The Beach is overrated...Try Hitting the lake This Summer instead

The Beach is overrated...Try Hitting the lake This Summer instead

Don't be salty, be fresh!

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Every summer, millions of people flock to the Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland beaches for vacation. Some people even drive all the way to the Carolina beaches, or even fly down to Florida! It could be for a day, a week, or it could be every single weekend (if you have a beach house). Whenever you go or however often it is, the beaches are always packed and most, in my opinion, are kind of dirty. The sand gets in everything - your food, your drinks, your towels, your bathing suit (and butt crack). The water is just gross and there are sharks in it.

The sun is always so hot that you just sweat the whole time you sit at the beach. In fact, it's kind of boring being on the beach. Corn-hole and Can Jam are only fun for so long. And, I don't know about you, but no matter how much sunscreen I put on or how regularly I apply it, I always get a really bad sunburn. Then there is the boardwalk, full of sketchy rides, too many people, and fudge shops every few feet. The beach is overrated as a vacation spot. Lakes, on the other hand, are underrated. Here are a few reasons why you should rent a lake house for a week or even just take a day trip to kayak!

1. No waves!

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One reason I hate going into the ocean is the waves. I don't like getting pushed around and splashed in the face. In a lake, you don't have to worry about that. Sometimes there is a current, but it's nothing like ocean waves.

2. Less people.

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I'm not big on crowds. The beach is always packed with screaming children and people playing music. Lakes are quite the opposite. They are quiet, calm, and relaxing.

3. It's cooler on the water.

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Sitting in the sand gets HOT but laying out on a paddle board on the lake isn't half bad. The air above the water is much cooler than that on the shore, so you don't sweat your balls off the whole time.

4. There is more to do.

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At the beach, you only have a few options: boogie boarding, sand castle making, digging holes, playing volleyball, laying out, reading a book, playing games... and you can still do all of that at the lake, but there is also so much MORE, too. At a lake, you can engage in recreational water sports, like kayaking, paddle boarding, fishing, water skiing, canoeing, etc.

5. There are mountains for more fun!

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Most lakes are surrounded by mountains, of which you can hike and camp around. Camping is always a good time (as long as you remember to bring bug spray!)

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40 Things To Do During Summer Vacation

Because we all know four months without college friends or classes is WAY too long.
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It's been less than a week since finals wrapped up at the University of Minnesota, and I, among many of my other friends, are already lost on things to do. Since January, our entire schedules have been filled with homework and studying. The new freedom summer brings provides endless time (in between our summer job shifts, of course) for new activities and things you wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity to do during the school year. Below is a list of 40 different activities to keep you entertained during your break and to ensure you make the most of your summer.


1. Learn a new language.

I highly recommend starting with Duolingo. It's an app that provides free language tutoring through a series of activities and exercises. It offers a wide variety of languages such as Spanish, German, Greek, Swahili, among many others.

2. Volunteer.

There's an endless amount of volunteering opportunities offered throughout every major city in the country. For example, many hospitals will accept volunteers, as well as organizations in Minnesota such as Feed, My Starving Children, or the Ronald McDonald House. Most positions only require an application but be sure to check for minimum requirements such as age or experience.

3. Read a book.

Go to a library and wander until you find a book you think you'll like. Sit back, relax, and enjoy.

4. Watch a TED talk.

This is one of my favorite hobbies any time of the year. TED is a nonprofit organization that shares short, approximately 15-minute videos ranging from science to business to global issues. There's a topic out there for everyone.

5. Start a garden.

Even if you don't have any outdoor space, succulents and cacti are very low maintenance and still add a little "green" to your indoor space.

6. Go camping.

Whether it's at a campground or in your backyard, enjoy the technology-free time with your family or friends.

7. Paint.

If you're not an artistic person, go to the store, buy a set of Crayola watercolors, and just paint.

8. Take an online course.

Coursera and edX both supply free online courses from top universities such as Yale, MIT, and Harvard. If you're trying to further your understanding of a particular topic such as physics or biology, I suggest starting with these websites.

9. Bake brownies or cookies.

Most stores stock up on the prepared cookie or brownie mixes, but if you have the time and ingredients, try making them from scratch.

10. Fly a kite.

Kites are available on Amazon for $10-$15, and instruction videos are available on YouTube to help you get started.

11. Play board games.

Life and Scrabble are my go-to's.

12. Make a scrapbook of old memories.

If you have the time and a little extra money, I promise the end-product will be worthwhile.

13. Start a journal.

You don't have to go buy the fancy Moleskin journals or buy an expensive one from Barnes and Noble, a simple notebook will do the trick. Write down your thoughts and document your summer.

14. Go to the beach.

Enjoy the sunshine, but don't forget sunscreen!

15. Go fishing.

Minnesota is the Land of 10,000 Lakes, and one of them is most likely within driving distance. Take the time on a nice, calm morning, and go fishing.

16. Binge-watch a TV show on Netflix.

"The Office," "Friends," "New Girl," "How I Met Your Mother," and "Grey's Anatomy" are good places to start.

17. Start a bucket list and cross off one item every week.

The items added don't have to be spectacular and nearly unattainable, they can be little things, too. In other words, I'm not expecting you to go skydiving, swim with sharks, and go on a cruise all in one month.

18. Learn to rock climb.

Both indoor and outdoor rock climbing are available depending on your level of comfort and experience. Remember to take every safety precaution and have fun.

19. Catch up with an old friend over coffee.

Call the friend you haven't seen in three years and ask to catch up over coffee. You never know how much their life has changed since last speaking with you.

20. Have a picnic.

Pack a basket with sandwiches, fruit, vegetables, and juice, and find a nice spot with a view. Maybe bring a book for a post-picnic activity.

21. Meditate or do yoga.

If you're unexperienced in both of these activities, many YouTube channels provide instructional videos. I'll post a link to one of my favorite YouTube yoga instructors here.

22. Learn a new instrument.

Whether it's piano, guitar, or even this $7.49 recorder from Amazon, try something new.

23. Discover new music.

Spotify and Pandora are great music platforms to discover different songs and artists. Keep checking your local venues and maybe attend a concert if possible.

24. Complete a puzzle.

You can buy puzzles online for around $10-$15. However, thrift stores and stores like Goodwill often sell them for less than $5.

25. Visit a museum.

The Science Museum of Minnesota and Minneapolis Institute of Art are two of the post popular museums in Minnesota. If you check their websites and other internet sources such as Groupon, you might be able to find a discount for admission.

26. Go to a comedy show.

I'm unaware of good comedy events around the country, but if you ever find yourself in downtown Minneapolis, check out Brave New Workshop.

27. Build a card tower.

If you're unsure how to do so, here is a link to instructions.

28. Reorganize and redecorate your room.

If you'd like a change in your life, try redecorating or reorganizing your room. Donate old clothes, books, or furniture no longer in use.

29. Marathon the entire Harry Potter series.

I challenge you to do this back-to-back with each movie, but I also realize that is 19 hours and 39 minutes of watching movies, not including snack or bathroom breaks.

30. Play with a pet.

It doesn't have to be your own. For a real adventure, check out the nearest animal shelter.

31. Start a blog.

Wordpress and Weebly are two online blogging websites that I highly suggest. Although it takes awhile to become accustomed to the platform, these websites are great because they're entirely customizable to the type of blog you wish to create.

32. Go for a bike ride.

Whether it's along the river or out on back roads, go for a ride.

33. Teach yourself how to juggle.

This might be easier said than done, but some videos on YouTube might be useful.

34. Take a bubble bath.

Some bubble bath or a bath bomb, music, and a good book will have you relaxed almost instantly.

35. Go to a farmer's market.

Support the farmers in your community and try buying local. With a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, baked goods, and flowers, there's something for everyone. The farmer's market in downtown Minneapolis is open Thursday's from 6am-6pm, while the Lyndale Market is open daily from 6am-1pm.


36. Exercise.

Go for a walk. Run. Bike. Do yoga. Play soccer. Just get up, and get moving.

37. Become a tourist in your own city.

Pretend you're from out of state and only have a limited amount of time to explore your city. Take yourself and your friends or family to the must-see places around town.

38. Color.

Adult coloring books have become an increasingly popular trend. Available online, Barnes and Noble, and Target, they're easily accessible. You can buy a book, some colored pencils or pens, and enjoy the relaxing day.

39. Spend time with your family and friends.

Whether it's a movie day or going out on a walk, put away your phone or laptop for a day and appreciate the people standing around you.

40. Enjoy all the time you have not worrying about studying or homework.

Cover Image Credit: Joe Pizzio // Unsplash

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15 Summer Jobs For The Person That Doesn’t Want To Sit At A Desk Or Work In Fast Food

School is soon coming to a close, and so are our jobs that we work during the school year.

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School is soon coming to a close, and so are our jobs that we work during the school year. If you are like me, then sitting at a desk or being trapped inside for forty hours a week sounds like hell. But do not fret, I have compiled a list of fifteen fun jobs that will keep you active and engaged all summer long…

1. Swim Instructor

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While it might seem like you have to be an insanely talented swimmer to become a swim instructor/lifeguard, it is a lot easier than you think. You just have to complete a few simple tasks that most people that are in good health will be able to carry out easily. For more information on the specific requirements, check out this website: https://americanpool.com/services/pool-management-services/red-cross-lifeguard-training/

2. City Tour Guide

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Are you from a town that fills with tourists during the summer? If so, this may be the perfect job for you! You will be able to walk around and tell people about the town that you grew up in. Easy peasy and great exercise! Plus, you can soak up the sun while getting paid. If you visit Indeed.com there will be tons of resources to find guide jobs.

3. Camp Counselor

www.camplaurel.com

If you love kids, this is the job for you! You will be able to play outside and hang out with kids all day. Many camp counseling jobs also include housing and food, because of this you have the possibility to travel to a new place and be a counselor there.

4. Dog Walker

www.cesarsway.com

Being a dog walker is now easier than ever. With all of the new apps hitting the market, you can be a dog walker in minutes. Apps like Rover and Wag create a platform where you can connect with dogs all over whatever city you are in. You can pick a walking job as easy as you can pick up an Uber, plus you can choose your own hours!

5. Plant Nursery Worker

alabamagreenindustryjobs.org

If you're like me and absolutely love plants, then this is the place for you. You can be outside, with plants, playing in the dirt. It doesn't get much better than that. Go out and find your local plant nursery. You won't regret spending for summer with the flowers! That's for sure.

6. Farmers Market Worker

www.evergreen.ca

Health food, produce, and pottery! Oh My! Snag a job at your local Farmers Market. Whether that be at manning a booth or managing the event as a whole, your days will be filled with fun and energy all day! Not to mention the discounts that you can get!

7. Amusement Park Worker

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Live your childhood dream and work at an amusement park! If you live in a capital city, odds are that there is an amusement park to work at. Not only do you get to work in a super fun environment, but you can soak up the sun while doing it!

8. Babysitting

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Maybe you don't want to commit a whole summer to camp counseling, but you still love kids. You're in luck! Babysitting is a great option for you. Flexible hours and you can work anywhere. Apps like Busy Bees can even help you find jobs in your area.

9. National Park Worker

www.backpacker.com

Are you a nature person inside and out? Then being a national park worker is perfect for you. Not only do you get to spend every day in the most beautiful environments, but you also get to have full access to the park on your off days for all of the roaming that your heart desires.

10. Zoo Worker

www.zoo.org.au

Every child's dream is to be able to be at the zoo all the time. Now you can! You can work at your local zoo during the summer. There are tons of jobs that you can do, from a dip and dots cashier to a sea lion feeder. The opportunities are endless!

11.  Hiking Guide

www.selkirkexperience.com

Get your summer bikini bod while you are at work! For all of you avid hikers, this is right down your ally. You can hike all day AND get paid to do it. Name a more wonderful duo. I'll wait…

12.  Landscaping

actionlawnreno.com

If you have an eye for design and a desire to get a little extra vitamin D, this job will certainly brighten up your summer. Tons of landscaping companies need more hands during the summer demand for landscape. Get in contact with your local companies and see if they have a spot for you!

13.  Freelance Writing

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Advance your career and get paid to work flexible hours? HECK YEAH! Calling all writers. This may be the job for you. Freelance writing is a great option to have complete freedom and also get paid to do what you love while sitting in a bikini by the pool.

14.  Wrangler

Cowboy, horses, dusty Park Butte Trail, Mount Baker Wilderness, Washington, USA.

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Giddy on up and get you a job as a horse wrangler. Many homesteads and ranchers need more wranglers during the summer. Many summer camps even have these jobs available. If you are looking to spend your summer riding off into the sunset, then this is just right for you!

15.  WWOOF

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Last, but certainly not least is WWOOF. WWOOF is an international company that is looking for people who desire to travel but need housing and a job as well. They are a company that will get you a job at a local organic farm and provides you housing for your work. So this summer if you want to travel, but not break the bank, this is a LIFESAVER.

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