This Family Fall Bucket list is easy and fun, and I’ve already modified it in view of Covid restrictions and concerns. To download the printable scroll down to the end.
The other day, I was sitting in the kitchen of my friend’s house as she leaned over the table to me and whispered (out of the earshot of her kids), “I’m so stressed, I could kill someone. I hate back-to-school!” My poor friend!
When I got home, I did a quick search and discovered that, according to a survey reported in the New York Post, more than half of parents of kids 5-18 say that back-to-school season is the most stressful time of the year.
That’s crazy, right?
Go go go.
Most of us think that stressful times are inevitable. They’re something to be rushed through to get to better times. Keep yourself as caffeinated as possible, put a heavy foot on the accelerator, and get ready for the ride. Your pulse – quick; your breath – shallow.
It really is as exhausting as it sounds.
But there are other ways, and although I’m sure you’ve heard it before, I always find it useful to start again with the simplest advice ever:
…a good, long exhale. Right now. Exhale everything you don’t need. Keep going. I think you forgot a couple of shoulds stuck in the back there, but stay here. First things first. The inhale that follows the super long exhale is as refreshing as a morning rose.
Breathe is life.
The truth is, you can’t be here for your family fully if you aren’t even giving yourself a chance to take a full breath in. The best thing you can do for other people, especially your kids, is to be the best version of yourself.
Now that the leaves are beginning to change colors and the weather is starting to cool, I invite you to hit the pause button and savor your relationships with the people who matter the most to you.
Your to-do list is not going anywhere. Your fears will still be here on Monday. Whatever you think you need to do to be a good wife, mother, sister, daughter, worker, you can still do it… after a short break. And the break will help you do it better.
If you take a close look at your life, I hope you don’t see only one long struggle to finish The Tasks. Because you know what? At the end of your life, you are not going to remember if you crossed one more item on your list today. It wouldn’t matter. There’s always something to be done, and that’s alright. That’s life.
We don’t remember the days; we remember the moments.
Do you know what you will always remember? The feel of your child’s head leaning on you as you read together, the brightness of your child’s eyes as you skip down the path on a cool morning, and the brightness of a candle inside of a jack-o-lantern on an autumn evening.
Yes, you can add more wonderful moments of fun to your life. No matter where you are in your life, you can do it. It just takes a bit of planning. This brings us to…
The trouble with the word “bucket list” is that it implies exhausting physical labor. I hear you. It summons up images of parka-wrapped athletes climbing Everest.
I like things to be easy, that is, enjoyable. I would love to call my bucket list “The Great Unbucket Plan,” but that would probably scare away readers. So we’ll stick to the nomenclature, but approach the whole idea a little differently.
Because taking time to slow down and enjoy the connection is a much more satisfying way to live. Sure, life is busy. The to-do list is long. And time is limited.
When we intentionally choose to slow down and make time to enjoy the people we love, our life is better, more meaningful, more satisfying. Plus, we end up showing our children that life is not all struggle and no fun.
The purpose of my bucket list is not to give you a headache. It’s here for your inspiration. Pick what looks like fun.
What About Corona Virus?
Last year we modified our fall bucket list to include fewer crowded activities. We skipped trick-or-tricking, as well as the haunted house, hayride, and petting zoo farm. This year, we are planning to do the same thing.
But it’s ok!
Skipping things doesn’t mean you can’t do it another way. We are still celebrating Halloween with a ton of fun activities and an indoor candy hunt. Check out our bucket list and enjoy all the ways to celebrate the cooler weather the first hint of festive feeling that scents the air this time of year.
Okay, okay, I know my printable bucket list is colorful and ink-heavy, but you know what? You only need to print it once. I’m really proud of this one – the lush warm colors are just delicious.
You might put it inside a photo frame with a glass front. And then you can use markers to cross things out on the glass as you finish them. Place it where you will see it a lot. The kitchen comes to mind… And when the fall season is over, just take the printout from inside the frame and add it to your Thanksgiving decorations box. Next year you can use it again!
Have an amazing fall!
Happy Family Fall Bucket List
- Visit a pumpkin patch
- Go apple picking
- Drink fancy hot cocoa
- Bake a pumpkin pie from scratch
- Make fall-themed cupcakes
- Go for a scenic drive and look for fall colors
- Have a family photoshoot
- Give thanks
- Feed squirrels
- Celebrate Halloween
- Watch a family movie (Harry Potter?)
- Sip Hot Apple Cider
- Jump in the leaves
- Decorate for fall
- Do a fall-themed science experiment
- Roast marshmallows
- Visit a farmer’s market and make a salad
- Craft with fall leaves
- Go on a morning hike
- Have a family game night
- Jump in rain puddles
- Read fall books
To download this list, enter your e-mail here and I will send you the link.