In my childhood years, I remember summers as long, hot and humid lazy days where boredom inspired creativity—building forts and creating clubhouses with friends, playing make-believe in the fields and jumping off hay bales, or laying in the grass to write a poem, draw a picture, read a book or just look up at the sky. I loved all that unstructured time to dream and be a kid.
I want to give that to Theo, too. Plenty of time to explore and play and just be, without doing. But at the same time, I want to create opportunities for special experiences in our summer, spending time with family, exploring the incredible beauty of the Pacific Northwest and taking advantage of all our region offers. Therefore, the summer bucket list.
We made a bucket list at the beginning of last summer, and I think we checked off 80% of the activities on the list. Writing our list down on paper and posting it to our kitchen bulletin board kept it front of mind and made us more thoughtful and intentional about how we spent our summer days, prompting us to plan more adventures. We’re doing the same this year, filled with quintessential summer fun, like swimming, biking, boating and horseback riding. But this time I want to record it here, both to share ideas with you and to keep a record for myself. Similar to bringing focus to my yearly intentions, writing down a bucket list helps the summer from just slipping away.
Here’s our bucket list for the summer of 2019.
Activities Close to Home
- Fruit picking. Theo loves spending time in Mimi’s garden (and with our little planter box) and he can’t wait to pick all the fruits and vegetables. This year, I want to go pick strawberries, raspberries and blackberries with him. As you can see from the photos, we checked this one off already this year! Even though is was a chilly day (thus, the puffy coats), we went strawberry picking at Home Farm in Blaine, and it was a wonderful experience. Not only do they have strawberries, but also raspberries and produce, from spinach to pumpkins, eggs to honey. They are not certified organic, but are a no spray farm. We will be back this summer.
- Swim Lessons for Theo. We got a summer membership to Bayside Swim Club this year, so expect to be spending a lot of time at the pool. And right now, we have Theo signed up for three sessions of swim lessons.
- Trail Ride. Theo loves horses. I was going to sign him up for the Mommy & Me Horse Camp at Lang’s Horse and Pony Farm, but none of the dates worked for this summer (but I’m going to remember it for next year). However, they also do trail rides, starting at age 3, so that will be a good activity for this summer.
- Ride bikes around Vancouver sea wall. Theo hasn’t been on a proper bike ride yet, and this summer seems like just the right time to take this iconic ride with him.
- Boating. Be in lake or ocean, we want to get out on a boat at least once this summer. Last summer, we actually thought about buying a boat, so we might try renting one and seeing how we like it.
- Camping trip with friends.This past spring, we rented an RV and went camping for a couple of nights with friends. It was our first camping experience as a family, and we had so much fun, we want to repeat it at least one more time this summer.
- Spend a few days in Seattle, with a visit to the Seattle Zoo and Experience Music Project. We are in Vancouver so often that we almost never drive south to Seattle. But this summer, we’d like to spend a few days in Seattle to visit friends and take Theo to the Zoo.
- Extended stay in Vancouver to explore and play. Most of our trips to Vancouver are just a one-day up-and-back, and we often don’t have a lot of time to explore all the city has to offer or spend enough time with family and friends. This summer, our cousins from Israel will be in Vancouver, so we’re planning to go and spend a week in the city to play, including a day at Playland.
Trips and Retreats
- Los Angeles for baby shower in June. My dear friend, McKenzie, is having her first baby in August, and we couldn’t be more excited for her and her husband, Evan. We’re travelling to Los Angeles for a long weekend where I’m hosting the shower. We hope to also squeeze in some beach time and some really good food. We went on this trip last weekend and had so much fun.
- Family retreat at North Cascade Institute in July. We’re headed to The North Cascades Institute for a sleepaway camp for families to hike, swim, boat and explore. We’re really looking forward to this family retreat together.
- Family trip to LEGOland, San Diego & Los Angeles in August. We’ve started to make a yearly tradition of a family trip with Uncle Oren and Theo’s cousins. Last summer we had a great trip to Lake Chelan. This year, we’re venturing to LEGOland, and probably the San Diego Zoo and Aquarium. We’re going to end the week back in Los Angeles where we hope to meet McKenzie and Evan’s new baby girl.
- Roadtrip to Oregon (Eugene, Portland and Oregon Coast). My aunt and uncle live in Eugene, and we’re overdue for a visit to them and my cousins. We’re going to do an extended road trip, spending time with family, stopping in Portland to eat and escaping for a few days to the Oregon Coast.
For Elie & Me
- Anniversary getaway for Elie and me. Our anniversary is August 24, and Elie and I usually try to do a local getaway around that date, since it’s the beautiful time in the Pacific Northwest. We’ve gone to Vancouver, Orcas Island and Lopez Island, but we don’t have anything planned yet for this year. Where should we go?
That’s our bucket list for this summer! Some travel, but with plenty of time for those lazy summer days. What’s on your bucket list this summer?