So in hopes of getting our of my rainy days funk today, I’ve decided to take a look at all the things I love about summer, look forward to about summer, and things that remind me of summer memories.

1. Cherry Coke. The very first summer I went to summer camp I was about 10. I remember my mom giving me a roll of quarters to use at the snack machine and drink machines. I was SOOO excited about this tiny piece of independence. My mom? Giving me a WHOLE roll of quarters? For me to pick out my own snacks and drinks for an entire week?!?!? YES (with some fist pumping)!!! So, when we got to good ole’ Camp Oak Hill for our week of sleep away camp, it didn’t take long for me to discover where the drink machine was located. Back then, a can drink was only 50 cents. So what did I do with my $10 in quarters? Yep. I bought 20 Cherry Cokes in the course of 5 days. 4 Cherry Cokes a day. For a kid who wasn’t allowed to drink any soft drinks at home, you can imagine how awesome I thought this was.

Surprisingly, I didn’t get sick off of them and I still to this day love to get a Cherry Coke from the fountain machine if it’s available. It takes me back to summer camp and one of the first acts of independence I had.

2. Watermelon. It’s no secret that this fruit is pretty much my biggest weakness when it is in season. So much so that my grandmother has been known to buy an entire watermelon for our summer vacation just because I’ll be there. And don’t you worry, it always gets eaten! I also love it so much I once traded a birthday cake for a watermelon one year. My Dad drilled the holes for the candles and everything. I kid you not.

3. Rainbows. It’s no secret that I love these flip flops. I’ve been through 3 pairs in the past 6 years. And these puppies take a lot of wear and tear! This summer, I am going to need to purchase another pair. Sadly, my 3rd pair has had better days and the souls are now pealing off the bottom. Not to mention the arch support is non-existant. Some people may have trouble forking over $50 for flip flops and I must admit, it’s tough the very first time. But then when those flip flops form to your feet and last for 3 years, all seems right with the world.

4. Nicholas Sparks. Put me in a beach chair on a sunny day by the ocean with a Nicholas Sparks book and I will be good for the day. I love reading his books at the beach. They always take place on NC beaches. There’s something about reading his books while at the beach that makes them 10 times better. I already have 2 lined up to take with me on my beach weekends this summer. Can’t. Wait.

5. Breaking out the summer scent. For me, when I break out the Coconut Lime Verbena lotion, it’s officially summer! It smells tropical and makes me think of my trip to St. Lucia. Sometimes if I close my eyes, I can still hear the steel drums.

P.S. Dear Bombays, can we please go back soon? Love, Melanie

That’s my summer list. There are SOOO many other things I could add but those are the ones I’m dreaming of today as I look outside at the rain.

What are your summer things?