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Summer Adventures Roundup

When it comes to fun and adventure, there’s no better season than summer to charter unknown territory with your friends. From traveling and hiking, to exploring your own city or offering up your time to assist a person or organization, there’s always something new to learn, unfamiliar places to explore, and grand experiences lying just around the bend.

We’ve collected six fun and different ideas you might like to try, or they may even spark an idea of your own.  So grab your friends and set out on some new adventures, and be ready to make some beautiful memories that will last a lifetime. There’s still so much summer to enjoy!

  1. 08112015_Summer_adventures_Roundup_BLG_BMAGet up, up, and away! Whether you’re heading off for a week at the seaside or a fun day trip, parasailing will give you the ultimate adventure of fun in the sun! It’s one of those “someday”   activities that we always want to try but never seem to get around to. Unleash your hesitations and let your spirit soar!
  2. Take a random road trip. Let fate plan your fun by throwing darts at a map of your county (or of your state or country if you’re up for a longer excursion) and wherever they come closest to is your road trip to remember. If you happen to be near the World’s Largest Frying Pan or Biggest Ball of Twine, Roadside America will make sure you don’t miss it. Don’t worry too much about taking an exact route—the goal here is the fun and stories you’ll gather along the way.
  3. Food truck day. If you’re tired of the same old restaurants or just want to cut back a bit on spending while you explore your town or city, switch things up and chase down some delicious food trucks! Have each friend pick a different truck for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and of course—snacks and treats! Or have each friend pick a different food truck each week, and plan to meet for lunch throughout the month. It’s amazing what new and different things you can experience right in your own city.
  4. Go on a hike and pack your own trail mix. Hiking doesn’t have to be an all-day trek through the wilderness. Visit your local trails or your state park and relish the fresh air as you catch up,unplug, and drink in nature’s scenic beauty. Have each friend bring a batch of homemade trail   mix to share during your outing.
  5. Try a completely new activity without spending a lot. Always wanted to try yoga? Never learned to swim? How about learning how to paint? It’s always refreshing to try something new with friends,  and with helpful sites like Groupon and Living Social, you’ll find great deals and discounts to boot.
  6. Volunteer for a good cause. There’s no better feeling than helping someone else, so gather your friends and do something for the greater good. You can help build homes with Habitat for Humanity, volunteer at a local animal shelter, rock babies at your hospital, or even band together and help a sick or elderly neighbor by mowing, weeding, and beautifying their yard. There’s no greater joy to be had than sharing a simple act of kindness.

 

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Friendship Printable

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We love celebrating friendship! It’s so important to keep in touch with friends and remind them how grateful we are to have them in our lives. So we wanted to offer this beautiful, printable friendship quote to all of you – our friends! It’s perfect for framing and sending to a friend as a token of just how special their friendship is! Enjoy!

Click here to download, print, and frame.

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Top 10 Ways to Surprise & Delight your Best Friend (FREE desktop background)

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Your closest and dearest friend(s) will always have a special place in your heart. And you in hers. You know each other inside and out. You’ve gone through good times and bad. You’ve been there for each other through thick and thin. And there’s no one else you’d rather call your best friend.

But times change—and life happens. You don’t get to see each other as often as you once did. You don’t keep in touch as often as you’d like. And you suddenly somehow feel that an occasional phone call just isn’t enough.

You’d like to change that now. You’d like to reach out to her in some very special way and surprise her with an act of appreciation for your deep friendship. Any ideas of how you’re going to do that?

Don’t give it another thought. Blue Mountain has done all the work for you and compiled a list of 10 fun and exciting ways to reconnect with your BFF. Pick one (or more!) and delight her today!

MAKE A SCRAPBOOK OR VIDEO
Compile a scrapbook or PowerPoint slideshow of the many pictures you have of you and your best friend together. If doing a video, add songs in the background that have a special meaning to you both. Don’t forget to add a personal message that will touch her heart. This will truly become a keepsake.

RECREATE PAST MEMORIES
What did you use to like to do together? Ride bikes? Go bowling? Shop at the mall? Visit an amusement park? Have sleepovers? Recreate that exact kind of day with little notes that will remind her of your past shared memories and inside jokes.

HAVE DINNER TOGETHER
Visit a restaurant in a city that neither of you have ever been to before. Make reservations under your nicknames. Order for each other. Giggle the night away.

WATCH AN OLD SHOW
Rent an old movie that was a favorite of both of yours and laugh/cry through it together. Choose either a popular TV series (like “Leave it to Beaver,” “Father Knows Best,” or “I Love Lucy”) or a classic film (like “Gone with the Wind,” “Casablanca,” or “Titanic”). If a good chick flick about female friendship is more to your liking, choose “Thelma and Louise,” “Beaches,” or “Steel Magnolias.” And don’t forget the popcorn!

MAKE A RETRO DINNER
Cook dinner for your best friend that would be something you both loved as kids. Think retro. Your menu could include such all-time favorites as macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup, salisbury steak or meatloaf with mashed potatoes and peas, chicken à la king, tuna casserole, TV dinners, deviled eggs, spinach dip in a hollowed-out bread bowl, cheese spread in a can with a nozzle plus crackers, baked Alaska, a gelatin mold, or S’mores.

SEND FLOWERS
It doesn’t matter if it’s a magnificent bouquet or a simple arrangement. The important thing is that your friend’s day is made that much brighter when she receives those beautiful flowers from you. You might also want to accompany them with an eCard that expresses your sentiments. For a helpful guide, here is what some flowers signify:

  • Amaryllis – splendid beauty
  • Birds of Paradise – joyfulness
  • Black-Eyed Susan – encouragement
  • Blue Violet – faithfulness
  • Carnation – pride and beauty
  • Chrysanthemum – cheerfulness in old age; fidelity
  • Gladiolus – strength of character
  • Heather – admiration
  • Lily – majesty
  • Pink carnation – gratitude
  • Yellow rose – friendship
  • Zinnia – thoughts of friends

SHARE A SPA DAY
Book an afternoon (or even a full day!) of pampering at the spa for the two of you. Choose from the variety of services offered—from manicures and pedicures, to facials, massages, and body treatments. Throw in a shampoo/style, makeup application, or lunch, too, if available. Then get ready to enjoy a truly restful and relaxing time together.

ENJOY AN OUTDOOR ACTIVITY
Think outside the box on this one. Maybe plant a garden together. Or go hiking (and enjoy a picnic lunch afterwards). Or play in a playground. Or fly kites. Or rollerblade. Or go kayaking. Or run a race. Or…frankly, the world is your oyster.

ATTEND A COOKING CLASS
There’s nothing that brings good friends together quite like food. Choose a class that will introduce a cuisine or technique that’s new to both of you. Then maybe schedule another evening to recreate at home what you learned in class. Don’t forget the wine! Bon appétit!

GET AWAY
Schedule a getaway weekend just for the two of you. It can be as exotic (a trip to Paris!) or as modest (tenting in a national park) as you’d like or can afford. The important thing is that you enjoy your time together and get a chance to catch up on old times!

And now we’d like to surprise and delight YOU, our dear reader, with a free desktop background featuring one of our most popular friendship quotes. To set as your desktop background, simply click the image, and when the new window appears, right click and choose “set as background.”

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Letter From the Editor – Celebrating Friendship!

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Hello, Blue Mountain Friends,

Is it really August already?!  The long lazy days of summer we enjoyed as children seem to go by so quickly now.  But there are still lots of delightful things to appreciate in August—the days are warm and sunny, the robins are still singing and the calla lilies are in bloom.  August also dawns with two great days to celebrate—National Girlfriends Day on the first, and Friendship Day on the third.

What would we do without our friends?  We go to them with the questions that can’t be Googled.  They drop everything if we’re in trouble.  They laugh with us, cry with us, encourage us and remind us of who we are, when we forget.  They are kindred spirits who get us when it seems like no one else understands. Just the thought of them can make us smile.

It’s said that a friend is one of the greatest things we can have and one of the best things we can be.   Here at Blue Mountain we’ve been pondering how we can all be better friends and nurture these important relationships.  So we’ve created new Friendship eCards to thank our friends for the many ways they enhance our lives, let them know how special they are to us and remind them that we’re here for them, too. Since every friendship is unique, we have a range of cards featuring beautiful photography, whimsical artwork and beautiful hand-lettered designs.  The messaging ranges from light and funny to warm and heartfelt.  Later this month we’ll be introducing fun new birthday cards and talking cards for friends, and all of our blogs this month have a beautiful friendship theme.  Why not Brighten Someone’s Day today and celebrate your friends with a Friendship eCard?

IMG_6574_FINAL_Crop Caroline
Caroline Leech, Senior Editor

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