Senior Year Bucket List | 50 Things to Do Before You Graduate High School

Hey Class of 2020!  The seniors are gone, high school feels empty and guess what?  It’s YOUR TURN now.  This year is all about making memories.  If you ask anyone who has been out of high school for more than a few things – they’ll tell you a few things consistently:

  • Hang out with your friends as much as you can

  • Make new friends – branch outside of your circle

  • Stay in touch.  Make the effort to have real in person visits or phone calls instead of social media

  • Pick your friends over boyfriends.  “It sounds so dumb but I wish I hung out with my girlfriends more instead of my boyfriend at the time.  My mother was right – the boyfriend wouldn’t last, but my friendships would”

  • Thank the ones who got you this far

So how do you make all this happen?  Check out this bucket list of 50 Things to Do Before You Graduate

senior year bucket list
maryland senior photographer

1.     Join a new club!  Not only will you gain skills and maybe find a new interest – you will grow your group of friends.

2.   Attend the Maryland State Fair (and wear a concert T shirt bc that’s how I met one of my best friends)

3. Go to homecoming

4.     Attend a high school football game (or other big sport at your school)

5.     Attend a pep rally

6.     Attend the ring dance

maryland high school senior pics

7.     Spirit Week!

8. Make a plan for the future. Whether you’re going to college or starting your career – take the time to develop a plan for your future now.  Because your future will be here sooner than you think.

9.     Take professional senior pics.  You won’t do this again until you get married – so make it count!

10. Host a bonfire

11. One word: HAYRIDE!

12.  Have a pumpkin carving party

13.  See one of your favorite bands in concert

14.  Go camping

15. Ice Skating at the Avenue 

16.  Bowling!  (Is Rock n Bowl still a thing??)

17.  Drive in movies at Benjie’s

18. Pay it forward

fall high school pictures

19. Try a new food. Check out the restaurants in Bethesda for amazing authentic cuisine.

20. Host a movie marathon with your friends!

21.  Pull an all-nighter

22.  Watch the sunrise

23.  Visit a Christmas Tree farm

24.  Make some good healthy habits now so they’re easier to stick to as your life becomes more complicated

25.  Learn to stand up for yourself and that it’s ok to say “no”.

26.  Learn to cook a real meal

Maryland Senior Pics

27.  Bake Christmas cookies

28. Go Christmas Caroling

29.  Play in the snow

30.  Start a collection

31.  Create a playlist of the songs that mean something to you and remind you of your friends and this incredible year!

32.  Go 24 hours without a phone

33.  Attend a high school play

34. Attend a minor league baseball game – bonus points if you stay for fireworks

35.  Go to an Amusement Park

36.  Sunflowers in Jarrettsville

37.  Volunteer for a day at a place you want to learn more about

Jarrettsville Sunflowers

38.  Day trip to DC and see the touristy things you’ve never done

39.  Search for fossils at Calvert Cliffs State Park

40.  Change your hair.  Like a lot.  Manic Panic anyone?

41. ROAD TRIP !!!

42. Print your pictures and make a scrapbook or collage for college!

43.  Register to vote

44. Go hiking

45.  Do something by yourself – go out to eat, go to the movies, something – be ok with being alone

46. Open a bank account

47. Make a vision board for your future goals

baltimore senior photography

48.  Visit your elementary school teachers (bonus if you bring your cap and gown to show off to the younger generation!)

49.  Write a letter to your future self

50. Go to prom (and graduate!)

You get one chance to make this amazing. Make it count. When someone asks you in 10, 20 or 50 years what was your biggest regret - be able to say “nothing. It was amazing!”.

Did I miss anything on YOUR senior year bucket list??? Drop a line in the comments!

Jenna | Maryland Senior Photographer

Jenna is by far one of the coolest teens I know - and I’m not saying that because she’s on my model team. She’s compassionate, enthusiastic, full of ideas and driven to improve the world. AND she’s going to be a senior in just a few short weeks!!! We got to hang out in the city a few weeks ago and I am so excited to share her session! <3

Getting Ready for your Senior Session: Top 10 Tips for Incredible Makeup

Professional hair and makeup is one of those things that may seem like it’s unnecessary but let’s be real - you’re making a significant investment of time and money to commemorate a time in your life that will never happen again. It’s SO worth adding on professional hair and makeup - whether it’s with me or someone else.

Maryland Senior Photography Makeup Tips

So however you choose to do your makeup for your session - here are 10 tips to make it INCREDIBLE.

1. EXFOLIATE!!! This one is super important to remove any dry patches or weird textures that may be lurking on your skin. Make sure you do this one at least 2 days before your session (more if you have sensitive skin) to prevent any weird breakouts or rashes.

2. Before you apply any makeup - wash your face well and apply a hydrating moisturizer. Be careful with moisturizers with built in sunscreen the day of, as they can add additional shine to your face.

3. At least 3 days before your session - avoid any products that contain salicylic acid to avoid drying out your skin.

4. Brush your teeth and put in your contacts before you start. Adding these in after can mess up your look.

5. Don’t apply makeup while wearing your outfit! Grab a loose button up shirt (think: art smock!) to cover yourself before you get started.

6. Let’s talk waxing for a minute. Waxing is great but it will make your skin red and puffy for a few days after. If you wax your face, make sure you do it AT LEAST a week before your session.

7. Drink lots of water for the week leading up to your session - and get a good night’s rest too. Puffy eyes are hard to hide.

8. If you’re hiring someone to do your makeup, bring photo examples to your appointment to show the look you want. Pinterest is a great place to gather look ideas! Avoid anything that is heavily contoured. It may be the trend today but won’t be tomorrow. And you want to look like yourself in your images - not someone else (who just happens to have incredible cheek bones). Your makeup artist can help guide you in ways to accentuate your look without stamping an expiration date on it.

9. I know you see it all over YouTube but please … go easy on the highlighter. And whatever you do, don’t put the highlight on the tip of your nose. Trust me on this one - it won’t photograph right and you’ll regret it.

10. Hire a makeup artist you can trust and let them guide the way. Even if you want a “no makeup” look - adding a little foundation and mascara can make a HUGE difference - and yes, you’ll still look like yourself. Promise.

Kristina | Baltimore County Senior Photographer

Kristina came to my studio last summer looking for senior portraits … and a model for a day experience. Ok, maybe, we should reverse those ideas. Kristina was SO excited for her session and literally brought 3 bags of clothes in because she just couldn’t decide. After her hair and makeup was finished by the incredible Sarah G, we spent some time mixing and matching from the studio wardrobe and what she brought - and we created some fun looks!!! What I loved most - besides doing a mixture of in studio and outdoor images - was seeing how elated Kristina was when she left the studio. You could tell she felt as great as she looked!!!

Ready to book your model for a day senior session? Drop me a line!

Camden Yards Senior Session | Baltimore Senior Photographer

I had such a great time photographing Mike for his senior portraits in Baltimore! When his mom and I planned the session, we talked about incorporating a lot of his personality into the session - which means we needed to include sports! Mike is a huge baseball fan - and especially the Baltimore Orioles. We thought the city would be the perfect place for his senior pictures, to incorporate the amazing cityscape, as well as the Camden Yards.

This session had been rescheduled a few times due to bad weather - but we finally lucked out. It was hot and humid - but the sun was out! I’ll take it! Our first stop was Camden Yards. If you’ve never stopped by Camden Yards during the day when the team is out of town - definitely add it to your to do list. There are so many little details that you miss when you attend a game and don’t have the time to slow down. Mike, his mom and I wandered around, checking out plaques and statues to Mike’s sports heroes, looking at markers for various outside of the park homeruns, and even chatting with the security guards about the history of the stadium.

After our time taking his casual senior pictures, we hopped in the car and drove over to Fells Point. Fells Point has the coolest little stores, historic buildings and cobblestone streets mixed with a more modern urban vibe. We grabbed some fun shots there and finished at a park near home. We had so much fun and I am thrilled with how his session turned out!

You'll notice he's wearing shorts and it's snowing today ... THAT is how far behind I am on blogging! Yikes!

Ready to book your senior photography session? Drop me a line today.