Every summer begins the same, we have aspirations of greatness, but somehow it ends with much less grandeur than we planned. We’ve all been there. We talk about things we want to do, places we want to go, and people we want to connect with only to find ourselves two months down the road, one week before school begins, and no greatness achieved. All of that time is now gone, and you missed out on all sorts of family fun.
Trust me, I know. I’ve been there, too. But, I’ve discovered two secrets to creating your best summer ever, and the amazing part is you and your family will never forget the special time you spent together!
Best Summer Ever Bucket List
If you want to have your best summer ever, you need to begin by creating a bucket list. A bucket list is simply a list of things you hope to accomplish before the end of your life. So, it stands to reason that your “best summer ever” bucket list will include all of the things you and your family hope to accomplish before the end of the summer.
The first time we created a summer bucket list was amazing! We discussed all the things we wanted to do as a family before school started back, and created a list. We added anything and everything from catching lightning bugs to going to Florida on vacation. Once we grouped similar items together, our list contained 10 master items, and we accomplished 9 of the 10 that summer!
The list helped us be intentional about our family time, and I don’t regret it for a second. We’d been talking about doing several items on the list for years, but for whatever reason, we never actually got around to doing them. However, that year we finally did, and we had our best summer ever!
Creating Your “Best Summer Ever” Bucket List
Take an hour with your family, and simply brainstorm. Think about all of things y’all have been wanting to do, and start writing those things down. This doesn’t have to be a Word document, or a PowerPoint presentation! Simply write the ideas down on a sheet of notebook paper.
Allow everyone to share ideas, and be open to all suggestions. At first, it may be hard to come up with things to do, but as you start talking, you’ll find the thoughts will flow freely. You’ll probably be surprised at what all you can come up with!
Best Summer Ever Schedule
I know. This is the last thing you thought you’d need to consider when creating a memorable summer. You may be thinking, “I don’t want another schedule…I just want to be spontaneous!” I totally get it. One of the perks of summer is not being a slave to a schedule. However, if you don’t have any plan for getting the necessary items done, you won’t be able to be spontaneous.
Unfortunately, I’ve discovered that laundry doesn’t just wash, dry, and put itself away. (I know this firsthand because I’ve left it for indefinite periods of time hoping…waiting, but to no avail.) Thus, having a plan for when I needed to do laundry helped me. I also found that when I had no plan of what I was cooking for dinner, I would be scrambling around at the last minute slinging out whatever edible stuff I could find or running out for takeout. Neither of these was optimal.
So, having a general idea of what I wanted to cook, and when I would do things gave me more flexibility than waiting until I had no clothes to wear and no food to eat.
Creating Your Summer Schedule
The first thing you need to do is pull out the calendar, and add any appointments, practices, ballgames, recitals, etc. to June and July. This will help you define which days you need to be where. Then you can figure out when you want to do all of your “Best Summer EVER” bucket list items!
Remember, this doesn’t need to be a super-specific schedule down to 15 minute increments, but it should at the very least be broken down by day. It will help you become better at making promises you can keep. If you have a doctor appointment at 11 am on Wednesday, don’t tell your kids you’re going swimming at 10 am on Wednesday. Trust me, you’ll get the repercussions of telling your kids one thing then having to change plans, and nobody wants that!
Creating a bucket list is only fun when you have the opportunity to do the things on the list. So, do yourself a favor. Make a schedule that allows you to do as many of the items as possible in the time you have. The summer schedule won’t limit your spontaneity; it will actually give you the freedom to conquer your bucket list. Consider the old Nike commercial, and “Just Do It!” You’ll be glad you did because you and your family will have your absolute best summer ever.