SUMMER. Hair gets lighter. Skin gets darker. Water gets warmer. Drinks get colder. Music gets louder. Nights get longer. Life gets BETTER!
The glorious Michigan summer is has arrived...those random cold days are finally gone. I love thinking about all the fun things I want to do while the warm weather is here... So I've created a list of of fun things for this summer + I plan to do ALL of them. I think a bucket list helps you get out of the mundane day-to-day activities + gives yourself a push to try something new. Summer is here + gone so fast that I want to make the most it! So create your own or join me! But let's have a kickin' time!
Here are 30 summer bucket list items to check off for an incredible summer!
Picnic in the Park - I absolutely love going out to Reed's Lake for a picnic with the family, lots of room to let them run around, watch the boats, feed the ducks, and its a quick walk to Gas Light Village to get icecream at Jersey Juction. Things you will need: giant blanket, candles, basket of Finger Foods, glasses, and a bottle of wine.
Take a Hike - There is nothing better than getting out in nature + exploring with our hands and feet! I love heading north for a good hike but if you are looking to stay local Aman Park is beautiful, Provin Trails, Siedman Park, and Peace Park.
Nap in a Hammock - yup! a must!
Photo Shoot with Friends - I absolutely love doing photoshoots with friends. Great way to capture + create memories. Take a moment to let your guard down + have fun!
Host a BBQ - Invite your neighbors, co-workers, family, friends, or whoever and enjoy a good ol' fashion cook out!
Go to an Outdoor Music Festival - grab a blanket, some snacks, and the fam while listening to fun music in the background. During the summer months there are a TON of weekly Concerts in the Park events. Check out GRkids for great list of music/movies in the park!
Try 3 new Restaurants - Tim and I love supporting non-chain restaurants + our local entrepreneurs. There are always new places popping up in GR and not enough date nights so we tend to miss some. Here are a couple of our favs: Butcher's Union, Marie Catribs, Maru, Luna, Stella's Lounge (best burger's in town), and The Mitten Brewery.
Get Lunch from a Food Truck- YASSSS! oh man! We definitely don't do this enough. But guess what? one of our friends (the everyday chef + wife) just opened their food truck! You can find out where they will be on their facebook page! Here is an upcoming food truck event in Hudsonville click here for the info.
Watch the Sunrise at the Beach - We are only 35 minutes from Lake Michigan now so this is a MUST on my list!
Complete a DIY project - I have a ton of projects that I have been wanting to tackle. If i can just complete one I'm pretty sure I will be thrilled!
Go Camping with Friends - yes yes yes!! We are already planning some trips with friends this summer! such a great + fun way to disconnect yourself from this busy culture + build relationships!
Host a Bonfire Party- Now, we don't have a firepit YET (on the list of summer projects), but until then we will crash your party.
Make Homemade Icecream - I have made some killer icecream in the past my favorite was a vanilla latte icecream with chocolate chips. YUM! i will be taking requests from the kids and attempting some new recipes! send me some of your favorite non-dairy icecream recipes!
Host a game night - Its always fun to head to the deck for a couple drinks + games with friends.
Sleep Under the Stars - Some of my favorite memories from my childhood were sleeping outside on the Trampoline staring up at the star, talking about future plans. There is something about gazing up at the stars, it almost feels as if time is on hold and you can take a moment digest the moments before.
Go to a County Fair- I grew up going to county fairs with my grandparents so they hold a special place for me...hoping to ride the scrambler with one of my kids, grab some greasy fair food, and enjoy all that they have to offer.
Family Bike Ride - This has become a little trickier with 4 kids now, but I still want to make it happen!
Go to the Local Farmer’s Market - Oh the Market! I feel so fortunate that Grand Rapids has really come a long way! We now have little farmer's markets all over the city starting NOW. Here is a link to find the closest one to you! Try making dinner with just the items you pick up at the market. It will push you to be a little more creative in your cooking + most importantly eat things that are seasonal.
Go to an Art Museum - I LOVE art! Now the GRĀM is no Louvre but they get some amazing exhibits! And on Tuesdays you can go free!
Go to a Baseball Game - I'm not talking about your child's little league baseball game. Grab some friends and head out to your local Minor League for us its the West Michigan Whitecaps or we can head to Detroit for a Tiger's Game!
Go to a Drive-in Movie - This can be difficult here in Michigan since we have daylight until about 10pm which means outdoor movies can't start until after that. YIKES! a little late for my little ones, but its definitely a fun date night or evening with friends. Tim and I quite a bit while we were dating. The Getty 4 Drive-in Theater is the only one i'm aware of that is close to GR.
Try an Outdoors Fitness Class - I'm not entirely sure how I feel about this one, but I definitely want to give it a go. I love fresh air + i love working out, but summer months can be a little sticky. Free Zumba in Rosa Parks
Create a Summer Music Playlist - ummm yess! about to put my favorites jams together for an awesome summer playlist! Share some of your favorite recent bands below with me!
Spontaneous road trip. - just hop in the car and go! its so fun! you find new towns, new shops, new parks, etc... this way! we love taking of with no destination in mind.
Take a painting class. - i'm really interested in watercolor paints so i'm hoping to find a local artist or shop that can teach me some techniques.
Invite a new person over for dinner. - I truly believe as a culture we have forgotten the importance of hospitality + reaching out to those that aren't within your "circle" of friends. So next time you bump into someone you "kind" of know invite them over.
Go for a boat ride. - This is when you need to hunt down a friend with a boat or head to Chicago for a romantic dinner cruise.
Visit a new city. - I love wandering the streets + shops of a new city. This year we actually have a couple new cities on our list Toronto, Montréal, and onto Bar Harbor, Maine. What about you?
Would love to hear some of your summer bucket list ideas!
Below is a PDF file of my Summer Bucket List if you are interested in doing it as well!