Toronto is heating up: this past Thursday, temperatures rose to an almost record-breaking high of 38 degrees Celsius. If you’re like me and have few daytime summer commitments, the prospect of melting in the noontime sun might have you tempted to stay inside. Here are some romantic ways to keep the indoors feeling as dreamy as the out.

Finish a Book

That’s right, I didn’t say read. Often times when stuck inside, the last thing we want to do is pick something off the shelf and ‘dig in’. We’re too distracted by the fact that it’s our last resort. But there are definitely a few titles on your bookshelf you skimmed or began and never quite got engrossed in. Those tend to be better for summer days indoors, when it feels like finally accomplishing an already set goal instead of starting from scratch with a whole new one.

DIY Summerlicious

Trying out a new recipe is always fun—but why not try three? With all of the tantalizing outdoor food festivals coming up, this may be your last chance to have your family or friends come over for a full-on dinner party. Challenge yourself to create a three-course menu of new dishes that may well become part of your culinary repertoire. Plus, cooking gets us out of that ‘constantly eating’ slump we often fall into when lounging around at home.

Make a Summer Playlist

To plan for those sunny days that don’t swaddle you in sweltering temperatures, browse your iTunes for a hundred songs that you dream of listening to while tanning on the cottage docks, strutting down King Street West or peeking out from underneath a café parasol.

Clean a room

Not the whole house. That can feel like a daunting task and the initial high we get from filling up that first packing box with old tchotchkes often fades as we realize we’re going to need a lot more boxes to finish the chore. Pick one room, even an area of a room, in need of serious TLC and have a garbage bag at the ready.

Play Dress-Up

I know, I know. Kid stuff, right? But how many times have you been getting ready to go out and realized you have no idea which bottoms to pair with the top you’ve chosen? As long as the AC in the house is cranked, you might as well get your mannequin on and figure out your favourite future outfits!

Wine

No explanation needed.

P.S. All of these activities should come with a side of music. There’s nothing more deafening than looking out the window and practically hearing the heat closing in.

P.P.S. And after all this, if staying home still fails to please (personally, I go stir-crazy at some point), hit up your neighborhood coffee shop with a magazine. Or bring the laptop if it’s got free Wi-Fi, and wile away the hours looking up your next gastronomic challenge.

Disclaimer: I am no self-help guru. Many of my attempts to spend a fulfilling day indoors have indeed failed. See what works for you! Sometimes, the best option is to brave the muggy weather in favour of a fresh new tan and that sultry summer flush.

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