Summer Bucket List
Written by: Hanna Spanyer
“There’s a hundred and four days of summer vacation,
‘Til school comes along just to end it,
So the annual problem for our generation,
Is findings a good way to spend it
Building a rocket, or fighting a mummy,
Or climbing up the Eiffel Tower,
Discovering something that doesn’t exist,
Or giving a monkey a shower,
Surfing tidal waves, creating nanobots,
Or locating Frankenstein's brain,
Finding a Dodo Bird, painting a continent,
Or driving our sister insane!
As you can see,
There’s a whole lot of stuff to do
Before school starts this fall.
So stick with us ‘cause
Phineas and Ferb are gonna do it all.”
- Theme Song, Phineas and Ferb
Ah, Summer. Music festivals, amusement parks, huge cookouts, and all the hangouts with your best pals. These are the things that have defined my summers.
This year, though, I’m sure Summer will look different for all of us. With the coronavirus having taken over the world this year, our social lives have been drastically altered. You can’t do this, you must do that. No large groups, but find a way to be somewhat social so you don’t lose your mind. Stay six feet away at all times, but keep the ones you love most close. I feel like the first half of this year has been a whirlwind of new protocols, lifestyles, and so much emotional whiplash. Half of the time, I haven’t been able to keep my head on straight.
One of the most unfortunate things about this pandemic, in my opinion, is that it’s taken most of my Summer plans and tossed them right out the window. So what’s a girl to do during the first Summer of our new, socially distant life?
Like Phineas and Ferb, I’ve come up with some activities to add to your Summer Bucket List that don’t require a large group of people.
1. Get outside.
“The sun is good for you,” they always say; and that’s no lie. Summer to me is all about being outside in the warm, sunny weather. One of my favorite things to do in the summer that doesn’t require a large group of people includes a day trip to my favorite hiking spot, Red River Gorge. Hiking is a great way to get outside, exercise a tad, and enjoy nature. After a good few-hour long hike, I like finding a spot to string up my Eno, relax, and read for a while. My family and I also enjoy day trips to the lake to fish, tube, and lounge around in the sun. You don’t always have to leave your house to enjoy time outside in the summer. As a kid (and, let’s be honest, even as an adult) I love challenging my brother to a water balloon fight. At night, we venture to the park across the street from our house to catch fireflies or stargaze. We’ll even get a fire going in our firepit and see who can make the most gourmet s’mores around!
2. Try something new.
There are so many new activities to try in the summer months. Rock climbing, paddleboarding, snorkeling, ziplining, and skydiving are all adventurous activities to try your hand at this summer. If you aren’t an adrenaline junkie like me, you can try horseback riding, learning a new language, taking a self-defense class, taking dance lessons, relaxing by trying yoga, or even learning sign language.
3. Become an ameture chef.
I absolutely love to cook but often have no idea where to start. What better time to learn to cook than summer!? There are so many fruits and veggies that are in season, you’re bound to have plenty of fresh ingredients for your newest recipes. Attend a cooking class, grow your own veggie garden, and get started! Try copying a recipe from your favorite Food Network chef or make a everything-but-the-kitchen-sink dinner. Or try your hand at baking fresh bread, a cake, or a pie just because you can. Love food from other cultures? Try your hand at a staple from another country. You can even go simple and make your own smoothie or fruit salad. And if you’re craving something really sweet, make your own candy! The possibilities are endless in the kitchen.
4. Get creative.
Whether you’re crafty or not, there are simple DIYs and other simple crafts that make even the least-creative person on the planet seem like a pro! One of my favorite summer crafts is tie-dye. I love grabbing the nearest white t-shirt, throwing some rubber bands on it, and going to town with fabric dye. There’s no telling what the finished product will be until you’re completely finished and take all the rubberbands off to reveal your masterpiece! If you find yourself stuck inside on a rainy day, build a blanket fort in the living room and have a home spa day with your best buds. Most department and drug stores (e.g. Walmart and Walgreens) have everything you need to pamper you and a few close friends. You could even take your spa day one step further by making your own gourmet soaps!
If you want to tap into your creative juices but don’t know where to start, find a class to attend! With a simple google or facebook search, you can find painting, pottery, knitting/crochet, and woodworking classes. These classes are fun and give you step-by-step directions to create your very own work of art!
5. Lastly, grab a few of your best pals and have a photoshoot!
All you need is a location and a camera (professional, polaroid, or smartphone are all exceptional cameras). You and your friends can live it up, have fun, and snap some of the best pictures ever! After all, aren’t we all secretly looking for the perfect summer profile pic!?
Though this Summer is going to be vastly different from any Summer we’ve experienced so far, you don’t have to just sit around and let the days waste away. Take from this Summer Bucket List or create your own like Phineas and Ferb do. Whatever you do this Summer, have fun with it. And remember to stay safe and healthy!
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