Last summer was rubbish.
Living in the UK you learn from an early age that summer is a special time, to be savoured, cherished, enjoyed, worshiped even?
It's a time for BBQs, festivals, parties in the park, softball, families, ice cream and fun.
And it's important to me to spend time outside. I love the sun, the air and being in nature.
But I missed last summer completely.
I was working like a crazy person and turning down every invitation I got - birthdays, baby showers, festivals - I said no to them all and spent the hottest days of the year in my home office (aka basement) strapped to my laptop, pleading with the work gods to give me a break, of any kind. My prayers were not answered and summer passed me by.
On top of that I was having some stomach issues and insisted on doing an elimination diet right the way through July which meant I could only eat certain foods (nothing fun), so any invitation I might have said yes to that involved eating got immediately complicated and gave me another reason to pass.
A lot has changed since then.
Firstly, I discovered I have a dairy intolerance. Bye cheese. Hello 'do you have dairy free milk?'. Oh joy.
Secondly, having poured my heart, soul, sweat and tears - literally - into a business that didn't see fit to return my efforts, I now know, from an experience I am extremely grateful for, that there is so much more to life than work. And money, or lack of.
A few months ago me and one of my bffs (aka sister in law) agreed we would do this summer properly, get the family together and have loads of fun.
Now the summer months are upon us it's time to start making plans, so I started writing out a bucket list, here goes:
- Have a BBQ
- Play softball in the park
- Visit a museum
- Have a sleepover
- Do a car boot sale
- Sunbathe in the park
- Watch an outdoor movie
- Go to a music festival
- Go to the seaside
- Watch a sunrise
- Watch a sunset
- Go to the fun fair
- Have a midnight feast
- Make cookies and dip them in milk (non dairy obv)
- Have a bring a bowl (and bottle) party
- Explore a local park
- Dance like no one's watching
- Make a summer playlist
- Swim outside
- Have a clothes swap party
- Visit an elderly relative
- Plant something
- Treat yourself to something you really want
- Go somewhere posh and have champagne
- Sit outside and have coffee (and cake) on your own
- Go to a yoga class
- Go for a drive with no destination in mind
- Call your mum
- Call your dad
- Go for drinks at a rooftop bar
- Sleep naked
- Have breakfast in bed
- Eat ice cream from the ice cream truck
- Let the diet go a little (but not the exercise ;))
- Go for a walk in the woods
- Go camping
- Go horse riding
- Eat lots of fruit
- Tell your family and friends you love them
- Do something kind for a stranger
- Buy some food for a homeless person
- Thank someone who works at a place you go every day
- Spend time with someone else's children
- Have a water fight
- Organise a street party
- Have a social media black out day
- Do kartwheels
- Buy something from a charity shop
- Laugh out loud
- Smile at strangers
How will you be spending summer?