Summer 2020 is in full swing! For most of us, 2020 hasn’t gone the way we anticipated… (I mean, that’s an understatement; 2020 has sucked.) But it’s still summertime, life is still happening, and I want to soak up as much of the summer vibes as I possibly can. I don’t know about you, but in general I just feel like life has lost a lot of its spark recently. There’s very little that I excited about: no traveling, no festivals, no parties. I think that lots of the zest in life comes from the simple act of anticipating something, which is why I made a summer 2020 Austin bucket list (with a baby). I need some things to look forward to!
Social distancing and mask-wearing are really important right now, so I factored those into my summer bucket list. And I have an 8-month-old baby right now (yay! I remember being pregnant in 2019 and being soooo excited for summer 2020 with my fresh baby boy!) so I need baby-friendly activities. And Nate was in his car crash and can’t walk this summer, so that’s another complication.
All of that being said, coming up with things that make me feel excited about life was challenging! I realized that 50% of the game was simply changing my mindset about an event. If I can change my mindset, I can make even normal events that I do all the time into something worth looking forward to. (Let’s be honest…the options are pretty limited this summer!)
So, in my deep dive of creative thinking and fierce work on altering my mindset, here is my Summer 2020 Austin Bucket List. Summer vibes: I’m gonna keep chasing you! And 2020, I’m not gonna let you win.
My Summer 2020 Austin Bucket List (With A Baby)
- Austin Hotel Staycations X2! I know that a lot of people are venturing out on road trips this summer, but that’s not an option for us with all of Nate’s medical appointments. So, we’re going to do a couple staycations at some swanky Austin hotels! I have two lined up for the month of July. I’ll share recaps on the blog later this month! In general, hotels are being very cautious by requiring masks in public spaces, sanitizing lobbies and rooms, and requiring reservations at pools so that there’s adequate social distancing. And there are some really sweet hotels in ATX that I’ve never checked out, so this is my summer to do that! For one of these stays I’m handing Milo off to family members, and for another one I’m going to try to bring him with us.
- Summer Movie Nights. Y’all, Nate and I go to Alamo Drafthouse sooo often in real life and I miss it! So, I decided to create weekly movie nights at home. I have officially declared Wednesday nights in our home our “Alamo nights.” (This is an example of something that takes a mindset shift: watching a movie at home is nothing new – we’ve all probably been camped in front of our TVs too much since March, anyway – but making just a few subtle shifts changes everything.) Here are the rules:
- We both have to pick a movie in advance (NOT while we’re sitting on the couch in the evening and scrolling through Netflix) so that there’s a little bit of anticipation for the movie, just like how you feel excited about going to a movie theater if you purchase a ticket earlier in the week.
- No phones allowed! Anyone else guilty of scrolling mindlessly through instagram while watching a movie, then getting deathly bored because you don’t know what’s happening in the plot line because you haven’t been paying attention?
- Movie theater candy is a must! Sour Patch Kids are always my go-to.
- Craft beer for sure. I typically drink just a few ounces of beer at a time (we have a kegerator in our dining room, so I can pour however much I want), but for our Summer Movie Nights I commit to drinking a full beer. Haha! This sounds so ridiculous…does anyone understand this at all? When I’m at home, I’ll split beers with Nate or drink small amounts, but when I’m out at the movie theater, I’ll order a beer and drink the entire thing by myself. So, in an effort to re-create the movie experience, I pick a craft beer I’m excited about and pour the whole thing into a glass and savor it all. Mindset shift. 😉
- Weekly walks with friends. Milo was 4 months old when the pandemic hit, so I was just starting to venture out, put him in activities like swim lessons, and meet other new moms. And then BAM! We all had to stay in our homes. Being a mom is lonely, and being a mom during a pandemic is even lonelier. My remedy is to make sure I go on at least 1 walk per week with another mom. It takes a little coordination (naps! schedules! ahhhh!), but friends: it is sooo worth it to connect in-person with another mom. We’re outside the whole time, strollers are distanced, and we can chat about all the things about early mom hood. I always come home from these walks feeling invigorated. Summer must!
- Pool time! Milo loves being in the water, so I’ve been creative this summer with ways to keep him swimming. (I know they’re being careful with sanitizing, but I’m not going to Barton Springs just yet.) I have a sweet friend who lets us use her backyard pool, so we’ll pack up in the car and go over there occasionally. Some days I just give him an afternoon bath, because he’ll play forever in the tub if I let him! And I just ordered a little kiddie pool to keep in the yard for the rest of the summer – wahoo!
- Beach reads. There are no trips to the beach on my horizon, but that doesn’t stop me from filling my kindle with a bunch of great summer reads! (Click on my June Reads for a few really good summer book recommendations.) I love making myself a bright Aperol Spritz and cracking open a brand new summer novel.
- Check out some new breweries. I’ve been to a bunch of Austin breweries this summer, and I’m telling you: they are doing the BEST job at enforcing social distancing rules! (Please don’t go into crowded bars right now, friends.) Most Austin breweries require reservations, have guests sitting outside, and space their tables far apart. (Psst: here are 22 craft breweries in Austin to get you started!) As government mandates change about bars being open, and what qualifies as a “bar,” some of these might be closed. So check their websites. We went to newbie Hold Out Brewing a few weeks ago with two friends and had so much fun!
- Celebrate my 30th! For the last few years, I’ve dreamed of going to Colorado for my 30th, climbing a mountain in the morning, kicking off the next decade of life at 14,000 feet with a craft beer in my hand. Needless to say, that’s not going to happen… 😉 But I’ve adjusted my mindset and I have a really fun, socially-distant, outdoor bday celebration happening at the end of the summer. So excited to celebrate with my people.
Any plans for your summer? I know we’re all starved for excitement and anticipation right now. 2020 isn’t creating it for us right now, so we have to create it ourselves.