Summer of Fun {2018 Edition}

Ah!  It’s another edition of Shull Family Summer of Fun!

This is my kiddos’ 5th year in a row to sit down and write out things they want to do this summer.  We write them down and then try and check them off one by one.  I love this list because it’s always a random assortment of things ranging from free to it’s going to cost me, from at home stuff to go on an adventure things too!  We always hang up our list in the playroom and then refer back to it on summer days.  This year, however, Smith suggested we put the list in my phone so that we have it when we’re out and about (that Smith is one smart cookie 😉 ).  Plus, this means we can easily take off and add things as we go.

So, we sat around in our pajamas and typed it in my phone on Saturday morning.  This was the first year that I really saw a divide between the big two and the little two.  Please note, we had fun making our list but there were some “that doesn’t sound like fun” comments made by a few older kids when a few suggestions were thrown out.  Ha!  It wasn’t the most harmonious/Kumbaya moment…but we got ourselves a solid list (and Smith will not be “coloring upstairs” when that activity comes around.  He just wants that to go on record.  Hahaha!).

I love this boy so much…and my hair is a hot mess. 🙂

Now, we’re doing it early for three reasons:
1: It’s warm and sunny out which puts us in the summer mood (we are all so over the school year by now!)
2: My summer calendar is already filling up!  Geez!  We have some super fun stuff planned…but it’s already kind of full, so we need to intentionally make room for this stuff too (and some downtime!).
3: So you guys can offer up some other suggestions!!  You always have the best ideas, and we covet them all!

As always, it’s a crazy mess of things!   Here is our fun and silly mix of things to do this summer…

So, those are some of our ideas for summer fun. What are yours???  We are always looking for new ideas every summer.  My kiddos are 3, 5, 8, and 9…so on the younger side, but please feel free to share ideas for older kids too because I know many of you need them for your big kids!

These two were having so much fun making a list and checking it twice!  (And sweet Madeley has a busted lip.  Boo.)

To see our lists from the past, just look below…

I can’t wait to read your summer fun ideas!!  Now, I can easily add them to my list 🙂 .

Now, you guys ready to learn who won the Apple Watch and Erin Condren gift cards?!?!  I have emailed all of the winners, so if you’re one of them, EMAIL ME BACK ASAP TO CLAIM YOUR PRIZE!!



The winner of the Apple Watch (up to a $350 value) is JENNIFER WERTH!!!!!

And the winners of the three Erin Condren gift cards (each for $75) are RONA DINSMORE, LIZ HUMMEL, AND KYNDRA HARTZLER!!!


Hurry and email me back!!!

That’s it for today!

Happy Monday, friends! xo

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  • Erika Slaughter May 7, 2018 at 4:38 am

    I don’t know who threw, “shoe shopping” out there but that kid is my favorite. 😉

    • Mix and Match Mama May 7, 2018 at 5:27 am

      That would be Ashby Shull. Hahahahahaha!

  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog May 7, 2018 at 4:39 am

    What a fun list! The kids have got the right idea! I love how specific some of them are, the last time is super cute. 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • Jessica Hopewell May 7, 2018 at 4:59 am

    We live near a lake so we go boating & camping often. We’re taking a road trip to mountains next week then big family vacation to the beach in July! Zoo, aquarium, children’s museum, splash pad, vbs, day camps, sprinkler time, fishing, ride horses at night (we have horses) swimming pool jump contests & our country club hosts wonderful holiday parties that a lot of our neighbors & friends attend so those are our summer highlights! Your kids may enjoy hosting a lemonade (or whatever! Cookies, watermelon, water, etc) & give donations/proceeds to charity. That’s always fun! Bring on summer!

  • Sheaffer Sims May 7, 2018 at 5:34 am

    Why did nobody say “eat tacos”? That should be on everybody’s summer list. On the day you go shoe shopping, I’ll meet y’all at the mall. #priorities

  • Elspeth Mizner May 7, 2018 at 5:35 am

    Love the summer list idea, i totally know what you mean when you talk about the divide. There was always a heated discussion between me and my brother and our younger brothers

  • Lesley McFarland May 7, 2018 at 5:47 am

    I’m not sure if you guys want to come to Fort Worth but the log cabin houses are AMAZING!!! SO MUCH FUN!! Your kids are the perfect age for them. You can also go to zoo and ride the train. It is all right there.

  • Taylor May 7, 2018 at 5:51 am

    Fun list!! Just curious-how do you watch a movie from the pool? Sounds fun!

    • Mix and Match Mama May 7, 2018 at 5:55 am

      Last year, we watched Jaws. Andrew has a projector and we put it against the side of our house and watched from the water.

      • Taylor May 8, 2018 at 3:35 am

        That’s so fun!! Love it!

  • Jenn May 7, 2018 at 6:15 am

    Our list last summer was VERY similar. You should include something that benefits your neighbors or some older people, because the kids will get rewards they didn’t see coming! We took cookies to some older people from our church last year and they talk about that more than the roller skating or homemade pizzas!
    Also you should include a local play- there are so many good theaters around (they tend to like the children’s theaters even more, there’s a great one in Hurst!) and that’s one of our favorite activities in the summer.

  • Kristen May 7, 2018 at 6:17 am

    My kids love camping in the backyard.

  • Rebecca May 7, 2018 at 6:17 am

    Checking out books from the public library is a favorite in our house. Most libraries have summer reading programs with prizes too.

  • LeeAnn May 7, 2018 at 6:17 am

    Love the summer list! And that projector idea, so fun. LOVE that you watched jaws in the water LOL! Perfect

  • Shannon May 7, 2018 at 6:20 am

    I want to try out the drive-in movie in Lewisville this summer!

  • Miranda Foster May 7, 2018 at 6:26 am

    My kids are 1 & 3! We do a lot of park picnics, trip to the lake house, and want to attempt camping this year!

  • Narci Dreffs May 7, 2018 at 6:36 am

    Well, that list sounds pretty much perfect!! I can’t wait for summer to get here! So fun!!

  • Erin Port May 7, 2018 at 6:40 am

    We love going to get Sonic half-price shakes after 8 in our pajamas, geocaching and being tourists in our own downtown for a day. We visit the capital, the sculpture park, and get food from food-trucks! We add a new city attraction each year! We can’t wait to make our list 🙂 xoxo ERIN

  • Kristine G. May 7, 2018 at 6:41 am

    Love the list idea! My kids are 6 & 8 and we’ve done this for a couple years. Plus I’m a teacher and have the summer of so we usually get most things checked off our list. We don’t have a pool but I love the movie idea…you could call it a “dive in”. Some things that might make our list are: sleeping in a tent in back yard, night walk with flashlights, state fair, amusement park, bike to beach, etc.

    • Kaitlyn May 7, 2018 at 10:07 am

      I love calling it a “dive in” 🙂

  • Suz May 7, 2018 at 6:57 am

    Camping! Our family has done it for years with the cousins. Such happy memories. 😊

  • Francesca May 7, 2018 at 7:16 am

    So fun! It’s incredible how in a few short years looking back at your previous lists we see how your wonderful children have grown. I’m not really looking forward to the hot Texas summer with a 1.5 year old but we did get one of those water tables for him to play with yesterday! Any other suggestions for a toddler in the Texas heat would be appreciated. 😉

  • Lisa D May 7, 2018 at 7:17 am

    Go on a hike and take a picnic, on hot days go to inside things like an aquarium or children’s museum, camping in the backyard, summer reading — I made “reading bucks” for my kids, 15 minutes of reading gave them some bucks to redeem for fun later in the summer and that was an incentive for the kids to read during the summer, limit computer and video time so it’s a treat, keep up with spelling and math skills (retired teacher here!), sports camps, overnights with the grandparents….I sure miss those days of summer fun with my kids who are now “grown and flown”!

  • Rachel May 7, 2018 at 7:31 am

    Thanks for the fun ideas 🙂 I’m now officially in the summer mood!!

  • Hope Adkins May 7, 2018 at 7:34 am

    My neighbor and I let our 3 yr olds get out All of the bubbles and bubble machines and let them run wild. We also go to the dollar store and stock up on glow sticks and kites. It’s not much but to an2 and 3 yr old it’s so fun to be able to play outside one night when it’s dark. We also bought a $20 drone and my 3 yr old loves it. She’s always asking to fly the drone meaning she just wants to watch us fly it and then she runs around trying to catch it. Your older ones may like flying it while the little watch.

  • Judy May 7, 2018 at 7:38 am

    We do this every year also! Our list always includes a trip to the library, a snack at the mall, an art project (make a scrapbook from vacation usually) and something to do for grandparents (like take them a surprise flower).

  • Chrissy May 7, 2018 at 7:39 am

    Super cute list! A lemonade stand for charity is one of our summer staples. Do you have a lake with boat rentals nearby? That’d be a fun day out!

  • Jodi May 7, 2018 at 7:43 am

    Join the Library summer reading program…and head to a few indie bookstores. ❤️ My fave… ❤️ Chestnut Square’s Prairie Camp is OLD SCHOOL and hilarious for pics! ❤️ Adriatica’s summer market…gimme those tomatoes! 😜

  • Erin May 7, 2018 at 7:48 am

    I love that it’s not just “color upstairs” but rather “color a lot upstairs.” POOR SMITH! HA! And YES to strawberry cake!!

  • Tina May 7, 2018 at 7:48 am

    I always love seeing these lists! Last year someone in our town started hiding painted rocks all over town and it was a HUGE hit. She started a Facebook page and would post pictures of the rocks (with hints for some of them) for everyone to go out and search. Then everyone would post pics of the rocks they had found. Before long, the entire town got in on it and even had rock painting parties. Lol We added rock painting to my son’s family Birthday party because he loved it so much (he’s 7). He thought he was famous after a few of his rocks he painted were found and posted.☺️ It was so fun to go into town and see all the people out hiding and finding rocks. It really drew people outdoors and brought our town together. Teenagers and adults even loved it and would be out searching late at night.☺️ Of course, the rocks ranged from really awesome artwork to something a kid obviously did (my personal ones were in that 2nd category😉). My son has been asking all school year when we get to start painting, hiding and hunting for rocks again. It was definitely a fun summer activity, especially on days we just bored and wanted to get out of the house. The grandparents even came out and searched with us some. So fun!

  • Lacey Lepick May 7, 2018 at 7:52 am

    Can you tell me where you purchased your “America” raglan?!

  • Melissa May 7, 2018 at 7:52 am

    We’ve done a Summer Fun List since our oldest was in Kinder (he’s finishing 7th this year) and I keep a running list in my planner of things they say during the year or I find that would be fun and then I type it up cute and lay it out for them to see on the last day of school. Our list isn’t quite finished yet, but so far we have: visit the Dallas Aquarium, Bucee’s for snacks, the beach, and Nash Farms in Grapevine, Medieval Times (our youngest read a book about knights earlier this year and is dying to go), Magnolia Silos, and Muggle Shakes in Ft Worth, complete summer workbooks (never their favorite but that’s ok), make a soldier care package, read Old Yeller aloud, bake a flag cake and celebrate our dog’s birthday ; )

  • Julie May 7, 2018 at 7:55 am

    I laughed out loud that Smith made it clear he will NOT do coloring upstairs. So funny. I have an 8 year old boy too, and I can totally hear him saying something like that. Accompanied by an eye roll, of course! Love your summer list-thanks for sharing!

  • Meredith May 7, 2018 at 8:10 am

    When my kids were younger we made a summer to do list each year as well. It’s fun to go to DFW airport and watch the planes take off and land. There’s actually a viewing area and you are so close. Also we liked to ride the train to the zoo or anywhere actually. Oh and building a huge fort to sleep in was always a hit! You actually inspired me to make a summer list again with my 16 year old and two 19 year olds that will be home from college!

  • Ann Marie Tennison May 7, 2018 at 8:11 am

    Summer list!! EEEE! Can’t wait to make ours with the girls! Buy Momma & Daddy bikes is going on the list for family bike rides. HOW have we never purchased bikes for us? What a fun SUMMER!

  • Angela Ellingson May 7, 2018 at 8:11 am

    Such a great list!! My kiddos are excited for the zoo. 😊

  • Amanda Bacon May 7, 2018 at 8:13 am

    Camping, playing in the sprinkler, zoo trip, childrens museum trip, go to the planetarium, go fishing, picnic dinner in the living room with pizza and a movie, make a bird house, make giant bubbles, trip to a trampoline park, nerf gun war, bonfire, and lastly our library hosts so many fun and interactive events over the summer that my boys love going to and they are always free!

  • Staci Patyrak May 7, 2018 at 8:23 am

    This list sounds super fun! Our fam likes head to downton Dallas “the fun way.” By that I mean, DART and then the M-Line Trolley. So fun! Hit up Klyde Warren Park for some play time (splash in the water area and run around (not to mention…snow cones, Steel City Pops or gourmet ice cream sandwiches. You could also stay on the DART and go a little further to Union Station. Take a ride up Reunion Tower. Sample the dessert shaped like the tower at Cloud 9 Cafe.
    Last summer, we did a weekend staycation at the Gaylord Texan and LOVED every minute of it!
    On my summer bucket list is to visit the pool shaped like Texas (located in Plano). Haven’t made it yet, but one day.
    A visit to Ham’s Orchard for some berry or peach picking!
    Day trip to Glen Rose for Dinosaur State Park and Fossil Rim.
    At home car wash…kids get to splash in the water and cars get “clean”…win/win.

    Just love reading your blog! In fact…have purchased many of your book suggestions on the spot! Class Mom has been one of my favorites!

  • Heather May 7, 2018 at 8:26 am

    Here’s a few more that always make our list. Catch fireflies. See fireworks. Tie dye by the pool that we wear the following year for egg dying.

  • Ann May 7, 2018 at 8:29 am

    I think you should have at least one science project. 😬

  • Maria May 7, 2018 at 8:29 am

    Since you have started canning, get the kids involved in that too! It’s never too early. They may not be able to ladle hot foods, but they can certainly help with the prep work. And if you have extra, they will love giving their homemade goodies as gifts. My grandmother got me started early and I never forgot that time spent with her.

  • Alexis deZayas May 7, 2018 at 9:02 am

    You had me laughing out loud about Smith wanting it on record that he wasn’t going to be coloring upstairs this morning! I’d like shoe shopping on my list every season!

    • Mix and Match Mama May 7, 2018 at 1:02 pm

      Ashby insisted on both coloring and shoe shopping. Hahahaha!

  • Tish Ferry May 7, 2018 at 9:02 am

    Shoe shopping! Pair that with homemade icecream and a movie in the pool and that sounds like the PERFECT summer day! We are ready for SUMMER at the Ferry house too! Have a great week! 🙂 Simply Tish

  • Sydney May 7, 2018 at 9:31 am

    I agree with camping, and we’re definitely not a camping family! We always go for one night (aka about 18 hours) with our good friends, make campfire food, stay up way too late, then get up early, pack up, and head to starbucks:) it’s one of our kid’s favorite traditions

  • Kaitlyn May 7, 2018 at 10:05 am

    What a fun mix of things 🙂 Some of the ideas on our list this year are:
    •Camping (renting a camper)
    •Sleeping in a tent in the backyard
    •Going to a drive in movie
    •Visiting the public library
    •Donating items needed to the animal shelter and •playing with the animals while we’re there
    •Going to the zoo!
    •Picnics at the park
    •Visit a waterpark

    This momma is so envious of your pool! 🙂

  • Patty Anderson May 7, 2018 at 10:09 am

    When I was a child we used to love going out to the Boy Scout camp to hike after church each Sunday. We also rented canoes often for a leisurely afternoon on the water or lake. Great memories!

  • Dianna May 7, 2018 at 10:19 am

    Water balloon/gun fight, lemonade stand, homemade popsicles

  • Nancy May 7, 2018 at 11:00 am

    How about surprise a friend/family each week to surprise them with a fresh baked good and card!

  • Cat May 7, 2018 at 11:47 am

    We live in California and my family loves fruit-picking in the summer. I’m so excited for cherries and peaches and nectarines in a few weeks, and then strawberries later in the summer. And afterwards, we’ll be trying out the freezer jam for sure!

  • SS May 7, 2018 at 11:48 am

    We love to make sidewalk paint! (Equal parts water to cornstarch mix and food coloring and we buy brushes at the dollar store.) Blueberry picking, swimming of course, bon fires with s’mores, harvesting any of our goodies from the garden, playing outside, having friends over to play, catching lightning bugs (fireflies), and much more.

    Shay, have you made homemade ice cream in a baggie? We did that as a science experiment this year. LOL!!!

  • Gail Young May 7, 2018 at 12:02 pm

    This is a little side note but still on point I think. We have friends that do Grandparent Camp where they have all their grandkids at their house and they pick a theme each year. They do all kinds of activities geared around the theme from crafts, games, food, outings, etc. The ones I remember them talking about were Spy Camp and Pirate Camp. Sometimes it is just a day and sometimes up to a week. Some days the parents are there to help and sometimes it is just the grandparents with the kids. For Spy Camp they all wore costumes of trench coats, mustaches, wigs, etc. And for Pirate Camp , all the pirate costumes, etc. They have a blast together!!

  • Robin May 7, 2018 at 12:14 pm

    Some of the things on our summer fun list:

    1. trips to the beach
    2. trips to my parent’s cottage
    3. we have a local children’s garden so we make a few trips there
    4. family bike rides
    5. Library summer reading program – our local library has a great summer reading program with opportunities for great prizes for the kids (think free ice cream cones, free passes to a local water park, free pie from the Grand Traverse Pie Company, free cookie from Insomniac Cookie, etc.) and they have an adult summer reading program too with prizes (think free drink at a local coffee shop, free pie, water park tickets, etc.) – so my kids and I all enroll and then I usually take a fun day off work where we’ll get pie for breakfast (with our free cupons), hit up the water park (for free) and finish the day with free cookies/ice cream. It’s a great incentive for them to read (and me too) and we get so many prizes we can’t even use them all in a fun-filled day so some of them we stretch out and enjoy a little at a time. If your library has a program like this you should totally check it out – I don’t know about other states, but I think most libraries in Michigan do.

  • Kristin Bannister May 7, 2018 at 12:17 pm

    Ok first, I’m loving the shoe shopping idea— I feel like that needs to be added to every list I have! 😉 One thing we added new to our summer list this year: The kids are going to plan, shop for, and prepare ( with supervision) a meal for the family 1x a month. They are excited about coming up with the menu and learning to cook it for us. Also, we are going to pick our fruit and make jam with it… because I can’t wait to try making jam, after reading your posts!

  • Molly May 7, 2018 at 12:32 pm

    When I nannied, one of our favorite summer activities was to build a fort on a rainy day, eat lunch in it and watch a movie. Another fun activitiy for girls was hair wraps.

  • Jessica May 7, 2018 at 12:42 pm

    When I was growing up, a HUGE part of summer was picking fruit and vegetables out of my grandparents’ garden. No one in my family has a large garden anymore, so I always try to take my little ones to u-pick fruit places.

  • Darcy May 7, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    Woot! Congratulations to your winners! (And thanks for being generous with giveaways.)

    My kids are too little to make a list (my oldest is 27 months, youngest 10 months) but this summer we’re going to try to go swimming at our local pool once a month (we live in NE Oregon where no one has pools at home, lol); get a pizza and eat dinner at the playground while the kids play; and go on one road trip that is to someplace we’ve never been.

  • Jillian May 7, 2018 at 1:28 pm

    What a fantastic list! Shoe shopping, coloring, making (& more importantly eating) strawberry cake all sounds like a great summer activities to me! I look forward to reading all your summer posts! It will help the summer weekdays I am working in an office go by faster! Haha

  • Diana May 7, 2018 at 1:30 pm

    I love this idea! My kiddos are only 3 and 1, but I’ll see if I can get my 3-year to help me come up with ideas 🙂 I know we’re doing our Library Summer Reading program, and our town does movies in the park during the summer. We might try to make homemade ice cream if I can find an easy recipe! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Sarah May 7, 2018 at 1:45 pm

    We were inspired by your post last year about a summer list so I made one this year for my 2 year old twin boys. We’ve already started ours since it’s been hot in Florida for some time but here are just a few things on our 90 item list:
    Play date with friends (I have a list of different friends to get together with)
    Take swimming lessons
    Go out to eat with grandparents
    Children’s Museum
    Splash pad
    Go berry picking
    Play “Simon Says”
    Eat dinner outside by the pool
    Gymnastics open gym for toddlers
    Play “I spy” outside
    Go on a wagon ride
    Make homemade popsicles
    Host a pajama party play date with friends
    Visit a petting farm

  • Mindy Tierney May 7, 2018 at 2:34 pm

    Amusement Parks! We go to them every year. Usually before it gets too hot/crowded. We live just over an hour from Hershey Park – our favorite. This year we are going to Tenn. for the first time and spending a day at Dollywood Amusement Park!

  • Katy May 7, 2018 at 3:10 pm

    We get ice cream in our jammies after bedtime one night! We have a really good frozen custard place and also a food truck that sells giant cookie and ice cream sandwiches so we try and do one of those. We also go camping (this is something my parents so with them), make a lot of smores, and go see a baseball game (last year we saw the Rangers/Astros game). Our town has $1 summer movie clubs at 3 of the theaters with kids movies and $1 popcorn. We go to the science museum, to the farmers market, and to the trampoline park a lot, too.

  • Holly Clark May 7, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    When my kids were younger we did “3 Parks Day”. They each brought a friend and we went to 3 different parks nearby that we normally did not go to. This made the parks a little more exciting. As we went to the first park I set my timer for 30 minutes. They played anything they wanted and when the timer went off, we went to the 2nd park and played for 30 minutes and then on to the 3rd. We usually did this on the earlier side before it was too hot and I chose some parks with shade. We brought water bottles and came home for a snack and a time to relax.

  • Kristy May 7, 2018 at 4:44 pm

    Two things that end up on our list every year are to pick fruit at a local farm/orchard. And my kids also love “Park in the dark” which means going to a park with flashlights/glow gear just after sunset. It’s a blast!

  • Sarah May 7, 2018 at 5:30 pm

    Love how real you were about the list-making! Sounds very familiar in my house with three girls 3-9!
    One fun thing we did last summer was a camp out in our backyard with neighbors! Both the kids and adults enjoyed it…plus bathrooms were close by! 😉

  • Yley Allen May 8, 2018 at 1:33 am

    I love any excuse to make a list! Our Summer to-do list will include beach days, picnics, trampoline park playdate, family hike, Legoland, San Diego Safari park, Knotts Berry Farm, family vacation, fishing off the pier, petting zoo, a trip to color-me-mine, and feeding the ducks at the pond. Can’t wait for school to be out!

  • Tracy May 8, 2018 at 3:04 pm

    Our county has a “donut trail” where you visit a bunch of different donut shops. Could be done in one day or one shop per day/week. You could make your own donut trail….or ice cream trail…or cupcake trail (depends what’s in your area) and visit different local shops during the summer. It’s fun to compare the different shops and then rank them in order from favorite to least favorite and see how everyone’s compares. Service projects are fun to do together. Check if the “Kids Bowl Free” program is in your area. That’s always great summer fun with friends on super hot days. Have fun!

  • cassie {hi sugarplum} May 8, 2018 at 3:24 pm

    These posts are always so inspiring…I love all the fun ideas to stay busy, yet connected!!!

  • Stephanie Simpson May 9, 2018 at 8:04 am

    Water balloon fight. Reading party-get books from library then make bookmarks at home and have ‘bookworms’ (gummy worms) for a snack. Complete a summer reading list through the library. Have the kids decide on dinner and help them shop/prepare for it. They can come up with the name of their restaurant and make menus and take the parents’ orders and serve. The older two can make activity placemats for the younger two to complete while dinner is being finished up. Blind food test-mine love this. I’ll buy different flavored Oreos, Pringles, whatever and they have to taste them without looking and write down their flavor guess. For the older ones you could take them to a super late movie. We went to the last showing of a kid movie one summer and they thought it was so cool to be up and out that late. Night swim. Swim/play in the rain as long as no lightning. Outdoor concert. Make a painted rock garden. Make tie dye tshirts…for younger ones I found doing tie dye with sharpies is way less messy. (Google for the how-to). Do origami. Build a lego/block city. Minute to win it night. Simple science experiment day. I snap a pic of everything we do and they are either holding a chalkboard sign with the activity and what number it is or I edit the pic with my phone and type it on the pic and then at the end of summer I make a photo book through Shutterfly and then we can look back on it later. We started doing ours in 2012. So fun!