Monday, September 7, 2015

Summer by the Numbers

In summers past, we created Lists {2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013} - to do, to see, to go, etc.  And they were great.  The goal wasn't necessarily to cross everything off the list but rather to provide ideas for those days when we were bored and stuck and didn't know what to do.  Last year, we skipped on the list making, primarily because we had a fun summer of travel and guests already to look forward to.  I was anxious to remove any kind of "we should" "we will" "we haven't done this yet" rigidity and instead allow ourselves a little more flexibility while still doing some fun stuff - and the stuff on our previous lists was getting repetitive (I need new ideas!).  This summer, we took things in yet another direction and decided to count our summer by the numbers.

As school neared to a close back in June, we sketched out a few different categories of the things we knew we were going to do this summer that we could keep track of numerically.  We narrowed it down to nine categories - from new things we were anxious to try to everyday things we'd be doing anyway.

And here's my disclaimer - this is a lot easier said than done.  Especially when you're tallying for five different people.  You'd think it'd be simple enough - read a book and mark it on the sheet.  Well, not so much.  We had our sheets taped to the back of the garage door in the kitchen, which made them visible and accessible, it really was just a matter of remembering.  Every day.  All the time.  And after a while, while the idea is awesome and fun, it does get a little old.

(You can see our papers posted on the door here...amongst the excitement Ruby has when her Daddy comes home for lunch.)

So, here is our Summer by the {approximate} Numbers :) as well as some of our favorite photos from the last three months (that likely have nothing to do with our categories, but here they are anyway!). 

Books Read: 57   So this was to include only chapter books, and not the endless amounts of board books and picture books we read every day.  Some of those got written down, however, and likely many of the chapter books did not (as I couldn't keep up with what Brad was reading and Drew would often forget to write his down).  So we'll call this a nice estimate of the book variety.

Parks Visited: 9   These are local parks only, and don't include repeat visits to the same park.  There were many of those.

Visitors Welcomed: 10  Our house was full during the month of June!  

(Servings of) Ice Cream Eaten: 21  But we know it was so much more than that.

Caches Found: 11  I blogged about geocaching just a bit back on this post, and it was something I hoped we'd really get into this summer.  It was great at first, but then Drew lost his enthusiasm for it (Reed was way into it) and I learned that trying to take all three kids on my own was a bit difficult, especially when it came to hunting into hard to reach places. So we'll keep this on the "to try again" list for next summer.

Meals BBQ'd: 7  I'd love to see this number be so much greater.  And I'd love for the menu to include more than burgers and hot dogs.

Movies Watched: 14  Does not include movies watched while traveling.  Inside Out and The Minion Movie were seen in the theater.  And who says you can't watch Elf in the middle of summer???

Miles Traveled: 3,293   Brad to and from Chicago; us to and from the Detroit Zoo; us to Pella, Brad back home, the kids and me to Mankato, back to Pella, to Davenport, and back home again; and us to Genesee County to pick up Buddy.  Oofta!  Next year I think we'll track our biking miles!

And lastly, Pictures Taken: 2,285

Then there were the untallied categories of arguments had, knees skinned, and moods ignored.  But the memories made far out count them all.

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