Summer at our house is that crazy balance between scheduled time and free-for-all time. We make a daily trek to the pool for swim team and lessons and have our library day each week. The rest of the hours are filled with spontaneous chaos. I'm hoping this summer bucket list will help guide our choices when we have a long, hot afternoon to fill.
- Make garden stepping stones. Grandparents on both sides both have a set of these, but we never made our own. Plus Kid #3 needs to join the path.
- Go on hikes. We live seconds from great trails. No excuses here. Find a trail or activity near you at NatureRocks.org
- Enjoy Nature. This same site now has great indoor and backyard activities focused on enjoying the world around us.
- Go Family Camping. In the days BK (Before Kids), I spent the summers going on 3-4 day backpacking tours. Now we're going to master the art of Car Camping. Stay tuned for more posts this month on Camping & Food & Family & Tech. And, if you've got this on your list, you may want to make a reservation. Putting money down and having a date almost guarantees that camping happens.
- Star Gaze. Since my dad shared this awesome, extraterrestrial app, Star Walk, my kids want to know everything about the sky. We'll test it out in real life and stay up really, really, really late.
- Float Sticks. Spring runoff fills the drain gutters at a local public cemetery. We'll take the cousins and let each kid pick a colored jumbo popsicle stick. Then, the races begin!
- Go to the Beach. Nothing beats collecting shells and building sand castles with cousins. We're planning to visit Papa and Susu again this summer as we visit the North Carolina coast. Haven't been to NC? The soft white sand and warm water are better than the Bahamas! Well, almost.
- Harvest spring garden joy. Assuming we keep up on the weeding and watering, we should be harvesting spring peas by July. We're hoping that giving each person a row to tend will teach ownership? Here's hoping anyway.
- Learning a new chore. With kids ages 7, 5 and 22 m, I'm ready to have more help around the house. They've agreed to take on laundry, dish management and toy pick up.
- Sprinkler Day. An activity most likely to coincide with Big Sister's birthday. Busting out all the backyard water gear invented!
- Fireworks & Holidays. Get ourselves to an actual fireworks display with music and big bangs.
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- Summer Camp. Santa brought my oldest son a coupon for Acting Camp. For an entire week in August, he'll get to practice his old man walk, his silly faces and his super powers. Can't wait for the show at the end! Check out your local rec center for inexpensive summer kids camps.
- Try New Things. On our random list - learn sign language, make pottery, arrange flowers, soar up high (my toddler's idea), play new guitar chords and eat spicy sushi.
- Back-To-School Movie Night. We will actually host a back yard movie night for the neighbors. It's going to happen this year.
Bonus - Make Stuff
- Bead Creations
- Blanket Forts
- Wooden Airplanes - Planning on visiting our local home improvement store for the kid workshops.
- Backyard Sandbox - Like this, I hope.
- Popsicles - We may have to try every one of these recipes and it may require a purchase of a Zoku Quick Pop Maker. My daughter is already planning her popsicle stand to sell these bad boys.
Make Time For
- Reading, maybe some Math and French film watching. We can't let our brains rot.
- Picture Taking
- Swimming (Me! Not just watching the kids swim)
The days in May have just as many hours of daylight as mid-August, so we're hoping to get a jump start on our list.
If you don't catch us in the backyard with the movie playing, we probably made it to our campsite. Otherwise, I'll be at the pool, hoping to stop the farmer's tan before it starts and dreaming of how to do as little cooking as possible.
Other Summer Bucket Lists...