I grew up in a trailer home in the boonies, over the hill, through the woods, and across the dirt road from Old Grandma (who still lives there).
I remember distinctly the very first time I ever went into the big city (Pittsburgh). I gazed at the groups of people standing on street corners, waiting to cross, and the long lines of cars and the tall buildings. I saw people who looked different from me. I was completely in awe. I must have been about five years old.
My kids have had a decidedly different experience. They have iPads and live in the suburbs. They have only ever ridden their bikes on paved roads. They have been to Philadelphia and Washington DC and Baltimore, more times than they can count.
If you’re looking for a way to get your kids to take charge of their own entertainment, click over to this post where I have created a unique, card-based list of 150 of the best screen-free activities for elementary kids up through teens.
So with that in mind, I wanted to make a life list for my kids, things they have done and will do someday.
- Ride in a taxi – They did this in Philadelphia, and Grace can’t wait to do it again.
- Ride on a city bus
- Take the subway – New York City, June 2019
- Take a train – New Jersey Transit, June 2019
- Climb the Eiffel Tower (Grace and Allie added this.)
- Ride in an airplane – Did this on the way to our Disney cruise, December 2017
- Play in the ocean – We take a family vacation to Ocean City, Maryland every year.
- Build a sand castle – Ocean City
- Get buried in the sand – Ocean City
- Collect sea shells and other beach treasures – Ocean City
- Catch a crab – Ocean City
- Become a Jr. Ranger at a National Park – Assateague Island in Maryland & The White House
- Ride on the Maid of the Mist under Niagara Falls – September 2018
- See a movie at the drive-in theater – June 2019
- Practice yoga – Girl Scouts
- Swim in a wave pool – Hersheypark
- Ride rides in an amusement park – Hersheypark
- Ride a roller coaster – Hersheypark
- Learn to ice skate – Grace took lessons, but Allie hasn’t.
- Have dinner at the Phantom Ranch at the bottom of the Grand Canyon
- Look out from the top of the Washington Monument
- Tour the White House – November 2015
- See the Statue of Liberty in person – June 2019
- Go on a cruise – December 2017
- Visit Walt Disney World – December 2017
- Attend a home Penn State football game in person – I think the Blue & White game counts.
- Perform in a play – Grace has, but Allie hasn’t.
- Visit China (Grace added this.)
- Visit Mexico (Grace added this.)
- Visit Japan (Grace added this.)
- Swim with dolphins
- Go on an eco-safari in Africa
- Hike to a waterfall – July 2019
(The rest go back to my own childhood. I don’t want them to miss out on the fun that I had as a kid, despite all the yuppy experiences they’ve had.)
- Learn to play an instrument – Grace & Allie take piano, guitar, and ukulele lessons.
- Swim in a creek – Near our house
- Swim in a lake – Also near our house
- Roll down a really big hill – At a local park
- Camp out – They have both done this.
- Fly a kite – At the beach
- Pick cherries from a tree – At Strite’s Orchard in Harrisburg
- Pick apples from a tree – At Strite’s
- Pick and eat raspberries – At home
- Make mud pies – At home
- Climb a tree – At home
- Make a whistle from an acorn cap – Aunt Amanda taught them this, but they haven’t gotten good at it yet.
- Feed the birds – At home
- Catch tadpoles
- Grow a garden – At home
- Cook over a camp fire – At home
- Climb a mountain
- Find a geocache – June 2016
- See the Northern Lights
- Watch a meteor shower
- Care for a pet – At home
- Explore a cave
- Have fun at a carnival – I think the York Fair counts.
- Milk a cow
- Go roller skating – Near our house
- Take a boat ride on the river – With my uncle and Old Grandma and also on the Pride of the Susquehanna in Harrisburg
- Sell Girl Scout cookies – They have both done this.
- Tie their own shoelaces – They can both do this.
- Learn to cook with a recipe – They’re both pretty good at this.
- Learn how to handle money
- Create a painting
- Make jam from fresh fruit
- Roast marshmallows & make s’mores – Frequently in the summer
- Learn to crochet or knit
- Visit an art museum
- Visit a science museum – Whitaker Center in Harrisburg
- Go to vacation bible school – yearly
- Learn to sew
- Get a manicure at a spa – Grace has done this, but Allie hasn’t.
- Volunteer at a homeless shelter
- Volunteer at an animal shelter
- Learn a second language
- Sign up for a library card – both have library cards
- See a Broadway show – Saw Harry Potter and the Cursed Child on Broadway, June 2019
- Travel to a third world country
- Join the Girl Scouts or 4H – They are in both.
- Run a 5k – Both girls have walked 5Ks with me and HATED the experience.
- Go whale watching
- Swing on a tire swing – There is a tire swing at the elementary school near our house.
What am I missing?
Download a printable version of the list below. Print one out and check off the items as your kids do each one.
If you’re looking for a way to get your kids to take charge of their own daily entertainment, click over to this post where I have created a unique, card-based list of 150 of the best screen-free activities for elementary kids up through teens.
© 2015 – 2019, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.