My summer bucket list

Whether it's trips to the cottage, days of hiking or sunbathing, or barbeques and campfires, the nostalgia of summer keeps me motivated to finish the school year so I can finally cross these things off my list.

Person painting a picture while standing beside the ocean. Photo: Heinz Klier

Like most of us, I’ll be working full time, so the freedom my summers used to have is limited. So, to make sure I make the most of my vacation, I’ve made a summer bucket list—something I haven't done since I was a kid. It lists everything I’ll accomplish by the time September rolls around again. Feel free to steal from it and try some of these things yourself!


Try pottery

Pottery is something I’ve always wanted to try but have never taken the time to do. As someone with a tendency to collect mugs, making one of my own seems perfect—and the summer is the best time to do it.


Go for a hike

I live in a small town where hiking isn’t a local attraction, so a long hike has always been something I’ve wanted to do—especially early in the morning so I can see the sunrise.


Go to an art gallery

The last time I went to an art museum was in fifth grade. I spent most of my time doing workshops and looking at art with eyes very unaware of the beauty around me. Now that I’m older and slightly more educated on artists and techniques, I’d love to revisit the same gallery and see everything I missed. If you live in Ontario, I’m talking about the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, though I know Halifax has the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia if you’re also interested in visiting a place of beauty.


Grow a plant/vegetable

Since my family got a dog, a garden doesn’t stand a chance. But that doesn't mean I have to forget about earning my green thumb. I’m not sure if I want to plant a flower or a vegetable but, either way, I’d love to have a little sprout that I need to take care of from the middle of spring to the tail of summer. Plus, what’s more rewarding than being able to eat a vegetable you planted yourself!


Watch the sunrise

I’m a night owl who wakes up in just enough time to get to my computer and log into work, so I never see the sunrise. This summer, I plan on changing that.


Cook a new recipe

It doesn’t take me long to get into a routine, and that often includes food. There are so many recipes I’ve saved to my Pinterest board that I promised myself I’d get to, and the summer presents the perfect opportunity to expand my cooking abilities.


Learn a song

I took music lessons throughout elementary and high school, but I stopped when I moved to Dal. I miss learning new songs and—surprisingly—the hours of practice I used to procrastinate. This summer I’m determined to learn one new piece, even if it takes me until the end of August to do it.


Paint a big canvas

When the first lockdown happened, painting was the hobby that took up most of my time. I’d spend hours in my room sketching and painting on small pieces of cardstock until one of my walls was entirely covered in artwork. But, over time, I painted less and less, and it’s only now that I realize how much I miss it. Whether it's just streaks of colours or an attempt at a Pinterest photo, I know this summer I’ll be adding a new piece to my collection.


Fill a photo album

Growing up, my mom and our family friends were big on making photo albums. They had themes, fun spreads, stickers, and funny blurbs, all making memories of summer events and playdates. Because everything is so nicely saved on my phone, photo albums were never something I needed. For me, making a photo album will force me to go places, see new things, spend time outside of my makeshift office, and make the most of my summer.