Last summer, I made a list of all the things I'd like to do. And it was, generally speaking, successful. It prompted us to do something instead of just sitting around the house. It's not a to-do list, but just a list of ideas. So I'm doing it again...
- Zoo. We went to the zoo in New Orleans during our Thanksgiving visit, and I don't think I ever articulated the ridiculousness of the entire experience. It was just too much. Not a complete disaster, but close. But I think a smaller zoo would be better and less overwhelming, so it's back on the list this summer.
- Picnic. I think I've shared my thoughts on eating outside. Basically, I have a very narrow Goldilocks zone for eating outside (temperature, wind speed, bugs). But we'll try to have at least one picnic at the park or lake. As an aside, this is going to have to wait, because the rain and impending flooding has brought crazy walls of bugs.
- Splashpad. My sister and nieces took Scout to the local splash pad last summer, but we never made it back. Now that she's more mobile than last summer, I think it stays on the list.
- Pools. Last summer we managed to hit all of our local pools, but I don't think we went nearly enough. I'm hoping we can sneak in some after-work, evening swimming too.
- Outdoor Movie. Drive in movies start so late, so I'm not sure how Scout would fare. But I think it would be worth a try. There's a drive-in less than an hour from here or one halfway between here and my parent's house. If we don't make it all the way to the drive-in, we may settle for a free outdoor movie downtown Iowa City. Maybe for Monster's Inc.?
- Water Balloons and Sprinklers. I'm not sure if Scout would like a sprinkler, and I'm confident that it will drive Nola crazy. But nothing screams summer like wet skin covered in grass. Also a Cozy Coupe Car Wash.
- Tie Dye. We used to do this almost every summer. It's a messy project, but the dye wears off your skin eventually. Perhaps my nieces and I will tackle this during Scout's naptime.
- Baseball Game. Or at least a part of one. Rykert is not a baseball fan. And admittedly the games can get long, but I think minor league games are fun. So I'm putting it on the list.
- Farmer's Market. We've already been once this year, but it was a cool and very windy morning. I like to go on Saturday mornings and buy everything we need to make dinner.
- Make Homemade Ice Cream. Because yum. I think I'll make these to go with.
- Outdoor Concert. Every Friday and Saturday night there's a free outdoor concert downtown Iowa City. It's one of our favorite summer activities. We can go out to dinner, now that the students have gone home and the restaurants are less crowded, and Scout can play on the playground. We went for the first time last Friday, and had a great time eating a progressive dinner with my nieces - bar for dinner, ice cream shop for some, frozen yogurt for others, etc... Another aside, what is with the influx of frozen yogurt places - they are everywhere! The bottom is sure to fall outta that market soon. Hopefully, because there's nothing wrong with regular ice cream.
- Beach. We are, sadly, landlocked. But we should have plenty of opportunities to play in the sand at the lake.
- Sidewalk Paint. Last summer I taught Rykert and Scout about the joys of painting with water and real paintbrushes on the sidewalk, driveway, and deck. My grandma used to entertain us for hours "painting" her big deck with water in the summer. Painting with water is very low on the mess scale, so why not mess it up a bit with homemade sidewalk paint.
- Lightning Bugs. Scout's usually exhausted and ready for bed before it's even dark out. But at least once this summer, we'll try to stay up late enough to see and catch some lightning bugs.
- Children's Museum. Our rainy Memorial Day outing was a visit to the Children's Museum. The Iowa Children's Museum is located in the mall very close to our house and situated close to Target. As we were paying our admission fee I did the math, and realized that we didn't have to come very often to make an annual membership pay for itself. It's definitely a better cold weather activity, but I'm hoping we can make it there a couple times this summer.
Other summer goals...
- Keep the weeds in the garden under control.
- Rykert will be teaching my nieces to water ski. They received new life jackets and lesson vouchers for their birthday.
- Plan and cook dinner every weeknight.
- Watch the 4th of July parade and stay up late enough for fireworks.
So what am I missing...