After the crazypants winter we shared­—Yeah, that was snow in April­—you can probably understand how I might feel­ a teensy bit tentative when definitively proclaming above that Happy Days have returned. Sunny, Sandy, Summer Days? Is it true? I wonder. Really? At last? Can I print this?

After this weekend, I say yes.

As I sit down to write, it is the Wednesday evening following Memorial Day. It’s a bit chilly out—windy, too—a whimper from the perfection of this weekend. That didn't stop us from lighting a fire in the yard tonight, though, just so you know. It is summer, we say. We will it so.

Just yesterday, upon arriving back at work after the long weekend, my colleagues and I all found ourselves waxing poetic about the beautiful, relaxing three-day weekend, filled with bright skies and warm sun. That was Sunday we were talking about, actually. That was a perfect day by any measure: partly sunny, 82 degrees, with a soft breeze. We openly admitted we only cursorily mentioned the bizarre sunstorms on Saturday and the randomly wretched humidity of Monday evening. Who can blame us? We're all due to focus on, and enjoy, perfection.

This issue is one of my favorites. As we have for the past three years now, we surveyed you, our readers, to hear all about your Jersey summertime favorites and used your responses to fill out these pages. Whether you're into roller coasters or roller skates, you'll find day-trip inspiration galore, along with some tips and tricks from other parents for how to survive rainy-day boredom and when it's just too hot to bear it.

Summer, here we come! At last.

Judy Grover