Summer Bucket Lists Gave Me The Best Memories With My Kids And Why You Should Do Them

Summer Bucket Lists Gave Me The Best Memories With My Kids And Why You Should Do Them

Is there really anything better than summer? Even when you’re an adult and don’t get summers off, summer is still the best because it means no stress of school, no homework, free(ish) schedules, trips to the beach, and sun-kissed legs (because, let’s face it, these pasty white legs are starting to terrify people).

It’s been our tradition as long as my kids were old enough to know what summer is to make summer bucket lists that highlight every last fabulous moment of what summer is all about so we can make sure to squeeze them all in before, next thing you know it, it’s Memorial Day Weekend and I’m tackling the one other mom who waited until the last minute to go school supply shopping for the last freaking book cover.

My kids love doing these even though they’re curmodgeon-y teens now. And I love doing them, even though I’m a curmodgeon-y 30-something now. So, if our curmodgeon-y selves can love them, then so can your family.


Here’s one of the first we actually bothered to take a photo of back in 2011.

Looking at this photo makes me all teary-eyed…

(And forgive the photo quality – iphone cameras have come quite a long way since 2011!)

That was the summer we saw the last Harry Potter movie open in theaters at midnight on opening night!


We saw Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer movie at the drive-in. My kids made $11 with their lemonade stand that cost me $28 in supplies. We went to Disney!


And spent every free second we found at the beach.

We painted rocks that we collected at the beach and river.

We went to unlimited barbeques and pool parties.

We watched the Phillies lose and ate way too many hot dogs.


We camped in our own backyard and lit sparklers and made s’mores.


We went tubing on the lake

We went head to head in game after game of skee ball.

We visited weird amusement parks (Shout out to Storybook Land and all its creepiness!)


And made time to ride bikes at sunset.

I also got to visit Jess on set while filming the first Ted in Boston.



It was everything I will always remember about summer and  about my family unit before they’re all grown and have families of their own. And I know we wouldn’t have made it such an amazing summer if we hadn’t been trying to live up to the bucket list. So, do it. And don’t worry about money. All that is required is that you fill it up with moments that you spend and share together.

You’ll never regret it.

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