A couple years ago we started a “summer bucket list” with our kids. It was pretty fun, a way to get some ideas going for the summer, letting the kids pick a slip of paper out of the bucket when we needed something to do. Of course there were always a few that I would have to throw back (I mean, you can’t go to Canada’s Wonderland every day). Others I would take out of the bucket when the kids went to bed, and hide away for a few days (Running around outside having a watergun fight every night gets old fast). All in all it’s been a fun little tradition for our family. I realized today that this year I didn’t even pull out the bucket because the adult child now thinks it’s lame, and the 16-year old made her own personal list.

But I miss that old bucket, full of it’s ideas scratched out on ragged-ripped pieces of construction paper. Written in coloured markers by sticky little hands.

So, I came up with a different idea.

The anti-bucket summer list of 2017. 

Just for me.

All the things I DON’T want to do this summer.

How’s that for goal setting?

Here it is, in all it’s cheerful glory:

  • I don’t want to wait until the last week of summer to have fun. There’s only so many beaches, patios and ice cream stores you can visit on August 31st. Stop procrastinating and live summer life.
  • I actually don’t want to go to Canada’s Wonderland. Every ride there makes my head hurt. It’s like paying for a migraine.
  • I’m not going put off spending time with people. Usually, “We have to get together sometime” means “See you in ten years.” I don’t want to have any regrets with the people I love.
  • I’m not obsessing about a clean house. I have all frozen winter to worry about that. For now, grass is welcome on the floors.
  • I don’t want my flowers to die. I won’t be a lazy gardener.
  • I won’t be so hard on myself. I can wear a tank top. I can wear shorts. The earth will still rotate, my camera will not shatter.
  • I’m not going to listen to the people who don’t want to eat dinner outside every night. Outside is our new kitchen.
  • I don’t want to be so testy about all the chip crumbs on the kitchen floor. (That will take some work but it’s doable, the culprit is only home for 4 months.)
  • I won’t be jealous of other people’s summer fun, great vacations, pools, yummy summer food truck treats and life overall. I’m not living a summer of “I wish I had…”
  • I’m not going to rush so much. Seriously. There’s more to be accomplished in thought out intentionality than frantic hysteria. I don’t want to miss life because I’m running through it like a madwoman.
  • I’m not going to feel bad for feeding my creative soul. If I need to pull over and take a picture of a sunset, or pick wildflowers from the ditch, or talk daily about all the fruit stands on the side of the road, and the pick-your-own-fruit farms and lush green vineyards – then I will. No more stifling things that make my heart stir. No more feeling bad for finding inspiration in old barns and strawberry fields.

It’s actually pretty exciting.

All the things that I’m not going to do this summer.

Maybe knowing what you don’t want, helps you accomplish what you do.

Or maybe you’re just sad because your kids don’t want a fun bucket anymore.

Either way, the pressure is off.

I’m ready to live the rest of this summer in all it’s anti-bucket list glory.

Anything you don’t want to do this summer?