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Hot Fun In the Summer Time

Wendy Gladney

Upland, CA

My favorite season of the year is summer. For me summer was the time for vacations, outdoor activities, a break from school and a time to relax. Growing up in Riverside, I can remember between June and August how the flowers would be in bloom and the overall scenery was rich with colors. My family would have picnics, barbecues, and I would take my little brother and cousins to the Lincoln Park swimming pool, and we would have a great time. When I attended UCLA, summer was even more vibrant and exciting in Los Angeles with the many events, festivals, and outdoor concerts taking place. As an adult and mother summer meant taking the kids to Universal Studios, Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm and exploring Griffith Observatory. Summer is a time for friends, families, outdoor activities and to witness beautiful sunsets.

Summer officially started last week, but sometimes with the weather we have been experiencing it has been more like June gloom instead of hot fun in the sun. Although global warming and climate change are not topics that I have researched or spent a lot of time thinking about, I cannot help but believe they are a fact. Global warming refers to the rise in global temperatures due to increasing concentrations of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere, whereas climate change refers to the increasing changes in the measures of climate over a long period of time. When we look at weather patterns across the country sometimes it appears that patterns have flip flopped from state to state.

My husband moved to California from Chicago when we got married during COVID and he used to say that it never rains in California, and of course that is a myth, but it appears that we are experiencing a lot more rainier days during this time of year in California than many of us can remember. We are supposed to be the “Sunshine State.” No matter what the weather may bring, summer is more than just about the temperature. Summer is also a state of mind. It is also about slowing down and taking things a bit slower and enjoying the long days and enjoying the things and the people we care about. What does summertime mean to you? What are the things you enjoy doing and filling the long days with. We must remember to stay safe during the summer months, it is important to take appropriate precautions such as staying hydrated, applying sunscreen, wearing protective clothing, practicing water safety, and being mindful of potential hazards in the environment. The issue of summer that troubles me the most as a mother and grandmother are the swimming accidents. Many people enjoy swimming and water activities during summer, but it is important to be aware of the risks associated with water, especially for our little ones. Drowning, water-related injuries, and accidents can occur, especially if proper precautions and safety measures are not followed. Please keep an eye on your little and big loved runs at the pools and beaches.

Life does not guarantee us happiness unless we really will it, life just gives us time and space, it is up to us to fill it. Fill this summer with good times and good memories. Let this summer be your best summer. Enjoy, have fun and be a blessing to yourself and others. The pandemic is still lurking in the recesses, so be mindful of that as well.

Healing Without Hate: It’s a choice. It’s a lifestyle. Pass it on.

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