Wednesday, November 14, 2012

My Kid's Bucket List

I read through an Internet article earlier this week that listed the top 40 places you should visit with your children.  I love lists, so I started thinking about the things I wanted to make sure I did with my kids.  A "things to do with my kids before they're grown" bucket list.  So here's my list so far of things I absolutely want to do with my kids, which, in all honesty, could also be called my "remember these things are important" parenting rules that I will try to live by :)


My Kid's Bucket List/Parenting List

  1. take them camping
  2. let them decorate the Christmas tree
  3. have a dog
  4. let them collect bugs in the backyard
  5. finger paint (and not in the bathtub to avoid a mess; it's finger paint, not toxic waste!)
  6. dress up for Halloween
  7. stay up late just for mom and dad time
  8. learn to play board games and card games--not spend hours a day on a computer or in front of a TV
  9. teach my girls the cute little hand clapping games I learned as a little girl
  10. take them to Disney World
  11. visit museums and educational places
  12. make homemade ice cream
  13. eat the homemade ice cream for dinner
  14. stay up late to watch fireworks
  15. teach them why we have Memorial Day and Veteran's Day
  16. visit a nursing home; teach them the value and dignity that the elderly deserve
  17. let them see poor people; volunteer at a homeless shelter-more than once--so that they know what it means to truly go without
  18. let their room be a mess if that's the way they want it (within reason; otherwise known as "don't force your type-A-ness on them)
  19. dye all of their food green on St. Patrick's Day
  20. read them Scripture--often
  21. teach them how to pray; pray with them not just for them
  22. take them to the Grand Canyon
  23. take them to a beach--let them play all day
  24. teach them how to sing
  25. put them in gymnastics when they are little.  learning how to do a cartwheel is imperative to a good childhood.
  26. take them fishing.  
  27. make them practice sitting still
  28. let them collect things, even if it's something silly and it drives you nuts
  29. dress them like children, not like miniature adults
  30. let them watch DVDs of Loony Tunes so that they actually know what a good cartoon is
  31. make their birthdays special.  not with stuff; with memories.
  32. make them walk.  a four year old in a stroller is ridiculous.  do not have wimpy children.
  33. sponsor a child as a family-be involved in that child's life
  34. teach them how to eat well, and why we do it
  35. find a good church (one that makes Jesus exciting but isn't about selling him like a used car or the latest summer flick) and be involved there with your children
  36. teach them that obedience is instant, or it's not obedience
  37. let them know there are consequences to choices
  38. let them fail.  that's how they learn.
  39. play in creeks and flip over stones searching for salamanders
  40. pack a picnic of pbj and go eat dinner outside.  often.
  41. always have art supplies around.  feed their creativity.
  42. make home made play dough.
  43. teach them how to cook
  44. make sure they know how to swim at an early age
  45. speak Scripture over them; it will sink in
  46. always take the extra time to cuddle
  47. visit Kennedy Space Center
  48. read them stories about real people who lived:  Corrie Ten Boom, Anne Frank, Jim Elliot
  49. make them go outside.  every day.  for hours.  lock them out of the house if you have to
  50. teach them to entertain themselves.
  51. make a huge homemade slip and slide
  52. find somewhere with real snow.  take them sledding.  let them build a snowman.
  53. learn how to play an instrument
  54. teach them that they are part of your family, not the center of it
  55. make sure they take care of their teeth
  56. find the books that make them love reading
  57. let them decide how their room is decorated
  58. teach them the value of writing real letters
  59. let them save what is important to them
  60. take lots of pictures of every day moments
  61. praise them
  62. be their advocate
  63. go on road trips.  let them experience the joy of watching the world as it rolls past the car window.
  64. let them spend the night with other people
  65. teach them that God is bigger than fear
  66. take them to an amusement park
  67. pass on to them a love for Marvel movies and homemade popcorn
  68. try not to get too upset when she wants to wear makeup before you want her to
  69. teach her that they key to makeup is to look natural and enhance what's already there
  70. teach him to be respectful to women
  71. teach them that marriage is sacred.  your bed is no place for children.  if they are sick, they can sleep on a sleeping bag on the floor.  maintain this rule.
  72. teach them to knock and be given permission to enter any one's bedroom
  73. make sure know good manners and use them
  74. take their car privileges away if they drive like a moron
  75. eat dinner together as often as you possibly can
  76. make s'mores
  77. lay outside and watch the clouds go by
  78. make sure they watch a sunrise every now and then
  79. have frequent movie nights
  80. decorate the house like crazy for Christmas; the tackier the better
  81. have their friends over as often as you can; remember that your family is an avenue of grace and kindness to other people
  82. eat Popsicles all the time in the summer
  83. let them wake you up entirely too early on Christmas morning
  84. make sure they know that your homemade hour-and-a-half-to-make cinnamon rolls are way better than anything they can get in the store
  85. take them to Washington DC and teach them about our country; make sure they are thankful to be able to live here
  86. don't let them learn cuss words from you
  87. play in the mud
  88. tube down a river (especially fun if it's a non-commercial one)
  89. build sandcastles
  90. have a lemonade stand
  91. have a snowball fight
  92. play (harmless) tricks on them; and let them retaliate
  93. plant something and watch it grow
  94. tell them the Christmas story; make it exciting
  95. have tea parties with real cups and plates; buy them at Goodwill; who cares if they break?
  96. make homemade butter
  97. visit a farm
  98. play in a corn maze
  99. jump in leaves
  100. blow on dandelions when they're in their "wishing stage".  who cares if they're weeds and you are spreading them when you do that?  they are magical.

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