off.

49.  Cranberry Cherry Chicken WrapWhen it's really hot outside and you just want a something light, and cool for dinner- this chicken wrap hits the spot.  It comes together really quickly too!

50.  Burrito Bowl with Creamy Chipotle Sauce-  I always have a big bowl of cooked rice in the fridge so I can just warm it up and throw together easy meals like this one.  If you want, you can even make the chipotle sauce beforehand to make dinnertime even easier.  Just pull everything out of the fridge and it's ready to assemble.

Healthy Summer Treats

10 Healthy Summer Treats

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It's fairly easy to find healthy lunch and dinner options, but sweet treats are a little harder to find.  Luckily for you- we did the searching for you.  Here are 10 guilt-free treats for those times when you just need a little something sweet without totally blowing your healthy eating plan.

Healthy Treats and Desserts

51.  5-Minute Healthy Strawberry Frozen YogurtOne of the hardest parts of healthy eating for me is getting over my ice cream obsession.  That's why I LOVE this healthy option for a yummy frozen treat.  It uses honey or agave nectar instead of sugar, so you can enjoy a delicious treat completely guilt-free. (Or try this healthy peach frozen yogurt.)

52.  Chocolate Mousse Filled StrawberriesWould you believe that these decadent mousse filled strawberries are made using ingredients like silken tofu, chickpeas, and dates?  I don't generally cook with those ingredients but these look so amazing- I think I have to try it.

53.  Chocolate Peanut Butter Apples BitesThese apple bites and healthy and filling, but the creamy peanut butter and chocolate drizzle makes them feel like a special dessert.  I could eat these all day.

54.  Apple NachosIf you like the apple bites, then you'll love these apple nachos too!  It feels like a decadent treat, but this fruity dessert is so much healthier than your typical sugary, processed dessert. 

55.  Dulce Quesadilla- Strawberries, bananas, chocolate, and peanut butter- all heated together into melty goodness.  What's not to like?!

Healthy Dessert Ideas

56.  N0-Bake Quinoa Crumble BarsIf you like granola bars, here's a healthy option for you.  And you don't even have to bake it!

57.  Healthy Strawberry Oat SquaresThese Strawberry Oat Squares are like Strawberry Nutrigrain Bars- only healthier (and better.)  There's only 1 tablespoon of sugar plus they have no butter or oil and are made with 100% good for you ingredients.

58.  Cookie Dough Greek YogurtTurn your regular greek yogurt into a sweet treat.  Just add 1 tbsp. of creamy peanut butter, 1 tsp. of honey, 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract, 1 tbsp. of miniature chocolate chips and a dash of sea salt.

59.  Healthy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies- You're not going to believe this but, there is no oil, no flour, no eggs and no added sugar in these cookies!  The longer they sit- the better they taste too.

60.  Healthy Chocolate MuffinsThese healthy chocolate muffins use applesauce and greek yogurt and don't have any processed sugar.  Now, they're not exactly chocolate cupcakes- but it's a great healthy option when you're craving some chocolate.

Healthy Food Prep Tips

10 Healthy Food Prep Tips

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We've learned a lot about health and fitness over the last couple of years, but I think this has probably been the biggest game changer for us.  When life gets busy it's really easy to fall off of the healthy bandwagon.  (We should know, we've done it a lot.)  But we've discovered that when we take one day each week to prep our food for the week- we have SO much more success.  Then when our schedule is packed (and there is no way I have time to cook something nutritious for dinner), we don't resort to the drive-through or easy packaged meals.  Because it's already set to go for us in the fridge.  Yes, it takes a little planning, but trust me- it will change your life!

Healthy Food Prep Tips

61. Prepare Fruit Snack BagsFill sandwich bags with fruit for easy grab-and-go snacks.  It's perfect for when the kids are complaining that they're hungry between meals or for a healthy option when you need to grab something before running out the door for errands or appointments.  (Besides, if you don't bring a healthy snack in the car, you just might be tempted to stop at the drive-in.)

62.  Prepare Containers of Sliced VeggiesSlice up some carrots, celery, bell peppers, or other veggies for easy grab-and-go snacking.  Instead of putting them in the veggie drawer of the fridge (where you're less likely to see them and more likely to forget about them)- store them in the door of the fridge.  Jen up-cycled Crystal Light containers for her veggies- smart!

63.  Pre-Chop Your Lettuce for Salads-  When dinner time rolls around, it's super easy to throw together a quick salad if you already have everything chopped and ready to go in the fridge.  We go through our lettuce pretty quickly (and we have a food prep day every week) so we just wash it, chop it all up, and keep it in a plastic bowl with a tight-fitting lid.   But here's a great post about how to store your lettuce to make it last longer if you don't want to go shopping as often.

64.  Pre-Cook Your Meat for the Week- Instead of cooking chicken every night, we like to bake a bunch of chicken breasts all at once that we can use throughout the week for our salads and dinners.  Sure- you can buy bags of pre-cooked and sliced chicken at the store if you want, but this is so much cheaper and it's really easy.

65.  Fool-Proof Oven-Baked Brown RiceEvery week, as part of my food prep, I like to make a big batch of brown rice to keep in the fridge.  That way when lunch or dinner comes around, I can just scoop some and warm it up for a healthy side.  And this oven-baked method is SO easy!  I always double it and use a 9x13-inch pan.   (We also like to make a big batch of quinoa for the week.)

Healthy Meal Prep

66.  Make a Batch of Hard Boiled Eggs in the Oven- We like having hard boiled eggs on hand for our salads to add some variety and they're also great for an easy, healthy snack.  You can boil a pot on the stove or try the oven method using a muffin tin.

67.  Healthy Mason Jar Salads- We try to keep all the ingredients for a mini salad bar in our fridge, but sometimes we like to make prepared mason jar salads too.  They make great lunches for my husband to take to work, and I like using them myself when it's a crazy day at home and I don't have a lot of time to cook.

68.  DIY Freezer Smoothie KitsCreate your own individual serving smoothie bags.  It makes it so convenient for busy mornings.  All you have to do each morning is grab a bag from the freezer, empty it into the blender, add the liquid, and breakfast is ready in less than a minute.

69.  Healthy Crockpot Freezer Meals- We don't do this one every week, but we try to prep some healthy freezer meals about once a month.  In about two hours (or less if you have help) you can prep twelve healthy freezer meals for the crockpot.  Then when you're having a busy day, all you have to do is dump it in the crockpot and you're good to go.  It really is a life-saver when schedules get crazy.

70.  Fill Up a Healthy Snack Drawer- Fill a drawer in your fridge and pantry with healthy snacks (and get rid of the junk food!)  You'll eat what's in your house- so make sure you're prepared with healthy snacks that you enjoy.  Cottage cheese, nuts, string cheese, apple sauce, and yogurt are all good options besides your fruit and veggies.

Summer Workouts Tips

10 Summer Workout Tips

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Okay, now that we've covered the healthy eating- let's move on to exercise.  You can lose weight with healthy eating alone, but you need exercise to get healthy, fit, and toned.  Plus it's great for relieving stress.  I'm always in a happier mood after I workout and burn off some stress.  My roommate used to always say, "Don't be moody- move that booty!"  Ha ha- I love it.  Here are ten tips for your summer workouts.

Free Workout Calendars and Exercise Programs

71.  Popsicle Stick WorkoutIf you struggle with getting active and moving more- here's a fun tip using popsicle sticks.  Just write down different exercises on each popsicle stick and stick them in a cup. Then, whenever you get a free minute- pull one out, do the exercise, and move it to a different cup labeled "done."  Set a goal to do 10 popsicle sticks by the end of the day- or try to do them all if you want.  If it's broken down into individual exercises it often seems less overwhelming.

72.  Sworkit App- You don't need to go to the gym to get in a great workout.  Did you know that you can download the Sworkit Lite App for free and easily plan customized workouts?  It lets you choose how long you want to workout, what type of exercises you want to do, and even lets you set how long of a break you'd like between each exercise so you don't fall behind.  It's great for fitting in exercise during naptime or whenever you have some free time.  If you try it out and like it, I definitely recommend checking out Sworkit Pro.

73.  Blogilates Workout Calendar-  If you're ever on Pinterest, you've probably seen Cassey Ho and her Blogilates workout videos.  But did you know that she has free monthly workout calendars?!  (Very similar to our love calendars.)  You can get started with her beginners workout calendar and then if you subscribe to her newsletter, you'll get a new calendar each month.  Awesome, right?  She also has an app you can check out.

74.  Do a 30 Day ChallengeCassey also has fun calendars for different 30 day challenges.  You can choose from her Flat Abs Challenge, her Butt Lift Challenge, her Thigh Slimming Challenge, or her Sleek Arms Challenge.  And if that's not enough, Pinterest is always full of 30 Day Workout Challenges.

75.  Follow a Couch to 5K Running CalendarAnyone can be a runner, it just takes training and dedication.  The couch to 5K program is a great way to get started. You can always try this Couch to 5K app, too!

Free Workouts

76.  Order a Challenge PackIf you're really serious about shedding some weight or just committed to getting healthier- you might want to invest in your health and order a Beachbody challenge pack and join a challenge group.  Remember the challenge group that we did in February?  Well, I lost 14 pounds and my husband lost 18!  I love that there are so many different workout programs to choose from and being a part of the challenge group was exactly what we needed to keep ourselves accountable.  In fact, I just joined another challenge group for the 21 Day Fix to keep myself motivated.  (Let me know in the comments if you wanna join in!)

77.  Elliptical Workouts- Click on the link for 13 different elliptical workouts to whip you into shape.  These workout pages are great to print and take to the gym or just pull them up on your phone.  Just browse through and pick which workout you want to try based on the amount of time you have.

78.  Treadmill WorkoutsIf you have a treadmill at home (or a gym membership) pull up one of these treadmill workouts and get moving!  And if you're really up for a challenge- try this Treadmill Shredmill workout.

79.  Weight Lifting RoutinesIf you want to get started lifting weights, this is a great place to start.  They have printable workout routines, free trainers, eating programs, and everything you could ever want or need.

80.  YouTube Workout VideosI love my workout videos, but now because of YouTube there's even more options!  Have you seen all the awesome workout videos on there?  Check out these 21 free workout videos.  And then if you're ready for more- check out the top 13 personal trainers on YouTube.

Weight Loss Tips & Tricks

10 Tips & Tricks for Weight Loss

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Okay, we've gone over nutrition and exercise- now how about some quick weight loss tips and tricks to get you started dropping the pounds.

Weight Loss Tips

81.  Track Your Water-  Drinking water is such an important part of health and weight loss.  You would think it would be the easiest thing, but in our workout challenge group we actually discovered that it was the thing that most people in the group were struggling with.  You might be surprised what a difference it makes for you.  Easier weight loss, less headaches, and better digestion are just a few of the benefits.  These detox timer water bottles are a great way to track your water intake throughout the day.  Or try the Absorb Water App.

82.  Get More Sleep- Most people know that getting quality sleep is important for your health, but did you know it can be a big factor in your weight loss (or lack thereof?)  Researchers at Columbia University found that people who sleep less than seven hours per night are heavier, gain more weight over time, and have a harder time losing weight!  So make sure you're getting between 7-8 hours of sleep each night.  (Now that's a weight loss program I'm willing to work on!)

83.  Keep Your Fruits & Veggies Accessible- Instead of keeping your fruits and vegetables hidden away in the fruit and veggie drawers in the fridge- keep them somewhere accessible.  We bought a fruit basket and we always keep it full on the kitchen counter or dining room table.  Not only am eating more fruit, but the kids are too!  And whenever they ask for snacks, I tell them to get something healthy from the basket.  We also moved our vegetables from the fridge drawer to the fridge shelves.  I'm just more likely to grab them if I can see them.

84.  Divide Your Dinner Plate- Pay attention to how you fill up your dinner plate. Proper proportions make a big difference in your health and weight loss.  Aim to fill it up half way full with vegetables first, then split the remaining half between your proteins and starches.

85.  Cut Out Sugar- Sugar is biiiig problem in our country, just look at the statistics.  Now, I'll be the first to admit that I have a HUGE sweet tooth.  Sweets have always been my weakness.  But you'd be amazed what a game changer this one can be!  I was working out and trying to eat healthier, but I didn't see real results in how I felt until I cut out the sugar.  Suddenly I was having less headaches, feeling a lot less moody, and waking up with energy.  Now that doesn't mean that I never have sweets- but I try to limit it to once a week.  It's crazy hard at first, but it gets easier.  And remember, just because you fall off the bandwagon- doesn't mean you can't hop back on.  This isn't a quick-fix, fad diet- it's a lifestyle and it's a learning process.  

Weight Loss Tips and Motivation

86.  Get OrganizedIf you're struggling with your health and weight loss journey, then it's time to get organized and set some goals to help keep you on track.  Our friend, Mique, has great Fitness & Health Binder printables that are perfect to get you started.  There's a sheet to track your measurements, food journaling pages, and even printables to help with healthy meal planning.  If you want to find success, you've got to make it a priority.  I started putting my daily workouts and meal planning on my to-do list.  Yeah, there's no real deadline like some of my other assignments, but it's just as important!  Actually- it's more important.  You only get one body to live in, so make time for yourself.

87.  Set Up a Visual MotivatorAren't these weight loss jars great?  Every time you lose a pound, you get to move one of the marbles from the "pounds to lose" jar to the "pounds lost" jar.  There's just something motivating about seeing your progress.  I have a friend who uses dollar bills instead of marbles.  She made herself a little "sweat stash" and every time she works out, she gets to add a dollar to the jar.  Then she spends the money to treat herself to something fun.

88.  Invest in Your Health & Fitness- No, getting healthy doesn't have to be inexpensive, but don't be afraid to spend some money on yourself.  Your health is worth it.  Besides, you're more likely to value something when you've invested in it.  Maybe that means buying some new workout clothes and running shoes to get you motivated, or maybe it means purchasing a new workout program that you're excited about it.  Obviously you don't want to do more than you can afford, but it's a good idea to evaluate what you're currently spending your money on and if see if you need to make adjustments.

89.  Surround Yourself with Supporters-  Getting healthy can be a hard journey, and sometimes it's tempting to just give up.  That's why it's important to surround yourself with supporters.  Hopefully you have family and friends who are encouraging you in your health goals, but even if you don't- you can choose to surround yourself with positivity.  Follow social media pages that are health and fitness oriented so you'll see daily reminders and motivators in your newsfeed.  Join a challenge group for extra support.  There are even apps, like PumpUp, that connect you to a fitness community where you can motivate and encourage each other.

90.  Take "Before" Pictures- I know, taking a "before" picture is not fun.  But just do it.  You don't have to show it to anyone- keep it for yourself.  It's a great motivator later on to be able to look back and see how far you've come.  Sometimes weight loss is a slow process, and it's easy to get caught up with a number on the scale.  But the scale doesn't tell the whole story.  And when you can see the difference in yourself in a picture- it's a great feeling.

Our Favorite Fitness Products

Our Favorite Fitness Gear and Products

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If you're looking to invest in yourself and your health, then you need to check out these eleven products- they're our fitness faves!

Favorite Fitness Products and Gear

91.  Victoria's Secret Sports BrasIt's really hard to find a good quality sports bra these days, but we're loving the Victoria Secret sports line.  There are so many different styles and options and the quality is great.  (They also have a wide selection of workout pants, capris, and shorts and, of course, matching workout tops.  I like to shop their sales.)

92.  Lululemon HeadbandsThese headbands are awesome at keeping your bangs back and hair away from your face while working out.  Yes, they're a little pricey for a headband but they're totally worth it for the quality.

93.  Nike Free Running Shoes- These are my favorite workout shoes.  They're crazy comfortable, very high quality, and come in lots of fun, bright colors.  My husband laughs at me, but cute shoes totally motivate me to workout.

94.  Athleta Workout Wear- Athleta's workout clothes are great quality and very comfortable.  They're definitely on the pricey end, but they last forever.  (If you're shopping on a budget, we're also fans of Target's activewear.)

95.  Anti-Slip Yoga MatThis yoga mat is extremely high quality, ultra durable, and also comes with a yoga mat carrier.  The cute colors are just an added bonus.  It's great for yoga, pilates, or really any floor exercises.

Favorite Fitness Products

96.  Fitbit FlexThe fitbit really is a great tool to get you motivated to be more active.  It tracks steps, distance, and calories burned- and it even monitors how long and well you sleep.  (You can even get fitbit replacement bands in all sorts of fun colors.)

97.  Fit JournalThis pretty fit journal is a great way to track your progress.  It has pages to log your food intake, workout logs, grocery list pages, measurement pages, motivational quotes, and even a place for your before and after pictures.

98.  FlipBelt- If you're a runner, you'll love the FlipBelt.  It's perfect for holding your car keys, cell phone, and some cash while you run.

99.  Wireless EarphonesMusic makes every workout better and these earphones are great.  They're lightweight, comfortable, stay in place while running, and are great for women with small ears (like me.)

100.  Bowflex Adjustable DumbbellsIf you do any weight-lifting at all, then you NEED to check out Bowflex's SelectTech Adjustable Dumbbells.  It's basically 15 sets of weights in one, so you don't have to have multiple sets of dumbbells all over the place.  Each dumbbell adjusts from 5 to 52.5 pounds!  We invested in these a couple of years ago when they were on sale at Christmas time and both my husband and I love them!  Actually, everyone that I've talked to that uses them loves them.

101.  Weight Lifting GlovesThese weight lifting gloves are specifically designed for women, and the best part is- they're 100 percent machine washable and dryable.  (Which comes in handy with all that sweat.)

Did we miss any of your favorite fitness products?  Let us know in the comments.  We love finding new tried and true products!

Phew!  And there you have it- over 100 health hacks to help you slim down this summer!  

For more ideas to get moving- make sure to check out our 50 Healthy and Active Date Ideas.  It's full of fun ideas to "get physical" with your sweetheart.

50 fun active dates

 Hope you have a happy HEALTHY summer!

The post 101 Summer Slimdown Hacks appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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101 Health Hacks- a Summer Slimdown Guide

101 HEALTH HACKS

There's just something about summer that makes you want to get more active and healthy.  Maybe it's the warm weather (or maybe it's because everyone wants to feel confident for swimsuit season.)  Whatever it is- summer is the perfect time to slim down and shed some pounds.  So today we're sharing...

101 Health Hacks- The ULTIMATE Summer Slimdown Guide

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Consider this your ULTIMATE 

Summer Slimdown Guide!  

 

From healthy snacks and meals to workout tips and weight loss tricks- we've included it all.  We're even sharing our favorite fitness products and gear.  Since this is such a comprehensive list, we've divided it into categories to make browsing easier for you.  Below you'll find...

 
  • 10 Healthy Summer Smoothies
  • 20 Healthy Summer Snacks
  • 10 Healthy Summer Salads
  • 10 Healthy {Oven-Free} Summer Dinners
  • 10 Healthy  Summer Treats
  • 10 Healthy Food Prep Tips
  • 10 Summer Workouts Tips
  • 10 Weight Loss Tips & Tricks
  • 11 of Our Favorite Fitness Products
 

So stop what you're doing and pin this sucker right now.  (That way you'll be able to find it easily whenever you need a healthy meal, a quick workout, or just some fitness motivation.)  Then come on back and start scrolling through the different sections to find your favorites.

Ready?!  First up...

 

Healthy Summer Smoothies

10 Healthy Summer Smoothies

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My "health journey" started with smoothies.  After all, it's a lot easier for me to sip on a yummy, cold drink than to try to make myself eat veggies that I don't love.  I started with fresh fruit smoothies and then started trying different variations of green smoothies.  That was over 5 years ago and I've grown to love my salads and veggies- but I still love my smoothies!  My kids do too.  In fact, whenever we run out of spinach they are quick to remind me that we need to pick some up for our smoothies.   I discovered a long time ago that when I let them help me pick the ingredients or even the color of the smoothie- they are excited to drink it.  Sometimes they even ask if they can create their own smoothie recipe.  You can follow the "green smoothie formula" to make your own recipe, or try one of these ten tried and tested smoothie favorites.

Healthy Summer Smoothies

1.  Pink Power SmoothieThis is my girls' favorite smoothie because it's bright pink! They don't even care that they're drinking beets and celery because all they taste is the strawberries and apple.  Who said healthy smoothies have to be green?2.  Apple Peach Carrot Smoothie- This smoothie is delicious and loaded with nutrients.  It's a great way to sneak some veggies into your family's diet too.  If your kids have a hard time with green smoothies, you might start with this one- since carrots are sweeter than greens.3.  Golden Glow Elixir- This smoothie is one I've been wanting to try.  Doesn't it just look so bright and happy?  It's like drinking a glass of sunshine.  (You'll need a high powered blender to get a good texture and consistency- otherwise I recommend juicing this one.)4.  Mean Green MachinePack some power greens into a delicious smoothie.  This recipes calls for 4 cups of spinach and my kids slurp it right up!  All you need is pineapple juice, baby spinach, pineapple chunks, a granny smith apple and some ice.5.  Blueberry Banana Smoothie- This tasty smoothie only calls for four ingredients:  blueberries, frozen bananas, almond milk, and almonds.  I love making this one during blueberry season.

Healthy Smoothie Recipes

6.  Sunrise SmoothieThis tropical tasting smoothie is a great way to start your day. All you need is frozen mixed berries, a frozen banana, an orange, and some vanilla greek yogurt.7.  Strawberry Banana Smoothie- Strawberry Banana is a tried and true classic!  I love switching things up and trying new and different recipes, but I always come back to this original as one of my very favorites.  (And of course it's my girls love it too- because it's pink!)8.  Healthy Peanut Butter & Chocolate SmoothieThis smoothie doesn't have any processed sugar (in fact it has a whole cup of spinach) but it still tastes like a Wendy's frosty.  I use almond milk instead of water and the banana gives it a great consistency.9.  Pineapple Mango Vitamin C BoosterThis Vitamin-C packed smoothie is sweet, creamy, and citrusy.  Plus pineapple and mango is a fruit combination that I never tire of.  All you need is frozen pineapple and mango chunks (I like to buy the big bags of pre-cut frozen fruit), a banana, vanilla, and milk of your choice (I use almond milk).10.  Protein Packed Blackberry SmoothieThis vibrant colored smoothie was the perfect way to use some of our blackberries this week.  And you don't even need to throw in any protein powder if you don't want to because there's plenty in the greek yogurt.

Healthy Summer Snacks

20 Healthy Summer Slimdown Hacks

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With the kids home from school sometimes the summertime snacking can get out of control.  But snacking doesn't have to be a bad thing.  In fact, eating small snacks throughout the day is good for your metabolism- as long as you're picking healthy, nutrient-rich snacks.  So stock your fridge and pantry with lots of healthy ingredients and options.  After all- it's hard to eat junk food if it's not around, and it's a lot easier to eat healthy snacks when the fridge is full of them.  Here are 20 great ideas to get you started.

The first ten snacks are savory and the last ten are sweet.

Healthy Snack Ideas

11.  Meat & Cheese Cucumber Sandwiches- Super easy and super yummy.  Just put slices of lunch meat and cheese between slices of cucumber.12.  Avocado ToastMy husband grew up eating avocado toast but it was a new discovery to me when we got married.  We use whole wheat bread and it's super filling.  (Sometimes we add sliced cheese on top too.)13.  Zucchini Pizza Bites- These zucchini rounds are great for portion control and a fun & healthy finger food for the kids.  Plus they're about a million times healthier than those frozen pizza rolls.14.  Healthy Microwave Popcorn (Without the Bag) Did you know you can make your own microwave popcorn- without all that oil and butter?  You won't believe how simple it is!15.  Skinny Green Popcorn- These soya beans are so much better for you than regular oily popcorn or potato chips, but you can still enjoy a bowl of cheesy, salty munchies to nibble on without guilt.

Healthy Snack Ideas

16.  Zucchini Parmesan ChipsThe next time you have the urge to eat something savory, crispy, and crunchy- let these baked zucchini chips curb your deep-fried cravings. You won't believe these easy crisps weigh in under 100 calories.17.  Carrot ChipsThese carrot chips only require three simple ingredients and are so easy to make.  Plus, they're so much healthier than potato chips.18.  Garlicky Parmesan & Rosemary Roasted ChickpeasThese are so easy to make and taste delicious.  And the best part is that you can use the same method with almost any flavor combination you want.  This recipe makes cheesy, garlicky, herb-roasted goodness.  But you could also do plain salted, cinnamon sugar, or even a spicy buffalo flavor.  The sky's the limit.19.  Veggies & Dip in a JarThis is a great, on-the-go snack option.  Just fill the bottom of a mason jar with your favorite veggie dip or dressing than add in your veggie sticks for snacking.20.  10-Minute Restaurant-Style Steamed EdamameYou won't believe how easy it is to make your own steamed edamame.  All you need is a bag of edamame, salt, and water.  Nothing fancy, but it tastes divine.

Delicious Healthy Summer Snacks

21.  Almond Butter Banana SandwichWhen a banana alone won't cut it, try making an open sandwich using your favorite nut butter, agave or honey, and toppings.22.  Peanut Butter Banana RollAll you need a whole wheat tortilla, some peanut butter, a banana, and mini chocolate chips for this yummy snack.23.  Frozen Yogurt Covered Blueberries- These are really yummy, plus they're low calorie and high fiber.  Add in the protein from the greek yogurt and it's a great option for a sweet treat.  (You can even leave out the berries and just make frozen yogurt dots.)24.  Frozen Grapes or Cherries- My kids eat these like candy.  The iciness gives the fruit a sorbet-like consistency, and the sweetness will satisfy those sugar cravings.  Perfect for a hot, summer day.25. Smoothie PopsiclesTurn your favorite summer smoothies into popsicles!  Whenever we make smoothies, we always seem to have a little leftover in the blender.  Instead of wasting it, we like to pour it in our popsicle molds for a cold dessert treat later in the day.  (Healthy chocolate smoothies make great fudgesicles too!)

Sweet Healthy Snacks

26.  Yogurt PopsIt doesn't get any easier than this.  Just stick popsicle sticks into the tops of individual yogurt containers.  Then simply freeze for easy frozen yogurt pops.27.  Chocolate Raspberries- Sometimes you just need a little chocolate fix, but you don't want to sabotage all your hard work by making (and eating) a whole batch of chocolate chip cookies.    These chocolate chip raspberries are a perfect healthy option to satisfy that chocolate craving!  And it doesn't hurt that it's a super quick and easy either.  (Another option is to melt a small handful of chocolate chips in the microwave for dipping strawberries.  It's one of our favorite, easy date night treats.)28.  Chocolate-Dipped Banana BitesYou can use any kind of nut butter that you want to make these banana bites, and the frozen factor makes them perfect for summertime!29.  Apple Cookies Just load up slices of apple with you favorite toppings- peanut butter, nutella, chocolate chips, and slivered almonds all work great.  My girls love making these with me.  Their favorite thing to do is stack up the slices to make "triple-layer" cookies.30.  Healthy, Baked Cinnamon Apple ChipsThese baked apple chips are easy to make at home, plus they're healthy, cheap, easy, and totally delicious.

Healthy Summer Salads

10 Healthy Summer Salads

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When we started changing our eating habits we started eating a LOT of salad.  Don't get me wrong- I love salad- but I also get bored really easy.  So I started searching Pinterest to find fresh, new salad recipes to add some fun and variety to our healthy menu planning.  I was amazed at how many different, delicious variations there are to choose from!  Eating healthy doesn't have to be bland or boring!  Have fun with it.  Try combining different fruits, veggies, meats, nuts, cheeses, and dressings and see what new concoctions you can come up with.  Here are ten of my "gotta-try" favorites to get you started.

Healthy Summer Salads

31.  Rainbow Chicken Salad with Almond Honey Mustard DressingThis is one of my kids' favorite salads.  It's full of lots of juicy fresh fruit, tangy feta cheese, and the salad dressing is finger-licking good.  It's made with almond butter so it's super smooth and creamy too!32.  Asian-Style Cobb Salad with a Sesame VinaigretteMandarin oranges, hard-boiled eggs, green onions, avocado, carrots, chicken- what's not to like?  It's basically an Asian-style party in your mouth.  The sesame vinaigrette completes it perfectly too!33.  Harvest Cobb Salad with a Poppyseed Dressing-  From the crispy bacon to the crunchy apples, pears, and pecans- I love everything about this salad.  The creamy poppyseed dressing is pretty decadent too!  The sugar and bacon make this salad a little bit of a splurge, but I decided that I'd rather eat some extra calories to help me enjoy my veggies and fruits than on junk food or baked goodies.34.  Pomegranate, Pear, Pistachio Salad with Pomegranate Dressing -   This salad is SO addictingly delicious! Sweet pomegranate arils, pears, apples, crunchy cucumbers and peppers complimented by salty roasted pistachios and pepitas all topped with a creamy pomegranate dressing.35.  Broccoli Apple SaladNow this is how you enjoy your broccoli!  Pecans, cranberries, carrots, onions, and apples- there are so many delicious flavors and textures!  Did I mention the creamy dressing on top is to die for?!  If you couldn't tell yet- I'm all about the dressing.

Favorite Healthy Salads

36.  Spinach Strawberry Salad with Balsamic VinaigretteSummer is strawberry season and the perfect time to make this delicious salad.  I love the flavors of the berries mixed with the gorgonzola cheese and toasted pecans.  You can use fresh bacon or even bacon bits will work in a pinch.  (I always have a bag of real bacon bits handy for salads.)37.  Southwest Pepper Jack Salad with Avocado Salsa Dressing-  This recipe will get you craving salad!  It's loaded with black beans, red bell peppers, tomatoes, fresh corn, pepitas, Pepper Jack cheese, and topped off with a creamy avocado salsa dressing.  You can add in some tortilla strips for a little something extra or leave them off if you prefer.38. BBQ Chicken Ranch Salad-  This is my favorite salad to order when we eat out and it's even better when you make it yourself.  (Then you can add extra your favorite ingredients.)  This is the recipe I used to get my oldest daughter to love salads!  I let her help me make it and it worked like a charm.39.  Blueberry Chicken Chopped Salad with a Dijon Vinaigrette- We went blueberry picking this summer and so I had to give this recipe a try- it was a hit.  It's a great mixture of savory, sweet, and tangy and it held up great in the fridge after a couple of days- even with the dressing on top.40.  Quinoa & Berries Barbecue Chicken SaladIf you like BBQ sauce on your salad you've got to try this version.  The added berries and quinoa give it a totally new and delicious flavor.  This post even has vegan options you might want to check out.

Healthy {Oven-Free} Summer Dinners

10 Healthy Oven-Free Summer Dinners

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I don't know about you, but on really hot summer days the last thing I want to do is turn on my oven.   So I'm always on the hunt for oven-free dinners that are both healthy AND delicious.  When I'm not making a salad, I especially love using my slow cooker in the summer.  These are ten of our favorite, healthy oven-free dinners!

Healthy Crockpot Dinners

41.  Slow Cooker Enchilada Quinoa BakeIf you haven't jumped on the quinoa bandwagon yet, you really ought to give it a try.  It's a great wheat-free alternative to starchy grains and it contains all nine essential amino acids making it a complete-protein source.  We eat a lot of quinoa these days, but this is one of my very favorite ways to eat it.  It's super easy to prep and with all that enchilada flavor, the kids gobble it up.  42.  Crockpot Seasoned Chicken, Potatoes, and Green BeansThis one is a classic and super easy to throw together.  With very little prep-time you can have a complete, healthy meal cooking in the crockpot and waiting for you when dinner time arrives.43.  Slow Cooker Sweet Potato, Chicken, and Quinoa SoupThis healthy soup is SO easy to prepare. The only chopping is with the sweet potatoes. But once those are peeled and chopped into small pieces, it’s pretty much just throwing the rest of the ingredients into the slow cooker and waiting for it to do its magic!44.  Slow Cooker Chicken FajitasThese chicken fajitas are full of flavor and the slow cooker really makes the chicken tender.  You can serve them with whole wheat tortillas or pour it over rice or quinoa to make a delicious fajita bowl.45.  Slow Cooker Asian Chicken Lettuce WrapsThese lettuce wraps are like the ones you can order at P.F. Changs, and you won't believe how simple the recipe is.  It makes a lot so you'll even have leftovers for lunch or dinner the next day.

Healthy Summer Dinners

46.  Slow Cooker Stuffed Bell Peppers- These peppers are stuffed with quinoa, black beans, corn, and salsa for tons of flavor.  Just put them together in the morning and forget about them until dinner.47.  Stuffed Sweet PotatoesNo need to turn on your oven for this quick dinner!  Just cook your sweet potatoes in the microwave, then slice them open and stuff them with this Chipotle Black Bean & Corn Salad.  If that’s not enough, you can whip up a very quick and delicious vinaigrette with lime juice, lime zest, honey, and chipotle and pour it over the whole thing.  Yum!48.  Southwestern Spaghetti SquashIt only takes about 15 minutes to cook the spaghetti squash in the microwave.  Then you can top if off with chipotle peppers, cilantro, and quest fresco cheese.  Sometimes we'll even heat up some spaghetti sauce in the microwave to top it off.49.  Cranberry Cherry Chicken WrapWhen it's really hot outside and you just want a something light, and cool for dinner- this chicken wrap hits the spot.  It comes together really quickly too!50.  Burrito Bowl with Creamy Chipotle Sauce-  I always have a big bowl of cooked rice in the fridge so I can just warm it up and throw together easy meals like this one.  If you want, you can even make the chipotle sauce beforehand to make dinnertime even easier.  Just pull everything out of the fridge and it's ready to assemble.

Healthy Summer Treats

10 Healthy Summer Treats

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It's fairly easy to find healthy lunch and dinner options, but sweet treats are a little harder to find.  Luckily for you- we did the searching for you.  Here are 10 guilt-free treats for those times when you just need a little something sweet without totally blowing your healthy eating plan.

Healthy Treats and Desserts

51.  5-Minute Healthy Strawberry Frozen YogurtOne of the hardest parts of healthy eating for me is getting over my ice cream obsession.  That's why I LOVE this healthy option for a yummy frozen treat.  It uses honey or agave nectar instead of sugar, so you can enjoy a delicious treat completely guilt-free. (Or try this healthy peach frozen yogurt.)52.  Chocolate Mousse Filled StrawberriesWould you believe that these decadent mousse filled strawberries are made using ingredients like silken tofu, chickpeas, and dates?  I don't generally cook with those ingredients but these look so amazing- I think I have to try it.53.  Chocolate Peanut Butter Apples BitesThese apple bites and healthy and filling, but the creamy peanut butter and chocolate drizzle makes them feel like a special dessert.  I could eat these all day.54.  Apple NachosIf you like the apple bites, then you'll love these apple nachos too!  It feels like a decadent treat, but this fruity dessert is so much healthier than your typical sugary, processed dessert. 55.  Dulce Quesadilla- Strawberries, bananas, chocolate, and peanut butter- all heated together into melty goodness.  What's not to like?!

Healthy Dessert Ideas

56.  N0-Bake Quinoa Crumble BarsIf you like granola bars, here's a healthy option for you.  And you don't even have to bake it!57.  Healthy Strawberry Oat SquaresThese Strawberry Oat Squares are like Strawberry Nutrigrain Bars- only healthier (and better.)  There's only 1 tablespoon of sugar plus they have no butter or oil and are made with 100% good for you ingredients.58.  Cookie Dough Greek YogurtTurn your regular greek yogurt into a sweet treat.  Just add 1 tbsp. of creamy peanut butter, 1 tsp. of honey, 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract, 1 tbsp. of miniature chocolate chips and a dash of sea salt.59.  Healthy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies- You're not going to believe this but, there is no oil, no flour, no eggs and no added sugar in these cookies!  The longer they sit- the better they taste too.60.  Healthy Chocolate MuffinsThese healthy chocolate muffins use applesauce and greek yogurt and don't have any processed sugar.  Now, they're not exactly chocolate cupcakes- but it's a great healthy option when you're craving some chocolate.

Healthy Food Prep Tips

10 Healthy Food Prep Tips

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We've learned a lot about health and fitness over the last couple of years, but I think this has probably been the biggest game changer for us.  When life gets busy it's really easy to fall off of the healthy bandwagon.  (We should know, we've done it a lot.)  But we've discovered that when we take one day each week to prep our food for the week- we have SO much more success.  Then when our schedule is packed (and there is no way I have time to cook something nutritious for dinner), we don't resort to the drive-through or easy packaged meals.  Because it's already set to go for us in the fridge.  Yes, it takes a little planning, but trust me- it will change your life!

Healthy Food Prep Tips

61. Prepare Fruit Snack BagsFill sandwich bags with fruit for easy grab-and-go snacks.  It's perfect for when the kids are complaining that they're hungry between meals or for a healthy option when you need to grab something before running out the door for errands or appointments.  (Besides, if you don't bring a healthy snack in the car, you just might be tempted to stop at the drive-in.)62.  Prepare Containers of Sliced VeggiesSlice up some carrots, celery, bell peppers, or other veggies for easy grab-and-go snacking.  Instead of putting them in the veggie drawer of the fridge (where you're less likely to see them and more likely to forget about them)- store them in the door of the fridge.  Jen up-cycled Crystal Light containers for her veggies- smart!63.  Pre-Chop Your Lettuce for Salads-  When dinner time rolls around, it's super easy to throw together a quick salad if you already have everything chopped and ready to go in the fridge.  We go through our lettuce pretty quickly (and we have a food prep day every week) so we just wash it, chop it all up, and keep it in a plastic bowl with a tight-fitting lid.   But here's a great post about how to store your lettuce to make it last longer if you don't want to go shopping as often.64.  Pre-Cook Your Meat for the Week- Instead of cooking chicken every night, we like to bake a bunch of chicken breasts all at once that we can use throughout the week for our salads and dinners.  Sure- you can buy bags of pre-cooked and sliced chicken at the store if you want, but this is so much cheaper and it's really easy.65.  Fool-Proof Oven-Baked Brown RiceEvery week, as part of my food prep, I like to make a big batch of brown rice to keep in the fridge.  That way when lunch or dinner comes around, I can just scoop some and warm it up for a healthy side.  And this oven-baked method is SO easy!  I always double it and use a 9x13-inch pan.   (We also like to make a big batch of quinoa for the week.)

Healthy Meal Prep

66.  Make a Batch of Hard Boiled Eggs in the Oven- We like having hard boiled eggs on hand for our salads to add some variety and they're also great for an easy, healthy snack.  You can boil a pot on the stove or try the oven method using a muffin tin.67.  Healthy Mason Jar Salads- We try to keep all the ingredients for a mini salad bar in our fridge, but sometimes we like to make prepared mason jar salads too.  They make great lunches for my husband to take to work, and I like using them myself when it's a crazy day at home and I don't have a lot of time to cook.68.  DIY Freezer Smoothie KitsCreate your own individual serving smoothie bags.  It makes it so convenient for busy mornings.  All you have to do each morning is grab a bag from the freezer, empty it into the blender, add the liquid, and breakfast is ready in less than a minute.69.  Healthy Crockpot Freezer Meals- We don't do this one every week, but we try to prep some healthy freezer meals about once a month.  In about two hours (or less if you have help) you can prep twelve healthy freezer meals for the crockpot.  Then when you're having a busy day, all you have to do is dump it in the crockpot and you're good to go.  It really is a life-saver when schedules get crazy.70.  Fill Up a Healthy Snack Drawer- Fill a drawer in your fridge and pantry with healthy snacks (and get rid of the junk food!)  You'll eat what's in your house- so make sure you're prepared with healthy snacks that you enjoy.  Cottage cheese, nuts, string cheese, apple sauce, and yogurt are all good options besides your fruit and veggies.

Summer Workouts Tips

10 Summer Workout Tips

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Okay, now that we've covered the healthy eating- let's move on to exercise.  You can lose weight with healthy eating alone, but you need exercise to get healthy, fit, and toned.  Plus it's great for relieving stress.  I'm always in a happier mood after I workout and burn off some stress.  My roommate used to always say, "Don't be moody- move that booty!"  Ha ha- I love it.  Here are ten tips for your summer workouts.

Free Workout Calendars and Exercise Programs

71.  Popsicle Stick WorkoutIf you struggle with getting active and moving more- here's a fun tip using popsicle sticks.  Just write down different exercises on each popsicle stick and stick them in a cup. Then, whenever you get a free minute- pull one out, do the exercise, and move it to a different cup labeled "done."  Set a goal to do 10 popsicle sticks by the end of the day- or try to do them all if you want.  If it's broken down into individual exercises it often seems less overwhelming.72.  Sworkit App- You don't need to go to the gym to get in a great workout.  Did you know that you can download the Sworkit Lite App for free and easily plan customized workouts?  It lets you choose how long you want to workout, what type of exercises you want to do, and even lets you set how long of a break you'd like between each exercise so you don't fall behind.  It's great for fitting in exercise during naptime or whenever you have some free time.  If you try it out and like it, I definitely recommend checking out Sworkit Pro.73.  Blogilates Workout Calendar-  If you're ever on Pinterest, you've probably seen Cassey Ho and her Blogilates workout videos.  But did you know that she has free monthly workout calendars?!  (Very similar to our love calendars.)  You can get started with her beginners workout calendar and then if you subscribe to her newsletter, you'll get a new calendar each month.  Awesome, right?  She also has an app you can check out.74.  Do a 30 Day ChallengeCassey also has fun calendars for different 30 day challenges.  You can choose from her Flat Abs Challenge, her Butt Lift Challenge, her Thigh Slimming Challenge, or her Sleek Arms Challenge.  And if that's not enough, Pinterest is always full of 30 Day Workout Challenges.75.  Follow a Couch to 5K Running CalendarAnyone can be a runner, it just takes training and dedication.  The couch to 5K program is a great way to get started. You can always try this Couch to 5K app, too!

Free Workouts

76.  Order a Challenge PackIf you're really serious about shedding some weight or just committed to getting healthier- you might want to invest in your health and order a Beachbody challenge pack and join a challenge group.  Remember the challenge group that we did in February?  Well, I lost 14 pounds and my husband lost 18!  I love that there are so many different workout programs to choose from and being a part of the challenge group was exactly what we needed to keep ourselves accountable.  In fact, I just joined another challenge group for the 21 Day Fix to keep myself motivated.  (Let me know in the comments if you wanna join in!)77.  Elliptical Workouts- Click on the link for 13 different elliptical workouts to whip you into shape.  These workout pages are great to print and take to the gym or just pull them up on your phone.  Just browse through and pick which workout you want to try based on the amount of time you have.78.  Treadmill WorkoutsIf you have a treadmill at home (or a gym membership) pull up one of these treadmill workouts and get moving!  And if you're really up for a challenge- try this Treadmill Shredmill workout.79.  Weight Lifting RoutinesIf you want to get started lifting weights, this is a great place to start.  They have printable workout routines, free trainers, eating programs, and everything you could ever want or need.80.  YouTube Workout VideosI love my workout videos, but now because of YouTube there's even more options!  Have you seen all the awesome workout videos on there?  Check out these 21 free workout videos.  And then if you're ready for more- check out the top 13 personal trainers on YouTube.

Weight Loss Tips & Tricks

10 Tips & Tricks for Weight Loss

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Okay, we've gone over nutrition and exercise- now how about some quick weight loss tips and tricks to get you started dropping the pounds.

Weight Loss Tips

81.  Track Your Water-  Drinking water is such an important part of health and weight loss.  You would think it would be the easiest thing, but in our workout challenge group we actually discovered that it was the thing that most people in the group were struggling with.  You might be surprised what a difference it makes for you.  Easier weight loss, less headaches, and better digestion are just a few of the benefits.  These detox timer water bottles are a great way to track your water intake throughout the day.  Or try the Absorb Water App.82.  Get More Sleep- Most people know that getting quality sleep is important for your health, but did you know it can be a big factor in your weight loss (or lack thereof?)  Researchers at Columbia University found that people who sleep less than seven hours per night are heavier, gain more weight over time, and have a harder time losing weight!  So make sure you're getting between 7-8 hours of sleep each night.  (Now that's a weight loss program I'm willing to work on!)83.  Keep Your Fruits & Veggies Accessible- Instead of keeping your fruits and vegetables hidden away in the fruit and veggie drawers in the fridge- keep them somewhere accessible.  We bought a fruit basket and we always keep it full on the kitchen counter or dining room table.  Not only am eating more fruit, but the kids are too!  And whenever they ask for snacks, I tell them to get something healthy from the basket.  We also moved our vegetables from the fridge drawer to the fridge shelves.  I'm just more likely to grab them if I can see them.84.  Divide Your Dinner Plate- Pay attention to how you fill up your dinner plate. Proper proportions make a big difference in your health and weight loss.  Aim to fill it up half way full with vegetables first, then split the remaining half between your proteins and starches.85.  Cut Out Sugar- Sugar is biiiig problem in our country, just look at the statistics.  Now, I'll be the first to admit that I have a HUGE sweet tooth.  Sweets have always been my weakness.  But you'd be amazed what a game changer this one can be!  I was working out and trying to eat healthier, but I didn't see real results in how I felt until I cut out the sugar.  Suddenly I was having less headaches, feeling a lot less moody, and waking up with energy.  Now that doesn't mean that I never have sweets- but I try to limit it to once a week.  It's crazy hard at first, but it gets easier.  And remember, just because you fall off the bandwagon- doesn't mean you can't hop back on.  This isn't a quick-fix, fad diet- it's a lifestyle and it's a learning process.  

Weight Loss Tips and Motivation

86.  Get OrganizedIf you're struggling with your health and weight loss journey, then it's time to get organized and set some goals to help keep you on track.  Our friend, Mique, has great Fitness & Health Binder printables that are perfect to get you started.  There's a sheet to track your measurements, food journaling pages, and even printables to help with healthy meal planning.  If you want to find success, you've got to make it a priority.  I started putting my daily workouts and meal planning on my to-do list.  Yeah, there's no real deadline like some of my other assignments, but it's just as important!  Actually- it's more important.  You only get one body to live in, so make time for yourself.87.  Set Up a Visual MotivatorAren't these weight loss jars great?  Every time you lose a pound, you get to move one of the marbles from the "pounds to lose" jar to the "pounds lost" jar.  There's just something motivating about seeing your progress.  I have a friend who uses dollar bills instead of marbles.  She made herself a little "sweat stash" and every time she works out, she gets to add a dollar to the jar.  Then she spends the money to treat herself to something fun.88.  Invest in Your Health & Fitness- No, getting healthy doesn't have to be inexpensive, but don't be afraid to spend some money on yourself.  Your health is worth it.  Besides, you're more likely to value something when you've invested in it.  Maybe that means buying some new workout clothes and running shoes to get you motivated, or maybe it means purchasing a new workout program that you're excited about it.  Obviously you don't want to do more than you can afford, but it's a good idea to evaluate what you're currently spending your money on and if see if you need to make adjustments.89.  Surround Yourself with Supporters-  Getting healthy can be a hard journey, and sometimes it's tempting to just give up.  That's why it's important to surround yourself with supporters.  Hopefully you have family and friends who are encouraging you in your health goals, but even if you don't- you can choose to surround yourself with positivity.  Follow social media pages that are health and fitness oriented so you'll see daily reminders and motivators in your newsfeed.  Join a challenge group for extra support.  There are even apps, like PumpUp, that connect you to a fitness community where you can motivate and encourage each other.90.  Take "Before" Pictures- I know, taking a "before" picture is not fun.  But just do it.  You don't have to show it to anyone- keep it for yourself.  It's a great motivator later on to be able to look back and see how far you've come.  Sometimes weight loss is a slow process, and it's easy to get caught up with a number on the scale.  But the scale doesn't tell the whole story.  And when you can see the difference in yourself in a picture- it's a great feeling.

Our Favorite Fitness Products

Our Favorite Fitness Gear and Products

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If you're looking to invest in yourself and your health, then you need to check out these eleven products- they're our fitness faves!

Favorite Fitness Products and Gear

91.  Victoria's Secret Sports BrasIt's really hard to find a good quality sports bra these days, but we're loving the Victoria Secret sports line.  There are so many different styles and options and the quality is great.  (They also have a wide selection of workout pants, capris, and shorts and, of course, matching workout tops.  I like to shop their sales.)

92.  Lululemon HeadbandsThese headbands are awesome at keeping your bangs back and hair away from your face while working out.  Yes, they're a little pricey for a headband but they're totally worth it for the quality.

93.  Nike Free Running Shoes- These are my favorite workout shoes.  They're crazy comfortable, very high quality, and come in lots of fun, bright colors.  My husband laughs at me, but cute shoes totally motivate me to workout.

94.  Athleta Workout Wear- Athleta's workout clothes are great quality and very comfortable.  They're definitely on the pricey end, but they last forever.  (If you're shopping on a budget, we're also fans of Target's activewear.)

95.  Anti-Slip Yoga MatThis yoga mat is extremely high quality, ultra durable, and also comes with a yoga mat carrier.  The cute colors are just an added bonus.  It's great for yoga, pilates, or really any floor exercises.

Favorite Fitness Products

96.  Fitbit FlexThe fitbit really is a great tool to get you motivated to be more active.  It tracks steps, distance, and calories burned- and it even monitors how long and well you sleep.  (You can even get fitbit replacement bands in all sorts of fun colors.)

97.  Fit JournalThis pretty fit journal is a great way to track your progress.  It has pages to log your food intake, workout logs, grocery list pages, measurement pages, motivational quotes, and even a place for your before and after pictures.

98.  FlipBelt- If you're a runner, you'll love the FlipBelt.  It's perfect for holding your car keys, cell phone, and some cash while you run.

99.  Wireless EarphonesMusic makes every workout better and these earphones are great.  They're lightweight, comfortable, stay in place while running, and are great for women with small ears (like me.)

100.  Bowflex Adjustable DumbbellsIf you do any weight-lifting at all, then you NEED to check out Bowflex's SelectTech Adjustable Dumbbells.  It's basically 15 sets of weights in one, so you don't have to have multiple sets of dumbbells all over the place.  Each dumbbell adjusts from 5 to 52.5 pounds!  We invested in these a couple of years ago when they were on sale at Christmas time and both my husband and I love them!  Actually, everyone that I've talked to that uses them loves them.

101.  Weight Lifting GlovesThese weight lifting gloves are specifically designed for women, and the best part is- they're 100 percent machine washable and dryable.  (Which comes in handy with all that sweat.)

Did we miss any of your favorite fitness products?  Let us know in the comments.  We love finding new tried and true products!

Phew!  And there you have it- over 100 health hacks to help you slim down this summer!  

For more ideas to get moving- make sure to check out our 50 Healthy and Active Date Ideas.  It's full of fun ideas to "get physical" with your sweetheart.

50 fun active dates

 Hope you have a happy HEALTHY summer!

The post 101 Summer Slimdown Hacks appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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Becca http://www.TheDatingDivas.com <![CDATA[50 Fun & Easy Family Activities for Summer]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=73771 2015-07-01T12:11:58Z 2015-07-01T12:00:42Z 50 Fun and Easy Family Activities for Summer

50 (Totally Easy)Ways to Make Magical Summer Memories as a Family

I don't know about you, but I'm always looking for fun family activities once summer arrives.  We only have so many summers with our kids at home and I'm all about making them count!   I'm also all about EASY and INEXPENSIVE!  Let's face it- life can get crazy and busy moms don't always have time to plan and prepare elaborate pinterest-worthy activities.  Luckily, it doesn't take a lot of time or money to create lasting family memories.  In fact, you don't even have to go looking for them!  Yep, you're in luck- because we divas have done all the searching for you and put them together in one place.  {Go ahead and pin this baby right now.  Trust, me it'll come in handy!}

Today we're sharing...

50 Family Time Ideas

{Easy, inexpensive, NO-stress ideas for busy moms}

Fun and Easy Family Activities For Summer

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image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Fun-and-Easy-Family-Activities-For-Summer.jpg" description="50 easy ways to make magical summer memories as a family.  Inexpensive, NO-stress ideas for busy moms including: indoor, outdoor, AND after-dark ideas! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

To make it super convenient, we've divided our ideas into the following categories:

  • Outdoor Family Adventures
  • Indoor Family Adventures
  • At-Home Family Fun
  • Backyard Family Fun
  • After-Dark Family Fun

That way you can just pin or bookmark this post now, then whenever you need an easy, fun family idea- just scroll down to the section you're looking for.

Got it pinned? { Seriously- go do it now.  I'll totally wait for you.}  Okay, ready?  Let's get started...

OUTDOOR FAMILY ADVENTURES

Outdoor Family Adventures

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{For when you want to get out and enjoy the sunshine.}

Fun Outdoor Family Adventures

1.  Geocaching-  If you've never heard of geocaching you need to check it out!  It's basically an outdoor treasure-hunting game where your family uses a hand-held GPS like this one to hide and seek containers called "geocaches" or "caches" filled with fun, random treasures.  Trust me, the kids will love it!

2.  Letterboxing-  Letterboxing is very similar to geocaching.  After choosing a location online, your family will use clues to find hidden boxes.  Once you've found the box, your family can stamp the logbook and write down the date and where you're from.  It's a fun and easy way to have a family adventure!

3.  Hiking Scavenger Hunt-  If your family enjoys exploring the outdoors, this is a fun idea to keep the kids busy.  Just print off the free scavenger hunt printable and let the kiddos hunt for the pictured items.  If you have older children you might want to check out this similar Nature Scavenger Hunt.

4.  Zoo Scavenger Hunt- A trip to the zoo is always a fun family outing, but this zoo scavenger hunt makes it extra exciting for the kids.  Instead of just walking around the zoo, they'll get to open different bags with clues that will lead them to the different zoo animals.  If you have little ones, this is a must-try.

5.  Summer Photo Scavenger Hunt-  Outdoor scavenger hunts are a fun way to get out and explore with your family.  But instead of collecting things, how about collecting photos?!  Arm the kids with a disposable camera (or a hand-me down camera) and let them go on a hunt and snap photos.  Rebecca, from Simple as That, even has fun themes for their hunts like: shapes, colors, plants, animals, or signs.  This is one I definitely want to try out.

Summer Outdoor Family Fun

6.  Park Hopping- Going to the park is fun, but going to lots of parks is even more fun.  Am I right?  Just grab the printable park hopping checklists and go.  The checklists have a list of fun tasks or activities for your family to complete at each park.  Super easy, but super fun!

7.  Berry Picking- Summer is the perfect time to take the family berry picking.   Afterward, you can make jam or a fruit pie together.   This is a great site that shows you where to find pick-your-own fruit and vegetables farms and orchards in your state.  It also has great tips for canning and freezing jams.  We went berry picking several weeks ago and my girls are still talking about it.

8.  Kite Flying- One of our favorite family days this summer was also one of the easiest.  On a windy day we drove to the store and let each kid pick out a $1 kite, then went to the local park and started flying them.  It only cost us $4 but it provided a whole evening of fun memories that they're still talking about.  If you wanted, you could even try making your own kites.

9.  Random Acts of Summer Service-  Get out together as a family to do some service.  It doesn't matter if it's picking up trash at the local park, offering to wash the neighbor's car, or taking donated toys to a local charity.  (Our Summer Boredom Buster Printable Pack includes a Summer Service Sheet as well as Random Acts of Kindness Cards to leave at the "scene of the kindness crime" so others can pay it forward too.)

10.  Family Road Trip Activities-  If you're looking for the ultimate outdoor family adventure, then why not go on a family road trip and explore the fun attractions along the way?!  This Road Trip Adventure in a Box makes it so easy to make some seriously fun memories.  There's a fun activity for every hour PLUS printable car bucks and a road trip mix CD cover.

 

INDOOR FAMILY ADVENTURES

Indoor Family Adventures

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{For when you want to get out of the house, but it's too hot or rainy to stay outside.}

Indoor Family Activities

11.  Library Scavenger Hunt-  Too hot to be outside?  This library scavenger hunt is a fun way to spend a hot summer afternoon with the kids.  Just grab the printable clues and let the kids have fun exploring the local library and getting in some summer reading.

12.  Mall Scavenger Hunt- Wouldn't this be a fun family night?  Just split everyone into two teams so half the kids are with dad and half are with mom, then race to see who can finish first.  The free printables are included and there are even FOUR different hunts to choose from!

13.  Walmart Bingo-  Use our printable bingo card for a quick, easy, fun, and free family night at your local Walmart.  Divide into teams and see who can get "Bingo" or "Blackout" first.   There's even a blank bingo card if your family wants to make your own.

14.  M&M Bowling-  Take the family to the local bowling alley for some summer fun, but this time bring a bag of M&Ms for an added a twist!  Before each person bowls, they must pick an M&M out of the bag without looking.  The color of the M&M will tell them how they have to bowl.  Trust me- this is no boring bowling night!

15.  Hotel Pajama Party-  You don't have to go on a vacation or out of town to stay at a hotel.  Surprise the kids by staying at a local hotel over-night.  {Watch for great deals and discounts on Groupon.}  If you pick a hotel with a pool you can swim all day and then have a family pajama party at night.

For even MORE ideas, check out our 85 Indoor Activities for the Whole Family!

AT-HOME FAMILY FUN

At-Home Family Fun

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{For when you want to cook up some fun at home.}

Family Night Ideas

16.  Wacky Game Night-  Host a fun family game night featuring pudding Pictionary and ice cream sculpting.  Who wouldn't love painting pictures with pudding and sculpting their own ice cream masterpieces with a couple of spoons?!  This one is a winner with my kids.

17.  Taste Testing Night-  Here's a fun (and yummy) family night idea- host your own taste testing party.  Every wonder which brand is the best?  Make it your family mission to find out!  It doesn't matter if it's popcorn, pizza, soda, ice cream or anything else- just get 4 different brands and use the printable score cards to record your results.

18.  Movie Night Popcorn Bar-  If your family loves movie nights and popcorn, then this popcorn bar is the perfect way to take it up a notch.  Just set out a giant bowl of popcorn and your favorite toppings and mix-ins and let everyone make their own personalized bowl of yummy goodness.

19.  Family Waffle Bar-  OR if you're looking for more of a meal, then give this build-your-own-waffle bar a try.  It's a quick, but fun, way to turn lunch or dinner time into a party.  Just cook up a stack of waffles then let everyone choose from a variety of toppings.

20.  Fairytale Mystery Dinner-  Download the free mystery dinner menu and let the kids order a fun 3 course dinner using the silly secret code names.  The kids are always giggling when they find out what they ended up ordering, especially if they get dessert before dinner.

Summer Family Fun Ideas

21.  Fancy & Formal Family Dinner-  Let the kids help turn your dining room into your own family restaurant for the night and host a fancy, formal dinner- just because!  Pull out a nice table cloth and eat by candlelight.  Teach the kids how to set a proper table setting and go over dining etiquette.  You could even have everyone get dressed up in their best clothes for the occasion.  Any day can be a special occasion if you make it one.  (It might be fun to use our Dinner Conversation Jar for this one too!)

22.  Make a Family Time Capsule-  The free printables make this an easy family activity to pull off.  Some of the pages include: family memories, current events, all about me, a letter to my future self, family recipe, and even a current prices page.

23.  Make Your Own Family Mission Statement-  Dedicate a night to creating your own family mission statement together.  It's a great way to set some family goals and focus on what you want to work on and improve in your home.  And I love that you can put it on display in your home afterward.

24.  Paint Night- Make a quick trip to the craft store and let everyone pick out their own paint-by-numbers.  They're usually really inexpensive and they even have grown-up paint-by-numbers kits for adults, so it doesn't matter if you're not a natural artist.  We spent a whole day painting together as a family and had SO much fun!

25.  Family Nerf Gun Battle-  Grab some nerf guns and plan a friendly family battle.  You can even divide into teams and have everyone get dressed in their "team color."  You can get started with some fun target practice games and then use the printables provided to start your "Nerf War."

Fun Summer Family Activities

26.  Build a Blanket Fort- My brothers and sisters and I used to love making blanket forts when we were kids.  But it was a million times more fun when my parents joined in on the fun.  After all, they were so much better at constructing them AND they let us bring snacks and drinks into the fort when they were with us.  (Oh, and if you haven't tried making an air fort before- you totally should.  Or go all out and make a fort using pool noodles like this.)

27.  Indoor Camping-  OR just grab your tent and set it up in the front room.  I love that you can get some of the fun of camping out without having to sleep on rocks or use the bathroom in the woods.  When we do this, we like to let the kids roast marshmallows over a candle and we'll even make foil dinners in the oven.

28.  Head's Up Game Night-  If you haven't played Head's Up yet- you have to check it out.  You don't even need to run to the store to buy it.  It's a hilariously fun app that you can get on your phone or iPad.  All you have to do is pick a category, then the person who is guessing holds the phone (or iPad) up in front of their head so everyone else can see the words. Players have a set amount of time to get the guesser to guess as many correct words as possible.

29.  Family Karaoke Night or Talent Show-  Grab a karaoke machine (or a karaoke app) and sing the night away.  Or open it up to any talent with a family talent show.  You could even host your own version of American Idol or America's Got Talent.  Just have two or three people in your family be the judges and the rest can be contestants.  I had a roommate whose family did this all the time and it was hysterical!

30.  Christmas in July-  We love celebrating Christmas in July!  There are so many ways you can do this- watch a Christmas movie, play Christmas music, make a holiday treat, draw a "Secret Santa" name, or get ahead of the game and start working on some homemade presents.

BACKYARD FAMILY FUN

Backyard Family Fun

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{For when you want to stay home but still get some sunshine.}

Backyard Family Fun Ideas

31.  Backyard Splash Bash-  Who wouldn't love a wet and wild water party in the backyard?  From slip-n-slide baseball and water balloon volleyball to sponge ball tag- there are tons of fun water game ideas to keep you busy.  There's even some FREE party printables included too!

32.  Squirt Gun Painting- This one just might win you mom of the year.  Squirt guns are fun and painting is fun- but put them together and your fun just went to a whole new level!  This is something the kids will be talking about for awhile and it doesn't require much effort at all!

33.  Paint Slip-n-Slide- My kids would go crazy for this!  Just lay out a long tarp in the backyard and cover it in different colors of paint.  Then dress the kids in white shirts and shorts and let them go crazy "painting" their clothes by sliding down the tarp.  Then grab some soap and the hose to clean the kids up before coming back inside.   (If you pick comfy shirts and shorts, you could let them use their new "masterpieces" as pajamas.)

34.  Backyard Shaving Cream Fight-  Or skip the sliding altogether and just have a fun family shaving cream fight in the backyard!  Grab a some bottles of shaving cream (and maybe some sunglasses for eye protection) and let everyone go at it.  You're sure to get some great, silly pictures from this one!  And you should- just in case they ever forget what an awesome mom you are. (Not gonna lie- these shaving cream balloons look like a blast to add to your fight too!)

35.  Shaving Cream Slip-n-Slide- If your kids like slip-n-slides, they're going to LOVE shaving cream sliding!  If you don't mind a little mess, you can make some crazy fun memories!  It's pretty easy to pull off to- you'll just need a tarp or last tablecloth and lots of shaving cream.  (If you have a play slide-  you should check out this fun idea too!)

Summer Family Night Ideas

36.  Backyard Movie Night- You don't have to get elaborate with this one (although you can if you want)- just borrow a projector and throw a white sheet over the fence.  Grab a movie and some snacks and enjoy a backyard movie night.

37.  Backyard Obstacle Course-  Make your own obstacle course in the backyard using whatever outdoor toys you can find.  (Hula hoops, balls, stools, jump ropes, and kiddie pools all work great.)  Then take turns timing each other and racing through the course to see who can get the fastest time.

38.  Frisbee Golf-  If you don't have a frisbee golf course near you, you can make your own in your own backyard.  Check out the post for all the details and printables to pull it off.

39.  Backyard Campout-  Now this is a family activity they'll remember forever.  You don't need to drive to a campground to go camping.  Just set up your tent in your own backyard and get ready for some serious fun.  (If you wanted you could even have a backyard barbecue or grill your own "fate burgers" before camping out for the night.)

40.  Summer Picnic and Party Games- A backyard picnic makes for a fun summer family night.  Especially if you throw in some fun summer party games like this watermelon seed spitting contest or the squirt gun shoot-out.

For even MORE ideas, check out these 75 Outdoor Water Activities AND 65 Outdoor Party Games for the Entire Family!

 

AFTER-DARK FAMILY FUN

After Dark Family Fun

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{For some family fun after the sun goes down.}

Summer Night Family Activities

41.  Park after Dark- One of my kids favorite parts about summer is that I'm not so strict about bedtime.  Hey- you don't have to get up early to catch the bus, might as well let them stay up a little late and enjoy sleeping in.  For some after-hours fun, get a bunch of flashlights or glow gear and go play at the park.  It's only happened once so far but they loved it!  Flashlight tag was their favorite after dark park game! {Bonus if you live in a place like we do where you can catch some fireflies.}

42.  Night Bowling-  Who needs a bowling alley when you can create your own glowing bowling alley in your own backyard?  All you need are some empty soda or water bottles, some glow sticks, and a ball.  It's a fun way to burn off some energy on a summer night before bed.

43.  Glow-in-the-Dark Game Night-  This fun group date night would also work perfectly as a fun family night!  From glow-in-the-dark baseball to glow-in-the-dark ring toss and capture the flag- there are lots of fun game ideas for an after dark family party.  There's even some FREE party printables included too!

44.  Swimming Pool Stargazing- Star gazing is fun, but this idea totally takes it up several notches.  Just put a blow-up pool in the backyard and fill it up with lots of pillows and blankets.  Not only is it more comfy, but it's perfect for keeping the itchy grass and bugs away.

45.  Movie in Mom & Dad's Room- This one is SO easy to pull off, but my girls loved it.  Just tape a sign on their door inviting them to a special movie night in mom and dad's room.  We have family movie nights a lot, but for some reason just changing the location to our bed made it exciting and new for them.  (And the special snacks didn't hurt either.)

Fun After-Dark Activities for Families

46.  Family Slumber Party-  Here's another super easy one to pull off.  Just blow up an air mattress and stick it in the living room for a fun family sleep over.  Or if you don't have an air mattress, grab some sleeping bags or even just blankets and pillows.  We popped popcorn, watched a movie, and played a couple of games.  We even took turns telling "scary" stories by flashlight.  (And I have to say, it's pretty funny what my little girls consider "scary.")

47.  Flashlight Games & Shadow Puppets-  These games and ideas and perfect for some late night summer fun.  Just stock up on flashlights and batteries, then when the sun goes down- pull them out and try a new game.

48.  Glowing Water Blob-  You've probably seen all of the fun water blobs on Pinterest, but I bet you haven't seen this fun glowing water blob! Takes it to a whole new level, huh?  Yes, this idea takes a little more time and preparation than the others, but I think it's worth it.  My kids would totally LOVE this!  What kid wouldn't?!

49.  Make Fairy Jars- This fairy jars are super easy to make and they glow for up to 8 hours.  They're perfect for making together and then taking outside on a summer night.   (If your boys are not into fairies- just call them glow jars.)

50. Glow-in-the-Dark Sidewalk Chalk- Make glow-in-the-dark sidewalk chalk and then play a fun family game of Pictionary on the front or back porch.  If you try this one, you should totally make some glow-in-the-dark drinks to go with it!

Do you have any other fun family night ideas?  Let us know in the comments!  We're always looking for more ways to make fun family memories.  

If you liked this post, you'll love 101 Things to Do With Your Kids Besides Watching TV and 101 Summer Boredom Busters- they're FULL of fun family ideas!  Then go grab our printable Summer Bucket List to write down your favorite ideas so you'll be sure to try them out.

Oh, and make sure you follow our "Family Fun Ideas" Pinterest board!  It's loaded with hundreds of great ideas and we're always adding to it.

The post 50 Fun & Easy Family Activities for Summer appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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50 Fun and Easy Family Activities for Summer

50 (Totally Easy)Ways to Make Magical Summer Memories as a Family

I don't know about you, but I'm always looking for fun family activities once summer arrives.  We only have so many summers with our kids at home and I'm all about making them count!   I'm also all about EASY and INEXPENSIVE!  Let's face it- life can get crazy and busy moms don't always have time to plan and prepare elaborate pinterest-worthy activities.  Luckily, it doesn't take a lot of time or money to create lasting family memories.  In fact, you don't even have to go looking for them!  Yep, you're in luck- because we divas have done all the searching for you and put them together in one place.  {Go ahead and pin this baby right now.  Trust, me it'll come in handy!}

Today we're sharing...

50 Family Time Ideas

{Easy, inexpensive, NO-stress ideas for busy moms}

Fun and Easy Family Activities For Summer

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To make it super convenient, we've divided our ideas into the following categories:

  • Outdoor Family Adventures
  • Indoor Family Adventures
  • At-Home Family Fun
  • Backyard Family Fun
  • After-Dark Family Fun

That way you can just pin or bookmark this post now, then whenever you need an easy, fun family idea- just scroll down to the section you're looking for.

Got it pinned? { Seriously- go do it now.  I'll totally wait for you.}  Okay, ready?  Let's get started...

OUTDOOR FAMILY ADVENTURES

Outdoor Family Adventures

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{For when you want to get out and enjoy the sunshine.}

Fun Outdoor Family Adventures

1.  Geocaching-  If you've never heard of geocaching you need to check it out!  It's basically an outdoor treasure-hunting game where your family uses a hand-held GPS like this one to hide and seek containers called "geocaches" or "caches" filled with fun, random treasures.  Trust me, the kids will love it!2.  Letterboxing-  Letterboxing is very similar to geocaching.  After choosing a location online, your family will use clues to find hidden boxes.  Once you've found the box, your family can stamp the logbook and write down the date and where you're from.  It's a fun and easy way to have a family adventure!3.  Hiking Scavenger Hunt-  If your family enjoys exploring the outdoors, this is a fun idea to keep the kids busy.  Just print off the free scavenger hunt printable and let the kiddos hunt for the pictured items.  If you have older children you might want to check out this similar Nature Scavenger Hunt.4.  Zoo Scavenger Hunt- A trip to the zoo is always a fun family outing, but this zoo scavenger hunt makes it extra exciting for the kids.  Instead of just walking around the zoo, they'll get to open different bags with clues that will lead them to the different zoo animals.  If you have little ones, this is a must-try.5.  Summer Photo Scavenger Hunt-  Outdoor scavenger hunts are a fun way to get out and explore with your family.  But instead of collecting things, how about collecting photos?!  Arm the kids with a disposable camera (or a hand-me down camera) and let them go on a hunt and snap photos.  Rebecca, from Simple as That, even has fun themes for their hunts like: shapes, colors, plants, animals, or signs.  This is one I definitely want to try out.

Summer Outdoor Family Fun

6.  Park Hopping- Going to the park is fun, but going to lots of parks is even more fun.  Am I right?  Just grab the printable park hopping checklists and go.  The checklists have a list of fun tasks or activities for your family to complete at each park.  Super easy, but super fun!7.  Berry Picking- Summer is the perfect time to take the family berry picking.   Afterward, you can make jam or a fruit pie together.   This is a great site that shows you where to find pick-your-own fruit and vegetables farms and orchards in your state.  It also has great tips for canning and freezing jams.  We went berry picking several weeks ago and my girls are still talking about it.8.  Kite Flying- One of our favorite family days this summer was also one of the easiest.  On a windy day we drove to the store and let each kid pick out a $1 kite, then went to the local park and started flying them.  It only cost us $4 but it provided a whole evening of fun memories that they're still talking about.  If you wanted, you could even try making your own kites.9.  Random Acts of Summer Service-  Get out together as a family to do some service.  It doesn't matter if it's picking up trash at the local park, offering to wash the neighbor's car, or taking donated toys to a local charity.  (Our Summer Boredom Buster Printable Pack includes a Summer Service Sheet as well as Random Acts of Kindness Cards to leave at the "scene of the kindness crime" so others can pay it forward too.)10.  Family Road Trip Activities-  If you're looking for the ultimate outdoor family adventure, then why not go on a family road trip and explore the fun attractions along the way?!  This Road Trip Adventure in a Box makes it so easy to make some seriously fun memories.  There's a fun activity for every hour PLUS printable car bucks and a road trip mix CD cover. 

INDOOR FAMILY ADVENTURES

Indoor Family Adventures

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{For when you want to get out of the house, but it's too hot or rainy to stay outside.}

Indoor Family Activities

11.  Library Scavenger Hunt-  Too hot to be outside?  This library scavenger hunt is a fun way to spend a hot summer afternoon with the kids.  Just grab the printable clues and let the kids have fun exploring the local library and getting in some summer reading.

12.  Mall Scavenger Hunt- Wouldn't this be a fun family night?  Just split everyone into two teams so half the kids are with dad and half are with mom, then race to see who can finish first.  The free printables are included and there are even FOUR different hunts to choose from!

13.  Walmart Bingo-  Use our printable bingo card for a quick, easy, fun, and free family night at your local Walmart.  Divide into teams and see who can get "Bingo" or "Blackout" first.   There's even a blank bingo card if your family wants to make your own.

14.  M&M Bowling-  Take the family to the local bowling alley for some summer fun, but this time bring a bag of M&Ms for an added a twist!  Before each person bowls, they must pick an M&M out of the bag without looking.  The color of the M&M will tell them how they have to bowl.  Trust me- this is no boring bowling night!

15.  Hotel Pajama Party-  You don't have to go on a vacation or out of town to stay at a hotel.  Surprise the kids by staying at a local hotel over-night.  {Watch for great deals and discounts on Groupon.}  If you pick a hotel with a pool you can swim all day and then have a family pajama party at night.

For even MORE ideas, check out our 85 Indoor Activities for the Whole Family!

AT-HOME FAMILY FUN

At-Home Family Fun

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{For when you want to cook up some fun at home.}

Family Night Ideas

16.  Wacky Game Night-  Host a fun family game night featuring pudding Pictionary and ice cream sculpting.  Who wouldn't love painting pictures with pudding and sculpting their own ice cream masterpieces with a couple of spoons?!  This one is a winner with my kids.17.  Taste Testing Night-  Here's a fun (and yummy) family night idea- host your own taste testing party.  Every wonder which brand is the best?  Make it your family mission to find out!  It doesn't matter if it's popcorn, pizza, soda, ice cream or anything else- just get 4 different brands and use the printable score cards to record your results.18.  Movie Night Popcorn Bar-  If your family loves movie nights and popcorn, then this popcorn bar is the perfect way to take it up a notch.  Just set out a giant bowl of popcorn and your favorite toppings and mix-ins and let everyone make their own personalized bowl of yummy goodness.19.  Family Waffle Bar-  OR if you're looking for more of a meal, then give this build-your-own-waffle bar a try.  It's a quick, but fun, way to turn lunch or dinner time into a party.  Just cook up a stack of waffles then let everyone choose from a variety of toppings.20.  Fairytale Mystery Dinner-  Download the free mystery dinner menu and let the kids order a fun 3 course dinner using the silly secret code names.  The kids are always giggling when they find out what they ended up ordering, especially if they get dessert before dinner.

Summer Family Fun Ideas

21.  Fancy & Formal Family Dinner-  Let the kids help turn your dining room into your own family restaurant for the night and host a fancy, formal dinner- just because!  Pull out a nice table cloth and eat by candlelight.  Teach the kids how to set a proper table setting and go over dining etiquette.  You could even have everyone get dressed up in their best clothes for the occasion.  Any day can be a special occasion if you make it one.  (It might be fun to use our Dinner Conversation Jar for this one too!)22.  Make a Family Time Capsule-  The free printables make this an easy family activity to pull off.  Some of the pages include: family memories, current events, all about me, a letter to my future self, family recipe, and even a current prices page.23.  Make Your Own Family Mission Statement-  Dedicate a night to creating your own family mission statement together.  It's a great way to set some family goals and focus on what you want to work on and improve in your home.  And I love that you can put it on display in your home afterward.24.  Paint Night- Make a quick trip to the craft store and let everyone pick out their own paint-by-numbers.  They're usually really inexpensive and they even have grown-up paint-by-numbers kits for adults, so it doesn't matter if you're not a natural artist.  We spent a whole day painting together as a family and had SO much fun!25.  Family Nerf Gun Battle-  Grab some nerf guns and plan a friendly family battle.  You can even divide into teams and have everyone get dressed in their "team color."  You can get started with some fun target practice games and then use the printables provided to start your "Nerf War."

Fun Summer Family Activities

26.  Build a Blanket Fort- My brothers and sisters and I used to love making blanket forts when we were kids.  But it was a million times more fun when my parents joined in on the fun.  After all, they were so much better at constructing them AND they let us bring snacks and drinks into the fort when they were with us.  (Oh, and if you haven't tried making an air fort before- you totally should.  Or go all out and make a fort using pool noodles like this.)27.  Indoor Camping-  OR just grab your tent and set it up in the front room.  I love that you can get some of the fun of camping out without having to sleep on rocks or use the bathroom in the woods.  When we do this, we like to let the kids roast marshmallows over a candle and we'll even make foil dinners in the oven.28.  Head's Up Game Night-  If you haven't played Head's Up yet- you have to check it out.  You don't even need to run to the store to buy it.  It's a hilariously fun app that you can get on your phone or iPad.  All you have to do is pick a category, then the person who is guessing holds the phone (or iPad) up in front of their head so everyone else can see the words. Players have a set amount of time to get the guesser to guess as many correct words as possible.29.  Family Karaoke Night or Talent Show-  Grab a karaoke machine (or a karaoke app) and sing the night away.  Or open it up to any talent with a family talent show.  You could even host your own version of American Idol or America's Got Talent.  Just have two or three people in your family be the judges and the rest can be contestants.  I had a roommate whose family did this all the time and it was hysterical!30.  Christmas in July-  We love celebrating Christmas in July!  There are so many ways you can do this- watch a Christmas movie, play Christmas music, make a holiday treat, draw a "Secret Santa" name, or get ahead of the game and start working on some homemade presents.

BACKYARD FAMILY FUN

Backyard Family Fun

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{For when you want to stay home but still get some sunshine.}

Backyard Family Fun Ideas

31.  Backyard Splash Bash-  Who wouldn't love a wet and wild water party in the backyard?  From slip-n-slide baseball and water balloon volleyball to sponge ball tag- there are tons of fun water game ideas to keep you busy.  There's even some FREE party printables included too!

32.  Squirt Gun Painting- This one just might win you mom of the year.  Squirt guns are fun and painting is fun- but put them together and your fun just went to a whole new level!  This is something the kids will be talking about for awhile and it doesn't require much effort at all!33.  Paint Slip-n-Slide- My kids would go crazy for this!  Just lay out a long tarp in the backyard and cover it in different colors of paint.  Then dress the kids in white shirts and shorts and let them go crazy "painting" their clothes by sliding down the tarp.  Then grab some soap and the hose to clean the kids up before coming back inside.   (If you pick comfy shirts and shorts, you could let them use their new "masterpieces" as pajamas.)34.  Backyard Shaving Cream Fight-  Or skip the sliding altogether and just have a fun family shaving cream fight in the backyard!  Grab a some bottles of shaving cream (and maybe some sunglasses for eye protection) and let everyone go at it.  You're sure to get some great, silly pictures from this one!  And you should- just in case they ever forget what an awesome mom you are. (Not gonna lie- these shaving cream balloons look like a blast to add to your fight too!)35.  Shaving Cream Slip-n-Slide- If your kids like slip-n-slides, they're going to LOVE shaving cream sliding!  If you don't mind a little mess, you can make some crazy fun memories!  It's pretty easy to pull off to- you'll just need a tarp or last tablecloth and lots of shaving cream.  (If you have a play slide-  you should check out this fun idea too!)

Summer Family Night Ideas

36.  Backyard Movie Night- You don't have to get elaborate with this one (although you can if you want)- just borrow a projector and throw a white sheet over the fence.  Grab a movie and some snacks and enjoy a backyard movie night.37.  Backyard Obstacle Course-  Make your own obstacle course in the backyard using whatever outdoor toys you can find.  (Hula hoops, balls, stools, jump ropes, and kiddie pools all work great.)  Then take turns timing each other and racing through the course to see who can get the fastest time.38.  Frisbee Golf-  If you don't have a frisbee golf course near you, you can make your own in your own backyard.  Check out the post for all the details and printables to pull it off.39.  Backyard Campout-  Now this is a family activity they'll remember forever.  You don't need to drive to a campground to go camping.  Just set up your tent in your own backyard and get ready for some serious fun.  (If you wanted you could even have a backyard barbecue or grill your own "fate burgers" before camping out for the night.)40.  Summer Picnic and Party Games- A backyard picnic makes for a fun summer family night.  Especially if you throw in some fun summer party games like this watermelon seed spitting contest or the squirt gun shoot-out.

For even MORE ideas, check out these 75 Outdoor Water Activities AND 65 Outdoor Party Games for the Entire Family!

 

AFTER-DARK FAMILY FUN

After Dark Family Fun

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{For some family fun after the sun goes down.}

Summer Night Family Activities

41.  Park after Dark- One of my kids favorite parts about summer is that I'm not so strict about bedtime.  Hey- you don't have to get up early to catch the bus, might as well let them stay up a little late and enjoy sleeping in.  For some after-hours fun, get a bunch of flashlights or glow gear and go play at the park.  It's only happened once so far but they loved it!  Flashlight tag was their favorite after dark park game! {Bonus if you live in a place like we do where you can catch some fireflies.}42.  Night Bowling-  Who needs a bowling alley when you can create your own glowing bowling alley in your own backyard?  All you need are some empty soda or water bottles, some glow sticks, and a ball.  It's a fun way to burn off some energy on a summer night before bed.43.  Glow-in-the-Dark Game Night-  This fun group date night would also work perfectly as a fun family night!  From glow-in-the-dark baseball to glow-in-the-dark ring toss and capture the flag- there are lots of fun game ideas for an after dark family party.  There's even some FREE party printables included too!44.  Swimming Pool Stargazing- Star gazing is fun, but this idea totally takes it up several notches.  Just put a blow-up pool in the backyard and fill it up with lots of pillows and blankets.  Not only is it more comfy, but it's perfect for keeping the itchy grass and bugs away.45.  Movie in Mom & Dad's Room- This one is SO easy to pull off, but my girls loved it.  Just tape a sign on their door inviting them to a special movie night in mom and dad's room.  We have family movie nights a lot, but for some reason just changing the location to our bed made it exciting and new for them.  (And the special snacks didn't hurt either.)

Fun After-Dark Activities for Families

46.  Family Slumber Party-  Here's another super easy one to pull off.  Just blow up an air mattress and stick it in the living room for a fun family sleep over.  Or if you don't have an air mattress, grab some sleeping bags or even just blankets and pillows.  We popped popcorn, watched a movie, and played a couple of games.  We even took turns telling "scary" stories by flashlight.  (And I have to say, it's pretty funny what my little girls consider "scary.")47.  Flashlight Games & Shadow Puppets-  These games and ideas and perfect for some late night summer fun.  Just stock up on flashlights and batteries, then when the sun goes down- pull them out and try a new game.48.  Glowing Water Blob-  You've probably seen all of the fun water blobs on Pinterest, but I bet you haven't seen this fun glowing water blob! Takes it to a whole new level, huh?  Yes, this idea takes a little more time and preparation than the others, but I think it's worth it.  My kids would totally LOVE this!  What kid wouldn't?!49.  Make Fairy Jars- This fairy jars are super easy to make and they glow for up to 8 hours.  They're perfect for making together and then taking outside on a summer night.   (If your boys are not into fairies- just call them glow jars.)50. Glow-in-the-Dark Sidewalk Chalk- Make glow-in-the-dark sidewalk chalk and then play a fun family game of Pictionary on the front or back porch.  If you try this one, you should totally make some glow-in-the-dark drinks to go with it!

Do you have any other fun family night ideas?  Let us know in the comments!  We're always looking for more ways to make fun family memories.  

If you liked this post, you'll love 101 Things to Do With Your Kids Besides Watching TV and 101 Summer Boredom Busters- they're FULL of fun family ideas!  Then go grab our printable Summer Bucket List to write down your favorite ideas so you'll be sure to try them out.

Oh, and make sure you follow our "Family Fun Ideas" Pinterest board!  It's loaded with hundreds of great ideas and we're always adding to it.

The post 50 Fun & Easy Family Activities for Summer appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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Becca http://www.TheDatingDivas.com <![CDATA[10 Things Husbands Wish Their Wives Knew]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=72340 2015-06-30T12:48:08Z 2015-06-30T12:00:07Z Top 10 Things Husbands Wish Their Wives Knew

If there's one thing that pretty much everyone knows about marriage it's that communication is key!  It's really hard to improve your relationship if you don't know how your spouse is feeling or what he's thinking.  Right?  So we divas decided to find out!

We created a survey that asked husbands what they really wish their wives knew.  

Then we sent it out to all of our husbands to fill out.  {Anonymously, of course, so they could be completely honest without worrying about getting in trouble for anything they said.}  ;)   While we were at it,  we decided to share it with our married brothers, fathers, uncles, grandpas, and friends too.  We figured the more answers we got, the more we would learn about the "other side" of marriage.  But we didn't stop there. We wanted to hear from your husbands, brothers, fathers, sons, uncles, grandpas, and friends too!  So we blasted it out on our facebook page and shared it in our newsletter too.

And the result was amazing!  Hundreds of men filled out our survey sharing their thoughts and feelings about their wives and marriages.  

We were seriously blown away with the responses that we received and wanted to share them all with you!  Now, we couldn't share everything, everyone said - so we sorted through all the answers and compiled...

The TOP 10 Things Husbands Wish

That Their Wives Knew

These were the ten most common answers - the ones that kept popping up over and over again.  

10 Things Husbands Wish Their Wives Knew

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image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/10-Things-Husbands-Wish-Their-Wives-Knew.jpg" description="We surveyed hundreds of husbands to find out what they really wish their wives knew.  These were the ten most common answers - the ones that kept popping up over and over again.  The Dating Divas"]

Now, before I reveal the answers - I just have to say how much we've enjoyed putting this post together.  We seriously loved getting to read all of the "secret" thoughts of our husbands and have learned so much.   We received responses from newlyweds and from husbands who have been married for 50 years.  We got answers from all over the country - and even from Canada, Germany, and Australia.  Some answers were simple, short, and straight-forward.  Others were long and eloquent.  But even with so many different men, it was amazing how the same answers (or variations of the same answers) kept coming up.

In all honesty, after sharing our survey with the world we sort of braced for impact.  I mean, we just told our husbands that we wanted to hear their input and we were ALL EARS!  This was their chance to "let us have it."  We were ready to hear their complaints.  And while we did get a little of that, I have to say - we were blown away with their sweetness and sincerity.   I almost wish the survey wasn't anonymous so we could share all of the amazing things your husbands said about you!  Yes, they mentioned a lot of things that we wives can work on, but mostly they just talked about how much they love and appreciate us.  I'd be lying if I said I didn't tear up once or twice.

At first, we were just going to paraphrase the top ten answers in our own words.  But we loved getting to read the real answers and the sincerity of our husbands - and we wanted you to be able to have that experience too.  SO in their own words, here is what...

 

"I Wish My Wife Knew..."

 #1-   That I Love Her

  • How much I love her...how much I crave a look, a touch...even a hand on my shoulder.
  • I love my wife dearly! I can't imagine what life would be like without her nor do I want to. I just wish she could tap into my brain and understand how I feel about her.
  • That I loved her more than anything.
  • I wish she knew how much I really love her.
  • If there is only one thing I could make my wife understand it would be how much I love her.  I don't know if words can every really do my feelings justice.
  • That I love her and that I am so happy being married to her.
  • You know how you can tell someone you love them? Well if only my wife knew how much I TRULY love her.
  • How much I really love and care about her.  At times I don't give her my complete attention, distracted by the TV or my phone. Guys usually don't multi-task well so I think sometimes she might feel ignored which is not cool. I want her to know that I'm sorry if I ever hurt her feelings or have ever made her feel ignored.  I love my wife so much! She deserves the very best.
  • How much I love her and how sorry I am for the times that I have ever hurt her.   I wish I could take back the times that I ever hurt her feelings.
  • That I love her more than words can describe.  I thought I loved her when I married her but the love grows bigger every day.  I never imagined I could be so happy.

#2-  That She is Beautiful & Amazing

  • I wish she knew how beautiful and wonderful she really is... even though she doesn't believe me.
  • I wish she understood how I see her.  She is a wonderful beautiful person but often has a hard time seeing that.
  • I guess I wish she knew how beautiful she is.  As much as I tell her she just doesn't get it.  I think she is incredibly sexy.
  • I wish she knew how truly beautiful she is to me.  I wish she could see my feelings because I don't express them well. I love her more than I know how to explain or show.
  • Every time I tell my wife she's beautiful and sexy, it's usually met with a skeptical scoff.  I  wish she knew I tell the truth and think she's the most beautiful woman in the world.
  • I wish my wife knew that she doesn't need to do everything perfectly.  She does so many things amazingly that she believes that everything she tries needs to be perfect. I don't like that she gets down when she messes up on one thing.
  • How I feel and think in my mind about her.  How grateful I am about the little things even if I don't always show it.
  • You are better than you think you are.  Thank you for being so gracious.  Thank you for your help with the small things and for your input.
  • I wish she knew how important she is to me.  Her self esteem holds her back, she's capable of so much more.  Women are amazing. I have grown so much because of my wife and am very grateful for all that she does for our family.
  • She doesn't have to be the "perfect mom."  Every other mom has difficult challenges, too.  No, they don't "have it all together". They are figuring it out just like you.  Stop comparing yourself.  You're enough just the way you are.
  • That I can achieve much, much more than I can ever imagined with her help, support, and love.  Every time I feel alone, insecure, incomplete, and insignificant she reminds me through her being there physically and spiritually that I am none of those things.

 

{Aren't our husbands amazing, ladies?!  Seriously- we picked some good men!!  Now... the next answers talk about things we can improve on as wives.  Please read with an open heart and consider your own, personal marriage and things you can work on individually.  Not everything will apply to everyone, but we honestly believe that we can learn so much from our husbands.}  

#3- That I am Trying

  • I am a long ways from being the perfect husband and father but I am trying, so keep being patient!
  • I wish she knew that I really want to please her, in all ways.  I always try and I don't mess up on purpose.
  • I wish wives knew that their husbands would move the earth for them but sometimes we do not know how to convey it.
  • I absolutely adore her I just seem to find it difficult to bring the message across, particularly in the area of birthdays and special occasions.
  • I wish my wife knew how much it hurts when she gets upset with me. I don't try to upset her but sometimes it happens and I feel badly about it. When she gets upset I fee badly about upsetting her and also with myself for doing whatever stupid thing I did.
  • I wish my wife knew more patience.  I'm trying.
  • I think that when women imagine the perfect husband and father and what they hope we will become it is often an unrealistic expectation that is influenced by media (romantic comedies, etc.) We try to be romantic but we just aren't flowing with it all the time!
  • I am not a very good conversationalist. It always seems that I say the wrong things or that every word is being analyzed. I then feel pressured to choose my words wisely so they can't be interpreted in any other way. I'm trying.  But I feel like I can't win.
  • I wish she knew how much I worry about our future and my ability to provide for her the life I know she deserves.
  • Men like to hear about your feelings but can you not misconstrue what we say or complain when we have something to say.  We're trying to communicate but we need you to listen too.
  • When I said forever in my vows I meant it and I intend to do my best to make it a great forever.

#4-  That Hints Don't Work

  • Hints don't work well with us. Be direct!
  • No, I can't read your mind.  Just tell me what you want.
  • Husbands are simple creatures. We can't read minds.
  • I know you like being surprised with romantic gestures, but it's really hard when I'm not creative and have no idea what your expectations really are.  Just tell me what you want and I'll move heaven and earth to make it happen.  Why isn't that romantic?
  • I wish my wife knew that something doesn't have to be a surprise to be romantic.  It's romantic because I made a choice to love you the way you want to be loved.
  • Men aren't complicated.  Just tell us what you want.  Don't hint at it.  Tell us.  And please don't complain about our shortcomings to others without even telling us what you expected to be done in the first place.
  • I wish wives knew how to communicate directly.  If you're unhappy with something I'm doing- tell me!  Don't tell your sister, mom, or friend.
  • If you want something just tell me.  Doesn't matter if it's something you want to buy, a gift you want to receive, a place you want to go, or a date you want me to plan- just tell me.  I'm probably not going to figure it out on my own.
  • Tell your husband how you want him to react when you are venting.  Don't make him guess or figure it out.  Otherwise you both get frustrated with each other.
  • Tell us when you only want us to listen.  We men are always in fix it mode so any problem brought to our attention starts drawing out a solution from our heads. If our wives could say that their problem is that they only need a listening ear for this problem we can fix the problem by being that listening ear. That makes us happy because we are a part of the solution and didn't get in trouble for offering a improper solution. Our wives would be happy too because they got the listening ear. If we ask, they want the listening ear or a solution it can come across as condescending.

#5-  That I Want to be Her #1

  • You married me first before the kids.
  • I want to be the most important thing to her. There is a lot on her plate but I often feel like I'm a long way down the list.
  • Our children require a lot of her attention.  I would LOVE for her to set some time apart for just me.
  • Wives are too over-scheduled and distracted with many different activities in life.  I wish I was on her to-do list.
  • Men love to be very important to and wooed by their wives.  Men don't want to be the pursuer and initiators all of the time.
  • Yes, I always want to fix your problems.  Sorry if it's annoying, but I just want to be your hero.
  • I'm your husband but I also want to be your best friend.
  • I don't need anything fancy - I just want your company.  Everyone else gets your time.  Can I?
  • When we first started dating and got married I felt like I was her world.  Now I wonder if there's room in her world for me.
  • She is the most important person to me in the world.  I want to feel like I'm the same for her.

#6-  That I Want to be Appreciated

  • I wish wives knew just how much the role of father and provider is being trampled on these days and just how important it actually is.
  • I go to work every day not for me, but for my wife. So she can be provided for and doesn't have to go to work herself. It would mean a lot to me if she showed appreciation for that. I feel it is something taken for granted rather than appreciated. I also wish she could understand that her appreciation, love, and intimacy is a big key to my happiness.
  • That husbands need to feel appreciated by their wives for what they do.
  • Sometimes, life is hard. Work can be hard.  Responsibilities can be hard. But when you know that your wife is on your team, it makes a world of difference.  Thanks for being so supportive!
  • I want my wife to be proud of me.
  • I ultimately want to be loved for who I am now instead of what I could be. Often I don't feel loved because she expects more than I can deliver. If I feel loved now unconditionally and it shows from her, than it makes me want to be better and ultimately become who she wants me to be in long run.
  • There have been several decades of men being devalued and marginalized. Being valued for our masculine gifts is rare and appreciated. The simple 'thank you' and a kiss on the cheek can keep up our spirits for quite some time.
  • Not to keep score and rub it in. Yes, moms do a great service - one of the greatest and hardest services in society.  But husbands put in a lot of energy in their jobs to make it possible for wives to stay home and do their jobs, but my wife sometimes forgets that.
  • The intentional displays of respect to your husband will do more to buoy him as a husband and father. We want to do all we can for our family, even more when we know it is appreciated.
  • Fathers and husbands have an incredible obligation of not only being a provider like fathers and husbands were a generation ago, but there are more demands to be more involved in housework, raising children, and day-to-day tasks than ever before.

#7- That Positivity is Attractive

  • Be positive!  Be grateful, our life is already wonderful. You are already beautiful, act like it. Our kids are already angels, enjoy them. Our lives are blessed. Stress less, be grateful.
  • If you want your husband to like you and like being around you, be pleasant and positive.  Don't nag and complain.
  • Kindness is the key. In actions, words, and looks. We want to hear good things. I've heard there should be three positive statements for every one negative.
  • Instead of focusing on a single flaw in the picture, take a step back and look at the entire picture as a whole.  If women analyzed the whole picture instead of a single flaw sometimes that flaw wouldn't be as big of a deal.  Look for the good in us and in life.  Not the bad.
  • Negativity is ugly.  I married you because you were pretty.
  • One of the main reasons I married my wife is she doesn't get offended, she doesn't hold a grudge, and forgives my shortcomings. She also communicates openly and honestly and positively. I see too many women that don't forgive, don't give the benefit of the doubt, and hide their true feelings until they come raging out.
  • When my wife is happy, I am happy.
  • My wife's mood has a huge effect on my mood.  It's hard to be positive when you're around someone who is negative.  But it's also easy to be happy when you're around someone who is smiling and laughing.
  • My wife is never more beautiful than when she is smiling at me.  (And I love when I am the reason for that smile)
  • When I'm at work at all day, I'm surrounded by unhappy, negative people.  I look forward to coming home to a happy home.

#8- That Her Words Matter

  • I wish my wife knew how tremendously powerful her voiced opinion is to me. When she compliments me or is impressed by something I've done, I soar for days. When she critiques my faults and nags about my shortcomings, I go in a hole for days. Anyone else could say the exact same words and they wouldn't carry nearly the same weight. But what she thinks about me matters so much to me.
  • A wife has the power to motivate or demoralize her husband. Please choose words and actions wisely.
  • I guess what I wish for my wife is that she would build me more often through the things she said. Telling me specifically things she loved about me. It means so much when I do hear those things.
  • Please pay close attention to how you treat your husband in front of other guys. If you build your husband up in front of other guys, it counts for double.  If you tear down your husband in front of other guys, it hurts twice as much.
  • I wish she knew how often she speaks down to me and how small and undesirable that makes me feel.
  • When you say things you don't mean but you still say it, it still hurts.
  • I wish she knew that I actually have feelings.
  • I wish she knew that sometimes I need to be told that I look hot, or handsome, or sexy too.
  • I wish wives knew that when they complain about their husbands (to friends, family, etc.) it makes the husband look bad but they never seem to approach him on these issues.
  • Don't compare me to your friends' husbands.

#9-  That Sex Matters

  • Sex is NOT just sex.  It makes me feel loved.
  • Yes, I do think a lot about sex. When we have sex, I feel more connected to her.
  • I wish my wife knew that it's not a bad thing that I think about sex a lot.  It means I think about HER a lot.  Why is that wrong?
  • Intimacy is a big key to my happiness and well being.  She is the only person I can turn to for intimacy and it hurts when it is not on her list of importance.
  • Just understand that when we know you aren't in the mood for sex specifically and you sometimes have the attitude of "Fine, let's just do it and get it over with", it makes us feel like you aren't desiring US! We would rather have you tell us you are just too tired and let's try again in the morning.
  • That physical intimacy coupled with words of affirmation is an important way to help me to feel loved and needed in a relationship.
  • The best way to love me is to be responsive to sex.
  • Sex will almost always beat sleeping!  It's that important to me.
  • I wish she understood how strong of a sex drive that I have. I do not know why I am wired the way I am, but I truly do continuously and always desire her.  I don't know why that isn't flattering to her?
  • I wish she knew that sex should be fun not dreaded.  She treats it like a chore on her to-do list instead of having fun with it.   I don't want to be a chore to her.
  • I wish my wife knew how important sex is for me. Men by nature are not the best communicators when it comes to talking so it is hard for us to verbally communicate our feelings. For a lot of men we let our feelings and love show through actions and touch.  In my wife's mind we need to talk about things, in my mind instead of having a long drawn out conversation... let me show you how much I love you. Let me touch you, let me make you feel my love through my touch. (When I say touch I don't always mean sex) but sex is a very important part of marriage.
  • For me, making love to my wife is the closest we can possibly be, two bodies join together physically to become one, at that time the only thing that matters is the two of us. At that time we are connected on a level that I can't show anyone else. When you take away our ability to touch our wives, you take away our ability to communicate clearly. Now I do know that there are many ways to communicate besides touch and sex, but I also know I am much better at communication through actions and touch than words.

#10-  That Sometimes I Just Like to be Left Alone

  • Sometimes I just want to relax.
  • That we sometimes need FIVE MINUTES to decompress when we get home. Then we are all yours.
  • I wish my wife truly understood that sometimes I actually have nothing going on in my head.
  • Men just want to be left alone sometimes. There are times that I want to be left alone to be quiet, angry, or upset. You don't need to know what I'm thinking all the time.
  • I wish she would understand that sometimes I like to just relax and be left alone after a long day at work.  I'm not trying to be lazy.
  • I wish she knew that I need a break and need to just rest sometimes.  I don't feel like I can without getting nagged.
  • That as much as we love being with you, sometimes we need our own time to unwind and relax, whether it's playing video games, working in the garage, or going shooting.
  • Sometimes we just need to be left alone. We (at least myself) know certain projects on the to do list NEED to get finished or started.... but what is URGENT to her may not be urgent to us.
  • If you can feel your man's love in most other capacities, do you really need to make him sit down and verbally communicate every 5 minutes?
  • When we talk about a man cave it is not to get away from you for negative reasons but just a spot where we can pass gas, be immature, and watch sports with no judgement.

Ha ha ha!  That last answer cracked us up!  

If you're dying to know which question came in at #11 and almost made the top ten cut... 

#11-  That Sometimes I'd Like for Her to Try My Interests and Hobbies

  • We husbands like to engage in your activities but y'all should make an effort to like our activities too.
  • I'd love for my wife to be my weekend caddy.
  • I wish my wife knew that surfing is fun.
  • Activities together are important.  I wish she'd try something new with me.
  • My wife does the things the kids want to do with them, but not what I want to do with me.

And just for kicks... here's our favorite, funny response...

  • It's cool that we're comfortable enough to use the bathroom with the door open, but you should really keep that door closed.

Hey, it's not bad advice!  In all seriousness though, we hope you've enjoyed reading these responses as much as we have.   We really were impressed with the caliber of men that wrote in!  We know how to pick 'em, ladies!  In fact, quite a few of them mentioned how much they appreciate The Dating Divas website, how glad they are that their wives read it and use the ideas to show them love, and several even suggested we start "The Dating Dudes" for all the men out there.  Now wouldn't that be fun?!  Do you think your husband would read that?

*Update!* We've heard "For Women Only - What You Need To Know About The Inner Lives Of Men" is a must-read if you want to keep reading on this fascinating topic! We've put it on our reading list, for sure! Have you read it? What did you think?

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Pssttt... if you liked this post, you'll love 10 Reasons Why You Should Spoil Your Spouse (Not Your Children) AND 10 Ways to Keep the Romance Alive AFTER Kids.

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Top 10 Things Husbands Wish Their Wives Knew

If there's one thing that pretty much everyone knows about marriage it's that communication is key!  It's really hard to improve your relationship if you don't know how your spouse is feeling or what he's thinking.  Right?  So we divas decided to find out!

We created a survey that asked husbands what they really wish their wives knew.  

Then we sent it out to all of our husbands to fill out.  {Anonymously, of course, so they could be completely honest without worrying about getting in trouble for anything they said.}  ;)   While we were at it,  we decided to share it with our married brothers, fathers, uncles, grandpas, and friends too.  We figured the more answers we got, the more we would learn about the "other side" of marriage.  But we didn't stop there. We wanted to hear from your husbands, brothers, fathers, sons, uncles, grandpas, and friends too!  So we blasted it out on our facebook page and shared it in our newsletter too.

And the result was amazing!  Hundreds of men filled out our survey sharing their thoughts and feelings about their wives and marriages.  

We were seriously blown away with the responses that we received and wanted to share them all with you!  Now, we couldn't share everything, everyone said - so we sorted through all the answers and compiled...

The TOP 10 Things Husbands Wish

That Their Wives Knew

These were the ten most common answers - the ones that kept popping up over and over again.  

10 Things Husbands Wish Their Wives Knew

[pinit count="horizontal" always-show-count="1" url="www.thedatingdivas.com/marriage-101/10-things-husbands-wish-their-wives-knew/" image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/10-Things-Husbands-Wish-Their-Wives-Knew.jpg" description="We surveyed hundreds of husbands to find out what they really wish their wives knew.  These were the ten most common answers - the ones that kept popping up over and over again.  The Dating Divas"]

Now, before I reveal the answers - I just have to say how much we've enjoyed putting this post together.  We seriously loved getting to read all of the "secret" thoughts of our husbands and have learned so much.   We received responses from newlyweds and from husbands who have been married for 50 years.  We got answers from all over the country - and even from Canada, Germany, and Australia.  Some answers were simple, short, and straight-forward.  Others were long and eloquent.  But even with so many different men, it was amazing how the same answers (or variations of the same answers) kept coming up.

In all honesty, after sharing our survey with the world we sort of braced for impact.  I mean, we just told our husbands that we wanted to hear their input and we were ALL EARS!  This was their chance to "let us have it."  We were ready to hear their complaints.  And while we did get a little of that, I have to say - we were blown away with their sweetness and sincerity.   I almost wish the survey wasn't anonymous so we could share all of the amazing things your husbands said about you!  Yes, they mentioned a lot of things that we wives can work on, but mostly they just talked about how much they love and appreciate us.  I'd be lying if I said I didn't tear up once or twice.

At first, we were just going to paraphrase the top ten answers in our own words.  But we loved getting to read the real answers and the sincerity of our husbands - and we wanted you to be able to have that experience too.  SO in their own words, here is what...

 

"I Wish My Wife Knew..."

 #1-   That I Love Her
  • How much I love her...how much I crave a look, a touch...even a hand on my shoulder.
  • I love my wife dearly! I can't imagine what life would be like without her nor do I want to. I just wish she could tap into my brain and understand how I feel about her.
  • That I loved her more than anything.
  • I wish she knew how much I really love her.
  • If there is only one thing I could make my wife understand it would be how much I love her.  I don't know if words can every really do my feelings justice.
  • That I love her and that I am so happy being married to her.
  • You know how you can tell someone you love them? Well if only my wife knew how much I TRULY love her.
  • How much I really love and care about her.  At times I don't give her my complete attention, distracted by the TV or my phone. Guys usually don't multi-task well so I think sometimes she might feel ignored which is not cool. I want her to know that I'm sorry if I ever hurt her feelings or have ever made her feel ignored.  I love my wife so much! She deserves the very best.
  • How much I love her and how sorry I am for the times that I have ever hurt her.   I wish I could take back the times that I ever hurt her feelings.
  • That I love her more than words can describe.  I thought I loved her when I married her but the love grows bigger every day.  I never imagined I could be so happy.
#2-  That She is Beautiful & Amazing
  • I wish she knew how beautiful and wonderful she really is... even though she doesn't believe me.
  • I wish she understood how I see her.  She is a wonderful beautiful person but often has a hard time seeing that.
  • I guess I wish she knew how beautiful she is.  As much as I tell her she just doesn't get it.  I think she is incredibly sexy.
  • I wish she knew how truly beautiful she is to me.  I wish she could see my feelings because I don't express them well. I love her more than I know how to explain or show.
  • Every time I tell my wife she's beautiful and sexy, it's usually met with a skeptical scoff.  I  wish she knew I tell the truth and think she's the most beautiful woman in the world.
  • I wish my wife knew that she doesn't need to do everything perfectly.  She does so many things amazingly that she believes that everything she tries needs to be perfect. I don't like that she gets down when she messes up on one thing.
  • How I feel and think in my mind about her.  How grateful I am about the little things even if I don't always show it.
  • You are better than you think you are.  Thank you for being so gracious.  Thank you for your help with the small things and for your input.
  • I wish she knew how important she is to me.  Her self esteem holds her back, she's capable of so much more.  Women are amazing. I have grown so much because of my wife and am very grateful for all that she does for our family.
  • She doesn't have to be the "perfect mom."  Every other mom has difficult challenges, too.  No, they don't "have it all together". They are figuring it out just like you.  Stop comparing yourself.  You're enough just the way you are.
  • That I can achieve much, much more than I can ever imagined with her help, support, and love.  Every time I feel alone, insecure, incomplete, and insignificant she reminds me through her being there physically and spiritually that I am none of those things.
 

{Aren't our husbands amazing, ladies?!  Seriously- we picked some good men!!  Now... the next answers talk about things we can improve on as wives.  Please read with an open heart and consider your own, personal marriage and things you can work on individually.  Not everything will apply to everyone, but we honestly believe that we can learn so much from our husbands.}  

#3- That I am Trying
  • I am a long ways from being the perfect husband and father but I am trying, so keep being patient!
  • I wish she knew that I really want to please her, in all ways.  I always try and I don't mess up on purpose.
  • I wish wives knew that their husbands would move the earth for them but sometimes we do not know how to convey it.
  • I absolutely adore her I just seem to find it difficult to bring the message across, particularly in the area of birthdays and special occasions.
  • I wish my wife knew how much it hurts when she gets upset with me. I don't try to upset her but sometimes it happens and I feel badly about it. When she gets upset I fee badly about upsetting her and also with myself for doing whatever stupid thing I did.
  • I wish my wife knew more patience.  I'm trying.
  • I think that when women imagine the perfect husband and father and what they hope we will become it is often an unrealistic expectation that is influenced by media (romantic comedies, etc.) We try to be romantic but we just aren't flowing with it all the time!
  • I am not a very good conversationalist. It always seems that I say the wrong things or that every word is being analyzed. I then feel pressured to choose my words wisely so they can't be interpreted in any other way. I'm trying.  But I feel like I can't win.
  • I wish she knew how much I worry about our future and my ability to provide for her the life I know she deserves.
  • Men like to hear about your feelings but can you not misconstrue what we say or complain when we have something to say.  We're trying to communicate but we need you to listen too.
  • When I said forever in my vows I meant it and I intend to do my best to make it a great forever.
#4-  That Hints Don't Work
  • Hints don't work well with us. Be direct!
  • No, I can't read your mind.  Just tell me what you want.
  • Husbands are simple creatures. We can't read minds.
  • I know you like being surprised with romantic gestures, but it's really hard when I'm not creative and have no idea what your expectations really are.  Just tell me what you want and I'll move heaven and earth to make it happen.  Why isn't that romantic?
  • I wish my wife knew that something doesn't have to be a surprise to be romantic.  It's romantic because I made a choice to love you the way you want to be loved.
  • Men aren't complicated.  Just tell us what you want.  Don't hint at it.  Tell us.  And please don't complain about our shortcomings to others without even telling us what you expected to be done in the first place.
  • I wish wives knew how to communicate directly.  If you're unhappy with something I'm doing- tell me!  Don't tell your sister, mom, or friend.
  • If you want something just tell me.  Doesn't matter if it's something you want to buy, a gift you want to receive, a place you want to go, or a date you want me to plan- just tell me.  I'm probably not going to figure it out on my own.
  • Tell your husband how you want him to react when you are venting.  Don't make him guess or figure it out.  Otherwise you both get frustrated with each other.
  • Tell us when you only want us to listen.  We men are always in fix it mode so any problem brought to our attention starts drawing out a solution from our heads. If our wives could say that their problem is that they only need a listening ear for this problem we can fix the problem by being that listening ear. That makes us happy because we are a part of the solution and didn't get in trouble for offering a improper solution. Our wives would be happy too because they got the listening ear. If we ask, they want the listening ear or a solution it can come across as condescending.
#5-  That I Want to be Her #1
  • You married me first before the kids.
  • I want to be the most important thing to her. There is a lot on her plate but I often feel like I'm a long way down the list.
  • Our children require a lot of her attention.  I would LOVE for her to set some time apart for just me.
  • Wives are too over-scheduled and distracted with many different activities in life.  I wish I was on her to-do list.
  • Men love to be very important to and wooed by their wives.  Men don't want to be the pursuer and initiators all of the time.
  • Yes, I always want to fix your problems.  Sorry if it's annoying, but I just want to be your hero.
  • I'm your husband but I also want to be your best friend.
  • I don't need anything fancy - I just want your company.  Everyone else gets your time.  Can I?
  • When we first started dating and got married I felt like I was her world.  Now I wonder if there's room in her world for me.
  • She is the most important person to me in the world.  I want to feel like I'm the same for her.
#6-  That I Want to be Appreciated
  • I wish wives knew just how much the role of father and provider is being trampled on these days and just how important it actually is.
  • I go to work every day not for me, but for my wife. So she can be provided for and doesn't have to go to work herself. It would mean a lot to me if she showed appreciation for that. I feel it is something taken for granted rather than appreciated. I also wish she could understand that her appreciation, love, and intimacy is a big key to my happiness.
  • That husbands need to feel appreciated by their wives for what they do.
  • Sometimes, life is hard. Work can be hard.  Responsibilities can be hard. But when you know that your wife is on your team, it makes a world of difference.  Thanks for being so supportive!
  • I want my wife to be proud of me.
  • I ultimately want to be loved for who I am now instead of what I could be. Often I don't feel loved because she expects more than I can deliver. If I feel loved now unconditionally and it shows from her, than it makes me want to be better and ultimately become who she wants me to be in long run.
  • There have been several decades of men being devalued and marginalized. Being valued for our masculine gifts is rare and appreciated. The simple 'thank you' and a kiss on the cheek can keep up our spirits for quite some time.
  • Not to keep score and rub it in. Yes, moms do a great service - one of the greatest and hardest services in society.  But husbands put in a lot of energy in their jobs to make it possible for wives to stay home and do their jobs, but my wife sometimes forgets that.
  • The intentional displays of respect to your husband will do more to buoy him as a husband and father. We want to do all we can for our family, even more when we know it is appreciated.
  • Fathers and husbands have an incredible obligation of not only being a provider like fathers and husbands were a generation ago, but there are more demands to be more involved in housework, raising children, and day-to-day tasks than ever before.
#7- That Positivity is Attractive
  • Be positive!  Be grateful, our life is already wonderful. You are already beautiful, act like it. Our kids are already angels, enjoy them. Our lives are blessed. Stress less, be grateful.
  • If you want your husband to like you and like being around you, be pleasant and positive.  Don't nag and complain.
  • Kindness is the key. In actions, words, and looks. We want to hear good things. I've heard there should be three positive statements for every one negative.
  • Instead of focusing on a single flaw in the picture, take a step back and look at the entire picture as a whole.  If women analyzed the whole picture instead of a single flaw sometimes that flaw wouldn't be as big of a deal.  Look for the good in us and in life.  Not the bad.
  • Negativity is ugly.  I married you because you were pretty.
  • One of the main reasons I married my wife is she doesn't get offended, she doesn't hold a grudge, and forgives my shortcomings. She also communicates openly and honestly and positively. I see too many women that don't forgive, don't give the benefit of the doubt, and hide their true feelings until they come raging out.
  • When my wife is happy, I am happy.
  • My wife's mood has a huge effect on my mood.  It's hard to be positive when you're around someone who is negative.  But it's also easy to be happy when you're around someone who is smiling and laughing.
  • My wife is never more beautiful than when she is smiling at me.  (And I love when I am the reason for that smile)
  • When I'm at work at all day, I'm surrounded by unhappy, negative people.  I look forward to coming home to a happy home.
#8- That Her Words Matter
  • I wish my wife knew how tremendously powerful her voiced opinion is to me. When she compliments me or is impressed by something I've done, I soar for days. When she critiques my faults and nags about my shortcomings, I go in a hole for days. Anyone else could say the exact same words and they wouldn't carry nearly the same weight. But what she thinks about me matters so much to me.
  • A wife has the power to motivate or demoralize her husband. Please choose words and actions wisely.
  • I guess what I wish for my wife is that she would build me more often through the things she said. Telling me specifically things she loved about me. It means so much when I do hear those things.
  • Please pay close attention to how you treat your husband in front of other guys. If you build your husband up in front of other guys, it counts for double.  If you tear down your husband in front of other guys, it hurts twice as much.
  • I wish she knew how often she speaks down to me and how small and undesirable that makes me feel.
  • When you say things you don't mean but you still say it, it still hurts.
  • I wish she knew that I actually have feelings.
  • I wish she knew that sometimes I need to be told that I look hot, or handsome, or sexy too.
  • I wish wives knew that when they complain about their husbands (to friends, family, etc.) it makes the husband look bad but they never seem to approach him on these issues.
  • Don't compare me to your friends' husbands.
#9-  That Sex Matters
  • Sex is NOT just sex.  It makes me feel loved.
  • Yes, I do think a lot about sex. When we have sex, I feel more connected to her.
  • I wish my wife knew that it's not a bad thing that I think about sex a lot.  It means I think about HER a lot.  Why is that wrong?
  • Intimacy is a big key to my happiness and well being.  She is the only person I can turn to for intimacy and it hurts when it is not on her list of importance.
  • Just understand that when we know you aren't in the mood for sex specifically and you sometimes have the attitude of "Fine, let's just do it and get it over with", it makes us feel like you aren't desiring US! We would rather have you tell us you are just too tired and let's try again in the morning.
  • That physical intimacy coupled with words of affirmation is an important way to help me to feel loved and needed in a relationship.
  • The best way to love me is to be responsive to sex.
  • Sex will almost always beat sleeping!  It's that important to me.
  • I wish she understood how strong of a sex drive that I have. I do not know why I am wired the way I am, but I truly do continuously and always desire her.  I don't know why that isn't flattering to her?
  • I wish she knew that sex should be fun not dreaded.  She treats it like a chore on her to-do list instead of having fun with it.   I don't want to be a chore to her.
  • I wish my wife knew how important sex is for me. Men by nature are not the best communicators when it comes to talking so it is hard for us to verbally communicate our feelings. For a lot of men we let our feelings and love show through actions and touch.  In my wife's mind we need to talk about things, in my mind instead of having a long drawn out conversation... let me show you how much I love you. Let me touch you, let me make you feel my love through my touch. (When I say touch I don't always mean sex) but sex is a very important part of marriage.
  • For me, making love to my wife is the closest we can possibly be, two bodies join together physically to become one, at that time the only thing that matters is the two of us. At that time we are connected on a level that I can't show anyone else. When you take away our ability to touch our wives, you take away our ability to communicate clearly. Now I do know that there are many ways to communicate besides touch and sex, but I also know I am much better at communication through actions and touch than words.
#10-  That Sometimes I Just Like to be Left Alone
  • Sometimes I just want to relax.
  • That we sometimes need FIVE MINUTES to decompress when we get home. Then we are all yours.
  • I wish my wife truly understood that sometimes I actually have nothing going on in my head.
  • Men just want to be left alone sometimes. There are times that I want to be left alone to be quiet, angry, or upset. You don't need to know what I'm thinking all the time.
  • I wish she would understand that sometimes I like to just relax and be left alone after a long day at work.  I'm not trying to be lazy.
  • I wish she knew that I need a break and need to just rest sometimes.  I don't feel like I can without getting nagged.
  • That as much as we love being with you, sometimes we need our own time to unwind and relax, whether it's playing video games, working in the garage, or going shooting.
  • Sometimes we just need to be left alone. We (at least myself) know certain projects on the to do list NEED to get finished or started.... but what is URGENT to her may not be urgent to us.
  • If you can feel your man's love in most other capacities, do you really need to make him sit down and verbally communicate every 5 minutes?
  • When we talk about a man cave it is not to get away from you for negative reasons but just a spot where we can pass gas, be immature, and watch sports with no judgement.

Ha ha ha!  That last answer cracked us up!  

If you're dying to know which question came in at #11 and almost made the top ten cut... 

#11-  That Sometimes I'd Like for Her to Try My Interests and Hobbies

  • We husbands like to engage in your activities but y'all should make an effort to like our activities too.
  • I'd love for my wife to be my weekend caddy.
  • I wish my wife knew that surfing is fun.
  • Activities together are important.  I wish she'd try something new with me.
  • My wife does the things the kids want to do with them, but not what I want to do with me.

And just for kicks... here's our favorite, funny response...

  • It's cool that we're comfortable enough to use the bathroom with the door open, but you should really keep that door closed.

Hey, it's not bad advice!  In all seriousness though, we hope you've enjoyed reading these responses as much as we have.   We really were impressed with the caliber of men that wrote in!  We know how to pick 'em, ladies!  In fact, quite a few of them mentioned how much they appreciate The Dating Divas website, how glad they are that their wives read it and use the ideas to show them love, and several even suggested we start "The Dating Dudes" for all the men out there.  Now wouldn't that be fun?!  Do you think your husband would read that?

*Update!* We've heard "For Women Only - What You Need To Know About The Inner Lives Of Men" is a must-read if you want to keep reading on this fascinating topic! We've put it on our reading list, for sure! Have you read it? What did you think?

Want to read more posts like this one?

Wish you could read your spouse's mind?

Dating Divas Survey

Help us out and...

FILL OUT OUR QUICK SURVEY!

We're looking for some great feedback from YOU! Answer just a couple quick questions to help the Divas give you exactly what you're looking for!!

Pssttt... if you liked this post, you'll love 10 Reasons Why You Should Spoil Your Spouse (Not Your Children) AND 10 Ways to Keep the Romance Alive AFTER Kids.

The post 10 Things Husbands Wish Their Wives Knew appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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55
Megan http://www.thedatingdivas.com <![CDATA[Summer Olympic Yard Games Group Date]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=72179 2015-06-30T12:50:00Z 2015-06-29T12:00:41Z Summer-Yard-Olympics-Group-Date

Olympic Games in Your Backyard!

Yard games are insanely popular right now and I’m certainly not one to argue. We LOVE gorgeous weather and pulling out all of our lawn games - it makes for one of the easiest and most active group dates of all time! There's practically no planning required - just use whichever yard games you’ve already got, invite your most competitive friends and you are all set to recreate your own Olympics.

Summer Yard Olympics Group Date

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We thought we’d kick up the yard game scene just a notch, so Alexa created some adorable chalkboard-inspired signs, and a super fun Olympic theme - complete with an invitation, bracket and even medals for the winners!! Alexa is an absolute design genius, see what else she can do - I’ll race you ;) - over at Alexa Z Design, she’s got some seriously gold medal-worthy stuff!

Yard Game Signs

If you’re as obsessed with playing outside as I am {yes, in this situation, it’s totally okay to act like a kid!}, then you’re going to want to get started with planning this date right away. It’s super simple. Print and fill out your invitations and get those babies to your athletes.... I mean, guests. Don’t forget to include the location of this year’s Olympic Yard Games, as well as the time guests should arrive to see the Opening Ceremony!

Yard Games Olympic Bracket

Get your brackets ready before your guests arrive. {You’ll want one bracket for each event that you plan on playing.} These blank brackets are perfect for up to eight couples and you can use them any way that you want - some of the events will require couples to compete and others might require each person to play solo, so just create a different bracket for each event. You can even create a wives bracket and a separate husbands bracket if you’ve got enough players! If you’ve got less competitors, no worries - just leave those spaces blank!

Cornhole Yard Game SignKubb Yard Game Sign

Before the athletes begin arriving, you’ll also want to set up your signs. We’ve included nine of our absolute favorite yard games, but there’s also a matching, blank sign so that you can add your own games! Just attach each of the signs to wooden stakes and stick them in the ground next to that game’s materials.

Blank Yard Game Sign

If you haven’t jumped on the yard games bandwagon yet, but you’re interested in getting started, my husband and I can’t get enough of Cornhole, Ladder Golf and Kubb {it's also known as Viking Chess, and men always love this one because they get to throw sticks across the yard!}. I promise, you’re going to be hooked and you’ll get a TON of use out of them, ours are pretty much a permanent part of our backyard in the summer! {You can also make a mini-date by playing just the two of you!} If you’re feeling kind of crafty, you can even DIY a few yard games like Twister or Giant Jenga or any of these awesome ideas for Outdoor Fun!

Yard Olympic Games First Place Medal

Once the games have been played, it’s time for the award ceremony. The gold, silver, and bronze medals can be awarded in lots of cute ways. Try attaching the circles to a ribbon that can be pinned on a shirt, printing them on sticker paper to use as stickers or stringing them to a piece of yarn to hang around the winner’s neck. You’ll probably also want to snap a few pictures of the winners with all of their awards. We thought the “Rocky” pose was most appropriate.

I know you're all excited to win so you can strike your own winning pose, so go ahead and grab your FREE
Yard Olympics Invite, Bracket, Medals and Game Signs!!

If you want even more ideas for outdoor games, check out Wendy’s ideas for Spring Olympics or these 50 Outdoor Date Ideas. If you’ve found a group of friends who love a little friendly competition, then they’ll get a kick out of our Win It in a Minute Games!!

The post Summer Olympic Yard Games Group Date appeared first on The Dating Divas.

]]>
Summer-Yard-Olympics-Group-Date

Olympic Games in Your Backyard!

Yard games are insanely popular right now and I’m certainly not one to argue. We LOVE gorgeous weather and pulling out all of our lawn games - it makes for one of the easiest and most active group dates of all time! There's practically no planning required - just use whichever yard games you’ve already got, invite your most competitive friends and you are all set to recreate your own Olympics.

Summer Yard Olympics Group Date

[pinit count="horizontal" always-show-count="1" url="www.thedatingdivas.com/four-or-more/summer-olympic-yard-games-group-date/" image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/Summer-Yard-Olympics-Group-Date.jpg" description="Fun group yard games date idea with free printable signs! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

We thought we’d kick up the yard game scene just a notch, so Alexa created some adorable chalkboard-inspired signs, and a super fun Olympic theme - complete with an invitation, bracket and even medals for the winners!! Alexa is an absolute design genius, see what else she can do - I’ll race you ;) - over at Alexa Z Design, she’s got some seriously gold medal-worthy stuff!

Yard Game Signs

If you’re as obsessed with playing outside as I am {yes, in this situation, it’s totally okay to act like a kid!}, then you’re going to want to get started with planning this date right away. It’s super simple. Print and fill out your invitations and get those babies to your athletes.... I mean, guests. Don’t forget to include the location of this year’s Olympic Yard Games, as well as the time guests should arrive to see the Opening Ceremony!

Yard Games Olympic Bracket

Get your brackets ready before your guests arrive. {You’ll want one bracket for each event that you plan on playing.} These blank brackets are perfect for up to eight couples and you can use them any way that you want - some of the events will require couples to compete and others might require each person to play solo, so just create a different bracket for each event. You can even create a wives bracket and a separate husbands bracket if you’ve got enough players! If you’ve got less competitors, no worries - just leave those spaces blank!

Cornhole Yard Game SignKubb Yard Game Sign

Before the athletes begin arriving, you’ll also want to set up your signs. We’ve included nine of our absolute favorite yard games, but there’s also a matching, blank sign so that you can add your own games! Just attach each of the signs to wooden stakes and stick them in the ground next to that game’s materials.

Blank Yard Game Sign

If you haven’t jumped on the yard games bandwagon yet, but you’re interested in getting started, my husband and I can’t get enough of Cornhole, Ladder Golf and Kubb {it's also known as Viking Chess, and men always love this one because they get to throw sticks across the yard!}. I promise, you’re going to be hooked and you’ll get a TON of use out of them, ours are pretty much a permanent part of our backyard in the summer! {You can also make a mini-date by playing just the two of you!} If you’re feeling kind of crafty, you can even DIY a few yard games like Twister or Giant Jenga or any of these awesome ideas for Outdoor Fun!

Yard Olympic Games First Place Medal

Once the games have been played, it’s time for the award ceremony. The gold, silver, and bronze medals can be awarded in lots of cute ways. Try attaching the circles to a ribbon that can be pinned on a shirt, printing them on sticker paper to use as stickers or stringing them to a piece of yarn to hang around the winner’s neck. You’ll probably also want to snap a few pictures of the winners with all of their awards. We thought the “Rocky” pose was most appropriate.

I know you're all excited to win so you can strike your own winning pose, so go ahead and grab your FREE Yard Olympics Invite, Bracket, Medals and Game Signs!!

If you want even more ideas for outdoor games, check out Wendy’s ideas for Spring Olympics or these 50 Outdoor Date Ideas. If you’ve found a group of friends who love a little friendly competition, then they’ll get a kick out of our Win It in a Minute Games!!

The post Summer Olympic Yard Games Group Date appeared first on The Dating Divas.

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0
Heather http://www.thedatingdivas.com <![CDATA[“X” Marks The Spot Date]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=73299 2015-07-05T00:40:26Z 2015-06-28T12:00:05Z X Marks the Spot

Ready to spice up your night with your sweetie? Well have we got just the thing for you!

“ARRGHH” you ready for this super cute and super sassy date night? We’ve got another fabulous Diva Central EXCLUSIVE printable bundle just for you! Use this sexy treasure hunt to lead to a night of intimacy.

Because today we are sharing….

X Marks The Spot Pirate Theme

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image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/X-Marks-The-Spot-Pic.jpg" description="My husband is going to LOVE this pirate themed date! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

The Dating Diva Community Exclusive

Diva Central is the one place online that’s dedicated to YOUR marriage, where you will find exclusive information tailored to YOUR specific relationship needs, with ideas, advice, and TIPS galore. When you become a full member of Diva Central, we’ll deliver this full post plus all the printables you see below! You’ll also gain access to many other exclusive posts, articles, printables, and more that are created with your marriage in mind! You get all of this for only $9.97 per month. If you want to join or simply try it out, get started for FREE with our Diva Central 7 Day Love Quest Challenge – just click the link at the bottom of this post!

This "X" Marks the Spot Date is specially made for your spouse to be led through your house with map in hand in search for the treasure. It will lead them through different clues until finally they find where “X” marks the spot! This date night is definitely one that leads to more. ;)

We’ve provided this "X" Marks the Spot Date Night for you and your spouse to use for a special night. This printable bundle features gorgeous printables from one of our designers: Jennifer from Simply Blessed.

This exclusive "X" Marks the Spot Date kit includes:

  • An ARGH-some Printable Treasure Map
  • THREE unique clues that include items to be used for later...
  • Printable “X” for Marking the Spot
  • Instructions for creating a fun hunt around the house to find the “bootie.”

Your spouse will LOVE the idea of being led throughout the house just to find out the treasure they are searching for is YOU.

"X" Marks the Spot a Sexy Night

Want to surprise your spouse and lead them on their way to find the “bootie?” This printable pack is sure to do the trick.

Once in the bedroom we suggest these games to go along with X Marks the Spot:

DIY Sexy Spinner

Spin the Bottle

Already a Diva Central Community member? Click HERE for the full post.

Sign up for a FREE trial of Diva Central today to get our 7 Day Love Quest Challenge! Once you become a full member for just $9.97 a month, you'll have access to the gorgeous printables you see above. 

Get ready to send your spouse on a treasure hunt around the house to find the ultimate treasure… YOU!

Start your "X" MARKS THE SPOT date with your spouse TONIGHT!

Diva Central Signup!

The post “X” Marks The Spot Date appeared first on The Dating Divas.

]]>
X Marks the Spot

Ready to spice up your night with your sweetie? Well have we got just the thing for you!

“ARRGHH” you ready for this super cute and super sassy date night? We’ve got another fabulous Diva Central EXCLUSIVE printable bundle just for you! Use this sexy treasure hunt to lead to a night of intimacy.

Because today we are sharing….

X Marks The Spot Pirate Theme

[pinit count="horizontal" always-show-count="1" url="www.thedatingdivas.com/just-the-two-of-us/x-marks-the-spot/" image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/X-Marks-The-Spot-Pic.jpg" description="My husband is going to LOVE this pirate themed date! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

The Dating Diva Community Exclusive

Diva Central is the one place online that’s dedicated to YOUR marriage, where you will find exclusive information tailored to YOUR specific relationship needs, with ideas, advice, and TIPS galore. When you become a full member of Diva Central, we’ll deliver this full post plus all the printables you see below! You’ll also gain access to many other exclusive posts, articles, printables, and more that are created with your marriage in mind! You get all of this for only $9.97 per month. If you want to join or simply try it out, get started for FREE with our Diva Central 7 Day Love Quest Challenge – just click the link at the bottom of this post!

This "X" Marks the Spot Date is specially made for your spouse to be led through your house with map in hand in search for the treasure. It will lead them through different clues until finally they find where “X” marks the spot! This date night is definitely one that leads to more. ;)

We’ve provided this "X" Marks the Spot Date Night for you and your spouse to use for a special night. This printable bundle features gorgeous printables from one of our designers: Jennifer from Simply Blessed.

This exclusive "X" Marks the Spot Date kit includes:

  • An ARGH-some Printable Treasure Map
  • THREE unique clues that include items to be used for later...
  • Printable “X” for Marking the Spot
  • Instructions for creating a fun hunt around the house to find the “bootie.”

Your spouse will LOVE the idea of being led throughout the house just to find out the treasure they are searching for is YOU.

"X" Marks the Spot a Sexy Night

Want to surprise your spouse and lead them on their way to find the “bootie?” This printable pack is sure to do the trick.

Once in the bedroom we suggest these games to go along with X Marks the Spot:

DIY Sexy Spinner

Spin the Bottle

Already a Diva Central Community member? Click HERE for the full post.

Sign up for a FREE trial of Diva Central today to get our 7 Day Love Quest Challenge! Once you become a full member for just $9.97 a month, you'll have access to the gorgeous printables you see above. 

Get ready to send your spouse on a treasure hunt around the house to find the ultimate treasure… YOU!

Start your "X" MARKS THE SPOT date with your spouse TONIGHT!

Diva Central Signup!

The post “X” Marks The Spot Date appeared first on The Dating Divas.

]]>
1
Michelle http://www.TheDatingDivas.com <![CDATA[Free Printable July 2015 Love Calendar]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=64868 2015-06-23T17:40:39Z 2015-06-27T12:00:19Z Free Love Calendar July 2015

Your free printable July Love Calendar is here! 

And it's FULL of fun and flirty romance tips to help reconnect you with your spouse and strengthen your marriage this month!

Free Love Calendar July 2015
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url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?s=love+calendar"
image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/July-2015-Free-Love-Calendar.png" description="Your FREE July 2015 LOVE calendar is here.  Are you ready for a whole month of intentionally loving your spouse?  Just print it off and complete the little romance tip each day! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

Yep, we promised it would be coming and here it is!  Are you ready for another month of intentionally loving your spouse?

Have any suggestions for future romance calendars?  We'd LOVE to hear in the comments!!  

And if you're new to our Love Calendars then...

Here's How It Works

Just download the darling calendar, designed by the lovely Erin with Strawberry Mommycakes. Jennafer at Oh Creative One works with us to update it each month {Isn’t it fun?! Jennafer and Erin can seriously create anything we envision. Check out Jennafer's and Erin's work!}

Then, simply check it every day for your little “love assignment.” It might be a small act of service to do for your spouse, a love note to write, or a quick activity to do together.

Odd days are designated for the hubby and even days are for the wife. The husband is in charge of the days highlighted in blue and the wife is in charge of the days in white. When it’s your day, you will either serve your spouse, plan date night, or grab any needed printables. You’re welcome!

 We’ve even included great date night ideas for each Friday night! {Don’t worry, we’ve only scheduled one “out on the town” date each month, so you only have to arrange for a babysitter once a month! The rest of the dates are fun and creative at-home options.} We’ve done all of the work for you, now you just have to MAKE IT HAPPEN!

**TIP: I suggest that you print the calendar and stick it somewhere where you’ll see it often. That way you can check off the little “love assignments” as you complete them BUT make sure that you also save the digital file to your desktop. Wanna know why? The red text on the calendar are actually links! If you click on them, it will take you to a post with more details and sometimes FREE Printables to go with your little love assignment. So if you see a “red day” on the calendar, don’t forget to check the link!

So, are you ready to join our Marriage Challenge?

Just imagine what a whole month {or YEAR} of intentionally loving your spouse could do for your relationship!

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE PRINTABLE JULY LOVE CALENDAR

And make sure to check in next month for your free printable August 2015 LOVE Calendar!

The post Free Printable July 2015 Love Calendar appeared first on The Dating Divas.

]]>
Free Love Calendar July 2015

Your free printable July Love Calendar is here! 

And it's FULL of fun and flirty romance tips to help reconnect you with your spouse and strengthen your marriage this month!

Free Love Calendar July 2015
[pinit count="horizontal" always-show-count="1" url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?s=love+calendar" image_url="http://www.thedatingdivas.com/wp-content/uploads/July-2015-Free-Love-Calendar.png" description="Your FREE July 2015 LOVE calendar is here.  Are you ready for a whole month of intentionally loving your spouse?  Just print it off and complete the little romance tip each day! www.TheDatingDivas.com"]

Yep, we promised it would be coming and here it is!  Are you ready for another month of intentionally loving your spouse?

Have any suggestions for future romance calendars?  We'd LOVE to hear in the comments!!  

And if you're new to our Love Calendars then...

Here's How It Works

Just download the darling calendar, designed by the lovely Erin with Strawberry Mommycakes. Jennafer at Oh Creative One works with us to update it each month {Isn’t it fun?! Jennafer and Erin can seriously create anything we envision. Check out Jennafer's and Erin's work!}

Then, simply check it every day for your little “love assignment.” It might be a small act of service to do for your spouse, a love note to write, or a quick activity to do together.

Odd days are designated for the hubby and even days are for the wife. The husband is in charge of the days highlighted in blue and the wife is in charge of the days in white. When it’s your day, you will either serve your spouse, plan date night, or grab any needed printables. You’re welcome!

 We’ve even included great date night ideas for each Friday night! {Don’t worry, we’ve only scheduled one “out on the town” date each month, so you only have to arrange for a babysitter once a month! The rest of the dates are fun and creative at-home options.} We’ve done all of the work for you, now you just have to MAKE IT HAPPEN!

**TIP: I suggest that you print the calendar and stick it somewhere where you’ll see it often. That way you can check off the little “love assignments” as you complete them BUT make sure that you also save the digital file to your desktop. Wanna know why? The red text on the calendar are actually links! If you click on them, it will take you to a post with more details and sometimes FREE Printables to go with your little love assignment. So if you see a “red day” on the calendar, don’t forget to check the link!

So, are you ready to join our Marriage Challenge?

Just imagine what a whole month {or YEAR} of intentionally loving your spouse could do for your relationship!

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE PRINTABLE JULY LOVE CALENDAR

And make sure to check in next month for your free printable August 2015 LOVE Calendar!

The post Free Printable July 2015 Love Calendar appeared first on The Dating Divas.

]]>
1
Cami http://www.thedatingdivas.com <![CDATA[101 Free or Cheap Summer Activities]]> http://www.thedatingdivas.com/?p=72665 2015-06-26T12:36:27Z 2015-06-26T12:00:20Z 101-Summer-Activities-for-Your-Bucket-List

101 Frugal Summer Activities

Summer is FINALLY here and I am loving it!  I love the warm weather, the awesome colors, and the fact my kids are out of school so we can hang out!  Yay!

The flip side to that is the fact that sometimes if my family and I don't plan well, we can get a little bored. To help off set that I decided to plan ahead - a concept to me which is foreign - lol.  Along with that, as Divas, we decided it might be high time to round up over 100 amazing summer activities for our readers (and us) to enjoy.

101 Summer Activities for Your Bucket List

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We found ideas for every person's needs...whether you want to include family or just you and your spouse - you will find your must-dos for your summer bucket list.  Below you will find...

  • 20 Outdoor Activities
  • 9 Food Activities
  • 8 Activities for Couples
  • 17 Activities with Kids
  • 11 Crafty Activities
  • 6 Thrill-Seeker Activities
  • 8 Nostalgic Activities
  • 22 Out & About Activities

With this list of over 100 awesome ideas, you are guaranteed to find out exactly what you want to do this summer!

As a bonus we had the ever talented Crystal of A Well Feathered Nest create this amazing printable bucket list for you.  Read through all the items we have found, pick your favorites and you can type them into your printable - or just print it and fill it out.  She even left a blank space for you to fill in with the dates you want to use the list or fill it out by category (for example: if your category is out & about ideas, then you fill the bucket list in accordingly).  Crystal is so great to work with and I want to shout my thanks for this gorgeous printable!

20 Free or Cheap Outdoor Activities

Have fun with these great outdoor activities.  They are sure to impress...

20 Fun Activities for Outdoors

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Great Summer Outdoor Activity

1- Go to a Drive In Movie: Drive-in movies are awesome! I loved going to them as a kid.  Go with friends, make it a family night, or just have an awesome date night - whichever you choose this is a must for your summer bucket list!

2- Swim in a Lake by Chipping with Charm: Swimming is an obvious must do for a summer activity - but up the ante and not just go swimming - but go swimming at a lake!  If you aren't sure if there is a lake close to you, do a google search (type your location in the top left search bar to find a lake or pond close to your location)... you just might be surprised at what you find!

3- Visit a Botanical Garden: I think that botanical gardens are one of the most romantic as well as fascinating places you can go to.  There are so many wonders to see. The flowers are amazing, the smell is to die for, and soaking up the sun never hurt anyone - and those are just a few rewards you receive when going to a botanical garden!

4- Fly Kites by Style Me Pretty:  Let's go fly a kite, up to the highest height...Oh that song brings back so many awesome memories.  You might scoff at us when we suggest this one, but honestly, it's a fun activity and before you know it, you will be having the time of your life!

5- Plant a Garden by Better Homes and Garden: Summer time is the perfect time to plant a garden - and the joy that it brings when you eat the joys of your labor is awesome!  Have a blast planting your garden and see what fun and adventure await...

6- Pick Fruit at a Local Farm by The Brambleberry Cottage: Going to a farm and picking your own fruit has a sense of accomplishment attached to it. It's such a fun adventure and you leave with the most fresh fruits and vegetables money can buy.  Seriously, you won't find the quality of the farm at your local grocery store.  If you don't know where to find a farm near you, try here.

7- Go Camping by French Press: Camping is a definite must for your summer bucket list.  If however, your idea of camping is going to a hotel... try to be creative and camp in your own back yard with a tent or you can even try your own family room!  What's great about these is you still get to enjoy 'camping' but you get the comfort of your own home.  You can take the couch cushions and use them as your bed, or pile up a ton of blankets.  Whatever works for you so you can have tons of fun while still keeping your comfort level to the maximum!

8- Paint Slip n' Slide by Mr. Otter Art StudioOh my goodness...this just looks amazingly awesome and tons of fun!  I mean, big slip n' slides are great, but add paint to the equation and it turns it into a genius idea.  I can't wait to do this with my kids!

9- Make a Backyard Water Park by East Coast Mommy:  Going to a water park is tons of fun but can be super expensive.  Save money and still have tons of fun by turning your backyard into a water park!  Your whole family will just eat it up.

Great Outdoor Summer Activities

10- Messy Twister by lol Snaps: Twister is such a classic game and tons of fun - especially for family get-togethers. Try this fun 'twist' by adding paint to the equation. I guarantee no one will be standing for long playing this game! LOL!

11- DIY Slip n' Slide Hockey by The Wee Chitlins: This over-sized hockey game is great!  I love that you can have the kids be super entertained, and they can stay cool.  If you want to make this even better, take this kids toy and make your own adult-sized water hockey rink!  Get plastic sheeting, spray paint the borders for an actual hockey rink, gather up friends and split into teams, then have a blast playing hockey and get super wet! Fun!

12- Go Swimming at Night with Glow Sticks by Hubpages: Again, going swimming as part of your summer activities is a no brainer, but swimming at night and using glow sticks as the lights.  This is a definite must! If you're loving this idea, check out our Glow-in-the-Dark Group Date Night.

13- Go on Night Walks by The Usual Mayhem: Clear your mind by taking long night walks...while walking take deep breaths of the beautiful summer air, and just enjoy being out in nature.  There is nothing that will beat the peace you will get by taking a great night walk.  Just soak it in.

14- Go on a Picnic by The Dating Divas: Picnics are so great. I love that they can be so last minute and unplanned which is fun.  What's great is the diversity of a picnic too...you can go as a family, just yourself, or a romantic get-a-way with your spouse.  Whichever you choose, it will be awesome.

15- Soak Up the Sun by A Girl and her Pearls: Soaking up the sun doesn't necessarily mean get in a bathing suit and go tan your skin - although that is a great option too!  All you need to do is just enjoy the sun - go to a park, lay on a blanket, and literally soak up the sun's rays and enjoy every second of it.  Being outside in the sun raises your spirits and gets your day off on the right foot.  It's just great!

16- Dance in the Moonlight: I know this sounds so cheesy - but honestly, this can be so liberating. Throw caution to the wind and let your spirits soar and DANCE!  For a romantic option, grab your special someone and slow dance in the moonlight.  Either way, just have fun!

Fun Outdoor Summer Activities

17- Nap in a Hammock by Bourbon and Pearls: Summer is not summer without taking a nap - but a normal old nap is not worthy to be on your bucket list.  Hammocks are perfect for summer, so taking a nap in one just fits.  Relax and enjoy.

18- Make a Tire Swing by Today's Creative Blog: Oh my goodness - tire swings just scream SUMMER BUCKET LIST!  Be creative and make your own - or find a park that has one in it.  Either way swing to your heart's desire and let it all go.

19- Outdoor Board Game by The 36th Avenue: Seriously, board games are a must for summer but a normal ol' board game is not bucket list worthy. What makes this idea bucket list worthy is that it is a DIY over-sized board game - using your own back yard as the board! Your kids will LOVE it!

20- Water Balloon Piñatas by Milk Allergy Mom: Oh my goodness - I LOVE this idea.  I am always searching for ways to keep my kids cool during the summer.  Fill up some water balloons, hang them up, and then let your kids at it (normal piñata style with blind fold, bat and all :))!  I would just take cover so you aren't soaked to the max, too!

 

9 Free or Cheap Summer Food Activities

Summer isn't summer without amazing food.  Enjoy these fun food filled activities to get your summer rolling!

Fun Summer Food Activities

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 Great Summer Food Activivities

21- Make a Giant Banana Split by Oh Happy Day: My husband I used to have a tradition of going to the movies and getting the BEST banana splits you have ever tasted.  Mmmmmmm....my mouth is watering just thinking about it.  So, take the banana split to the masses...make one that is monster and big enough to share for the whole neighborhood.  That is definitely worth getting on your must dos this summer, right?!

22- Make Homemade Pretzels by Two Peas & Their Pod: My family loves to go to the mall and get amazing soft pretzels to share. Now that I know we can make our own, oh goodness... this is going to be a great summer!

23- Eat Snowcones by Hoosier Homemade: Come on...summer is not complete without eating at least one snow cone right? Make your own at home and have tons of fun in the process!

24- Get an Ice Cream Cone from the Ice Cream Truck Idea by Windhula: Ice cream trucks are rampant during the summer.  Fill your kids' memory books with letting them get a sweet, cool treat from the ice cream truck.  It didn't happen very often for me growing up, but when it did, it was awesome!

25- DIY Granola Bars by Made From Pinterest: Granola bars are one of my kids' favorite snacks - especially during the summer.  If I made mya own with my kids, they would be in heaven! I love the fact that these recipes have different varieties and options so we can make it over and over.  This is a must on my summer bucket list.

Great Summer Food Activities

26- Make Root Beer Floats by Seedling.com: Yummy root beer floats have been around for forever, but not all root beer floats are made equal. Nope!  Try making your root beer float with different varieties of root beer and vanilla ice cream until you find the perfect combination that will get your mouth watering every time you make it!  Mmmm, mmmm good!

27- Make a Fresh Fruit Pie by AllRecipes: Have you ever had a fresh fruit pie?  If not, you are totally missing out!  Make this yummy treat for smiles all around. Yummy!

28- Ice Cream in a Bag by Growing a Jeweled Rose: Homemade ice cream is so great, but I had never heard of making it in bag.  What?!  This is just awesome.  My kids are going to love this!

29- DIY Trail Mix by My Natural Family: My family takes trail mix everywhere we go.  So, making our own trail mix takes it to the next level.  This is a definite summer food snack AND making it yourself makes it worthy of being on your summer bucket list.

8 Free or Cheap Summer Activities For Couples

Every couple needs some fun activities to do together during the summer - let this list plan all your activities for you!

Fun Summer Activities for Couples

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Summer Fun Activities for Couples

30- Watch the Sunrise by The Dating Divas: Take summer to the romantic level and go watch a gorgeous sunrise.  I don't know if I can say that my hubby and I have ever woken up early enough to watch an amazing sunrise. What a waste...it's definitely going on our summer activity list this year.

31- Have a Star Gazing Party by The Dating Divas: The stars are so gorgeous during the summer time.  Plan a great date and get ready to be amazed with the mind-blowing beauties of the galaxy.

32- Watch a Lightning Storm by The Dating Divas: I love summer storms - and lightning storms fascinate me.  Plan a romantic date for your spouse and enjoy nature at it's best.

33- Watch the Sunset by The Dating Divas: If you are watching the sunrise, then you have to also plan a night to watch the sunset.  You will make your spouse happy by planning on awesome night full of cuddling and enjoying nature.  This is a must for your summer activity list.

Fun Couple Activities for Summer

34- Have a Nerf Gun War by The Dating Divas: Have a fun filled evening with this great summer activity - and what's even better is it has a slight competitive nature to it.  Get your 'nerf' on and enjoy a fun night shooting targets and objects.  Just awesome.

35- Go Skinny Dipping by The Boyfriend Store: Um, I know that this activity might be a little 'shunned' but if you can't go skinny dipping with your spouse - then with who?  Throw caution out of the wind, be adventurous, and go swimming in your birthday suit with your spouse this summer!

36- Cuddle at a Campfire by PopSugar: I seriously LOVE to cuddle - so cuddling in front of a campfire sounds like heaven.  This is a must for any couple's summer bucket list.

37- Take a Bubble Bath by The Dating Divas:  I occasionally will take a bubble bath by myself to help me relax, but taking one with my hubby is even better.  Warm up the bath, add the bubbles, and then enjoy each other's company.  Yummy!

 

17 Free or Cheap Activities With Kids

Let your kids pick their favorites on this list to help your summer be filled with tons to do.

Great Summer Activities for Kids

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 Amazing Activities for Kids in Summer

38- Homemade Bubbles by Artful Parent: Every kid is fascinated by bubbles.  How much would your kids love it if you made your own?  Awesome right?  Have tons of fun with this awesome summer activity.

39- Play Your Favorite Night Games by Tips from a Typical Mom: I loved playing night games when growing up.  Pick your favorite games to teach your kids and have a blast playing some amazing games!

40- Petting Zoo by Catch My Party: Take your kids to learn more about animals and enjoy nature at a petting zoo.  Every kid loves to pet animals so a whole day full of that will be heaven! Find a zoo near you here.

41- Paint with Ice Cubes by Growing a Jeweled Rose: This idea not only keeps your kids cool, but allows them to express their inner artist too.  These paint cubes will be a huge hit!

42- Play with Summer Snow by Growing a Jeweled Rose: Oh my goodness, I LOVE this idea.  Take shaving cream, pour it into a bucket, freeze it, and let your kids have  ton of fun with their summer snow.

43- Build a Fort by School of How To: Seriously, a kid's life is not complete without building at least one fort.  Have a ton of fun building a fort with your kids and letting their imaginations fly.

Amazing kids Summer Activities

44- DIY Glowing Baking Soda Volcano by Growing a Jeweled Rose: Every kid loves to see science at its best - but a glow in the dark volcano explosion.  It's a definite must!

45- DIY Marshmallow Shooter and Marshmallow War by Owl-ways be Inspired:  Have a blast with these DIY shooter contraptions and let your kids go wild!

46- Make Balloon Rockets by Discover Explore Learn: Help your kids learn all about movement and science while still having a blast.  They will not tire of this fun experiment. Your kids will love this for their summer activity list.

47- Make Soap Clouds by Our Best Bites: After you do this you will never look at soap the same way again.  Get some bar soap, put it into the microwave, and voila - soap clouds for all your kids to enjoy.

48- Make an Obstacle Course by Learn Play Imagine: Obstacle courses are such a fun activity.  Have a blast using pool noodles to make a great course that your kids will want to do over and over.  This is a must for your summer activity list.

49- Squirt Gun Painting by Fireflies and Mudpies: If you want the best summer activity - then you need to combine all your kids' favorites - water guns and paint.  They will be able to create to their hearts content.  Awesome.

Fun Summer Activites for Kids

50- Exploding Chalk Art by Growing a Jeweled Rose: Make this your kids' favorite summer activity by making side walk chalk liquid, putting it in baggies, then throwing them on the ground.  Let them see their creations explode in front of their faces.

51- DIY Tin Foil River by Husohem: Make your own river with this summer activity.  With the help of some card board and tin foil, make a river in your own yard.  Float all your kid's favorite toys down your homemade river or race objects down.  The possibilities of fun are endless!

52- Sugar Writing Tray by Hellobee: Make your own box, fill it with sugar - and let your kids create!  This is also a great learning tool for writing and math.  It's just awesome all around.

53- Make Alien Bubbles by Family Licious:  I will be honest, when I first saw these, I got a little grossed out. LOL!  That means every kid will love these creations and want them for sure on their summer activity list.

54- Go to Your Local Library Reading Time: Most libraries have group reading times for kids.  Call your local library and find out when your reading times are. Your kids will not only develop a great love of books, but will grow in other ways as well.  This is a must do this summer!

11 Free or Cheap Summer Crafty Activities

I am not a crafty person, but my kids love crafts - so once in a while I do them.  All the items on this list seem like something even I can conquer and have fun doing it!

Fun Summer Craft Activities

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 Great Crafts for Summertime

55- Make Cloud Dough by Nurture Store: Get your hands dirty this summer.  Create your own cloud dough and just have a blast with it!

56- Make a Fabric Sunprint by Design Love Fest: I love that with this idea you can create your own fabric using nature!  How cool is that? Then make a throw pillow using the pattern you design!  This is summer bucket list worthy for sure.

57- Make Tie-Dye Shirts by Instructables: I know tie-dye shirts are a bit old school, but they are still just awesome.  Make a bunch and wear them to your next family reunion, or plan a fun group date and wear them, or just a fun date night.  Whichever you choose, have a blast with this fun summer activity item!

58- Home Depot Craft Day: Go to your local Home Depot and participate in a fun craft day.  Build your creative skills by being taught by the masters of creation themselves - Home Depot and their employees.  You will have a blast doing this summer activity!

59- Make a Hot Air Balloon by Martha Stewart: This is a to-die-for craft to do with your kids.  What I love even more is that they are adorable decorations for your kids' rooms.  Love it!

60- Make a Paper Sunprint via Martha Stewart: Find some amazing looking leaves or other items from nature, get some light sensitive solution and watercolor paper, put your fun items in the shape you like, put out in the sun, and voila - gorgeous and beautiful art.  Awesome!

Cheap Summer Craft Activities

61- DIY Wind Chimes - by A Cultivated Nest: I love wind chimes, but one that I can create myself would make it extra special.  This is so much fun and I can't wait to add it to my summer bucket list.

62- Build a Balloon Powered Car by Wonder How To: Oh my goodness, seriously, not only do you get to build a car, but it's powered by a balloon!  What more could you ask for in a great summer activity?

63- Make a Suncatcher by Denise's Yadda Yadda: Get your creative juices flowing with this fun summer activity.  Create some awesome and gorgeous art with this fun idea.

64- Make Your Own Butterfly Feeder by eHow: Attract some amazing creatures with this fun summer activity.  Butterflies are fascinating so if I could get them to come to my house with this feeder, that would put a cherry on top of my summer!

65- Pick Wildflowers by Avenue Lifestyle: Pick some gorgeous flowers and make an amazing arrangement for your table.  Gorgeous!

6 Free or Cheap Thrill-Seeker Activities

My husband and I love adrenaline rushes.  These activities are full of adrenaline and perfect for summer!

Amazing Thrilling Summer Activities

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 Amazing Adrenaline Rush Activities

66- Ride Go Karts by Complex.com: My family loves to ride go karts.  They are so much fun!  Find a complex close to you and get your fun summer thrills going!

67- Go Cliff Jumping:  Cliff jumping can be such a huge adventure. I grew up cliff jumping in Lake Powell and have jumped ever since.  If you are looking for an amazing adrenaline rush doing something that doesn't cost a lot of money, then this summer activity is for you.

68- Go Zip Lining: Seriously, zip lining has always been a want of mine.  This exciting, fun event is a must-do for your summer bucket list!

69- Go Rock Climbing: Nature is a gorgeous thing, so being able to climb and enjoy it up close and personal would be amazing, which makes it a must for my summer bucket list.

70- Go Geocaching:  Everyone at some time wants to go hunt for treasure, so why not do it this summer? I can't wait to add it to my summer list.

71- Go for a Hike by Let's Go for a Hike:  Hiking is so amazing.  I love being able to go into nature and enjoy all that it has to offer.  Enjoy a nice hike this summer and have a fun adventure with your family.

 

8 Free or Cheap Nostalgic Summer Activities

Sometimes reminiscing on the good 'ol days is just what is needed to bring a smile to your face.  Have a blast with these fun ideas.

Fantastic Nostalgic Summer Activities

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Great summer nostalgic activities

72- Dance in the Summer Rain by La Dolfina Lifestyle: As a kid I loved dancing in the rain. I don't know why I grew out of that, but I decided it's time to bring back the good ol' days and dance in the rain once again. I think this is a must for everyone's summer bucket list.

73- Race Popsicle Sticks Down the Gutters by Kidavalanche: I know that this sounds crazy - but my sisters and I couldn't wait for it to rain so that we could decorate popsicle sticks, wait for the rain to clear a bit, then go outside and race our sticks down the gutter's currents.  It was a blast and a definite must for everyone to do.

74- Catch Fireflies by Southern Living: I have to admit that I have never actually caught fireflies, but have always wanted to.  What a fun and exciting summer activity to do.

75- Sleep Outside Under the Stars by Nemo Equipment: Forget camping  with tents - have an awesome adventure out in the open!  Just grab your sleeping bag, some cushions, and sleep in your back yard, maybe on a rooftop, a deck, trampoline - whatever you choose, have a ton of fun and a blast!

76- I Spy Cloud Game: Seriously, this is the best game ever.  Get a blanket, lay on the grass and just take in the wonder of the clouds.  Let your imagination go and watch the clouds and see what shapes they form.  Find a bike, a boat, a basketball, a turtle - the possibilities are endless!  The clouds are ever changing and you might just be surprised with shapes jump out at you.

77- Sprinkler Under the Trampoline by Counting My Blessings: If you have a trampoline (or a neighbor does) then this is a definite must on your summer bucket list.  Throw on some swimsuits, put the sprinklers on, and have a blast with water and jumping!  It's a great combination, I promise!

78- Ride a Merry-Go-Round by Craftgawker: Merry-go-rounds are simply the best and it's so sad they are so hard to find now-a-days!  What I love about them is you can have someone push it, while you lay down in the middle and let all your cares go while spinning round and round. There's nothing better.  No matter your age, this is a great summer activity to do.

79- Skip Rocks by Good Memory: Go to a pond or lake, pick out a smooth flat rock, and see how many times you can skip it across the surface of the water.  If you are like my husband, you can skip it 10-12 times, if you are more like me, then you are lucky to get 4 or 5.  It doesn't matter how many times you can skip it, it's just a blast!

22 Free or Cheap Out & About Summer Activities

Once in a while it's great to just get out of the house and have a blast out & about!

Excellent out and About Summer Activities

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 Exciting summer activities to do out and about

80- Visit a National Park: Our nation is filled with National Parks that are just gorgeous.  Look up one that is closest to you and go.  There are some you can hike in, some that are filled with water, and still others that are teeming with wild life.  Whatever park you choose, it is sure to be a great time that will be filled with amazing memories.

81- Go to a Farmer's Market: If you have never been to a farmer's market you are totally missing out! A farmer's market is not only filled with delicious food that you can sample, but also full of local entertainment, music, art, etc.  It's a great place to be in and the bonus is you can leave with healthy fresh fruits, vegetables, or amazing other food to stock your home with. It's definitely a must do this summer!

82- Go on a Scavenger Hunt by The Dating Divas - Service Scavenger Hunt, Mall Scavenger Hunt, Zoo Scavenger Hunt or Romantic Scavenger Hunt: Scavenger hunts are so awesome!  What I love about them is their spontaneity and ability to surprise the participants.  They are tons of fun, bring in lots of laughter, and can be used on a date, a group date, or as a family activity. It doesn't matter how many people you have partaking in the adventure, you will all have a blast. Enjoy!

83- Go to a Baseball Game by The Dating Divas: Going to a baseball game is a great summer activity.  There is an energy surrounded by baseball games that you just can't get anywhere else.  Whether you go to a major or minor league game, a local community game, or a game your child is in - you will have tons of fun doing this great summer activity.

84- Go Roller Skating by TheStar:  Honestly, roller skating is so old school, but yet still so much fun.  Go to your local rink, put on some skates, and have a blast circling around.  I was looking around for awesome roller skating ideas, and came across this awesome video.  Who knew that you could do a double axel in roller skates?!  I never knew that this was such an artistic sport!  Awesome.  Find a rink near you here.

85- Go to a County Fair - picture via The Dating Divas: County fairs are tons of fun.  I love that there is tons of yummy food, lots of people, fun rides and games to play - all in one place.  What more can you ask for?

86- Visit a Planetarium by All Famous Wonders: Oh my goodness, going to a planetarium can be mind blowing.  Being surrounded by the stars and planets up close really puts things into perspective.  You can learn so much from going to a planetarium.  Find a planetarium close to you here.

87- Go on a Canoe Ride by Alixann Loosely Photography: Have fun on a relaxing canoe ride this summer.  Find a pond or lake close to you, and go ride a boat.  Maybe even have a picnic while on your canoe ride.  Whatever you choose, make sure to just have relax and have fun.

Awesome out and about fun summer activities!

88- Go to a Flea Market: Flea markets have a captivating energy that is easily spread.  Get a taste of what your community has to offer while at a flea market, as well as, getting amazing deals on clothing, food, art - you name it and it's probably offered at a flea market.  If you have never been to one, this summer is your chance.

89- Go to a Classic Car Show by Stafford Towntalk: My husband and I have a dream to buy a classic car and restore it to its glory days.  Classic car shows fascinate me. I am awed by the work people put into their car, the craftsmanship that is on display, and the love they show.  Check one out this summer and be prepared to be blown away.

90- Explore a New City: It's safe to say that even if you have grown up in the city you currently live in, there are always going to be small towns and cities close by that you don't know about.  Search google maps to find your next adventure.  Pick a place that you have never been to and go explore.  You are bound to find some amazing things.

91- Collect Sea Glass: I have heard of sea glass, but have never actually seen it myself.  As a kid I would always collect sea shells when we went to the beach.  This summer my family is going to search for sea glass instead!  What's great is you can do so many things with it - turn it into a great home decoration, awesome jewelry or even a wind chime.  There are countless possibilities. You will love it.

92- Walk Barefoot on a Beach: Come on...who doesn't love to walk in the sand on the beach barefoot.  Take time for yourself and enjoy feeling the warm sand between your toes and the soft feel of it underneath the soles of your feet.  If you want to have a relaxing time this summer, this is a must-have for your summer bucket list.

93- Build a Sandcastle by Hubpages: I have never had a knack for building sandcastles, but I think that's because I didn't have the patience for them.  Let your imagination flow and create an awesome sandcastle this summer. Even if you aren't talented at it like me, it's still a fun adventure to be had.

94- Go Snorkeling by Coastal Living: Snorkeling can be tons of fun, even if you are at a local swimming pool and not in the ocean!  There is something to be said about being able to put your face in the water and witness a whole new underwater life.  If you can make it to the ocean, great - because the ocean is full of life and awesome creatures that only snorkeling allows you to enjoy.  If not, have fun snorkeling in a swimming pool.  Dive for objects, spy on your kids and what they are doing - but just enjoy no matter your environment.

95- Go to an Outdoor Concert:  I love to go to concerts, but outdoor concerts are the best!  The atmosphere is different at an outdoor concert. Bring a blanket, sit on the grass and enjoy the music, or be up and close, in the crowd dancing around.  Whatever you choose, it's sure to be a hit!

Fun out and about summer activities.

96- Do Outdoor Yoga: I love yoga and the calming energy that it gives, but outdoor yoga sounds awesome!  Find a spot near you and get your zen on this summer!

97- Go on a Road Trip: Road trip! Who doesn't love a good road trip?  It doesn't have to be far to be a fun road trip.  Plan a short trip or long trip.  It doesn't matter!  All that does matter is that you have fun doing this great summer activity.

98- Dig for Sand Crabs by WikiHow: Finding sand crabs is great fun. They are so hard to spot and even harder to catch.  I love the excitement my kids and I feel in the heat of the moment.  It's captivating!

99- Batting Cages: I am not great at hitting baseballs, but it's still so much fun!  Go to your local batting cages and hit away!  Who knows, you might just surprise yourself with your mad skills.

100- Go Innertubing by Bear Paw Escape: Keep your adventure skills up with this fun summer activity.  Get an innertube and float down a river, take a good nap, or play a game of trying to get another person off their tube and in the water.  The variety this activity provides is just what the doctor ordered for the fun you will have this summer.

101- Tour a Fire Station: Fire fighters are true heroes in today's time.  Call your local fire department and set up a tour that you and your family can go on and learn more about what fire fighters do for us everyday.

Isn't this list just great?!  All your summer needs in one place - you can't ask for anything more.  If you want some more awesome ideas for your summer check out these amazing family vacation ideas or these rainy day activities - because it will rain at least once this summer!

 

 

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101 Frugal Summer Activities

Summer is FINALLY here and I am loving it!  I love the warm weather, the awesome colors, and the fact my kids are out of school so we can hang out!  Yay!

The flip side to that is the fact that sometimes if my family and I don't plan well, we can get a little bored. To help off set that I decided to plan ahead - a concept to me which is foreign - lol.  Along with that, as Divas, we decided it might be high time to round up over 100 amazing summer activities for our readers (and us) to enjoy.

101 Summer Activities for Your Bucket List

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We found ideas for every person's needs...whether you want to include family or just you and your spouse - you will find your must-dos for your summer bucket list.  Below you will find...
  • 20 Outdoor Activities
  • 9 Food Activities
  • 8 Activities for Couples
  • 17 Activities with Kids
  • 11 Crafty Activities
  • 6 Thrill-Seeker Activities
  • 8 Nostalgic Activities
  • 22 Out & About Activities

With this list of over 100 awesome ideas, you are guaranteed to find out exactly what you want to do this summer!

As a bonus we had the ever talented Crystal of A Well Feathered Nest create this amazing printable bucket list for you.  Read through all the items we have found, pick your favorites and you can type them into your printable - or just print it and fill it out.  She even left a blank space for you to fill in with the dates you want to use the list or fill it out by category (for example: if your category is out & about ideas, then you fill the bucket list in accordingly).  Crystal is so great to work with and I want to shout my thanks for this gorgeous printable!

20 Free or Cheap Outdoor Activities

Have fun with these great outdoor activities.  They are sure to impress...

20 Fun Activities for Outdoors

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Great Summer Outdoor Activity
1- Go to a Drive In Movie: Drive-in movies are awesome! I loved going to them as a kid.  Go with friends, make it a family night, or just have an awesome date night - whichever you choose this is a must for your summer bucket list!2- Swim in a Lake by Chipping with Charm: Swimming is an obvious must do for a summer activity - but up the ante and not just go swimming - but go swimming at a lake!  If you aren't sure if there is a lake close to you, do a google search (type your location in the top left search bar to find a lake or pond close to your location)... you just might be surprised at what you find!3- Visit a Botanical Garden: I think that botanical gardens are one of the most romantic as well as fascinating places you can go to.  There are so many wonders to see. The flowers are amazing, the smell is to die for, and soaking up the sun never hurt anyone - and those are just a few rewards you receive when going to a botanical garden!4- Fly Kites by Style Me Pretty:  Let's go fly a kite, up to the highest height...Oh that song brings back so many awesome memories.  You might scoff at us when we suggest this one, but honestly, it's a fun activity and before you know it, you will be having the time of your life!5- Plant a Garden by Better Homes and Garden: Summer time is the perfect time to plant a garden - and the joy that it brings when you eat the joys of your labor is awesome!  Have a blast planting your garden and see what fun and adventure await...6- Pick Fruit at a Local Farm by The Brambleberry Cottage: Going to a farm and picking your own fruit has a sense of accomplishment attached to it. It's such a fun adventure and you leave with the most fresh fruits and vegetables money can buy.  Seriously, you won't find the quality of the farm at your local grocery store.  If you don't know where to find a farm near you, try here.7- Go Camping by French Press: Camping is a definite must for your summer bucket list.  If however, your idea of camping is going to a hotel... try to be creative and camp in your own back yard with a tent or you can even try your own family room!  What's great about these is you still get to enjoy 'camping' but you get the comfort of your own home.  You can take the couch cushions and use them as your bed, or pile up a ton of blankets.  Whatever works for you so you can have tons of fun while still keeping your comfort level to the maximum!8- Paint Slip n' Slide by Mr. Otter Art StudioOh my goodness...this just looks amazingly awesome and tons of fun!  I mean, big slip n' slides are great, but add paint to the equation and it turns it into a genius idea.  I can't wait to do this with my kids!9- Make a Backyard Water Park by East Coast Mommy:  Going to a water park is tons of fun but can be super expensive.  Save money and still have tons of fun by turning your backyard into a water park!  Your whole family will just eat it up.

Great Outdoor Summer Activities

10- Messy Twister by lol Snaps: Twister is such a classic game and tons of fun - especially for family get-togethers. Try this fun 'twist' by adding paint to the equation. I guarantee no one will be standing for long playing this game! LOL!11- DIY Slip n' Slide Hockey by The Wee Chitlins: This over-sized hockey game is great!  I love that you can have the kids be super entertained, and they can stay cool.  If you want to make this even better, take this kids toy and make your own adult-sized water hockey rink!  Get plastic sheeting, spray paint the borders for an actual hockey rink, gather up friends and split into teams, then have a blast playing hockey and get super wet! Fun!12- Go Swimming at Night with Glow Sticks by Hubpages: Again, going swimming as part of your summer activities is a no brainer, but swimming at night and using glow sticks as the lights.  This is a definite must! If you're loving this idea, check out our Glow-in-the-Dark Group Date Night.13- Go on Night Walks by The Usual Mayhem: Clear your mind by taking long night walks...while walking take deep breaths of the beautiful summer air, and just enjoy being out in nature.  There is nothing that will beat the peace you will get by taking a great night walk.  Just soak it in.14- Go on a Picnic by The Dating Divas: Picnics are so great. I love that they can be so last minute and unplanned which is fun.  What's great is the diversity of a picnic too...you can go as a family, just yourself, or a romantic get-a-way with your spouse.  Whichever you choose, it will be awesome.15- Soak Up the Sun by A Girl and her Pearls: Soaking up the sun doesn't necessarily mean get in a bathing suit and go tan your skin - although that is a great option too!  All you need to do is just enjoy the sun - go to a park, lay on a blanket, and literally soak up the sun's rays and enjoy every second of it.  Being outside in the sun raises your spirits and gets your day off on the right foot.  It's just great!16- Dance in the Moonlight: I know this sounds so cheesy - but honestly, this can be so liberating. Throw caution to the wind and let your spirits soar and DANCE!  For a romantic option, grab your special someone and slow dance in the moonlight.  Either way, just have fun!

Fun Outdoor Summer Activities

17- Nap in a Hammock by Bourbon and Pearls: Summer is not summer without taking a nap - but a normal old nap is not worthy to be on your bucket list.  Hammocks are perfect for summer, so taking a nap in one just fits.  Relax and enjoy.18- Make a Tire Swing by Today's Creative Blog: Oh my goodness - tire swings just scream SUMMER BUCKET LIST!  Be creative and make your own - or find a park that has one in it.  Either way swing to your heart's desire and let it all go.19- Outdoor Board Game by The 36th Avenue: Seriously, board games are a must for summer but a normal ol' board game is not bucket list worthy. What makes this idea bucket list worthy is that it is a DIY over-sized board game - using your own back yard as the board! Your kids will LOVE it!20- Water Balloon Piñatas by Milk Allergy Mom: Oh my goodness - I LOVE this idea.  I am always searching for ways to keep my kids cool during the summer.  Fill up some water balloons, hang them up, and then let your kids at it (normal piñata style with blind fold, bat and all :))!  I would just take cover so you aren't soaked to the max, too! 

9 Free or Cheap Summer Food Activities

Summer isn't summer without amazing food.  Enjoy these fun food filled activities to get your summer rolling!

Fun Summer Food Activities

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 Great Summer Food Activivities

21- Make a Giant Banana Split by Oh Happy Day: My husband I used to have a tradition of going to the movies and getting the BEST banana splits you have ever tasted.  Mmmmmmm....my mouth is watering just thinking about it.  So, take the banana split to the masses...make one that is monster and big enough to share for the whole neighborhood.  That is definitely worth getting on your must dos this summer, right?!22- Make Homemade Pretzels by Two Peas & Their Pod: My family loves to go to the mall and get amazing soft pretzels to share. Now that I know we can make our own, oh goodness... this is going to be a great summer!23- Eat Snowcones by Hoosier Homemade: Come on...summer is not complete without eating at least one snow cone right? Make your own at home and have tons of fun in the process!24- Get an Ice Cream Cone from the Ice Cream Truck Idea by Windhula: Ice cream trucks are rampant during the summer.  Fill your kids' memory books with letting them get a sweet, cool treat from the ice cream truck.  It didn't happen very often for me growing up, but when it did, it was awesome!25- DIY Granola Bars by Made From Pinterest: Granola bars are one of my kids' favorite snacks - especially during the summer.  If I made mya own with my kids, they would be in heaven! I love the fact that these recipes have different varieties and options so we can make it over and over.  This is a must on my summer bucket list.

Great Summer Food Activities

26- Make Root Beer Floats by Seedling.com: Yummy root beer floats have been around for forever, but not all root beer floats are made equal. Nope!  Try making your root beer float with different varieties of root beer and vanilla ice cream until you find the perfect combination that will get your mouth watering every time you make it!  Mmmm, mmmm good!27- Make a Fresh Fruit Pie by AllRecipes: Have you ever had a fresh fruit pie?  If not, you are totally missing out!  Make this yummy treat for smiles all around. Yummy!28- Ice Cream in a Bag by Growing a Jeweled Rose: Homemade ice cream is so great, but I had never heard of making it in bag.  What?!  This is just awesome.  My kids are going to love this!29- DIY Trail Mix by My Natural Family: My family takes trail mix everywhere we go.  So, making our own trail mix takes it to the next level.  This is a definite summer food snack AND making it yourself makes it worthy of being on your summer bucket list.

8 Free or Cheap Summer Activities For Couples

Every couple needs some fun activities to do together during the summer - let this list plan all your activities for you!

Fun Summer Activities for Couples

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Summer Fun Activities for Couples

30- Watch the Sunrise by The Dating Divas: Take summer to the romantic level and go watch a gorgeous sunrise.  I don't know if I can say that my hubby and I have ever woken up early enough to watch an amazing sunrise. What a waste...it's definitely going on our summer activity list this year.31- Have a Star Gazing Party by The Dating Divas: The stars are so gorgeous during the summer time.  Plan a great date and get ready to be amazed with the mind-blowing beauties of the galaxy.32- Watch a Lightning Storm by The Dating Divas: I love summer storms - and lightning storms fascinate me.  Plan a romantic date for your spouse and enjoy nature at it's best.33- Watch the Sunset by The Dating Divas: If you are watching the sunrise, then you have to also plan a night to watch the sunset.  You will make your spouse happy by planning on awesome night full of cuddling and enjoying nature.  This is a must for your summer activity list.

Fun Couple Activities for Summer

34- Have a Nerf Gun War by The Dating Divas: Have a fun filled evening with this great summer activity - and what's even better is it has a slight competitive nature to it.  Get your 'nerf' on and enjoy a fun night shooting targets and objects.  Just awesome.35- Go Skinny Dipping by The Boyfriend Store: Um, I know that this activity might be a little 'shunned' but if you can't go skinny dipping with your spouse - then with who?  Throw caution out of the wind, be adventurous, and go swimming in your birthday suit with your spouse this summer!36- Cuddle at a Campfire by PopSugar: I seriously LOVE to cuddle - so cuddling in front of a campfire sounds like heaven.  This is a must for any couple's summer bucket list.37- Take a Bubble Bath by The Dating Divas:  I occasionally will take a bubble bath by myself to help me relax, but taking one with my hubby is even better.  Warm up the bath, add the bubbles, and then enjoy each other's company.  Yummy! 

17 Free or Cheap Activities With Kids

Let your kids pick their favorites on this list to help your summer be filled with tons to do.

Great Summer Activities for Kids

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 Amazing Activities for Kids in Summer

38- Homemade Bubbles by Artful Parent: Every kid is fascinated by bubbles.  How much would your kids love it if you made your own?  Awesome right?  Have tons of fun with this awesome summer activity.39- Play Your Favorite Night Games by Tips from a Typical Mom: I loved playing night games when growing up.  Pick your favorite games to teach your kids and have a blast playing some amazing games!40- Petting Zoo by Catch My Party: Take your kids to learn more about animals and enjoy nature at a petting zoo.  Every kid loves to pet animals so a whole day full of that will be heaven! Find a zoo near you here.41- Paint with Ice Cubes by Growing a Jeweled Rose: This idea not only keeps your kids cool, but allows them to express their inner artist too.  These paint cubes will be a huge hit!42- Play with Summer Snow by Growing a Jeweled Rose: Oh my goodness, I LOVE this idea.  Take shaving cream, pour it into a bucket, freeze it, and let your kids have  ton of fun with their summer snow.43- Build a Fort by School of How To: Seriously, a kid's life is not complete without building at least one fort.  Have a ton of fun building a fort with your kids and letting their imaginations fly.

Amazing kids Summer Activities

44- DIY Glowing Baking Soda Volcano by Growing a Jeweled Rose: Every kid loves to see science at its best - but a glow in the dark volcano explosion.  It's a definite must!45- DIY Marshmallow Shooter and Marshmallow War by Owl-ways be Inspired:  Have a blast with these DIY shooter contraptions and let your kids go wild!46- Make Balloon Rockets by Discover Explore Learn: Help your kids learn all about movement and science while still having a blast.  They will not tire of this fun experiment. Your kids will love this for their summer activity list.47- Make Soap Clouds by Our Best Bites: After you do this you will never look at soap the same way again.  Get some bar soap, put it into the microwave, and voila - soap clouds for all your kids to enjoy.48- Make an Obstacle Course by Learn Play Imagine: Obstacle courses are such a fun activity.  Have a blast using pool noodles to make a great course that your kids will want to do over and over.  This is a must for your summer activity list.49- Squirt Gun Painting by Fireflies and Mudpies: If you want the best summer activity - then you need to combine all your kids' favorites - water guns and paint.  They will be able to create to their hearts content.  Awesome.

Fun Summer Activites for Kids

50- Exploding Chalk Art by Growing a Jeweled Rose: Make this your kids' favorite summer activity by making side walk chalk liquid, putting it in baggies, then throwing them on the ground.  Let them see their creations explode in front of their faces.51- DIY Tin Foil River by Husohem: Make your own river with this summer activity.  With the help of some card board and tin foil, make a river in your own yard.  Float all your kid's favorite toys down your homemade river or race objects down.  The possibilities of fun are endless!52- Sugar Writing Tray by Hellobee: Make your own box, fill it with sugar - and let your kids create!  This is also a great learning tool for writing and math.  It's just awesome all around.53- Make Alien Bubbles by Family Licious:  I will be honest, when I first saw these, I got a little grossed out. LOL!  That means every kid will love these creations and want them for sure on their summer activity list.54- Go to Your Local Library Reading Time: Most libraries have group reading times for kids.  Call your local library and find out when your reading times are. Your kids will not only develop a great love of books, but will grow in other ways as well.  This is a must do this summer!

11 Free or Cheap Summer Crafty Activities

I am not a crafty person, but my kids love crafts - so once in a while I do them.  All the items on this list seem like something even I can conquer and have fun doing it!

Fun Summer Craft Activities

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 Great Crafts for Summertime

55- Make Cloud Dough by Nurture Store: Get your hands dirty this summer.  Create your own cloud dough and just have a blast with it!56- Make a Fabric Sunprint by Design Love Fest: I love that with this idea you can create your own fabric using nature!  How cool is that? Then make a throw pillow using the pattern you design!  This is summer bucket list worthy for sure.57- Make Tie-Dye Shirts by Instructables: I know tie-dye shirts are a bit old school, but they are still just awesome.  Make a bunch and wear them to your next family reunion, or plan a fun group date and wear them, or just a fun date night.  Whichever you choose, have a blast with this fun summer activity item!58- Home Depot Craft Day: Go to your local Home Depot and participate in a fun craft day.  Build your creative skills by being taught by the masters of creation themselves - Home Depot and their employees.  You will have a blast doing this summer activity!59- Make a Hot Air Balloon by Martha Stewart: This is a to-die-for craft to do with your kids.  What I love even more is that they are adorable decorations for your kids' rooms.  Love it!60- Make a Paper Sunprint via Martha Stewart: Find some amazing looking leaves or other items from nature, get some light sensitive solution and watercolor paper, put your fun items in the shape you like, put out in the sun, and voila - gorgeous and beautiful art.  Awesome!

Cheap Summer Craft Activities

61- DIY Wind Chimes - by A Cultivated Nest: I love wind chimes, but one that I can create myself would make it extra special.  This is so much fun and I can't wait to add it to my summer bucket list.62- Build a Balloon Powered Car by Wonder How To: Oh my goodness, seriously, not only do you get to build a car, but it's powered by a balloon!  What more could you ask for in a great summer activity?63- Make a Suncatcher by Denise's Yadda Yadda: Get your creative juices flowing with this fun summer activity.  Create some awesome and gorgeous art with this fun idea.64- Make Your Own Butterfly Feeder by eHow: Attract some amazing creatures with this fun summer activity.  Butterflies are fascinating so if I could get them to come to my house with this feeder, that would put a cherry on top of my summer!65- Pick Wildflowers by Avenue Lifestyle: Pick some gorgeous flowers and make an amazing arrangement for your table.  Gorgeous!

6 Free or Cheap Thrill-Seeker Activities

My husband and I love adrenaline rushes.  These activities are full of adrenaline and perfect for summer!

Amazing Thrilling Summer Activities

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 Amazing Adrenaline Rush Activities

66- Ride Go Karts by Complex.com: My family loves to ride go karts.  They are so much fun!  Find a complex close to you and get your fun summer thrills going!67- Go Cliff Jumping:  Cliff jumping can be such a huge adventure. I grew up cliff jumping in Lake Powell and have jumped ever since.  If you are looking for an amazing adrenaline rush doing something that doesn't cost a lot of money, then this summer activity is for you.68- Go Zip Lining: Seriously, zip lining has always been a want of mine.  This exciting, fun event is a must-do for your summer bucket list!69- Go Rock Climbing: Nature is a gorgeous thing, so being able to climb and enjoy it up close and personal would be amazing, which makes it a must for my summer bucket list.70- Go Geocaching:  Everyone at some time wants to go hunt for treasure, so why not do it this summer? I can't wait to add it to my summer list.71- Go for a Hike by Let's Go for a Hike:  Hiking is so amazing.  I love being able to go into nature and enjoy all that it has to offer.  Enjoy a nice hike this summer and have a fun adventure with your family. 

8 Free or Cheap Nostalgic Summer Activities

Sometimes reminiscing on the good 'ol days is just what is needed to bring a smile to your face.  Have a blast with these fun ideas.

Fantastic Nostalgic Summer Activities

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Great summer nostalgic activities

72- Dance in the Summer Rain by La Dolfina Lifestyle: As a kid I loved dancing in the rain. I don't know why I grew out of that, but I decided it's time to bring back the good ol' days and dance in the rain once again. I think this is a must for everyone's summer bucket list.73- Race Popsicle Sticks Down the Gutters by Kidavalanche: I know that this sounds crazy - but my sisters and I couldn't wait for it to rain so that we could decorate popsicle sticks, wait for the rain to clear a bit, then go outside and race our sticks down the gutter's currents.  It was a blast and a definite must for everyone to do.74- Catch Fireflies by Southern Living: I have to admit that I have never actually caught fireflies, but have always wanted to.  What a fun and exciting summer activity to do.75- Sleep Outside Under the Stars by Nemo Equipment: Forget camping  with tents - have an awesome adventure out in the open!  Just grab your sleeping bag, some cushions, and sleep in your back yard, maybe on a rooftop, a deck, trampoline - whatever you choose, have a ton of fun and a blast!76- I Spy Cloud Game: Seriously, this is the best game ever.  Get a blanket, lay on the grass and just take in the wonder of the clouds.  Let your imagination go and watch the clouds and see what shapes they form.  Find a bike, a boat, a basketball, a turtle - the possibilities are endless!  The clouds are ever changing and you might just be surprised with shapes jump out at you.77- Sprinkler Under the Trampoline by Counting My Blessings: If you have a trampoline (or a neighbor does) then this is a definite must on your summer bucket list.  Throw on some swimsuits, put the sprinklers on, and have a blast with water and jumping!  It's a great combination, I promise!78- Ride a Merry-Go-Round by Craftgawker: Merry-go-rounds are simply the best and it's so sad they are so hard to find now-a-days!  What I love about them is you can have someone push it, while you lay down in the middle and let all your cares go while spinning round and round. There's nothing better.  No matter your age, this is a great summer activity to do.79- Skip Rocks by Good Memory: Go to a pond or lake, pick out a smooth flat rock, and see how many times you can skip it across the surface of the water.  If you are like my husband, you can skip it 10-12 times, if you are more like me, then you are lucky to get 4 or 5.  It doesn't matter how many times you can skip it, it's just a blast!

22 Free or Cheap Out & About Summer Activities

Once in a while it's great to just get out of the house and have a blast out & about!

Excellent out and About Summer Activities

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 Exciting summer activities to do out and about

80- Visit a National Park: Our nation is filled with National Parks that are just gorgeous.  Look up one that is closest to you and go.  There are some you can hike in, some that are filled with water, and still others that are teeming with wild life.  Whatever park you choose, it is sure to be a great time that will be filled with amazing memories.81- Go to a Farmer's Market: If you have never been to a farmer's market you are totally missing out! A farmer's market is not only filled with delicious food that you can sample, but also full of local entertainment, music, art, etc.  It's a great place to be in and the bonus is you can leave with healthy fresh fruits, vegetables, or amazing other food to stock your home with. It's definitely a must do this summer!82- Go on a Scavenger Hunt by The Dating Divas - Service Scavenger Hunt, Mall Scavenger Hunt, Zoo Scavenger Hunt or Romantic Scavenger Hunt: Scavenger hunts are so awesome!  What I love about them is their spontaneity and ability to surprise the participants.  They are tons of fun, bring in lots of laughter, and can be used on a date, a group date, or as a family activity. It doesn't matter how many people you have partaking in the adventure, you will all have a blast. Enjoy!83- Go to a Baseball Game by The Dating Divas: Going to a baseball game is a great summer activity.  There is an energy surrounded by baseball games that you just can't get anywhere else.  Whether you go to a major or minor league game, a local community game, or a game your child is in - you will have tons of fun doing this great summer activity.84- Go Roller Skating by TheStar:  Honestly, roller skating is so old school, but yet still so much fun.  Go to your local rink, put on some skates, and have a blast circling around.  I was looking around for awesome roller skating ideas, and came across this awesome video.  Who knew that you could do a double axel in roller skates?!  I never knew that this was such an artistic sport!  Awesome.  Find a rink near you here.85- Go to a County Fair - picture via The Dating Divas: County fairs are tons of fun.  I love that there is tons of yummy food, lots of people, fun rides and games to play - all in one place.  What more can you ask for?86- Visit a Planetarium by All Famous Wonders: Oh my goodness, going to a planetarium can be mind blowing.  Being surrounded by the stars and planets up close really puts things into perspective.  You can learn so much from going to a planetarium.  Find a planetarium close to you here.87- Go on a Canoe Ride by Alixann Loosely Photography: Have fun on a relaxing canoe ride this summer.  Find a pond or lake close to you, and go ride a boat.  Maybe even have a picnic while on your canoe ride.  Whatever you choose, make sure to just have relax and have fun.

Awesome out and about fun summer activities!

88- Go to a Flea Market: Flea markets have a captivating energy that is easily spread.  Get a taste of what your community has to offer while at a flea market, as well as, getting amazing deals on clothing, food, art - you name it and it's probably offered at a flea market.  If you have never been to one, this summer is your chance.89- Go to a Classic Car Show by Stafford Towntalk: My husband and I have a dream to buy a classic car and restore it to its glory days.  Classic car shows fascinate me. I am awed by the work people put into their car, the craftsmanship that is on display, and the love they show.  Check one out this summer and be prepared to be blown away.90- Explore a New City: It's safe to say that even if you have grown up in the city you currently live in, there are always going to be small towns and cities close by that you don't know about.  Search google maps to find your next adventure.  Pick a place that you have never been to and go explore.  You are bound to find some amazing things.91- Collect Sea Glass: I have heard of sea glass, but have never actually seen it myself.  As a kid I would always collect sea shells when we went to the beach.  This summer my family is going to search for sea glass instead!  What's great is you can do so many things with it - turn it into a great home decoration, awesome jewelry or even a wind chime.  There are countless possibilities. You will love it.92- Walk Barefoot on a Beach: Come on...who doesn't love to walk in the sand on the beach barefoot.  Take time for yourself and enjoy feeling the warm sand between your toes and the soft feel of it underneath the soles of your feet.  If you want to have a relaxing time this summer, this is a must-have for your summer bucket list.93- Build a Sandcastle by Hubpages: I have never had a knack for building sandcastles, but I think that's because I didn't have the patience for them.  Let your imagination flow and create an awesome sandcastle this summer. Even if you aren't talented at it like me, it's still a fun adventure to be had.94- Go Snorkeling by Coastal Living: Snorkeling can be tons of fun, even if you are at a local swimming pool and not in the ocean!  There is something to be said about being able to put your face in the water and witness a whole new underwater life.  If you can make it to the ocean, great - because the ocean is full of life and awesome creatures that only snorkeling allows you to enjoy.  If not, have fun snorkeling in a swimming pool.  Dive for objects, spy on your kids and what they are doing - but just enjoy no matter your environment.95- Go to an Outdoor Concert:  I love to go to concerts, but outdoor concerts are the best!  The atmosphere is different at an outdoor concert. Bring a blanket, sit on the grass and enjoy the music, or be up and close, in the crowd dancing around.  Whatever you choose, it's sure to be a hit!

Fun out and about summer activities.

96- Do Outdoor Yoga: I love yoga and the calming energy that it gives, but outdoor yoga sounds awesome!  Find a spot near you and get your zen on this summer!97- Go on a Road Trip: Road trip! Who doesn't love a good road trip?  It doesn't have to be far to be a fun road trip.  Plan a short trip or long trip.  It doesn't matter!  All that does matter is that you have fun doing this great summer activity.98- Dig for Sand Crabs by WikiHow: Finding sand crabs is great fun. They are so hard to spot and even harder to catch.  I love the excitement my kids and I feel in the heat of the moment.  It's captivating!99- Batting Cages: I am not great at hitting baseballs, but it's still so much fun!  Go to your local batting cages and hit away!  Who knows, you might just surprise yourself with your mad skills.100- Go Innertubing by Bear Paw Escape: Keep your adventure skills up with this fun summer activity.  Get an innertube and float down a river, take a good nap, or play a game of trying to get another person off their tube and in the water.  The variety this activity provides is just what the doctor ordered for the fun you will have this summer.101- Tour a Fire Station: Fire fighters are true heroes in today's time.  Call your local fire department and set up a tour that you and your family can go on and learn more about what fire fighters do for us everyday.

Isn't this list just great?!  All your summer needs in one place - you can't ask for anything more.  If you want some more awesome ideas for your summer check out these amazing family vacation ideas or these rainy day activities - because it will rain at least once this summer!

  

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