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Posted on July 04 2022, By: Nancy Greene

Summer in the south is not just a season, it is a way of life. Cookouts, pool days, lazy evenings on the porch and fireworks for every occasion. Summer represents a casual, restful season to play, travel and chill.  

While fall is my favorite holiday, summer is a close second. As a child it meant traveling; staying up all hours of the night; and constantly hanging out with my friends. As an adult, my goal is to make summertime stress free and amazing for Emma while taking in the sites, smells and tastes of this beloved season. 

I am truly a nostalgic southerner. I love seeing US flags flying on every porch; kids playing in the streets; and lighting sparklers on a hot July night. I love the summer feelings of patriotism and everyone showing off in their red, white and blue.  

What is my favorite thing to do in the summer? Cookouts!!!! There is nothing on this earth like a burger cooked on a charcoal grill. I know this is very controversial. Charcoal versus gas...but my friends, if you have not had a burger on a charcoal grill...now is the time. Do it now! It is a life changer!!! We are pretty traditional when it comes to grilling – hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken...but we do it often and it is so good. Also, as an appetizer on our cookout nights, grilled shrimp!!!! Just skewer some shrimp and marinate in olive oil, salt, pepper, granulated garlic and onion powder; then grill for about 2-3 minutes per side. They are perfect to enjoy with a glass or wine or a cold beer while sitting on the deck and waiting for your burgers to grill!  

Sides are everything for a good cookout. We like to serve baked beans (check out my recipe here); potato salad; chips; and deviled eggs. Also, like Mr. Jimmy Buffet said, “a big kosher pickle” is a must!! Do you like onions on your burgers? I like onions on EVERYTHING but sometimes raw onions can be a bit strong. PRO TIP - about an hour or two before you eat, slice a red onion and put them in water with some apple cider vinegar. Pop it in your fridge and they are perfect by burger time!!! 

You can't have summer without fireworks. It doesn’t get better than laying on a blanket on a humid summer night and watching a firework show. One of my favorite firework memories was when we lived in Myrtle Beach. I was 5 months pregnant with Emma. Rob and I went to watch Fourth of July fireworks with our neighbors. As the firework show started so did heat lightning in the distance. The fireworks and lightning danced in the sky the entire time. After the show, as we were driving home, the heat lightning turned into the most amazing summer thunderstorm (which in my world, is a gift). It was the perfect summer night. 

So, friends, that wraps up my thoughts on what makes summer great. My wish to y’all is to have an amazing summer and I hope that you are able to find some time to sit back with family and friends and soak up this most fabulous season! 


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