Here’s a question: Do you have a bucket list? Odds are you do. In fact, 95% of American’s claim they’ve made a list of things they want to do or places they want to visit before they die. Maybe you’ve written it down or maybe it’s tucked away in the back of your mind. Maybe you categorized it? Or maybe it’s a jumbled mess. Regardless, you’ve probably got a bucket list and chances are your bucket list has some of these things on it:
- Fall in love
- Go on a wine tour in Napa
- Change someone’s life for the better
- Get to my ideal weight
- Go on a safari
- Ride a hot air balloon
- See the Northern Lights
- Go to the Super Bowl
- Swim with dolphins
- Travel through Europe*
Making a bucket list focuses our attention, helps us articulate things that are important to us and lends accountability, meaning and a spirit of exploration.
Here’s another question: Do you feel the weight of winter looming before you? I do. On November 1st, 2020 in Columbia, MO the sun will set around 5:30pm, the temperature will likely be between 55 and 37 degrees, and snow fall will soon follow and we’ll all be cooped up in our homes. Accompanied with dropping temperatures, this pandemic will most likely still exist come December. In a season that already confines us more to the indoors, we might be confined to smaller social settings and continuously changing health guidelines. I don’t know what this winter is going to look like, but I can imagine that it will be unique and challenging.
I’ve been thinking about winter. Which is pretty unusual. I think I’m usually an “out of sight out of mind” kind of gal. But, I’ve been thinking about winter. Maybe it’s because of the cooler weather that’s crept in this August. Or perhaps it’s because this past spring, I wasn’t thinking about what the next season may hold.
When this pandemic started, on my first day working from home, I made an email folder. What did I call it? “This Week.” I guess I thought that’d I’d only be getting coronavirus related emails for about a week or so. How long have I been sliding coronavirus related emails into this folder? 143 days.
I wasn’t prepared. Mentally. Emotionally. Toilet Paper-ally. I wasn’t thinking about what the days to come would have for me. But now I am. So, in preparation for the cloudy days and long nights, among some other things, I’ve decided to make a WINTER BUCKET LIST. I’ll say it again for dramatic effect… WINTER BUCKET LIST.
As the air cools and the days get shorter, my hope is: by making a bucket list I can learn to find joy in the little things, and focus on what I am grateful for.
Maybe I’m just tricking myself into being excited for something I’m dreading. A friend recently told me that stating “I’m excited!” either to others or yourself, for something you aren’t looking forward to, actually tricks your brain into thinking you’re excited and in turn, creates genuine excitement! So… Winter 2020/21? I’m excited!
So, what do you want to do this winter? Here are a few things on my WINTER BUCKET LIST:
- Roast marshmallows in the fireplace to make s’mores
- Make and decorate a gingerbread house
- Finish a 1000 piece puzzle (nerd alert!)
- Send some friends a handwritten card
- Get an indoor plant (and keep it alive)
- Make a family recipe
- Drive around with Hot Chocolate to see Christmas lights
- Have a virtual game night with friends around the world
- WINTER MOVIE MARATHON!!
- Cut down our own Christmas Tree
I also reached out to a few friends to see what would be on their list:
- Try a new video workout
- Read an entire book by the fireplace
- Make snow ice cream
- Pick up a new hobby
- Bake homemade cinnamon rolls
- Start a podcast with a friend
- Paint/draw a self portrait
- Leave a “Thank You” for the wonderful humans who drop packages on our porch
- Try making a new recipe
- Get better at photography
- Foster a pet
- Create a “Winter Quarantine” moody playlist
- Bless a family in need
Of course, some of these things don’t need to wait for winter, but I hope these lists inspire you to find joy in the little things as summer turns to fall and fall to winter. It’ll be here before we know it! Thinking of you all. Praying for you all.
*USA Today’s 10 top bucket list items on singles’ lists in 2017.