Mom Parenting Summer Bucket Lis

Calling it a summer

We did everything we could. 

I’m calling it though–time of death, 7:58 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 26. We’ve lost it. Summer is dead.

I live for the summer. It’s really my favorite time of year. And we have been busy this summer. Despite the heat, we were outside constantly and we have the tans to prove it. We camped eight times over the course of my kids time off from school, which tied up a lot of our time. And, like last summer, we worked through a summer bucket list.  (Don’t worry, as I “fall back” into blogging ((see what I did there)) I’ll outline some of my favorite activities and hopefully spur more ideas for another bucket list next year.)

I developed this for us last year as a way to stay busy and enjoy the summer. It’s easy to fall into a rut of “that’d be fun to do. We’ll do it later.” When a list is staring at me every time I open the fridge, it reminds me that I only have a limited amount of time to enjoy the only thing I really like about Michigan: Summer.

Our summer bucket list included a variety of tasks to keep us busy but also stay present in the summer.

Just like last year, the list was filled with completely obtainable things and some things that were a stretch. We accomplished a lot of them. Honestly, we did more of the items I figured we’d never have time for, and less of those that I thought would be easy.  But as the summer went on and the start of the school year ticked closed, I started to feel like a failure.

We didn’t ride our bikes to the park for the picnic. Why? Because our bikes were up on the rack on the camper. I could have gotten them down. Why didn’t I?

We didn’t have a backyard movie and bonfire. Why? Because the mosquitoes were horrible in our backyard and our bonfire pit was accidentally hit by the lawn mower and was beginning to fall apart. I could have fixed it, but honestly, I was just going to hit it again the next time I mowed the lawn.

I started to feel like I should have done more. I should have tried harder. I should have worked more to get items checked off of this list.

However, I recently realized that wasn’t the point. My kids were certainly not disappointed by the summer. They loved stepping outside of our house and our yard and doing new and fun things. I mean, who doesn’t like Shrinky Dink crafts!

I created this list because I didn’t want to have a day off and take it for granted. I wanted to make the most of it. We did. A lot of those things created some of our favorite summer memories. They loved VBS at another church, we learned making our own stamps in tough and we saw the sun rise over one Great Lake and set over another in one day.

I went into mourning over the summer weeks before the kids even went back to school. I felt like I was out of time. This was it. Next week it will be snowing and I’ll be inside and miserable. At least, that’s how it’s played out that way in my head.

I think I need a fall list. I need a way to make the most of the fall and find the ways to find JOY in the crisp air, falling leaves and the impending doom that is winter. (My therapist even suggested I make a winter bucket list as a way to keep myself moving in winter, but let’s not get crazy!)

Just because the kids are back to school and we get up every morning at the same time and take our packed lunches to go doesn’t mean that life is over. So I need to find fall activities. That’s my goal for the next week. I need to find ways to enjoy the fall! I’m thinking marching bands and caramel apples for one.

What do you think? What things do you like to do in the fall that I could add to my list?


2 thoughts on “Calling it a summer

  1. We love cooking shows in our house…been wanting to do a friendly “top chef” challenge, but think Finley might be too small for this just yet. Pick out fall ingredients (pumpkin or apple) and have the kids make a dessert (friendly competition against each other). You & Jacob are the judges.

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