Most people create summer buckets lists with the idea of doing something fun and new, of going to exciting places and experiencing new and fun things. Yeah, this is not that list. I’m pretty sure my summer bucket list somehow qualifies as the anti-summer bucket list. The below list is rather intertwined (really the domino effect) and looking back had we only tried to tackle one or two of these things or been able to add time to the day/week/weekends it probably would have been ok. But Murphy’s Law being what it is – that isn’t exactly how things panned out. Let me also preface this by saying this is our first summer in our new house (that right there should tell you that no good will come from anything we do 🙂 so there are obviously things we wanted to do to ensure a fun and easy (even I can’t keep a straight face at that one) summer. We’ve had an insanely busy last few months with additional therapy and doctor’s appointments so the idea of easing into summer was a welcomed one.
Beware of awesome sales
We have a fairly large backyard – with up until recently – nothing in it. Ok I exaggerate, we have three trees (which actually leads into another project – but I’ll get to that). So we decided that for Easter we’d get the kids a playscape. It would be something fun for them to play on after school, keep them occupied on weekends while we try to get yard work and other house stuff done and a cool hangout during the summer. Plus it had the added benefit of keeping them from annoying our neighbors (no fences = double edged sword). I found an amazing playscape (not to mention it was on a great sale, had free shipping and I had a coupon!) that would accomplish what we wanted plus allow us to add a swing specifically for Gavin (a favorite past time of his). Between weather, schedules, family stuff and activities we didn’t really have much of a chance to put the thing together. This is one of those projects that doesn’t really lend itself to a lot of stop/starts but that didn’t stop the hubs from putting pieces together when/where he could (our garage was a bit overfull at the time). What lite the fire to get it finished was our daughter Bailey’s 7th birthday party. (FYI this beast of a project was finally finished last Sunday.) Which leads us to:
Don’t plan an early summer party
Bailey’s birthday is actually on 6/15 but because that was also the weekend of Father’s Day we decided to delay her birthday party by a week. She requested that it be a split party – so family and friends – which I’m good with – one larger party actually makes life a little easier vs. planning for two parties. BUT if we’re going to have a good amount of young kids running around – it would be nice to have the playscape done for them to actually play on. That loops us back to point #1 and getting the playscape done. AND since (as of last weekend when we were doing this) it was looking like Saturday was going to be sunny for the party…..
Love/Hate the sun
Again, looping back to point #1 where I said we only have three trees in our backyard – NONE of them are remotely close to our house. This means NO shade and we get A LOT of sun. I mean from sun up until about 1:30 or so our deck is hit dead on with direct sunlight. Now while I don’t mind it for me – I really want to keep the kids from getting burned. Especially Gavin – the kid inherited every Irish gene in our family. We talk about a sunny day and he gets a burn. So we decided to put up a year round gazebo (only the fabric comes down seasonally). In the event of rain, as long as we’re not talking hurricane type winds, people can still be outside under it. So, I bet you’re asking yourself, when did that “little” project get done? Sat and Sun of last weekend – the two hottest days we’ve seen in a while and in between getting the playscape done. And to top it off, Murphy’s Law decided to rear it’s ugly head. Two of the support bar end pieces had to be reshaped as they came bent in.
So I guess since we “front loaded” the summer with all these projects that means that now we can just sit back, relax, watch the kids fight – I mean play on the playscape and wait for our blueberry and raspberry bushes to start ripening so we can go picking!? I mean, it’s only fair, right???