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My top 20 best loved summertime things are categorized like this:
I am enjoying summer in Northern Virginia so much, but I do miss my backyard pool in Florida more than ever this year. The pool in my neighborhood is still closed! Good news though, in this Summer Roundup list you’ll see we have been cooling off in the water, just not pool water!
As you check out my summer favorites, most links are shoppable!
Did you know #thesosblog is committed to keeping any items shared affordable? To me, that means $100 or less, most items will be less than $50. In our house, I am in charge of our budget, all my purchases need to be practical and affordable.
That is why on #thesosblog shoppable items will always be practical and affordable.
Let's dive in to these summertime favorites!
1. Daily Moisturizer with SPF
A daily moisturizer that includes sunscreen is a must sunny summer days.
Personally, I have had a skin cancer scare and currently one of my best blogging friends is going through a skin cancer removal process.
If that isn’t enough, skincancer.org reports:
“About 90 percent of nonmelanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun. Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer. An estimated 4.3 million cases of BCC are diagnosed in the U.S. each year.”
My favorite daily moisturizer right now is:
CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion with Sunscreen - SPF 30
Here are a few more I like:
2. Setting Spray
I love makeup and I wear it every day! That being said, summer and makeup do not get along very well (hello sweat and humidity!) a setting spray is a must for my summer round-up!
If you aren’t familiar with setting sprays and you are just starting to shop around for one make sure you choose a spray that specifically says “setting spray” as opposed to “finishing spray”. They are different!
A setting spray is formulated to keep your makeup in place.
I like this explanation from Beauty Haven:
“Makeup 'setting' spray is formulated to be budge-proof and keep your makeup right where you left it, while 'finishing' sprays are typically used to moisten the skin. Therefore finishing sprays are more commonly used to 'reset' makeup during the day to prevent any cakiness and keep it fresher for longer.”
My all time favorite setting spray is:
URBAN DECAY All-Nighter Setting Spray
and here’s why:
This product is a little pricey when you are on a budget but totally worth it!
Here are a few more I like:
3. Waterproof Mascara
I learned the best tip from our sweet Benefit Brow Bar Brow Artist!
Use a coat of Waterproof Mascara over your regular mascara.
The result = avoiding those horrible smudges over your eyes during the day!
It works! I have hooded eyelids and used to find myself covered in smudges when I happened to see myself in the mirror during the day. This tip saves me from that.
Summertime calls for waterproof mascara because we find ourselves in the pool or at the beach. Or if you are like me this year, floating down a river because our pool isn’t open yet!
My favorite Waterproof Mascara is:
CliniqueFIT Workout 24-Hour Mascara
Here are a few more I like:
4. Lip Balm
Lips can still get chapped in summer! I apply lip balm every morning, every night ,and sometimes throughout the day. I love the way it makes my lips feel.
My favorite right now is Nugg. My youngest daughter gave me some Nugg products for Christmas. The set she gave me is pictured here and is still available! Their packaging is so cute (I am a sucker for marketing!) but cute packaging does not always mean quality products.
In this case - it does!
Their logo says "Nugg Cute & Clean!" they cute part is obvious, their products are so cute!
I dug a little deeper to find out about the clean part.
Here is what I discovered at Nugg Beauty:
All things that are important to me! I will continue using Nugg products (thank's for my gift Sadie!)
My favorite lip right now is Nugg Super Shine Lip Balm which I could only find in this set:
nügg Let it Shine Lip Treatment Gift Set with All Natural & Vegan Lip Balm and Lip Scrub
Other lip balms I like and my two favorite clear glosses are linked here:
5. Microfiber Body Cloth / Face Wash
Microfiber cloths are all the rage from cleaning to hair wraps and now face clothes!
This one is effectively a “body cloth” and can be used as a washcloth for your entire body however I use it as a face wash. Yes! You read that correctly. Due to my dry skin, I only use actual face soap a few times a week. The other nights, this is the only wash I use on my face.
This particular cloth is made by Norwex. A Norwegian company with a patented microfiber weave and BackLock Technology, which means this cloth has microsilver properties allowing it to self-purify between uses. I wet it with water only, wash my fash, rinse it out, hang it to dry and I have a clean cloth when I wash my face again!
I wash it only once a week in the washer.
A microfiber cloth is a great option for skincare. This cloth is part of 3 Zero Waste Beauty Products for Everyday Use on #thesosblog.
According to Minimalist Beauty:
“Microfiber cloths completely remove makeup gently exfoliate skin, reduce fine lines and wrinkes, diminishacne, whiteheads and blackheads, minimize scars and clear clogged pores from dirt and bacteria all while not disruptingthe PH levels in your skin.”
You can purchase microfiber cloths anywhere from the Dollar Store to Target however this particular cloth from Norwex is the only one that self purifies. It also comes with a two-year warranty.
Shop this and other zero waste, microfiber beauty items from Norwex here:
I am always reading several books and listening to audio books using Audible too.
Of course not all at the same time but also, yes, at the same time. Meaning I don’t necessarily finish one before starting another. Words are my thing (that is why I blog!). Reading words refreshes my soul.
Fiction, non-fiction, magazines you name it, I am reading it.
My summer book round-up includes a couple of non-fiction books.
1. Your Move by Michelle Young
Author: Michelle Young
Your Move is a suspense novel set in Canada. Claire has a successful, professional life and then finds herself on the run. Someone is dead. She is a suspect. Running from an old life that won't stop chasing her no matter how hard she tries, Claire is facing the demons from her past and her present. You won't want to put this book down!
Michelle's writing transports me right into the scenes she is describing. I found myself holding my breath and reading faster just to see what was going to happen next.
#thesosblog Quick Content Review:
Language: moderate, sprinkled throughout
Sexual Content: mild
2. The Moments Between by Natalie Banks
The Moments Between
Author: Natalie Banks
Is she dreaming? Or not? Claire Dupont has been in a state of shock and despair after the death of her husband in a train accident. Except, he's not dead?
Natalie Banks expertly weaves another love story full of suspense and heart gripping, tender moments. Strong characters and relatable experiences throughout, this story will capture your heart and is sure to make you squeeze your family a little tighter when you finish.
#thesosblog Quick Content Review:
Language: profanities, very little sprinkled throughout
Sexual Content: tastefully described, moderate depictions
3. Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller
Blue Like Jazz
Author: Donald Miller
Blue Like Jazz is one of the non-fiction books on my list. My favorite book of all time, I have read it at least 4 times. The quote on the front "Non-religious thoughts about Christian spirituality." grasps the heart of this memoir by Donald Miller. This book helped me grow as a person, helping me relate to and love people and connect with God in a way I never did before.
You may recognize the title of this book because it was made into a movie in 2012. In my opinion the movie does not capture the heart behind the book. I always recommend reading the book before watching the movie.
My favorite quote from Blue Like Jazz:
"Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can love it yourself."
You can read a full review of this book on #thesosblog:
Blue Like Jazz Reflections & Review.
Grab your copy of Blue Like Jazz here or the audio book here.
4. What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
What Alice Forgot
Author: Liane Moriarty
Alice has forgotten the last 10 years of her life, the last thing she remembers is going to her spin class. Suddenly she is 39 but thinks she is 29. No memory at all of the last 10 years of her life, although she lived them.
This is the story of Alice trying to put all the pieces together, trying to figure out her life with 10 years missing. Liane Moriarty will have you laughing and crying throughout this story of life, love and family.
You can read a full review of this book on #thesosblog.
You can grab your copy of What Alice Forgot here or the audio book here!
#thesosblog Quick Content Review:
Language: profanities, minimal sprinkled throughout
Sexual Content: very light/mild references only
5. Thinking Like a Boss by Kate Crocco
Thinking Like A Boss
Author: Kate Crocco
The 2nd non-fiction book in my summer round-up, Thinking Like A Boss is not your typical business book.
Kate's practical but positive message is transformational for women in business. Taking 12 lies we often tell ourselves and coaching us through them in her powerful but tender voice brought to life on the pages of this amazing book.
This is not a "12 steps to..." kind of book. Kate takes the lies we too often tell ourselves and turns into positive truths we can apply in our lives as women and women in business. Lies like "I'm not qualified" or "I'm not ready to start". If you have a dream to pursue and feel held back or stuck, grab a copy of this book!
Audio Book, also available and read by the author Kate Crocco!
You can follow Kate on Instagram too! You will be encouraged.
Shop my Top 5 Summer Reads here:
When I lived in Florida these summer fashion items were year-round items because in Florida, summer is almost 24/7, 365 days a year.
Now that I live through seasons these are summer must-haves!
Some of these items now get packed away in Fall and Winter.
Not hair bands though...those are always on my wrist (or in my hair).
1. Hair Bands
My hairstylist of 20+ years restricted me to these hair ties a few years ago. As a midlife woman in my 40s, my hair was becoming dry and breaking! At that time I lived in Florida and used a hair tie every day. I still use one most days and these bands have saved my hair (thank you Jimi !).
They are much better for your hair because they can grip your hair tightly without pulling or breaking.
I usually buy these:
SCUNCI 3 CLASSIC COLOR SPIRAL TWISTERS
Here are several options:
Open toed shoes are essential for summer. It is just so hot! Keeping your feet cool is more comfortable!
Carla Griscti shares some clever tips for staying cool in the summer heat. In an article on Prima she talks about feet:
"Our feet help to control the body's temperature, so keeping them cool will stop you from over heating. "
Sandals and flip flops do the trick for me in the summer:
These are my current favorites:
Women's Agnes Wide Width Microsuede Espadrille Platform Sandals - Universal Thread Black
Here are some styles to shop through:
3. Jean Shorts
My go-to for summer = jean shorts.
I think I came out of the womb in denim shorts. Seriously though I cannot remember a time in my life that I didn’t wear some form of jean shorts.
Jean shorts came on the fashion scene in the 1950’s and became popular in the 1960's. They have had their seasons of being less or more popular. Now a classic, very versatile piece of clothing that can be dressed up or down. They can be styled with different tops and styles of shoes.
Definitely an important part of a capsule wardrobe for summer.
My current favorite is - whatever fits me (thanks to #midlife and my quarantine 15 that seems to want to stick around)!
Here are some styles to shop through:
4. Halter Style Tops & Dresses
I love this style! Especially the high neck halter for tops and cute summer dresses.
What make something a halter top? Traditionally a halter is a backless, sleeveless top that ties around the neck. This has evolved into styles today that are not necessarily backless but are sleeveless. I think it is the lines heading towards the neck or around the neck that give something a halter style.
My favorite is the high neck halter.
Here are some halter tops and dresses to shop through:
5. Strapless Bra
A strapless bra is a must, especially when your favorite summer style is the halter top I mentioned in #4 of my Summer Fashion Must Haves here.
The constant search for one that will stay up (I hate the constant tugging when I feel my strapless bra falling!) finally ended last summer when I found this!
Maidenform Combo Wing Backless Bra
I was so excited I wrote a post about it last summer: My Search for the Best Backless, Strapless Bra.
All I know is we need away to hide those straps! It just makes our outfits so much prettier.
Here are some options to shop through:
This summer brought with it the need to be creative if we wanted to get out and about, have some fun in the sun and enjoy the warm weather.
For us the "out" sometimes included some of our favorite at home spots.
1. Front Porch Sits
We have spent more time on our front porch this year than we were expecting too thanks to quarantine days.
I can’t complain though because our front porch is one of my favorite places to be.
Sure, it’s hot but the evenings and mornings are already cooling down here in Northern Virginia making the front porch a nice summer hang out.
2. Watermelon Park River Tubing
I was introduced to Watermelon Park last summer by a friend (thanks Amy!). We had a girls day floating down the river. This year I took my husband for a day date!
Located in Berryville, Virginia this family owned park makes a day at the river so easy! Free parking on site and they have tube rentals. With your tube rental, the park provides a free ride up the river to the starting point where you start your lazy float back down to where your car is parked. You can even rent a little float for your cooler. Ask for a tether or two for your group so you can hook your tubes together.
With a beautiful mountain view this part of the Shenandoah River is gentle and fairly shallow, so don’t expect any rapids. It is a perfect, relaxing afternoon and a great way to cool off this summer with the pools and water parks closed.
If you are in or near Northern Virginia I highly recommend this activity!
You can get all the details here:
Watermelon Park Recreation
3. Sinistral Brewing Company
Another favorite summer spot of ours is Sinistral Brewing Company in Manassas, Virginia.
Located in Old Town Manassas with a large outdoor seating area, they have live music every weekend, great beer and even better people. The atmosphere is amazing in this picturesque little town that has stolen my heart.
Locally owned and operated, Sinistral Brewing Company survived the national shut down serving beer to go and a dose of encouragement with every pick up. As newbies to the area we have been welcomed in to the Sinistral family from the minute we stepped in the door.
Every time we are there we feel at home. We are so thankful for the Sinistral Brewing Company community.
They have a saying "Brewing good beer for good people." That is what they do!
The sticker pictured here says Old Town Strong. Old Town Strong is a charity organization helping the businesses in Old Town Manassas. Coming together in creative ways to provide support for the Old Town Manassas business community during these tough economic times. Check it here HERE .
You can keep up with Sinistral on Instagram, follow and visit if you can!
4. Back Porch Sits
Summer brings with it mosquitos! I am forever a mosquito magnet.
My dad used tell me that was because I'm so sweet. I am not so sure about that anymore but I do know I don’t want to end up covered in bites and neither does my family! To avoid that we head to the back porch.
We are blessed with a beautiful screened in deck that overlooks a wooded area behind our house. Many summer evenings you can find us sitting out back enjoying the view, the fresh air and some family game time.
Lately we've been stuck on Skip-Bo!
This one tops the list. Tennessee with my family.
Our oldest daughter and new son-in-law live outside of Nashville. Prior to getting married, when she was 18, our girl moved to Tennessee and ever since we have gathered there in the summer.
Her younger sisters join her for a week of sister time “mom free” and I meet up with them after their week is done. Then I spend a little time there too. There is nothing sweeter than having all my kids together, even for a short time! Now "my kids" includes a son. My mom heart is so happy and full!
Tennessee is beautiful. If you have never been you should go!
Being with my family is the best part but I also love Tennessee summer nights. Full of fireflies and mild temperatures, sometimes balmy if it’s been raining the nights are glorious. The grass is always green and the skies are to die for. Rolling hills, quaint little towns, and I am not sure how they do it, but in Tennessee time seems to slow down a little.
Family + Tennessee tops my summer round up list for sure.
I hope you enjoyed my 20 Best Loved Summertime Things for 2020!
Some of my blogging buddies are sharing their Summer Favorites too!
You will find fashion food and fun as you visit their blogs!
Check them out here:
D'Arcy @ www.dear-darcy.com
Gwen @ www.gwenliveswell.com
Sherri @ https://awomanthing.live
Michele @ https://hotflashandsass.com
Lenysha @ www.fiftyfabandtraveling.com
Rosemary @ https://distinctlysouthernstyle.com
Melanie @ https://mels2ndact.com
Kim @ www.foragoodlifeafter50.com
You might also enjoy these posts on #thesosblog:
Avoid Blogger Burnout | Fun in the Sun Amazon Haul |
3 Zero Waste Beauty Items for Everyday Use | Paper Towel Alternative