Salvage Your Summer Bucket List

It's not too late!

Salvage Summer Bucket List

It’s often been said that the Fourth of July is kind of the middle mark for summer for kids in school and for their moms.  So, with that date just passed, how are you feeling about your time?  Is the term “time management” something that you laugh at?  Is the phrase “summer time management” an oxymoron?  Or would you like to Salvage Your Summer Bucket List, and when the first day of school arrives, feel like you can say it wasn’t just a fun summer, but also a productive, meaningful one for you?

I’m thinking that with just a little bit of tweaking, we can get to where we all feel better about our summers… and can still enjoy them!

The truth is, the free-for-all gets old really quickly, and I think even for the kids.  As much as we like the idea of being in vacation mode, getting up when we want, going to bed when we want, eating when we feel like it, we still want to feel good about how we are caring for our families, and how we are using our time!

As I talk to busy moms this summer, I’m learning that healthy eating and their own workouts are two of the first things to go in the summer… but it doesn’t have to be that way!

Let’s explore.

Let’s go ahead and assume that we all really do feel better when we do meaningful work.  And whether you work outside the home, or your work IS your home and household and family, you are doing meaningful work.

Whatever that work might be, relaxation is essential and important, but the truth is this:  when you feel like you’ve accomplished something, relaxing is way more fun.  Know what I mean?  If you’ve knocked even a couple items off your list, you’ll feel much calmer when you sit down, without those items hanging over your head.

So, how on earth do we achieve that feeling when our kids are home for summer?  How can we feel some sense of satisfaction and accomplishment, even amidst the chaos (and the fun)?

Summer actually can be relaxing, fun, memorable, and you can still feel good about what you accomplish!  How’s that for win-win?

So.  If you haven’t yet really taken stock of what you’d like to accomplish this summer, both big-picture and day-to-day, then I’d like to encourage you to give it a shot.  This will be fun, I promise.

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Let’s begin by just looking at all the things you may be thinking you’d hoped to accomplish this summer.  Don’t pull any punches, and don’t judge, just get it out on paper or your favorite digital system such as Evernote or Notes.  If you could do everything you really hope to do, what would you still want to get done this summer?

To get you started, here are some categories for your Salvage Summer Bucket List

  • Household projects
    • Big
    • Small
  • Family bucket list items.
    • Memories you want to make
    • Things you want to accomplish together
  • Kid stuff that must get done
    • Doctor appointments
    • Physicals for school
    • Any areas in which you want to help them prepare for next year academically
    • Haircuts (schedule the back-to-school haircuts now, how great would that be to have that done?
  • Your health and wellness
    • Your workouts
    • Your personal goals surrounding your nutrition, rest, faith, or personal goals
  • Your work goals
  • Your fun or relaxation goals
    • Girlfriends you still want to get together with, or want to get together with more often
    • Books you want to read
    • A massage or a pedicure or a yoga class
  • Household day-to-day stuff
    • Cleaning
    • Groceries
    • Laundry
  • Vacation
    • Did you still want to get away?  Write down what you’d like to do, either realistic or a long shot!


You did it!  You created your Salvage Summer Bucket List!  Good work!

I’m curious.  What are you feeling, now that you’ve gotten these items out in the open?  Perhaps a little bit excited, and a little bit overwhelmed, all rolled into one?

If so, that’s normal.  Part of you may be thinking, “Sheesh, this is nuts, it’ll never get done.  I’ll just go turn on Netflix and sort it out in August.”

I’d encourage you to take a breath, and then maybe try this mantra on for size:  “One small step at a time.”

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Let’s now look at how we can tackle this big, beautiful, slightly intimidating list of desired goals.

  • First, let’s talk Mindset.  I want you to remember:  when you do more, you feel better.  The free-for-all is fun, but it gets old.  So, when you take the time to care for yourself by honoring your time, you will feel better.  Try to remember this.
    • Consider the mantra, “One small step at a time,” or create a mantra you like better.  Perhaps, “Get more done to have more fun” resonates with you.
  • Next, determine where you want to keep your Salvage Summer Bucket List.  Where do you keep your daily planner or your calendar?  I suggest somewhere close to that.
  • Now, it’s a simple matter of pulling from your List as you look ahead!  (Yes.  It is simple, even if it’s not easy!  Remember:  just do your best, remember your mantra(s), and have fun.  You’re imperfect.  That’s cool.
    • Start long term.  Look at your remaining weeks of summer.  Can you see where there’s an opening to fit in a vacation?  Pencil it in, and add “research vacation” to your daily planner or calendar.
    • Next, look at what items you want to start adding each week.  A favorite workout on Wednesday mornings?  Pencil it in.  Your weekly grocery run works best on Tuesdays after lunch?  Pencil it in.  Just start building a bit of structure, a bit of a rhythm to your weeks ahead.
    • Finally, consider how you’ll consult your Bucket List.  Each morning?  On Sundays as you look to your week ahead?  Plan to make it your companion for the remaining weeks of summer, knowing that it can act as your guide if you let it… and if you do, you’ll get that satisfied sense of salvaging your summer to-do list!

Above all else, flexibility in all things.  Isn’t flexibility every mom’s middle name?

Your goal is simply the pursuit of feeling better, and knowing when to push and when to back down is the most important key in feeling great each night when you put your head on the pillow.  So, be kind to yourself, but be willing to embrace a bit of discipline, and just a bit of structure, so that you can accomplish more, feel better, and Salvage Your Summer Bucket List!

And share!  Click the share button, I want to hear what you and your friends think.  Do you have as system you love already?  Comment below or share on Facebook or comment on my page!  We are all here to learn and grow together!




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