an easy to follow summer bucket list

Yesterday I got a text around 8 am from a friend asking if we were back and town and what we were up to that day.
That is not the norm.
Normally by 8:00 am on a weekday I am wearing something that I had to iron (or at least should have been ironed),  already finished my second cup (and last cup) of coffee and am wrapping up my first period class. There are no thoughts to entertaining myself or my own children…just praying that I remembered to sign my son’s homework folder and hoping I can find where I set my copies.

But this is summer so the rules change. I put down my book for a minute to read her text in my pjs while wondering if it was ok to let my daughter wear the same clothes she had worn the day before and also slept in. I texted back immediately that were free and that I was up for doing something. And by something I told her I meant sitting on her couch and drinking her coffee doing nothing. I didn’t shower despite the fact that I’d run the night before and hoped she’d appreciation the clean t-shirt and spritz of perfume I put on for her benefit and headed out the door. And even though this girl is usually so together and accessorized she looked every bit of June that I did when she let us in.  She brewed coffee and we caught up for a bit before I finally told her please for the love of all things holy to go and put on a bra. 
She complied and I’m pretty sure that is the most productive thing either of us did all day.

We got a new puppy in January…and he is the cutest most needy thing ever.  Well, besides my two biological children. And I figure I have a lot in common with this new member of our family. I do not get so excited that I pee when I meet someone new ( but almost) or eat every stuffed animal in the house ( I figure he is just helping us simplify and as long as he doesn’t chew up an American Girl doll or my nice running socks we are ok). However, when I am bored or have too much time on my hands….I often end up getting myself into trouble. (like the dog). I just turned 36 this week and you’d think that I would outgrow it…but not so much. So last week at the first hint of summer I took out one of my favorite composition notebooks and wrote down 10 things I wanted to do daily this summer to keep me out of trouble and make good use of my time.  I did this last year and it kept the laundry from piling up and me motivated. And it is such a good list. Things like pray, do 100 sit ups, learn something, laundry, give something away and have actual quality conversations with everyone in my family.  And I’ll keep that list around….but…

There are all these summer bucket lists that I keep seeing on facebook.  The kind that could make even Martha Stewart feel inadequate. I even had my kids write their own at dinner the other night. It involved a lot of swimming, pokemon and snowcones. (Done. Done. and Done). But I also have seen the how to give your kids a 70s summer floating around and I am not going to lie….I want both.

I want my kids to have new and amazing experiences and I want to clean out my closets, write lessons plans, figure out what I want to be when I grow up, eat dinner at the table every night, write a book, hang out with homeless people, lose 20 lbs, grow spiritually, make memories with my family, see everyone and everything.  And I did just apply to graduate school yesterday (ok, so maybe I was a teensy bit productive …but I swear I did not shower or put away so much as a single mismatched sock.) Some of those things will happen. Some won’t. And in August…no matter how many lists I write I will look at my calendar and say where did the summer go and why didn’t I do half the things I wanted to.  Maybe I should rethink the list.

So after my first shower in three days I decided to write my own modified bucket list:

1. Sleep past 8 am. Sounds easy, but after 10 months of waking up a 5 am this is a serious challenge.
2.  A  challenge that I should be able to meet by staying up past 10:30. On. A. School. Night.
3.   I teach highschool, but sometimes it feels like junior high.  Attempt to stay out of junior high.
4.   Have the women who work at the donut shop in my neighborhood….start asking if I want my regular.
5.   If you are what you eat, then I’d like to become waffle fries, really thin pizza and pie. Preferably from Pie Emporium…but I’m not really all that picky.
6   Fully embrace gluten. and carbs. I’m pretty sure all the hate they have gotten the last few years that they need some extra love. I can supply that extra love.
7.  Run the bottoms off my brand new sneakers. (see #4-#6)
8.  Burn my tongue on a s’more. This will happen anyways…I might as well add it to the list so I can feel accomplished.
9. Read more than LaVar Burton.
10. Watch the second season of Orange is the New Black in less than week.
11. Watch all of True Detective and take recommendations for what new show I should binge watch. Or….rewatch all 6 seasons of Gilmore Girls and tell Owen that if he had been a girl he would have been named Rori.
12. Strictly enforce nap time. For myself. Not my kids.
13.  Keep my car clean enough so that it doesn’t look like there is a family of 12 living out of it.
14. Shower and change clothes as infrequently as possible. This goes for my kids too. (laundry problem solved).
15. Invest in a pair of pajama jeans.
16. Teach Tess how to work the microwave so she can make her own Easy Mac and popcorn. 
17. Get rid of all the metal in my house (see #16).
18.  Teach shaun how to braid and do a ponytail before school starts. (forget teaching Tess to count past twelve-teen…Shaun is the only one home getting my kids ready for school, her teacher can teach her to count but someone will have to do her hair if she is going to survive kinder).
19.  Learn all the lyrics to all of the following: Ice Ice Baby, Redneck Girl, Baby Got Back, and We Didn’t Start the Fire. 
20.  Hit the beach and lake as often as I can.
21. Try to apply sunscreen all over and evenly rather than just the big white handprint I ended up with on my back last year.
22. Since I will apparently be spending a lot of time in a swimsuit, try to remember to shave my legs more than once a week.
23. Spend quality time with my kids. And my couch.
24.  Create the perfect road trip playlist. (road trips are a given)
25. Not get another speeding ticket. This will take most of my effort and prayer over the next 8 weeks.
26. Delete all the embarrassing pictures from my phone. Learn how to delete them from the cloud. (I am pretty sure that is IMPOSSIBLE).
27. Not back my car into anything.
28. End hunger and establish world peace ( I was feeling like this list might be a bit selfish and lazy this should redeem me….)

I could probably keep going on with this nonsense….but I’m sure you get the idea…and I think that any list with more than 4 things on it is a bit lofty anyways. What can I say I have always been an overachiever.



If you see me driving around town. The chances are good that my windows will be rolled down, I probably need to shower...and this song will be blaring.....sing along...or remind me to slow down.




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