Heart Stuff | Summer

Summer Bucket List

Today, we’re sharing our summer bucket list!

A couple of months ago when my bestie S was finally making the transition from a wheelchair to crutches, we met up with a few friends for dinner.  It was an event that had been on her bucket list since the accident last October and we were thrilled to finally get out of the house for a seemingly normal activity.

I’m not really sure how we got on the subject, but we started talking about how easy it was to get off track with goals and dreams once the newness of January and February wore off.

While we were still excited about the goals we had set for ourselves in early January, we realized how  difficult it had become to remain motivated to reach those goals as the days stretched into weeks and the weeks into months when our “real lives” started slowly taking over our calendars.

Honestly, it’s something I hear all the time from my sisters, fellow bloggers, friends and you.

Well, that conversation led to us discussing our Word of the Year which ultimately inspired this post and our summer bucket list.

We were all going around the dinner table talking about the progress we had made on our Word of the Year and goals when we got to one of S’s closest and most trusted friends.

“I’m doing great on all my goals,” she said, “but I’m too embarrassed to tell you my Word of the Year.”

To be honest, we all kind of looked at each other dumbfounded because this girl is a total rock star.  She’s fought several battles with cancer, raised four great kids, run multiple successful businesses, contributes to her church and community in a big way and still finds time to do special things for her husband, family, friends, neighbors and coworkers.

We all sat there silent for a few seconds when she finally said, “I’m just worried if I tell you my word you’re either gonna laugh at me or you’ll think I’m selfish.  Either way, I’m too embarrassed to say.”

Of course, we all immediately started reassuring her there were no embarrassing words of the year.  A few minutes later she sucked in her breath and said, “Ok, here goes. I’ve got to step out of my comfort zone some time. My Word of the Year is….”

…and then she said her name.

We sat quietly as she explained why she had chosen her name.  She recounted the tough years being a mom, the constant changes at work, her time as a caregiver to an ailing mother, the many months spent at the hospital and doctor appointments waiting for cancer treatments and ultimately the untold stress it had all taken on her spirit.

She didn’t need to justify herself to any of us.  Yet she laid out her case so succinctly I’ve often thought about that conversation as I’ve grappled with my own struggles all these months later.

About this time nearly every year, I find myself dealing with a bit of burnout and an empty creativity tank. It’s not because I don’t love this job. Believe me, this job is definitely a ton of work, but it feels like a dream job.  I love it so much that most of the time my brain doesn’t turn off no matter how physically tired I am or how emotionally drained I’ve become from decision fatigue.

Last year, we had to take a summer sabbatical because S had shoulder surgery and needed the entire summer to rehab.  This year though, we’re making a deliberate choice to slow our posting schedule down to 2 or 3 days a week so we can fully concentrate on school,  developing healthy habits and routines, celebrating self-discovery, embracing change,  filling our creativity tanks with new adventures, simplifying our homes, and being intentional with the white space we create in our calendars this summer.

In short, we’re boldly claiming our names for the summer and we hope you will too!

Now you might be thinking the Summer of _______________ (fill in your name) sounds awesome but there is no way I can _______________ (fill in your excuse).

Let me reassure you, right now, you can definitely still have a summer that celebrates everything that makes you special while still working a full-time job, being a wife, mom, sister, daughter, friend or caregiver.  You just have to make it a priority #truth

So, what does the Summer of ____________ (fill in your name) look like, you ask?

It means you make the time to:

  1. Say yes to the things you really want to do
  2. Say no to the things you feel obligated to do or are only doing out of guilt
  3. Enjoy a summer sunrise or sunset
  4. Do a 48-hour social media detox
  5. Plan a staycation
  6. Find a good summer read
  7. Finish a goal you’ve been putting off or too long
  8. Host a slumber party with your sisters, besties, or girlfriends
  9. Try a new recipe
  10. Take a day trip
  11. Go on a date with yourself
  12. Invite someone new to coffee, lunch or dinner
  13. Send a postcard
  14. Pick fruits or vegetables from a roadside stand, a farmer’s market or a you-pick farm
  15. Create healthy routines for skincare and cleaning
  16. Pray, meditate or practice gratitude daily
  17. Live out your affirmations
  18. Plan a progressive supper with your family, friends or neighbors
  19. Start a journal
  20. Learn a new skill or hobby
  21. Stop negative self-talk
  22. Do something out of your comfort zone
  23. Become more self-aware
  24. Be inspired with TED Talks
  25. Practice random act of kindness
  26. Find ways to turn obstacles into opportunities
  27. Apologize first
  28. Enjoy nature with a walk on the beach, a day at the lake, or a fun hike
  29. Replace a bad habit with a good one
  30. Start & finish a new home project
  31. Be a cheerleader
  32. Go all day without complaining
  33. Treat yourself to something special
  34. Take more pictures or commit to photo walks each week
  35. Explore a new city
  36. Start juicing
  37. Save the planet and go green
  38. Prioritize rest and good sleep hygiene
  39. Create healthy meals
  40. Exercise
  41. Write a letter to your future self about how awesome you are
  42. Take action
  43. Turn off the TV
  44. Go to an outdoor movie or concert
  45. Commit to your personal growth

You guys, how many times do we say we’re going to do something that is really important to us only to let the entire summer slip away without taking action?

Let’s be better than that and take our summer back!

Let’s flip the script and vow that this year really is going to be our year.

The year we take full advantage of our summer by letting go of the excuses and take action. By honoring what makes us special and unique, by prioritizing our needs without feeling guilty about it, and by doing more of the things that makes us happy and less of the things that makes us feel obligated to gratify the expectations of others.

Let’s be bold and claim our names and celebrate the Summer of ______________ (insert your name) for all new adventures and opportunities that have yet to come our way.

Are you with me?

What’s on your summer bucket list this year? We’d love to hear all about it! Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

Many blessings,


Similar Posts


  1. Love this list summer bucket list and the goats too Coco. You definitely look like youre in your element. I cant wait for the Summer of Bonnie to begin.

    1. YES, Bonnie! The Summer of Bonnie is going to be amazing. I can’t wait to hear all about everything you guys are up to. Girl you know I love goats any time of the year. Just looking at them makes me happy so you can imagine how ecstatic I was to get to pet them too ha ha! Hugs, CoCo

  2. Dear CoCo,
    What a beautiful listing – so many things sound wonderful and actually doable! 🙂 I love the sweet little goats – we sometimes call Annie (our Beagle mix) a little goat – with her long ears, sometimes she really looks like one!! Animals are the best de-stressor! I truly am so thankful to hear S’s good news – she has been in my prayers and on my heart for all these months! I was so surprised to read about your Dad’s heart attack, but thankful to hear that he is healing so quickly! My husband had a widow maker’s blockage a couple of years ago and had emergency surgery. We were so shocked – no heart disease in his family and he had such a vague sign of a heart problem that we didn’t even realize what it was. Thankfully he didn’t have that “one and only” heart attack and healed quickly. As you very well know – our lives can take a different turn in an instant! But as I’ve said many times – you are AMAZING – I want to be just like you when I grow up! (Although I’m already many years ahead of you – in age only!) Thinking of you and always ready to see what beautiful changes you’ve made. XO

    1. You always leave me the sweetest messages, Patty, thank you so much! I can only imagine how cute Annie is with those sweet ears. I bet they’re enough to melt your heart immediately. S has definitely had a long haul but we are beyond excited that she continues to recover and is healing more each day. She has just a few tendon issues that need to be resolved but honestly they feel like a piece of cake compared to everything else. We know your prayers played a huge role in her recovery process and we can’t thank you enough for lifting her up. As far as my Dad goes, we were floored when they said he had to have emergency surgery due to a blockage as well. I mean, he’s still pretty young in his late 60s and is super active and rarely sick so we were shocked too. I’m thankful your husband has continued to heal as well. I know you guys have a tight and loving family. It’s scary (and also a blessing) to know they’ve been given second chances. Sending you lots of love and hugs sweet friend. I always appreciate your sweet and kind words, CoCo

  3. OMG – it’s so funny to pop-in here today and read your bucket list…as we just posted ours today! LOL We too grappled with making a list, but after spending some quality family time together – and facing some challenges ahead – we decided that time passes too quickly. If we don’t write it down, it won’t happen. S’s friend is a genius for creating a demand for herself and making herself a priority! Cheers to all of us for the summer ahead. Much love to all!

  4. I don’t think I have read anything this profound in quite awhile. Thanks so much for the writing and posting of this…we do get lost in doing everything for everyone other than ourselves. Grins and thanks, Sandi

    1. That’s so sweet of you to say, Sandi, thank you! I completely understand how easy it is to get caught up doing so much for everyone else that we put ourselves last the on list. We are totally worth taking the time to do the things that make us happy though. I’m hoping to take steps in taking more time for those things this summer and I hope you are too. I’m believing big that the Summer of Sandi is going to be filled with exciting adventures. Big hugs, CoCo

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *