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5 Best Ideas To Enjoy This Unique Summer!

Here’s the List: Top 5 Tips!

This past weekend, we warmly welcomed the unofficial start to summer.  After a few challenging months, this new season brings with it, new opportunities for renewal and rejuvenation. With the ‘new normal’ presented by coronavirus, we’ll likely have to make some adaptations to our normal summer routines. This is an incredible chance though to ask ourselves how we really want to take advantage of the warm months ahead and go into the summer with positive energy.  So, here’s a list of our Top 5 ideas to burst into the summer with confidence and positivity.

  1. Get Outdoors - Set a goal to get outside every day, whether that’s to go for a walk, run, or a hike. Build towards a few thousands steps a day, or a mile or two. No need to aim big, start small and focus on what you can do one day at a time, but always building. You’d be surprised how much you can accomplish! 

  2. Support Restaurants and Hospitality - With restaurants slowly opening up, even the smallest little bit can help. Find your favorite spots for the summer and try to support them as much as possible. Whether just popping in to say ‘hi,’ or ordering takeout as much as possible. These businesses make up the cornerstones of our communities! You can also support them by asking if they have social media accounts so you can share amongst your friends. 

  3. Take Time to Focus on Your Mental Well-Being- Often, we focus so much on doing things for others, we tend not to take care of ourselves the way we should.  Take time to read a new book or start your day with meditation. Taking a brief moment, even just 5-10 minutes to check in with yourself can greatly change how you start or finish your day. Both the Calm and Headspace apps are great and can be found on the app store. 

  4. Home Improvements- Having a home that’s a space you can relax in and feel at ease is incredibly important to well-being. Things like planting a garden (‘Victory Garden’), painting a room a new color, or even reorganizing the fridge are little things you can do to positively change your space. 

  5. Learn Something New- There’s always a new thing we’ve wanted to do or learn that we’ve put off because we feel we don’t have the time or may just be too tired. Whatever that thing has been, this is the summer to do it! Whether it’s learning a language (duolingo in the app store), or learning how to cook or improve your cooking, or maybe even picking up an instrument, there’s no better time than now! 

Optimism on the Rise: Open for Business!

This past weekend as we celebrated Memorial Day, Karen and I had the chance to enjoy some much-needed time in downtown Portsmouth, soaking in the great weather and visiting the recently opened local eateries with family and friends. Music was playing, the sun was shining, and a spirit of optimism and excitement was in the air. After the last few months of relative isolation, it was beyond inspiring to see people outside, taking it all in, and supporting our small businesses. 

We’re beginning to see restrictions eased in states across the country with the opening of many of the places we have grown to miss. This summer, the chance to stay local and support local can help get our communities back on track. Not only does supporting our local economy and small businesses help build vibrant communities, it also helps build a deeper appreciation for all that our communities have to offer. It makes me think back to when we would enjoy great local attractions with the kids – a trip to the top of Mt. Washington or visit some of our favorite spots like Story Land, Santa’s Village, Six Gun City and see the trained bears at Clark’s Trading Post in Lincoln, New Hampshire. Every state has so much incredible history and so much to offer, this summer presents an incredible opportunity to have some fun in your own backyard. 

We’re reaching a turning point in this fight against COVID-19 and while this summer may be different than those of years past, we have an opportunity to embrace the moment and do what’s best for our communities. Many businesses have adapted to the circumstances and are taking on the “New Norm” with renewed business models prepared for the months ahead. As individuals, we must do the same, and with confidence knowing that this will help lay the foundations for an even stronger future. 

In Support of Freedom!

With the world focused on COVID-19, China has used this moment to begin its crackdown on Hong Kong. Despite overwhelming election results showing that the people of Hong Kong favor their current semi-autonomous nature, the Chinese Communist regime is taking steps to crush freedom and impose its strict will upon the citizens of Hong Kong.  With the passage of new legislation, directed from mainland China, free expression and all forms of dissent will be permanently banned, and the corrupt Communist Chinese regime will be fully in control.  All in direct violation of the 50-year agreement signed in July 1997, guaranteeing Hong Kong autonomy in its governing and economic systems. 

We as Americans must stand up and make our voices heard.  We support the cause of freedom  for people everywhere and specifically the right of the peace-loving Hong Kong citizens to enjoy the freedom they rightly bargained for and were promised by the Chinese. 

Thankfully, there are specific, concrete actions we can take that will severely punish the Chinese for this aggressive and lawless act. The majority of these actions are economic and can have a devasting impact on the Chinese economy and financial system.  In addition, there are initiatives that call out China’s massive abuses of human rights and sanction this rogue regime in the court of international public opinion.  For specifics, please click here and here.

We need to take these actions now, not only because they are the right thing to do in the case of Hong Kong – but because if do not – then the Chinese will be further emboldened, and we can be sure that their next target will be the innocent people of Taiwan.

Positive Profile of the Week:  Tim Baines

As I have said in the Sunshine Report and elsewhere, small businesses are the backbone of our community as well as our nation. They provide jobs critical to the community, important tax revenue, and a spirit of community that brings us together. In the hit show ‘Cheers,’ the theme song featured the famed words  “where everybody knows your name.” This week, we’re profiling a gentleman whose name is known by everyone in his industry and community because of the impact he’s made, none other than the Honorable Tim Baines, Owner of Manchester's Mint Bistro. 

Tim is the son of former Manchester Mayor and West High School Principal Bob Baines. Following in his father’s footsteps, Tim was elected to public office, serving the residents of Manchester as the Alderman of Ward 3. As a father who has also had own son follow suit and serve the people of his community, I know how proud Mayor Baines must be of his son, Tim, as my own son Gates now serves in the NH State Legislature. 

During Tim’s time in public office, he brought forth a commitment to overcoming obstacles. He defeated a multi-term incumbent, created policy that strengthened economic development, and worked across the aisle to do what was best for his constituents regardless of the political consequences. But holding public office is just one of Tim’s accomplishments. 

Tim is the proud owner of Mint Bistro, a well-known establishment located in Downtown, Manchester. Mint is a one of a kind dining experience, and its relaxed vibe keeps patrons coming back again and again. On any given night you will see Tim greeting patrons and working alongside his dedicated staff to his clientele a great dining experience. But Mint is more than just a place to enjoy a great meal, it’s a pillar of community support. Attend any charitable event and you are bound to see a donation from Tim. His passion to help those in need is evident in the actions he’s taken, even in times like these. It speaks volumes of his character.  

Public servant, business owner, and compassionate community supporter. These three titles sum up the incredibly positive impact Tim has made and will continue to make in his community.  Imagine how great it would be if every community could have their own Tim Baines.

Quotes of the Week:  Summer

“it's a smile, it's a kiss, it's a sip of wine ... it's summertime!”  ― Kenny Chesney

When I figured out how to work my grill, it was quite a moment. I discovered that summer is a completely different experience when you know how to grill.” —Taylor Swift

“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.” ― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

“I started working out with my father the summer I was 13, which was incredible for our relationship. Those were my summers: working out with my dad, hanging out with my brothers, riding my bike. Pretty simple.” —Michael Strahan

“Summer afternoon, summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” —Henry James


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