34 in 34 update

I am a few months away from creating a new list for my 35th year and some of the things I did not accomplish this year may find their way onto that list as well. There are many things I like about creating these lists (as I have for the past couple of birthdays). They help to set tangible goals, to consider how to put my word for the year into practice as well as push myself to do things I might not have otherwise done. These lists create a mindset for me, a way of looking at the year, whether I accomplish everything or not. 

Update so far (2 months away from the deadline) 


1. Blog 3x times a week. I haven't blogged much lately so I feel that with holidays and traveling and being incredibly busy in the semester, I haven't set aside a lot of writing time for myself. But, overall, I think I've done a better job with this goal than I have in previous years and maybe 3 x a week was a bit ambitious. I think when it comes down to it, I'll be happy with what I have written this year. 

2. Keep a plant alive for a season. I think this might go on next year's list. Or maybe not at all. I never bought the plant and I don't feel particularly committed to this goal, at all. We'll see how I feel about it in a few months. I initally thought this goal would help in my thinking about tending, but perhaps it was too physical, too tangible of a goal.

3. Be More Playful. I am pretty happy with some of the ways I've been more playful and silly in the past few months. I play games on my iPad; I did Zombie Zumba. I continue to find ways to push my creativity in the classroom. I like where I am with this goal and I want to do a bit more, still. 

4. Complete 365 project. So far so good. I have pretty much taken a picture a day, though not all of them printworthy. And I have stopped posting them all to Flickr because they mostly end up in my Project Life album and I'm okay with that. 

5. Read 15 books. I have actually read 16 books as of today. 3 of them have been audio books because I have done an awful lot of traveling back and forth to Illinois and to my brother's for Thanksgiving. I plan to have a similar goal on next year's list.

6. Complete Project Life. I was posting my PL thoughts, processes, layouts and materials each week. I am several weeks behind posting and a few weeks behind with the layouts but will catch up by the end of this week, hopefully. I am determined to accomplish this project and am so close that I think I can accomplish this no problem. I have really enjoyed doing it and will probably do it again in 2013.

7. Try a new cheese each month.  I am crossing this off the list as I should have months ago because in trying to be healthier, it is a bit unrealistic.

 8. Visit Washington D.C. Could still happen.

9. Tour a Lighthouse. Not ready to give up on this either. 

10. Visit the Smithsonian. Still waiting.

11. Make a monthly playlist. This is one of my favorite things to do! I am really excited to do a year in review playlist and Spotify has made this so easy. Love! 

12. Watch the sunrise. Yep! A few times and photographed a few. Yay!

13. Say yes to something scary. I feel like taking a chance on the teaching position I am in now qualifies. I've also said yes to some smaller scary things, as well like Zombie Zumba and hanging out with a few new people I have met here. 

14. Go on a picnic. I would say we kind of did this so I'm going to count it! It was impromptu and not the kind of picnic I imagined but I'll take it. 

15. Learn to use my speedlight flash. Haven't done this and it may go on a completely different kind of list in the future. 

16. Visit a winery. Still want to do this.

17. Make tiramusu. Again, a bit unhealthy but I have done some baking for others. So, I may still make this for Christmas. And eat a very tiny piece.

18. See five live events. I've been to 2 plays, 2 live band/performances, and many lecture/talks on campus. I'm calling this a success. 

19. Random Acts of Kindness. While I haven't devoted an entire day to it, I have added money to meters, paid for someone's coffee, gave a woman in Old Navy, some of my coupons and let an older woman ahead of me at the grocery store when she had fewer items than I. This has definitely been on my mind as we head into the holidays and I'm thinking about what else I can do each day. 

 20. Swim. Not really achievable at this point. 

21. Make homemade meatballs. Found a recipe for healthier ones and may try it soon. 

22. Cook 12 new recipes (and blog about them). I have facebooked a lot of my attempts at creating pesto/goat cheese combinations but haven't been wholeheartedly committed to this goal. May try again in the new year, especially as I continue to try healthier options. 

23. Do something creative every week. This has been challenging but I've tried to take photographs, make bracelets, and work on scrapbooking as well as design some web things. I don't know if it's been every week but certainly better than most years.

24. Stay in a bed and breakfast. Doubt this will happen this year. 

25. Make my own artwork (and display it). I have a really good idea for this. 

26. Express my gratitude every day. Feel confident about this heading into a very thankful season.

27. Ride in a hot air balloon. May go on next year's list and I am okay with that. 

28. Grow my hair out and not cut it.  I feel like I have done an excellent job with this! I have trimmed it occasionally to give it shape and recently cut it into a kind of bob and I love it. 

 29. Watch all the movies nominated for an Oscar this year. When I set this goal, I think I meant for Best Picture. So far, I've watched HugoWar HorseThe DescendentsMoneyball,The Help and Extremely Loud, Incredibly Close. I have now seen Midnight in Paris and The Iron Lady. I still need to see The Artist and The Tree of Life. Definitely doable.

30. Wear all my perfume or get rid of the ones that have expired. Threw out a lot during the moving process and while I haven't worn all of what I have, I haven't bought any new perfume, either so yay. 

31. Grow an herb garden. Maybe next year.

32. Organize my recipes. Still in process. 

33. Draw a heart in the sand and photograph it. Not yet

34. Memorize 3 poems. I've memorized 1 so far, my last year's mantra, "The Laughing Heart." 


In looking over this list, I feel pretty good with where things stand. I can definitely watch a few films, cook a few recipes, complete Project Life and make my own artwork. And what isn't accomplished, I can decide if I want to move those items to the big 35 list or not. I think some will find their way into my 35th year while others will go unmet and I am completely okay with that.