Summer Bucket List (+ a printable template for you!)

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I just love this time of year, friends! Let’s see if you resonate with this, too. I really like the sense of anticipation you get riiiight before summer officially hits. To be honest, sometimes I think I get just as much of a kick out of the anticipation of summer adventures as summer itself! Isn’t that funny? Do you get filled with this sense of anticipation as the weather warms, too? It’s almost like the feeling you’d get as a kid in the springtime, knowing that school would be out soon and summer was right around the corner. I think there’s still a bit of that residual excitement in all of us! There’s just something special about knowing there are adventures waiting for you!

There’s a cool touch to the mornings here in Minnesota…and the days are getting nice and warm! Sophie and I are going on walks pretty much daily! The sun is shining stronger, and the days are definitely longer. I’m finding such joy in watching the sky turn to dusk outside after I put Sophie down for bed…and the bright morning light certainly makes early mornings a lot more enjoyable. There’s that certain feel to the air – a little muggy sometimes in the afternoon, but it always smells like grass and dirt now, and it brings with it a promise of more outdoor and warm weather adventures ahead.

That’s when you know it’s time to put together your summer bucket list!! 🙂

I used to make a summer bucket list when I was a kid. I’d use Microsoft Word – anyone remember WordArt? – and use the fun fonts to type out all kinds of summer adventures I was looking forward to. Growing up, it was things like going to our favorite ice cream shop in a lakeside town and walking down by the docks…or going to parks or beaches, or making it a point to go on a bike ride. When I was in college, I was a summer nanny, and that gave me a great excuse to get outside more! I’d often take the kids on walks or bike rides to local parks, or we’d do chalk outside, go to the neighborhood pool, eat popsicles on the deck…the list goes on and on. It was fun and easy to get outside or go on new outings, simply because the kids and I had so many ideas about what we wanted to do, they loved playing outside, and it broke up any monotony of being indoors all day.

Last summer, I was a bit more low-key, besides being in my sister-in-law’s wedding in July and going on our babymoon trip in August. It’s just harder to want to do a ton of outings when you’re getting towards the end of your pregnancy and you’re feeling more big and tired by the day, haha!

But now that I’m in this stage of life, I’m finding the need to be intentional about summer adventures again! I don’t want summer to just pass us by. Sophie is becoming more interested and aware of  things around her every single day, and I know that over the course of the summer, she’ll keep blossoming and getting more out of any outings we do! 🙂

I’ve been trying to brainstorm things we can do – either as a family of three, or, if Bjorn’s busy, things that Sophie and I can do together or with friends!

Here’s what I have so far:

Our Summer Bucket List

Go to the pool. There’s one near us, and then there’s a larger waterpark type of pool in another nearby town. I’m excited for Sophie to get to splash around. She’s fascinated by water now days!

Keep up with our library program. We signed Sophie up for the “1,000 Books Before Kindergarten” program. She’s well on her way, and it’s just so much fun! I want to walk to the library with her more often this summer and check out books to read together. (We did this when I was a kid and library days always made for some special memories!) Reading over the summer is hugely important for older kids, too, especially when they are out of school for the summer.

Get ice cream together. You can’t have summer without ice cream! This summer, we’ll have to get cones or other treats at McDonalds or Dairy Queen! Obviously, Sophie won’t have the ice cream, but it still would make for a fun family date.

Eat at the drive-in style restaurant in town. They have amazing burgers and root beer floats!

Hang out at various lakes in the area. Last summer, we did a lot of rafting out on the lakes (SO much fun!) but I’m not sure how much rafting I’ll be able to do with Sophie along for the ride this year. However, even sitting by a lake in the summertime is so peaceful!

Go to the playground. We have a lovely park here in our neighborhood, and I can’t wait to see Sophie try a playground swing for the first time!

Grill out. Now, in Minnesota, people are basically okay with grilling out in all kinds of weather, haha…but Bjorn and I don’t usually grill out in the winter. I’m looking forward to some burgers and brats this summer!

Make artwork together. I’d love to whip up a batch of edible finger paint and let Sophie create a fun piece of art!

Play with toys outside on a blanket. See a theme here? We just have to get outdoors!

Swing on the “front porch swing.” Although we don’t have a front porch, Bjorn and I love our stand-alone swing. He got it for me at Hy-Vee, of all places, for a great deal one summer! We used to set it up in our backyard, but we tried it in our front yard last summer and we really grew to love it because it lends itself to a front porch feel. 🙂

Have a picnic. It’s really not that hard. I just need to decide to do it! We can pull together a simple meal someday, pack it up, and sit with Sophie to eat outside at a local park!

Go on walks as much as possible! My goal is to get as much use out of our jogging stroller as I can! Whether it’s walks in our town, or walks along other trails and parks, it’s good for me and it’s great for Sophie, too!

Play with bubbles! 

Have a fire in the fire pit, complete with s’mores!

Garden. Personally, I am not great at gardening, but I’d sure like to at least try to grow some squash this year. (I love spaghetti squash so much, but it can be pricey at the store!) We’ll see if it ends up happening!

Go on some family dates! I’m looking forward to going out to supper as a family of three!

Go to the zoo. love zoos. Sophie is really interested in fish and in birds right now, so I know she’d be fascinated by all the creatures there.

Go to a children’s museum. There’s a children’s museum not too far away from us, and I think it’d make a fun playdate with friends! It’d probably be more fun for kids older than Sophie, since this summer she won’t yet be a year old…but I don’t think you can start them too young when it comes to looking at interesting things and going on interesting outings!

Those are some of the main items I can come up with right now. A baby’s first summer is a special thing, and I look forward to making some great memories together. 

Printable Summer Bucket List Template

I’ve created a template just for you! Now you can record your own summer bucket list! Hang it on the fridge, keep it in the car…whatever helps you remember which special outings to do and memories to create this summer! Enjoy!

Get your own summer bucket list to print!

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