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  • Amy L. Sullivan

Strong Girls Can: A Summer Series for Moms and Daughters

Recently, a friend told me I have six more summers with my daughter. Six. Six summers until we are outfitting my girl’s dorm room. Six summers until the world calls her an adult. Six summers until my daughter no longer bounces around our house chomping on sour cream and chive potato chips. Six.


How can this be? I just delivered the girl last week. Last week, I gave birth, and the doctors and nurses told my husband and I we could take our baby home from the hospital. We thought this was an insane idea. I mean, hello, we just met the kid, and we didn’t know anything about babies. We put our girl in a very uncomfortable (but extremely adorable) outfit. We fumbled with the dreaded, fifty pound bucket seat, and then we slowly drove forty-five miles an hour and headed home.

“What are we supposed to do now?” I wondered aloud. My husband shrugged, and we decided to go to Burger King (?). I ordered onion rings, and that is the last thing I remember, onion rings.

Now, I only have six more summers with my beauty, the one who is all legs and full of endless stories and high-pitched giggles. The one who forces me to open my eyes wide and sip each day slowly.

And it was this thought which prompted me to think about our summer series, Strong Girls Can.

Our family has loads of unscheduled summer lounging in our future (trust me, we dominate spending time together in a nonstructured way), but I also want to be intentional with my girl. Therefore, every Monday from now through mid-August, we are going to talk about our girls, and I’d love for you to join us.

Extreme goodness including an essay contest for tweens and teens, special guest interviews, free girly loot, product and book reviews, and photo challenges is all planned.

So what do you say? Are you in? Fingers crossed, fingers crossed.

My prayer is the conversations we start here trickle down into the conversations you have with your girl.

Participation is easy. Just show up here each Monday.

Ready? Let’s do this.

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To kick-off our series, my girl and I made this list for you. It is a list promoting independence and adventure. This list longs to hang on your refrigerator. Go ahead, and take down the school lunch menu, and you will have the perfect spot for it (scroll down, and you can print it off because it is also a snazzy printable). This list contains 88 acts of adventure and independence for girls. It lists perfect ways to spend time together, starting points for conversations, ideas for battling the beast of boredom, and reminders for our girls to play hard. Plus, if your girl is anything like mine, she loves a good checklist, and her little adventurous self can check off items as she goes.


  1. Understand how-to use a circuit breaker

  2. Learn to code

  3. Tread water

  4. Determine if someone has a fever

  5. Identify editable flowers

  6. Create a short film

  7. Read a book in one day

  8. Catch a baseball

  9. Make a slingshot

  10. Rock climb

  11. Design a website

  12. Identify local trees

  13. Iron

  14. Create an outdoor fort

  15. Check the oil in a car

  16. Throw a Frisbee

  17. Memorize Scripture

  18. Throw a baseball

  19. Sew a button

  20. Make an obstacle course

  21. Play jacks

  22. Paddleboard

  23. Understand how-to consume information online (in a healthy way!)

  24. Design a kite that really flies

  25. Make jam

  26. Mow the grass

  27. Learn to use a hammer

  28. Catch a frog

  29. Complete a 1000 piece puzzle

  30. Climb a tree

  31. Run a 5K

  32. Drive a boat

  33. Make bread

  34. Volunteer

  35. Bake a cake from scratch

  36. Grow vegetables

  37. Learn two jump rope songs

  38. Build a zipline

  39. Play football

  40. Come up with a catchphrase

  41. Build a fire

  42. Learn how-to mind map

  43. Kayak

  44. Say no

  45. Learn a new languag

  46. Chop wood

  47. Sew curtains

  48. Make a candle

  49. Design and build a mini-waterpark

  50. Put a chain on a bicycle

  51. Pitch a tent

  52. Paint a room

  53. Create a budget

  54. Reupholster a chair

  55. Study bees

  56. Use a rope swing to jump into a lake

  57. Write a poem

  58. Read a map

  59. Handwrite a two-page letter

  60. Learn basic substitutions for cooking

  61. Learn how-to treat minor burns

  62. Start a rock collection

  63. Invent something new

  64. Take a class

  65. Do a handstand in the lake

  66. Learn to ride a horse

  67. Stand up for a friend

  68. Play a musical instrument

  69. Treat a minor cut

  70. Learn to skateboard

  71. Identify poison ivy

  72. Hang a swing in a tree

  73. Put a chain back on a bike

  74. Read a book over 100 years old

  75. Inflate a flat bike tire

  76. Cook over a campfire

  77. Speak in front of a group

  78. Ride a bike no-handed

  79. Write a book

  80. Jump a car

  81. Play hopscotch

  82. Design a video game

  83. Attend a rally

  84. Ride a skateboard

  85. Hike a mountain

  86. Read the Bible

  87. Try out for something

  88. Ask for help when you need it

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Should you want a copy of our list, ’tis yours (Strong Girls Can: 88 Acts of Independence and Adventure). Should you want to create your own Strong Girls Can list, do it!


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I will see you next Monday, friends.

Until then, keep me posted on strong girl happenings in your house.

Share photos of what your strong girl is up to (or have her share them) via social media or email me pics at AmyLSullivan12.com. Make sure to tag me and use the hashtags #StrongGirlsCan and #RaisingGirls. Here’s to summer, strong moms, and strong girls!

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Pssst. Let’s connect via FB and Instagram.

#StrongGirlsCanASummerSeriesforMomsandDaughters