Every summer I vow to make a summertime bucket list with my family.
Have you ever seen one of these? They’re a list of ideas to spark a summer full of enjoyment and learning.
They can be as ambitious as a trip abroad, as fun as a day at the zoo, or as simple as a campout in the backyard. Maybe there’s a series of books you would like to read as a family. You could try every flavor of ice cream at Baskin Robbins or Ben & Jerry’s. The goals’ budget and scope are less important than getting your family to set goals for the summer and accomplish each one.
I am hoping that this is the year we finally draw up our family list.
But I decided to take matters into my own hands and draw up a bucket list that only a mom could truly appreciate. Here is mine:
A Mother’s Summer Bucket List:
- Organize and color coordinate every family member’s closet, with children not only willingly helping but serenading me with traditional folk songs.
- Get my family to weed flower beds without having to raise my voice, bribe them with puppies, or threaten to ban all use of social media for all of eternity.
- Hear the kids say, “Mom, relax and read a book. We’ll put sunblock on each other. (Extra star if this happens and no sibling injuries occur.)
- Have 24 hours go by without saying, “For the love of all that is good and holy please don’t _______________ again.”
- Never again having to say, “No I don’t think it’s a good idea that you built a swimming pool in the front yard.”
- Go a whole week without having to hear one of my darlings say, “I’m bored,” “I don’t want to,” or “But he likes it.”
- Spend a rainy day at the movies. See the whole movie without anyone throwing up or needing 10 bathroom breaks. Extra star if we leave the theater with more popcorn in our stomachs than on the floor.
- Buy and/or make everybody’s Christmas gift. When Christmas time comes around, actually remember where I put the gifts.
- Make a whole dinner from the vegetables and herbs I grew in my garden. Extra star if anyone other than me eats it.
- When packing everyone’s suitcase for vacation, remember to pack underwear and socks.
- When we take the five-hour car trip to our vacation destination, ban all use of iPhones, iPads, Kindles, and other electronic devices so our children can actually spend quality time together bonding, just like I did when I was a kid.
- After 30 minutes of said “bonding,” pull the car over and get everyone’s electronic devices from the trunk and beg them to play a game, any game. Take two Extra Strength Excedrin, and remember there was a reason my parents always looked so tired after those “great” car trips of my youth.
- Each time I want to wish the summer away, remind myself that it goes by all too fast, and one day I will sorely miss every gray-hair-inducing minute of my kids’ childhood.
This post comes from the TODAY Parenting Team community, where all members are welcome to post and discuss parenting solutions. Learn more and join us! Because we're all in this together.