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Cool As Ice

A refreshing snack on a miserably hot day. Photo by Flickr user Auntie K.

A lot of the time, the beginning of the school year seems absolutely unbearable. No, not just because we have to adjust from our summer days of sleeping in until noon and frolicking on sandy shores to our daily routine of test-taking and homework-induced meltdowns. This time of year can be especially miserable because, for some reason, the sun decides to go overboard and beat down on us at 90 to 100 degrees. In September and October. What. The. Heck.

Maybe I’m a little hypersensitive to the heat because I live by the beach in my own little marine layer bubble of year-round partly cloudy skies and mild temps. But I’m sure most of you can agree that the irony of balmy summer weather kicking in when school starts is a wee bit cruel.

If you find yourself perspiring in your polo and always leaving your huge club sweatshirt at home, fear not; I’ve found a perfect solution. To ease the pain of disgustingly sweaty days at school, try making refreshing popsicles as an after-school snack. They’re healthier and tastier than your run-of-the-mill otter pop. Popsicles are also surprisingly easy to make—puree the ingredients in a blender, and put the mix in a paper or plastic cup if you don’t have a fancy popsicle mold. You’re also going to want to find some popsicle sticks. Then, you can get some homework done while you wait a few hours for the popsicles to freeze. Here are some flavor suggestions to get you started: (click the links for detailed recipes)

1.                  Orange-Banana Smoothie: Greek yogurt, orange juice, bananas, lime zest, and lime juice
2.                  Banana Blueberry Swirl: Bananas, yogurt, sugar, lemon juice, and fresh blueberries
3.                  Strawberry: Strawberries, sugar, water, and lemon juice
4.                  White Peach and Raspberry Swirl: Raspberries, sugar, peaches, and whole milk yogurt
5.                  Triple Berry: Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, sugar, and lemon juice
6.                  Chocolate Pudding: Chocolate pudding, Oreos, milk, and whipped cream
7.                  Kiwi: Kiwis, sugar, water, and lime juice