Monday, June 1, 2015


photo of me and my littles
photo credit: sloan photographers for lularoe

with my busy toddler graduating preschool this week,
and a very active little one-year-old in tow,
i am getting pretty nervous thinking about
how we will spend our long summer days.
so, i put together a master summer bucket list...
things i think my kids would enjoy doing with me!

i sorted them into 4 different categories:
indoor activities, outdoor activities,
free outings, and paid outings.

in the outings sections, i added details which are
only relevant to people in southern California.
but overall, this list should still be relevant
no matter where you live!
please feel free to share additional ideas in the comments!

i hope that this helps you to have fun with your kiddos!
let me know how it goes :) and wish me luck too!


1.     Play with play dough (and make your own play dough)
2.     Play with jigsaw puzzles or jumbo floor puzzles
3.     Play with teepee, tent or tunnel
4.     Make ice cream, smoothies, or popsicles
5.     Bake cookies or make no-bake cookies
6.     Build a fort using furniture and sheets
7.     Cut out felt pieces and make a felt board or felt scene
8.     Play hide and seek
9.     Make puppets from socks or brown paper bags
10.  Make paper crowns
11.  Make a necklace with cheerios or beads
12.  Build towers with Legos or blocks
13.  Have waterplay with a stool at the kitchen sink
14.  Make muffin tin crayons by melting broken crayons in the oven
15.  Color pictures together (print out adult coloring sheets for mom)
16.  Play instruments and record videos of your “band”
17.  Make homemade pizzas
18.  Have a friend come over to play
19.  Make lemonade from scratch
20.  Make a book with your own story and pictures
21.  Play bingo (and make your own bingo set)
22.  Play board games like Candyland and Chutes & Ladders
23.  Collect sticks, stones, and leaves and paint them
24.  Create some art by fingerpainting
25.  Sew something easy like a pillow in a fun shape
26.  Have a dance party and play freeze dance
27.  Exercise or do yoga or dance (find instructional videos on YouTube)
28.  Use bingo markers to do art (practice counting, making letters, etc)
29.  Make your own puzzles using cardboard from cereal boxes
30.  Make a collage using magazines
31.  Do some crafts with supplies like cotton balls, q-tips, tissue paper, etc.
32.  Make your own Moonsand
33.  Build a house using toothpicks and gumdrops or marshmallows
34.  Use painter’s tape on your couch and floor to make race tracks for little cars
35.  Give each other manicures and pedicures
36.  Paint a plant pot (from the dollar store)
37.  Swap some toys with a friend or neighbor for a few days
38.  Make a bird feeder from an empty paper towel or toilet paper roll
39.  Make 3d junk art by gluing together scraps from the junk drawer
(old keys, screws, etc.) and then painting it


40.  Take a walk and try a new route
41.  Go on a bikeride
42.  Do a nature scavenger hunt (print a list of objects from Pinterest)
43.  Take a nature walk and collect rocks or flowers in an egg carton
44.  Play with bubbles (make your own bubble juice or bubble wands)
45.  Have a picnic lunch
46.  Trace your bodies with sidewalk chalk
47.  Make car or train tracks with sidewalk chalk
48.  Play hopscotch
49.  Play with a watertable or use buckets or tubs filled with water
50.  Put sand, beans or rice in watertable or bucket and bury small toys
51.  Spread shaving cream over a table and play
52.  Paint on an easel
53.  Play with water balloons
54.  Go swimming
55.  Pitch a tent in your backyard
56.  Plant a garden
57.  Weed the garden
58.  Pick flowers and make a flower crown or necklace
59.  Wash the car in swimsuits


60.  Visit a park you haven’t been to before
61.  Visit a local farm (Centennial farm in Costa Mesa)
62.  Visit a local garden or arboretum (Fullerton Arboretum,
CoastKeeper Garden in Orange, Roger’s Garden in Corona Del Mar)
63.  Visit a nature center (Shipley Nature Center in Huntington Beach,
Bolsa Chica Wetlands in Huntington Beach, Turtle Rock Nature Center in Irvine)
64.  Go to the beach
65.  Attend a free children’s movie at a theater (Triangle Square in Costa Mesa)
66.  Visit an animal rehabilitation center or sanctuary (Pacific Marine Mammal Center
in Laguna Beach, Tucker’s Wildlife Sanctuary in Silverado)
67.  Visit the library and join the summer reading club, attend storytime,
or attend other free events (i.e. lego building days)
68.  Have a picnic lunch at a park
69.  Go bowling for free with
70.  Visit a local pet store and check out the animals
71.  Go hiking (Bommers Canyon in Irvine, Peter’s Canyon in Tustin,
Laguna Coast Wilderness Park in Laguna Beach)
72.  Visit a free children’s museum (Discovery Science Center in Los Angeles)
73.  Play at a mall playground (Mainplace Mall in Orange, Irvine Spectrum)
74.  Watch movies or concerts in the park (check city websites for dates)
75.  Go to a splash pad (Pioneer Park in Tustin, Irvine Spectrum)
76.  Attend storytime at a bookstore (Barnes & Noble)
77.  Visit a duck pond and feed the ducks (Tewinkle Park in Costa Mesa)
78.  Visit a farmer’s market and try the free samples
79.  Visit the tide pools and touch sea animals
80.  Fly a kite at the beach or park (plastic kites at the dollar store)
81.  Take your bikes to a large park and ride them on the trails
(Irvine Regional Park in Orange, track at Grijalva Sports Park in Orange)
82.  Take a walk on the pier or ride bikes on the boardwalk
83.  Make free crafts at local store events (Lakeshore Learning, Lowe’s, Home Depot)
84.  Find a local service opportunity with


85.  Visit a local zoo (Santa Ana Zoo, Orange County Zoo in Orange,
Reptile Zoo in Costa Mesa)
86.  Visit a trampoline park or bounce house (Scooter’s Jungle in Placentia,
Big Air Trampoline Park in Laguna Hills, Sky High Sports in Costa Mesa,
Sky Zone in Anaheim, Frogg’s Bounce House in Fountain Valley, Pump it Up)
87.  Visit an indoor play center (Playland CafĂ© in Irvine, Thrill It in Orange,
Seascape Kids Fun in Anaheim)
88.  Visit a children’s museum (Bowers Kidseum in Santa Ana,
Discovery Science Centerin Orange, La Habra Children’s Museum,
Pretend City in Irvine, Dinosaur exhibit at Laguna Hills Mall, Muzeo in Anaheim,
Ocean Institute in Dana Point)
89.  Go to the dollar movie theater
90.  Take a train ride (Metrolink, Amtrak)
91.  Go get frozen yogurt, ice cream, or shaved ice (Rite-Aid,
Yogurt Land, Snow Station)
92.  Ride the ferris wheel, carousel, or train at a mall or shopping area
(Irvine Spectrum, The Block of Orange, Balboa Island, South Coast Plaza)
93.  Go to the fair (O.C. Fair in Costa Mesa)
94.  Go to the circus
95.  Visit an aquarium (Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach)
96.  Pick strawberries at a local farm (Tanaka Farms in Irvine)
97.  Go out to breakfast or lunch
98.  Ride the rides at a park (train, bumper boats, pony rides, paddle boats,
group bikes at Irvine Regional Park in Orange; hot air balloon at Great Park in Irvine)
99.  Visit a petting zoo (ZooMars in San Juan Capistrano)
100.  Visit the play center at IKEA (kids are free for 1 hour, or 90 minutes for club members,
but this is categorized as “paid” assuming mom will do some shopping during this time)
101.  Play at a fast food restaurant playground (Chick-Fil-A)
102.  Play at a park and splash pad (Atlantis Park in Garden Grove, only $2)
103.  Take swim lessons or swim at a public pool (YMCA, Hart Pool in Orange)
104.  Visit a theme park (Adventure City in Anaheim, Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park, Disneyland in Anaheim)
105.  Visit a water park (Raging Waters in San Dimas, Soak City in Buena Park)
106.  Take a class through your city or a nearby city (sports, dance, art, etc.)
107.  Visit an arcade (Balboa Island, Nickel Nickel, Chuck E. Cheese’s, Camelot in Anaheim)
108.  Take a craft class at Michael’s stores (prices start at $2)
109.  Visit a historical site (La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles, San Juan Capistrano Mission)
110.  Walk or ride bikes to a donut store
111.  Go to an airplane or car museum (Lyon Air Museum in Santa Ana,
Planes of Fame in Chino)
112.  Go to a baseball game
113.  Go miniature golfing (Camelot in Anaheim, Boomers in Irvine or Fountain Valley)
114.  Take a ride on a boat or go whale watching
115.  Go camping (O'Neill Regional Park in Trabuco Canyon, Bolsa Chica State Beach in Huntington Beach, Doheny Beach in Dana Point)

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