This post originally appeared on the blog Stepping Away From the Edge August 1, 2022.

Welcome to August!

How we got here so quickly, I have no idea. But I’m sure it comes with age. Because summer lasted a million years when I was a kid, and now that I’m in my 60s, well . . . not so much. But. Here we are. August already.

Each year, at the beginning of summer, I think about all the things I want to do during the months ahead. Some years I actually write a list, but most years I just carry that list around in my head. My “summer stuff” list varies by year, and usually includes a real mishmash of things: “Eat ice cream cones regularly” and “Plant a tree” and “Clear out the linen closet.”

My list generally changes by year, but one thing (well, two if you count the ice cream) shows up on every summer list I put together: “Watch a sunset over Lake Michigan.”

And you know what? We never do it!

sunset over Lake Michigan lighthouse in silhouette

Oh, we get to Lake Michigan every year, at least once or twice. But we don’t tend to stick around for the sunset! And it’s one of those things that . . . never quite appeals once you’re tucked in at home for the evening, with your glass of wine. And especially when you can watch some pretty amazing sunsets right there at home, from the comfort of your own front porch. (Plus . . . here in West Michigan, at the very western edge of the eastern time zone, our sunsets come very late.)

But last Saturday, we did it! Tom and I drove to South Haven (about 35 miles away) after dinner, and we settled into our beach chairs on a little sand dune and we watched the sun set over Lake Michigan.

early evening sunshine over Lake Michigan sunset over Lake Michigan sundown bright colors on horizon Lake Michigan

It was such a beautiful evening. The weather was perfect. It was peaceful. And lovely.

I love living so close to The Lake. (If you’ve never seen the Great Lakes, well. It’s much like being at the seashore . . . very coastal and all. Except the waves are wind-based, not tidal. And it’s fresh water instead of salt water.) (Which tends to freak ocean-people out.) (And no matter which Great Lake you live near in Michigan, you refer to it as The Lake.)

silhouette of woman walking on beach

So. Back to August 1.

When August hits, I always get a little bit (almost) panicky inside. August’s arrival . . . means summer is nearly over. (Not really, these days, but I’m sure you get what I mean.) I’m never ready for it to end. And I want to make the most of every summer moment that remains, y’know?

So today, I encourage you to review your “summer list” — the things you wanted to do this summer — and pick something that’s there, year in and year out. The thing that maybe you don’t usually get around to doing.

And then . . . go do it!

woman in sunglasses on sandy beach sunshine in background

Quick. Before summer is gone.

Trust me, you won’t regret it!

“I could never in a hundred summers get tired of this.”
        — Susan Branch


It’s August, my friends.
Don’t wait!

Start Your Engines!