Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Let's Do This

Two years ago yesterday, I released my 30 Before 30 Checklist.  Here's the list in its entirety for anyone who might be interested:

1. Write a book (Even if I NEVER publish it)
2. Become a mom (7/13/2011)
3. Run a half-marathon
4. Perform in a play
5. Plant a garden
6. Learn to sew and make something I can wear
7. Cook an entire Thanksgiving meal by myself
8. Go to another continent (besides Europe)
9. Drive across the United States (7/2010)
10. Paint a painting I'm proud of
11. Learn basic photography and PhotoShop
12. Take a class just for fun
13. Read the Bible cover-to-cover
14. Visit all 11 of my college girlfriends at their homes
15. Present at a national teaching conference (NCTE 11/2010)
16. Read the top ten novels of all time (Modern Library Association List)
17. Take a "girls only" vacation w/ my mom and sister
18. Get something published (poem, article, etc.)
19. Go on an overnight hiking trip
20. Go to Disney World (11/2010)
21. Refinish a piece of furniture
22. Mentor a younger girl
23. Get a make-over and buy the make-up
24. Take HIP-HOP dance lessons and show them off at a club
25. Decorate someone else's house
26. Finish my scrapbook from London (started in 2004)
27. Grow my hair out past my shoulders (Fall/Winter 2011)
28. Wear a bikini and not be self-conscious
29. Learn yoga
30. Learn a song on the guitar

In terms of "checking things off," I didn't do so hot last year (or the year before that).  BUT, I did accomplish #2, which is pretty major.  I've got big plans for this year now that that one is taken care of. ;) (Seriously, I've got to get busy... at this rate, I'll be 50 before it's all done.)

Some of these things I could knock out in a long weekend if I really put my mind to it (like #s 10, 21, & 23), and I'm really hoping to do so.  Other things, like #4, are a work in progress that will be fulfilled in the coming weeks *hint* *hint*.  And still, some things (i.e. #s 1, 3, & 28), I'm just hoping for a mini-miracle in accomplishing them before the big 3-0.

Either way, it is nice to have a little challenge.  As I said in my original post, these are things to keep me accountable to really LIVING and not just getting lost in the busyness of day to day.

Speaking of really living, I think I like my late twenties.  This is a season of knowing myself more, yet being young enough to keep discovering and figuring myself out too (I hope I'm never too old for that).  I told Jeff recently that, for the first time in my life maybe, I'm not really "waiting" for the next big thing - college, a job, a husband, a house, a baby.  Sure, I have plans and wishes for this next year, but I'm also content where I am.  I am just here, and it is a good place to be.

I still want to accomplish those things on my list.  I still think they are worthwhile and important.  But, my "list" these days, as I begin to understand how fleeting time really is, is different too.

At 28, it looks a little more like this:

...give more of myself away.

...be quicker to show grace (to myself and others).

...laugh more.


...be still.

...take more time to play.

...worry less.

Somehow these goals are scarier than my original list.  Maybe because there is more at stake.  But the rewards are greater too.  I'm convinced.

Alright 28, let's do this!

*Thanks for all your birthday wishes yesterday.  I love my little blog family!


  1. I'm sorry I missed your birthday. Happy belated birthday. I love your list. I am a bit passed 28 but wait until your 30s. I remember finally coming into feeling great about myself, having more confidence and enjoy life more. Good luck.

  2. This is a great list! I'm in my mid-late twenties and I'm still waiting for that moment when I am completely satisfied in the present and not looking towards the future. It's great that you have found it!

  3. You should come down to Virginia Beach, run the rock-n-roll half marathon with me and then we can rock bikinis just by knowing that we ran a half marathon! :)

  4. This is a great post! I love knowing you for your early, middle, and late twenties :) we've come a long way haven't we?

  5. I really enjoyed this post. I've been thinking about a lot of the same things in terms of the late 20's lately. I love your list. I'm inspired to do something similar!


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