You know what I'm talking about. It happens to us all. The dreaded late summer doldrums, the moment when we're no longer over the moon about being out of school, we've eaten all the ice cream and floated all the rivers and napped on all the beaches, and now we just want something to do. Luckily this moment hasn't happened yet, at least I should hope not, but for future reference I'm making a list of all the ways we can amuse ourselves over the summer when everything seems dull and done to death. Here are the first five things on my list, hope they entertain you as much as they have me in the past!

1. Knit a hat! This seems like an awfully woolly thing to do in the summer, I know, but find yourself a comfy seat in an air-conditioned place (be it your house, apartment, a coffee shop or mall food court, wherever you won't be annoyed by holding a bunch of yarn), and create the perfect knit hat that you can look forward to wearing come fall. I once spent a summer making a hat a la Jayne from Firefly (pattern here), and it was totally epic wearing that shizz around campus in September. Do this! You will be happy you did. P.S. put a pom-pom on the hat because everybody loves a pom-pom hat. (There are some free knitting patterns for hats here.)

2. Take a walk and bring your camera! Yeah yeah, totally hipster-y and oh my god physical exertion (for me at least, world's slothiest sloth), but worth the pain of lugging a camera around in 90 degree weather in broad daylight where everyone can see. I used to wander around my neighborhood last summer when I was unemployed and had literally nothing else to do, and I got some great shots of moss and flowers in people's yards. Sounds lame but I really enjoyed myself, and I found that it made me pay attention to little details around me that I would otherwise have ignored or taken for granted. Plus then I got to show them off to my friends and pretend to be a photographer! Woohoo!

3. Go to a bookstore and pretend to be a character from your favorite book! Okay maybe not in a crazy "HELLO MY NAME IS LIZ BENNET HOW ARE YOU" kind of thing, unless you want to, in which case hats off to you, but more in a sort of "I'm character A and character A would totally read about subject X, even though I never read that. I will go hang out in subject X section and totally browse the books character A would browse!" I've done this before, once, and it wasn't as exciting as hoped... but I think if you go in costume it might be more awesome. Report back with findings.

4. Bake something you've never baked before! Not a new flavor of cupcake. Not a different shape of cake. Something completely different. I know baking in the summer sounds like putting needles under your fingernails, but suck it up. I suggest you try baking saffron buns, which are absolutely the most delicious bun in the world and they are super expensive to make! That means they taste best, right? Saffron can be worth between $500 and $5000 per pound in the US, which is amazing, and I once spent $17 on like 3 grams of the stuff (which is more than enough for a batch, no worries). Saffron buns make me think of Christmas, but I like to think of colder days when in the midst of a raging summer, and saffron buns are a light and delicious summer snack to have with fruit or lemonade. Nom! Here is a recipe for the yummy things.

5. Listen to a podcast! Little-known fact about me: 90% of the knowledge that makes up my ingenius brain is derived from podcasts. I used to listen to the "Stuff You Should Know" podcast every single day, and it was hands down the most interesting thing my grey matter has ever absorbed. It's a podcast of topics from the website How Stuff Works (which in itself is a treasure trove of awesome knowledge), and it's hilarious as well as totally fascinating. I also recommend "Stuff You Missed in History Class" and "Stuff Your Mom Never Told You," also from How Stuff Works. Best enjoyed while lying outside in the shade under a wide-brimmed hat while sipping a mint julep. Ahhh, learning. Ahhh, perfection.

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