Lighting Up Your Summer Evenings

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This year my daughter (soon to be a 4th grader) brought home a piece of paper on the last day of school that has changed how we are approaching this summer. A classmate’s family compiles a Summer Bucket List every year and attempts to complete as many of the items on it as possible. After I saw it, I remembered the mom telling me how this was a tradition in their home and me thinking it was a great idea. But in the bustle of the end of the year, it was quickly forgotten – until a few days ago when I found the typed list in my daughter’s backpack. My kids were so excited to try some of the items on the list and add some of our own!

One of the items on the list that excited my kids the most was to “Swim with Glow Sticks.”
A trip to Target and we found a huge pack of Glow Sticks for about $5 in the Toy Section of the store. We splurged and got one for each girl. As the sun began to set we cracked open the packs. The girls got busy using the provided connectors and making “stars” in different color combinations.


Then, magic! The sun set further and they tossed the stars into the deeper part of the pool and enjoyed watching them sink and move in the water. “I wish we had an underwater camera,” said my oldest after coming up for a breath and telling me how it was beautiful watching their creations dance in the currents under the surface. It was just as beautiful from the top of the pool too, but one of those moments a camera just can’t capture perfectly.


So grab those glow sticks and hop into the pool with the kiddos for a simple twist on the usual.

Guest Author Deb Smith is the owner of OutLoud Marketing Studio and has lived in the Valley since 2003. She and her husband and two girls enjoy art, trying new foods, swimming, gymnastics, concerts and travel. You can find her on Instagram at @wordsmithgirl or on the web at

Editors Note: We do not know if glow sticks are suitable for pool use – be sure to remove from pool directly after use so your pool’s cleaning system or chemical makeup is not effected. Enjoy!

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  • Reply Suzanna Buell

    That looks like a really fun idea! My son is about to start 4th grade too! They grow up so fast 🙁

    July 14, 2016 at 9:27 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      We are going to go over to my Dad’s house to try this in Grandpa’s pool! Swimming at night is always our favorite – I can’t believe we didn’t think of glow sticks before! And I understand about growing up so fast – doesn’t it seem like they were just babies and now, grade school!!

      July 14, 2016 at 10:53 pm
  • Reply Suzanna Buell

    Yes, I don’t like it one bit! I want to keep him little forever!!

    July 15, 2016 at 11:37 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Awww, me too. I love babies and all things that go with having a newborn. And toddlers too – learning to walk and talk is such an exciting time! And on and on right! All of it so amazing – we Moms have the best job in the world!

      August 2, 2016 at 5:32 pm
  • Reply Lori Carson

    What a great idea!!

    August 1, 2016 at 11:48 am
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Thanks! If you make any of these, we’d love to see! You can share your photos with us (any photos of you out and about with the kids too! We love all of them) on our FB page.

      August 2, 2016 at 5:31 pm
  • Reply Deepa

    Looks like a lot of fun! Yes kids do grow up so fast!:)

    August 1, 2016 at 1:37 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Yes! So fast I know – whenever I look back through photos I realize how quickly time goes!

      August 2, 2016 at 5:30 pm
  • Reply Jodee

    We do this for birthdays in our bath tub. Im sure my kids would love it in a pool!

    August 1, 2016 at 1:50 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      That is such a FUN idea! What great memories you are making for your kids! We would love to see photos! I think we are connected on IG – just tag us and we will see for sure! Thanks for sharing the Birthday idea – love it!

      August 2, 2016 at 5:30 pm
  • Reply Laura Budovitxh

    I love the bucket list idea!! Would be a gr8 idea for vacations as well. Instead of plannin every minute, just make a list and check them off as you complete them.

    August 1, 2016 at 2:16 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Yes! Me too! We made a bucket list for the summer and are excited that we still have a few things left to do! I never thought of doing it for vacations – that is a fabulous idea!

      August 2, 2016 at 5:28 pm
  • Reply Melissa

    I really like this idea! Thank you for sharing!

    August 1, 2016 at 2:59 pm
  • Reply kim c

    Such a fun idea!

    August 1, 2016 at 5:02 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Yes! And makes for great photos too!

      August 1, 2016 at 5:06 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Yes! Let us know if you try and post pics on our FB page!

      August 2, 2016 at 5:23 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      We would love to see your photos if you try this! Are we connected on Instagram? Just tag us so we can see!

      August 2, 2016 at 5:27 pm
  • Reply Valerie Arnold

    Awesome idea! Always great kid ideas from Active Moms!

    August 1, 2016 at 7:08 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Thank you! Appreciate your kind words – they mean a lot coming from an awesome Active Mom like you! Let us know if you try it – we heard back from one Mom that was going to try it in the tub!

      August 2, 2016 at 5:22 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Thank you! Means a lot coming from an awesome Active Mom like you! Share your pictures with us on FB if you try it! We’d love to see your two cutie pies having fun with the glow sticks!

      August 3, 2016 at 3:21 pm
  • Reply Lily

    I Love the bucket list!

    August 2, 2016 at 6:24 am
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Me too! Do you have one for this summer? We still have Wet N Wild to do – my son loves it there! We like to do the water slide with the boat in the smaller kids area – we go over and over again! Also, we have go to the Salt River and try and see the wild horses! Anything left on your summer bucket list? Anyting fun you already did?

      August 2, 2016 at 5:20 pm
  • Reply Michelle Warden

    Gotta try this!!!

    August 6, 2016 at 12:32 am
    • Reply Katrina Sherk

      Yes! So fun! And makes for great photos too! We had one awesome Active Mom who does this in the bathtub for the kids’ birthdays to celebrate! So creative! If you do this, post pics and tag us – we love to see! Thanks for being such an amazing Active Mom and thanks for sharing the Active Moms love too – we appreciate that and you so much!!!

      August 8, 2016 at 3:30 am
  • Reply Katherine

    Love the bucket list. We do this sometimes on our out-of-state vacations, but would love to do it at home.

    August 9, 2016 at 2:57 pm
    • Reply Katrina Sherk August 9, 2016 at 5:41 pm

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