No one likes to say it, but summer can be a bummer, at least for those of us who count down to Christmas and spend 11 months of the year missing October. Places are crowded. Playgrounds start to resemble zoos. There’s unstructured time in all the wrong places. It’s hot. All your friends disappear to unnamed beaches and you get to thinking you don’t have any friends, except for the pictures on Instagram. You get a little bit tired of drinking La Croix. There’s only one cure for summer – and for the full-time-mom gig – and that’s to challenge it head-on.
Last Wednesday, I woke up, considered spending another day writing emails in my workout clothes, and thought to myself, I should probably go on 100 adventures this summer, starting today. I’ll be honest with you: the last few months, in the two-kid-chaos, I’ve been leaning toward daily trips to the YMCA and quietly looking at my laptop during afternoon baby naps, rather than venturing out. It’s a scenario that is calm and predictable and makes you feel a tiny bit better about your arms, but after a while it turns out to be rather boring. Besides, there are so many beaches I haven’t built sand castles on, so many trails I haven’t hiked, so much craft ice cream in San Francisco that I haven’t tried! This is unacceptable, considering I am currently EMPLOYED BY A FOUR YEAR OLD. There’s also the added bonus that small people sleep impeccably after adventure days, along with 9,405,593 other reasons to venture out, including the Pacific Ocean, the Google search results for “best secret spots in San Francisco,” and the existence of croissants.
I like to pretend otherwise, but nobody except myself is preventing me from going out for ice cream when I feel like it, or driving to that place that’s been on my list forever. In fact, the kids currently staying in my two spare bedrooms are actually my hostages, not the other way around. Even despite the hundreds ice cream flavors within driving distance of my house, I need a tiny bit of accountability to get myself out the door. And so, I give you: The 100 Adventures Project, in which I intend to go on 100 adventures in 100 days.
Here are the rules of the game:
1. The rules will remain a tad…loose.
2. An adventure will qualify as anything that sounds like fun to me, involves putting on pants, and is just the tiniest bit of a challenge (read: a step beyond sitting in my house drinking coffee).
3. Adventures can range from tiny (favorite coffee shops, walks in the neighborhood, cooking interesting foods) to medium (exploring new places in San Francisco, beach days) to large (all-day road trips down the coast, cross-country flights, and big whole-family expeditions).
4. Adventures will typically involve at least one of my children (usually both), with a few adventure dates thrown in there just for me and Jordan, plus a precious few that involve me and ONLY ME.
Despite my flexible guidelines, I’ll probably still have to stretch the definition of “adventure” a bit to encompass real-life challenges–convincing Sam to walk down the aisle as a ring-bearer later this month, the inevitable times I’ll forget to pack someone’s shoes, and the dreaded grocery store runs–but maybe that’s the point. So many things turn into adventures simply by naming them as such. And that’s when the magic happens.
If The 100 Adventures Project sounds the tiniest bit interesting to you, you can follow along on Instagram, or, better yet, plan your own adventure project! Then, please tell me about your adventures so I can feel slightly less insane and alone in my mission to conquer the ice cream of San Francisco, among other problems. What sounds interesting to you? What’s been on your list that you’ve wanted to do forever? Go do it! And I will, too, and we’ll compare notes.
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