3 Ways to Make the Most of Summer - Yoga Journal

3 Ways to Make the Most of Summer

Squaw Valley Ski Resort—high above Lake Tahoe in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains—is Wanderlust country. Home to the Festival’s 2009 debut, it’s a perfect stomping ground to recalibrate your inner compass. Use these tips from area locals to make the most of summer’s bounty.
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Mindfulness Hike

1. Make food scraps the star. 

Rather than tossing the parts of produce you don’t usually eat, put them to use in your favorite seasonal recipes, says Tiffany Swan, the executive chef at Squaw Valley–Alpine Meadows. “Use carrot tops instead of basil in your go-to pesto recipe, and watermelon rinds instead of cucumber in gazpacho,” she says. 

Here’s how to get the most out of summer corn: Place four bare cobs in a pot with 1-cup heavy cream and let sit at room temp for 2 hours. Remove the cobs; add 2 tbsp sugar and a pinch of salt to the cream, and beat with a hand mixer until medium-size peaks form. “The cobs release milky starches along with the sweet taste of summery corn to create a uniquely flavored and lower-sugar whipped cream,” says Swan.

See also How to Cook with Fresh Cherries

2. Use nature’s medicine. 

Spending time outside means greater odds of bites, stings, and scrapes. Luckily, there’s an herb for that: plantain (Plantago major). It’s naturally antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, and its crushed leaves can be applied directly to the skin for immediate relief from all kinds of irritations, says herbalist Shea Smith, director of the herb shop HAALo in nearby Nevada City, California. “Plantain grows like a weed across the country,” says Smith. “You can also buy the dried herb online and mix it with a little warm water to make a skin-soothing paste.”

See also Black Bean-and-Plantain Burritos

3. Take a mindful hike.

Leave your need to achieve behind the next time you hit a trail, says yoga teacher Shari Beard, who leads hikes at the Wanderlust Festival. “One of my favorite mantras for hiking is, ‘Nowhere to go, nothing to do, no one to be,’” she says. Use this as a walking meditation wherever you are as a way to calm your mind. “This mantra really helps you feel the spaciousness of meandering without a goal—even if just for a few moments,” says Beard. 

See also Gabrielle Bernstein’s Kundalini Meditation for Oneness