In four short days the girls will hop of the bus and summer break will officially start! Boy are we ready! Well, I'm ready I think. It's always a bit of a transition with new routines and the girls learning that, even though they aren't in school, there are still rules. We've been fortunate because, so far, the girls love school. In fact, if you ask them if they are ready for school to be out for the summer, both of them will say, "No."
Every year, as a parent I feel like I am under so much pressure to make summer fun! As I look back on my childhood my summers were filled with bike rides, "helping" on the farm, family time, and just enjoying the break from school. In previous years I've seen other moms create a Summer Bucket List with their kids. I thought last summer that this would be something fun for us to create and a neat way to keep track of all the fun things we've done in the summer with a simple check mark. Well, let me tell you all it did was add to the stress of summer, so this year I am saying "no" to the summer bucket list!!!
That's right! No matter how much my kids beg, I'm not going to give in. I honestly don't even know if they will remember it. Our summers are so jam packed with fairs, weddings, swimming, time spent with friends and family that sometimes it's hard to squeeze anything else in.
While I tried to keep our bucket list realistic with things that were a given like: fair rides, showing animals, tractor pulls, steam engine show, swimming, fireworks, summer reading, etc. Some not-so realistic things made their way to the list like:
a trip to Great Wolf Lodge, (we already had a pretty major vacation in the works that we were keeping secret from the girls so there was no way this was going to be able to happen.)
Make home-made ice cream (Let's face it. Our lives are busy and sometimes the ice cream on sale at the grocery is just way too tempting!)
Camping (We don't have a camper. I won't camp without a camper. I know. I'm spoiled! We did make arrangements with our good friends who camp at the Steam Engine Show for B and Mel to spend the night in their camper, but B won't spend the night with anyone so that remained unchecked).
And to top it off, B even asked if we could put a trip to Disney World on our bucket list! Seriously, why are my kids' expectations so high.
At the end of the summer the Bucket List didn't end up being something I could look at and smile because we accomplished all of these fun things. Instead, it ended up being a little depressing to look at. Brad tells me I'm too hard on myself and I probably am. As I look back on last summer we might not have checked everything off our bucket list, but we did so many more fun things that weren't even on that list! We went to the zoo, we had a campfire (even though we didn't go camping), we didn't go to Great Wolf Lodge, but we went to a splash park;) ate endless amounts of Popsicles and store-bought ice cream...and so much more.
I'm not saying that I think bucket lists are a bad thing. I think they are great whether it be for summer or lifetime goals, however a summer bucket list just didn't "fit" for us.