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As I’ve done before, I’m straight up stealing this post idea from Phase Three of Life. Thanks for always being an idea person, Meg 🙂

Maybe it’s the fact that this year’s winter was especially icy, especially cold, especially brutal, but I can’t quite seem to comprehend that the weather right now is in the 70s. And it should stay that way, at least for a few months. When I see the sunshine, I feel a very real urge to hold on to it with both hands, like it was a rope and I was playing tug-o-war with some celestial god who can say “Nono, no more sunshine for you, Peon” at any moment.

Because I can’t quite grasp the reality of this summer, I’m having a hard time understanding all the things I have to look forward to this summer, plans that are in motion, or almost in motion, or bouncing around in the back of my mind, waiting to be put into motion.

Allow me to present: Jac’s summertime bucket list. Yes, I desperately hope to do every one of these things. No, I likely won’t. But I’m sure gonna try! In no particular order …

  • Drive-in movies. I live near two drive-in theaters (though the one that embraces those old-school graphics of dancing sodas and popcorn bags is clearly the better one), and it’s my favorite way to spend a Saturday night. We (ahem) pack a cooler, bring some blankets, and settle in for a double-feature.
  • The Printers Row Lit Fest. I try to go yearly, and barring some act of God, I’ll be there this year, too, for my fifth fest. It’s my church, a time when something I hold dear takes over multiple city blocks of Chicago and welcomes me in. I always try to make a speech or two (the event includes author talks), but really, I go to be surrounded by books. Again: My church.

    Jeff and I had been dating six months the first time I took him to the Printers Row Lit Fest. I also got to introduce him to The Bean, which was a few blocks away.

  • A long weekend with Jeff. Unfortunately, my huny has crappy vacation days. Fortunately, I do not have crappy vacation days. We’re planning to do a long weekend somewhere within driving distance (and I’ll probably take the rest of the week off because summer). Traverse City is winning–we went a few years back and it did not disappoint. Each day, we visited a different beach. There was the winery-hopping as we traveled up one peninsula to its tip. The sail boat trip was great, as was the giant dune I climbed halfway. (Jeff climbed the whole thing. I made him go without me.)

    This is how I felt about going to the top of the sand dune.

    Hole up in a cabin in Pennsylvania with a writerly friend. My bud Lindsay and I were lamenting how nice it would be to have time to just write, and she mentioned the glory of a writers’ colony. Which made me think … we should just meet halfway–she’s in NYC, I’m in northeast Indiana–for a weekend and do nothing but write and critique each others work (and, probably, drink wine).

  • Visit a lake as much as humanly possible. You may not know it–I didn’t before moving here–but northeast Indiana is fulllllll of lakes. And many friends of mine have family members who live on lakes. You put me in a bathing suit on a boat in water and you have a blissfully happy girl.
  • Hit up a farmer’s market and buy some fresh flowers. I swear, Instagram made me all jealous of my friends getting fresh blooms over the weekend. I want to play. (Oh yeah, I’m on Instagram now. Follow me, if you’re so inclined.)

What’s on your summertime bucket list?