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The Summer Bucket List (Printable List + Tips)

We are down to the last few days of school over here which means it’s summer bucket list time over here for us!

In my poll for June blog topics, I received a few requests to share our summer bucket list. I’m still finalizing our 2023 list but wanted to share a few printables that you are welcome to use, along with a few tips I’ve learned over the years!

Also, if you are a working mom who struggles with summer, I wrote a post a few summers ago about my summer break working mom guilt. So if you’re looking for solidarity, I totally get it and hope those words make you feel seen and that a bucket list helps remind your kids that you are doing your best to make their summer special, even if it looks different from their friends’ summer.

Alright, let’s dive into summer…

Summer Bucket List Tips

Tip 1: Create a list with big and small things!

When making my bucket list, I like to plug in the big things first — vacations, extra special camps that the kids are looking forward to, travel to see family, events at the pool, holidays, birthdays, etc. Then I fill in the rest of the space with lots of little things I know the kids will look forward to throughout the summer. Here are a few examples from our previous bucket lists…

10 Easy Summer Bucket List Ideas
  1. watch fireworks
  2. water balloon fight
  3. shrimp boil for dinner
  4. spend an entire day at the pool
  5. ride bikes to the park
  6. Snooze Day
  7. bake a cake
  8. make popsicles
  9. picnic lunch
  10. host friends for a backyard BBQ

Tip 2: Revise your list throughout the summer!

I print my list several times throughout the summer as I am constantly updating it with new plans! This is an especially important reminder if you overextended yourself on the front end (ahem, 2021 for me).

If you’re halfway through summer and don’t think you’re going to make it to the water park, take it off the list! As vacations change or new activities pop up, revise your list so it stays exciting! No one needs a fridge reminder that the beach trip was canceled.

Last summer Thomas broke his arm, we canceled a big vacation we had been planning for over a year, our entire family got COVID at different times and our summer camp line-up had to be reconstructed several times to avoid water-based camps for Thomas. It was a LOT of pivoting, but we managed to regroup and update the plan with things to still look forward to.


Tip 3: Try a theme.

If a summer bucket list feels too overwhelming, start small with just a few items and/or pick a theme! Whatever you decide, make sure it feels like a good fit for your family, otherwise, the bucket list will feel more like a chore to tackle rather than fun things to look forward to!

Summer Bucket List Theme Ideas

  • Movie Bucket List: Create a list of movies you want to watch this summer as a family. Maybe you want to knock out the Harry Potter series, re-watch all your favorite 80s/90s childhood movies, or my personal favorite — watch all the Marvel movies in chronological order!
  • Ice Cream Bucket List: Fill your list with shops around town you love or want to try. And if you’re traveling to new places this summer, it would be fun to add an ice cream shop to visit while you’re there!
  • Outdoor Bucket List: A hike/picnic/bike trail bucket list would be SO fun.

Wishing you all a great summer filled with lots of new memories made together!

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