Bucket Listing Like Nobody’s Business Over Here

The first day of school is now 6 days away. Which means we have exactly 6 days left to do ALL THE SUMMER THINGS.

(Mini golf, check.)

I love the fall – perhaps slightly so less out here in California, where fall isn’t all gorgeous foliage and strolls through quaint villages, and is rather “that time when I can’t use the pool anymore” – but this summer has been especially epic, and I’m going to be bummed to see it go. It’s not just the change in weather that’ll be a shift for me, though: my daughter is going into preschool, and my son is going into kindergarten, and so from 9AM to 2PM every day it’ll just be…me.


With my computer.

(So you guys will be there too, I guess. That makes me happy.)

It’s a big change for all of us – I’m picturing dropping off one, and then the other, on that very first day, and then walking back to a quiet, empty house. And while there are elements of this change that are exciting (I’m imagining spectacular, uninterrupted productivity, and maybe even the occasional trip to the gym), it’s also…you know…hard. I’m going to miss them. (I think. I’ll report back.)

Because this is such a massive shift in our family dynamic, I don’t want it to just sneak up on me: I want to make these last couple of weeks feel like a conscious celebration – and also be all wonderfully prepared and on top of things when the school year does finally start, because getting two children off to school every morning sounds stressful, to say the least. (GET. IN. THE CAR.)

…And how might I go about getting all wonderfully prepared and on top of things?

By making to-do lists, of course!

Below are my personal Summer Bucket and Back-To-School To-Do lists – and they’re downloadable and printable, should you want to use them as inspiration for your own end-of-summer activities. First up for me in the school preparation category is inventorying our school supplies and then shopping for whatever we’re low on (markers, construction paper, tape, etc), so that I don’t arrive at the store and discover completely ransacked shelves.

Before you shop for school supplies, though, let me first encourage you to please please please remember to buy all the disinfecting wipes in the world so as to prevent things like full-family viruses resulting from a sneezy classmate. And then let me also give you a suggestion that’ll help you both save money and help a public school in need: Go to to participate in Clorox’s receipt validation program – the brand is partnered with (the leading platform for giving to public schools) and for every $5 purchase of qualifying Clorox® or Glad® products, you will save $1 and send $1 to classrooms in need. All you have to do is upload a picture of your receipt. (FYI, Clorox also donated $150,000 to match donations to qualifying projects on dollar-for-dollar between now and January.)

You know you need those wipes. Why not use your purchase to help out our public schools as well?

Click here to download this to-do list!

Click here to download this checklist!

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This post was created in collaboration with Clorox. Photography by Kim Ebbets.

  • Sarah Arnold

    One more to do:

    Take next 6 days off from blogging.

    9-2 everyday! Woo Hoo!! I starting last year, I have 8-3 Wednesday and Friday that I am off work and no kids. I almost panic when they get on the bus because there is SO much to do and the day goes SO fast!

    Enjoy those babes!

    • jordanreid

      aw! I love that idea 🙂 I actually am taking tomorrow and Friday off – like OFF-off – to enjoy with them, since I’ve pre-written posts for those days 🙂 water park ahoy 🙂 🙂

  • Leah McCombe Butler

    I hesitate to post anything here, but I was wondering if you’ve ever considered including a sentence that a post is sponsored at the beginning (see Cup of Jo as an example). I find that I’m totally fine with sponsored content if I know what I’m getting into before reading. If I get to the end of an especially long post and find out that it’s sponsored content, it makes me feel a bit like it’s a bait and switch. I leave the post feeling sold to and icky, rather than having my last sentiment your resolution of the story. Just curious…

    • jordanreid

      ahhhhhh I hear you leah. I’m really, really sensitive to issues of disclosure and totally get you. I think the reason I’ve historically hesitated to put the disclaimer at the beginning of a post is because from the very first time I wrote a post that I was being paid to write, sponsored posts have felt no less exciting to me – often they’re actually more exciting, because they present an opportunity to learn about something new, something I may not have otherwise gotten the chance to discover. in other words, I mean it when I say that in my head, sponsored posts feel no different from non-sponsored posts other than the initial jump-off point…and so I always feel like I don’t want people to skip the post, you know? because every word I write means a lot to me.

      but that’s also selfish, I think. and I really do get what you’re saying. how about I do that going forward, ok?