Monday, June 8, 2015

Summer Bucket List 2015

I really missed doing our Summer Bucket List last year.  Our list had pretty much one item on it, finding a new house.   But this year, we are ready to explore all of the fun things around us in our new community and we have a long list of items on our Bucket List that we have been compiling throughout the school year. Every time we heard about a fun place locally, I have been putting it down on a list in my phone.  We won't ever be able to check them ALL off, but we will have a great time trying!

The very last day of school/first day of Summer Vacation, we had our annual Start of Summer Silly Surprise Supper.

It is such an inexpensive and easy way to celebrate, and the kiddos LOVE it.  I just decide what we are going to eat for dinner, divide it into four courses, and call the food items crazy names.  I usually buy really junky food we never usually eat, so it makes it seem special.  No one complains, and I don't have to figure out cooking a real meal at the end of the insanity that is the last week of school. I have the children each select one crazy item from each of three categories for each of the 4 courses.  The three categories are a food item, a serving dish, and a utensil.  They number the items 1-4 and sit down to eat in a silly location.  This year it was set up in our office. Our foods were strawberries, mini pizzas, potato skins, and eclairs.  Our utensils were fork, spoon, knife, and toothpick.  Our serving dishes were plate, bowl, cup, and large mixing bowls.

 The kids dressed up in crazy costumes  they chose themselves and ordered food from the Wackiest Waitress in the World (AKA me) who was also dressed up in a crazy outfit.  I love doing this.  It sets the tone for summer.  I get to play with my kids and make them laugh.  I feel like too many of my days during the school year are spent directing, instructing, chauffeuring, and disciplining.  This is a chance to play.   I wish I took more chances to play.

On Monday, we headed to the library to sign up for the Summer Reading Program.  They had some fun games and crafts set up with prizes.  We checked out a lot of books. Then came home and looked up all the other ones locally we could do this summer.  The school has one, too.  So my kids are keeping track of forms for the library, school, Barnes and Noble, Books-a-Million, and Pizza Hut. We are also doing a little summer book club with friends in the neighborhood.

We are trying to see how many Acts of Kindness we can do together this summer.  The kids wrote messages on the sidewalk to the librarians telling them thank you for all that they do for our community.

On Tuesday, we played at the pool and Chad and Andrew made a bike rack for our garage using PVC pipe with directions we found on Pinterest.  I was pretty impressed.

Molly's first pet, Madylen the fish, died a couple of weeks ago and she was very sad.  We held a very sweet little memorial service for her.  On Wednesday this week, she chose TWO new girl Beta fish, Sparkle and Glitter to be her new best friends.  Ryan decided he wanted to be a pet owner as well. He chose two BOY Beta fish, who are still as yet unnamed.  They are in tanks with a divider, so Chad is calling them Lefty and Righty. Ryan is so nurturing and thoughtful.  He wanted everything to be just right and was even concerned that the fish might be frightened of the scary knight in his bedroom.  He suggested we take it out of his room for the first few nights until the fish felt more at home.

All three kids are taking Gymnastics lessons this summer once a week.  We were able to find a gym that offered a Boys Only Class at the same time as the Girls Class for Molly's age!  It is so hard to find activities that all three want to do and are offered at the exact same time and place.  I am so happy!!!  I did make the mistake of waiting until AFTER class to try and get a picture.  This was what I ended up with.  Next week I will try to get one BEFORE class. LOL

Thursday, we headed to Discovery Place.  Our pass expires at the end of July, so if anyone wants to meet us there one day, let me know.  They have a cool Guitar Exhibit there right now that we all enjoyed.

Friday, we headed to Greensboro to visit Safari Nation, an inflatable play place we had purchased a Groupon for. They had a fun zipline and this massive structure with ball cannons.  The kids spent most of their time loading and shooting the cannons.

When we were exhausted from zipping, bouncing, and shooting, we brought lunch to my Nanie TooToo and mom and then went by my parents' work for a moment to say hello.

Friday night, we met friends at the Summer Music Concert at Blakeney.  All three kids had a great time playing in the fountains and enjoyed spending time with each other and friends.  I am hoping to find ways to spend time with friends this summer, myself.

Our friends from Winston asked if they could come see us on Saturday. We met them at the North Carolina Raptor Museum, a place that has been on our bucket list for three years and we still had never been. I wanted to make sure it happened this summer, so we went the very first weekend! We toured the museum, went to the flight show, and got to go behind the scenes to the animal hospital where they help the injured birds.  My bird enthusiasts were in heaven.

They have owls from Hogwarts and Guardians of Ga'Hoole.  This is a pic in front of their very own "HAWKWARTS."

During the behind the scenes tour, they showed how they feed injured orphans.  They do not want them to imprint on a human, so the workers wear camouflage and feed the babies with a puppet.  Molly was the model to show how this works.  It was perfect for her, since she always says she wants to be an animal saver when she grows up.   Which is pretty funny, as Molly loves animals in theory, but in reality, prefers that there is a fence or glass between her and almost all animals.

It was a great first week of vacation!!! One evening when I have more time, I will share our summer routine and daily schedule.  Although we have lots of fun during the summer, we also make sure there is plenty of unstructured time for play and relaxation, as well as time to pitch in around the home.

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