completing our summer bucket list

It's still August and our summer bucket list is complete! I got pictures of almost everything and wanted to share them since 1) most of them haven't appeared on the blog yet and 2) to always remember how much fun summer with a 2-year-old is. We have visited a bunch of different parks (I didn't keep track along the way but just did a quick count and came to 15)! My friend Heidi has taken her son to 73 parks this summer so far (she is going for 100), but I'd say 15 is pretty good too.

We built a raised garden bed and learned a heck of a lot about growing food. We followed square foot gardening and planted carrots (flop), beets (total flop), onions, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes (holy tomatoes), cucumbers (huge!), spinach, watermelon (verdict is still out), snap peas, green beans, sweet peppers, green peppers, basil (flop), marigolds, cantaloupe and a couple different types of lettuce. It has been fun (a lot of work too) but we will definitely plant less next year.

We made it to the farmers' market a couple times early in the season and both times enjoyed the amazing gluten-free cinnamon and sugar crepes at the Sweet Treat without Wheat stand.

We went to the Ashby Park splash park and playground with one of Rooney's best friends, Adah. They used to go to daycare together but don't get to see each other as much anymore.

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We have wanted to do this for several years! Eric chose it for his Father's Day activity and the weather was perfect. It's so pretty up there.

I think it's so fun to visit the Tropical Sno stand on a warm day! We enjoyed it while walking around a lake, watching the ducks.


This is a summer tradition we've been doing for three years! My mom comes down with a couple of her friends and my sister brings her girls to the aquatic center for a couple hours of swimming, and then we eat at Panera afterward. (Speaking of Panera, I highly recommend the Chicken Cobb with Avocado salad!)

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Rooney loved the Heritage Carousel at Union Park - which is only 50 cents to ride! - and there's a cool spaceship playground there, too!

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I guess technically I had a suicide slush instead of ice cream...but it was fun to see what this local favorite is all about! Eric wants to go back for another chocolate malt!


What a cool local festival! It was our first time checking it out. There's a great small-town parade and then free sweet corn with a line three blocks long! We had a blast with two families from our church who we really look up to.

Can you spot us? We are just above the "d" in "Ride" in the photo above. Rooney immediately wanted to do it again. (Video here.)

They have watermelon Laffy Taffy! And just about anything else you could ever want.

Done and done, can't wait to do it again. You can read more about our awesome week in Okoboji here.

This lasted about as long as any toddler activity (about four minutes). Now that I think about it, I'm not sure she even touched the chalk. She always requests that mommy draw her, then mommy, then daddy.

Just as good as I remember it to be! Find the recipe here.

I promise she had fun, despite the look on her face!

I hope you have been having a great summer! I want to post more but just haven't found the time lately. I was sick, then we were on vacation, then a bout of anxiety knocked me out for a couple weeks. Rooney also goes to bed much later now, so I have less time in the evenings to write and put together images. I have a bunch of half-written drafts backed up that I really do want to finish, so thanks for sticking around!

*photos created using Canva, a great free tool for wanna-be graphic designers!