With the weather starting to warm up in May, it finally feels like summer isn’t too far away. Here are some ideas for making the most of your May weekends.
Things to Do at the Weekend During May
We’re in the final days of April and I’m SO ready for warmer weather! The well-known saying of “Never cast a clout till May be out” is always worth remembering in Scotland though! Roughly translated as ‘don’t put away your winter clothes till May’s over’, it tends to come true most years.
Unpredictable weather aside, it’s definitely time to spend longer outdoors, enjoy those May Bank Holiday weekends, eat alfresco, and soak up the sun whenever it appears.
Ideas for a May Weekend
If you’re looking for inspiration, here are some simple ideas for things you could do at the weekends in May.
Enjoy May’s Bank Holiday Weekends
Ah May, with its double helping of long weekends (if you’re in the UK) which always signals that summer is on the way. Make sure you enjoy your time off, relax, maybe catch up with some loved ones, and maximise your long weekend. How about trying to make it a hygge weekend, or enjoy a perfect Sunday morning?
Enjoy Getting Out and About Again
Restrictions are easing and we’re able to start enjoying safely getting out and about again. So get out there and do something to make the most of your renewed freedom. It doesn’t have to be anything special: last weekend we went to pitch & putt and ate ice cream in the sun. It was so simple but so enjoyable purely because it felt normal!
Go on a Bike Ride
If you’re a fair-weather cyclist like me, it’s time to dust off your bike, pump up those tires, and head out now that there’s less chance of getting covered in mud. If you don’t own a bike, use your city’s cycle hire scheme to get out for a ride in the sun. And – if your kids are outgrowing their bikes at a rate of knots, I also just heard about The Bike Club which offers a subscription-based service to hire great quality, lightweight kids bikes around the UK – and you just swap them for bigger ones as the kids grow (again!) Such a good idea.
Grow Some Flowers or Salads
With the chance of frost long gone and the longer hours of sunshine, try planting some flowers. You can grow sunflower seeds outdoors now, or try planting a bed or container of wildflower seeds to attract bees to the garden. If you have a greenhouse, you can plant tomato plants this month or you can grow salad leaves outdoors in beds or containers.
Overhaul Your Lunch Hour
One of the things many of us missed in lockdown was the option to pop out and get something more exciting for lunch than the sandwich you brought from home (and no longer want). If you’re now working from home regularly, lunches can be pretty monotonous. Give your lunch a fresh overhaul for spring with The 5-Minute Salad Lunchbox – a fantastic book which is packed with ideas for fresh, zesty salads that can be made in minutes. Try the chicken and peach bulgur salad with maple dressing or the satay chopped salad – soooo good!
Try getting out of the house to eat your WFH lunch regularly too – whether it’s just in the garden, the park, by the canal, or any green space where you’re physically removed from screens and headsets.
Go Blossom Spotting
Blossom season is in full swing and you’ll see white and pink blossom everywhere this month. I’m a big fan of The Alnwick Garden in Northumberland and try to see the cherry blossom there each spring. Travel restrictions have put paid to that this year but I’ve been following their blossom livestream which is really lovely.
If you’re a real blossom lover, also check out the National Trust’s brilliant Blossom Watch page, which is full of resources dedicated to blossom, including a 5-minute podcast about the calming effects of blossom. (The podcast is pretty calming too!)
Fire Up The Barbecue
May is often the real start of barbecue season – although you might have snuck in a couple in April! If you’re uncovering the barbecue for the first time this season, make sure you give it a good clean with a decent heavy-duty grill brush and some proper grease-busting barbecue cleaner.
Have an Evening Around the Fire Pit or Chimenea
The longer evenings are ideal for enjoying your garden, and they’re made even better with a fire pit or chimenea. Snuggle up and keep cosy with some blankets: these fluffy double-sided ones are brilliant – super soft and really cosy.
Add a chocolatey treat to your barbecue or firepit session by making s’mores, the all-American campfire classic of melted marshmallows with chocolate in a biscuit sandwich. Most of the recipes you’ll find online will tend to contain Graham crackers which don’t exist in the UK, so here’s How to Make S’mores in the UK.
Get a Long Awaited DIY Project Done
Holiday weekends are the perfect time for a spot of DIY. If your house is looking a bit too well-loved (because you and your family have been in it non-stop for a year!), then now’s the time to do an overdue project. Decorate a room, repaint some woodwork, go outside and paint your fence or gates, and clear out the garage. Or just rearrange the furniture in a room and be amazed at the difference it makes.
Turn Your Outdoor Space Into An Extra Room
Gardens have really earned their keep during the pandemic, and they’ll need to keep doing that this year too. If you’ve got lots of outside space, use it to the full and set up areas for eating, chatting, reading , relaxing etc. If you have one patio/terrace/balcony space, make it as flexible as possible so you can easily change it from a relaxing space into an eating area with zero hassle. Use storage boxes for cushions that double as side tables like this Keter one. I’ve also recently added loads of solar lights to my patio and it’s such a cheery space now.
Try Some Weekend Baking
Whip up a weekend treat that you’ll hopefully be able to enjoy outside in the sun. How about an easy carrot cake, some delicious breakfast muffins, or make these fruity flapjacks to pack up and take on a picnic.
And Some Seasonal Cooking
If you’re looking for some spring cooking inspiration, you can’t go wrong with Greenfeast by Nigel Slater. It’s part of a pair of seasonal plant-based cookbooks and this is the Spring/Summer edition. Divided up into recipes that you can make in a bowl, in the oven, on the hob, on a plate etc, it’s full of lovely recipes and Nigel’s calm, soothing writing.
Enjoy Some Reading (hopefully in your spruced up outside space!)
Here are some book recommendations for this month:
The Salt Path by Raynor Winn. If you haven’t read this bestselling memoir / travel journal yet then I’d heartily recommend it.
Under The Stars: A Journey Into Light by Matt Gaw. A fascinating exploration of what we’re missing because of the artificial glow of electric light in the night sky.
For the kids:
The Gruffalo Spring and Summer Nature Trail. A great seasonal sticker and activity books for Gruffalo fans!
I hope this post has given you some ideas for things you could do on at the weekends this May. If you have any favourite May activities, let me know in the comments!