Excessive heat can drain the body of energy, and staying hydrated is of the utmost importance. With so much heat in the West and excessive dew points in the Midwest, it’s important to pay attention to your body and how you are feeling; headaches are just one of the common problems when you’ve had too much time outdoors. So with the summer heat currently in full swing… one should be finding activities indoors in place of outdoors. Not only will you feel better, but playing it safe from heat exhaustion or other ailments will only benefit your well-being; at least until there is a break in the weather.

So what kind of indoor activities might spark your interest? Thinking about this gave me several ideas over this past weekend. I’ll begin with card games. Americans began making their own playing cards as early as 1800 and is still one of the best forms of entertainment for all ages. Getting together for a card game is an excellent way to pass time. If you are going solo these days and would like to play, you may do so online. There is a website I found with multiple games to play for your enjoyment, with or without other players. It can be found at www.pogo.com/card-games ; also, they offer board games. One of my favorites is Scrabble, though I’m not the best at it, it’s excellent for the mind… consider it brain exercise. You can play for free online, or you can purchase an interactive game. Interactive gaming can be bought on a disc and played on your computer, Wii, X-Box, PlayStation or by using apps you can download. There are a variety of ways to play board games, but I’m still old fashioned, as I like the actual boards to play on.

Puzzles may seem a bit boring to some people, but if you purchase a theme you like, puzzles are a great way to pass time. The pogo website offers so many ideas, it’s simply amazing; from classic games to brain games, individual to family style, and single player to multiplayer… it’s all there. Bingo is another game that’s a favorite by many, and ‘Yes’ they offer it online there as well, in the event you cannot drive somewhere to play in person.

If gaming isn’t a favorite, there’s always book clubs you can join. Reading a book and discussing thoughts or feelings with others is another way to keep busy indoors. The Library is one of my favorite places to be, as it offers information on just about anything, and it’s usually peaceful. Museums are another place to keep busy. In fact, some museums will post other activities which are somewhat related, or not. If you are looking to be more physically active then you should check out the recreation centers, VW Posts or senior centers for a list. You may find ping pong, swimming or workshops of some sort offered at these places.

Recently I attended a ‘Paintnite’ with some friends. There is a website for this that one can sign up for. It’s a wonderful way to meet new people, make friends and spend time learning to work with watercolors… all at the same time. I enjoyed it immensely. Whatever your pleasure, there is something for everyone to enjoy indoors; you just have to put your thinking cap on. Be smart this summer and don’t spend too much time in the heat, stay hydrated and keep the mind healthy.

Make your week count.