Friday, March 13, 2015

40 before 40

Happy Friday friends! On Sunday I turn 38. If you’ve read this blog for more than a minute, you know I love to make lists and set goals. Some are monthly, some are seasonal, and some reside on what I call my life list.

I never regret one day of getting older because too many people are denied the privilege. But I do look around and reflect during my birthday month. What experiences do I want to have next? Where do I want to go? What skills can I pick up? Big or small, it gives me something to look forward to.

Some things that I’ve crossed off my life list so far:
Get Lasik if I qualify, shoot a gun, buy a play pack for a season, take graphic design courses, get married in a way that fits us, work on a political campaign, swim with dolphins, see the sun rise over the ocean at the shore in all four seasons, try foie gras, host Thanksgiving/Christmas/Easter, do the Polar Bear Plunge, visit Bushkill Falls, spend the day at Walden Pond, drive across the Golden Gate Bridge, ride a street car, drink a Guinness in Ireland, take two weeks off in a row and spend them at the beach, make homemade pasta, touch a redwood tree, stand in Lake Michigan, perfect the turkey, see the sun rise on the east coast and set on the west coast of the US in the same day, take the elevator to the top of City Hall in Philadelphia, buy a house, tour Pennsylvania covered bridges.

If I had a fat bank account and unlimited days off, this list would basically be travel-related only. But I have neither, so I had to supplement with real life things. I'm also sharing this early because some are large travel goals that require time, planning, and cash money. 

My list of 40 things I'd like to do by my 40th birthday on March 15, 2017:

  1. See a play on Broadway
  2. Walk over the Brooklyn Bridge
  3. Skydive
  4. Go tubing on a river
  5. Volunteer at a soup kitchen
  6. Eat a lobster roll in Maine
  7. Stay in a Falls View room at Niagara Falls
  8. Write a novella
  9. Tip 100% of the bill at a restaurant
  10. Go whale watching
  11. See Mt. Rushmore
  12. Take a spontaneous weekend trip –deciding to go and leaving that same day
  13.  Watch Old Faithful blow
  14.  Stroll along the Seine 
  15.  Go to high tea
  16.  Learn conversational French
  17.  Adopt a family in need at Christmas
  18. Witness the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace
  19. Go to a college football game
  20. Eat at a farm to table restaurant (stole this one from Jana, thanks friend!)
  21. Read two Agatha Christie novels – a Marple and a Poirot
  22. Participate in a walk to raise money for pancreatic cancer
  23. Get the tattoo on my back touched up
  24. Stand on the Cliffs of Moher
  25. Buy a pair of Frye boots
  26. Go to the opera
  27.  See the Mississippi River
  28.  Beignets at CafĂ© du Monde
  29.  Conquer my fear of the grill
  30.  See the Chincoteague Ponies
  31.  Have dinner at Vetri
  32. Cheesesteak tour in Philly
  33.  Visit the Morris Arboretum
  34.  Go to the Mutter Museum
  35.  Attend an author event at the Philadelphia Free Library
  36.  Get something published on HuffPost
  37. Take a cooking or baking class
  38.  Learn how to use a drill
  39.  Pick strawberries and make a strawberry pie from them
  40.  Bake French bread
What about you? Do you have any must dos?

Birthday weekend coming up! Happy birthday to my first roomie Peter on Saturday. Our moms were in the same hospital room when we were born, and we ended up going to school together and becoming friends. I love that story.

Enjoy your weekend and go ahead, have some cake for my birthday Sunday because

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  1. I REALLY need to do a list like this. I can't do 30 before 30 or 40 before 40 because...well...I'm not old, just older. But, I refuse to have a 50 before 50 this early in that game. Just typing that made my throat constrict and my eyes blur.

    I've done 11 things on your list, yet there's many on you're been there, done that list that I want to do (swim with dolphins, ride a street car, buy a house, etc.) Life experiences are fabulous, and I love hearing what others experience too!!!

  2. That is such a great list. I really need to come up with one for myself. A drill is not that hard, I could totally teach you. A farm to restaurant place would be on my list too! Happy Early Birthday!

  3. Please get the skydiving off that list. JMJ JMJ. I agree on all of the French stuff. I have seen a Broadway play and the Chincoteague ponies!! And I am bringing French bread batons for our dinner tonight, except I did not make them.
    You have done a lot so far, way more than I! Continued Goddess speed. Love you to infinity and beyond and wicked proud of you. Love, Your Momma

  4. First and most important, Happy Birthday! Secondly, I love your outlook on getting older, it's something not everyone is blessed with so we shouldn't take it for granted.

    I love everything on your list, I've been to a farm to restaurant place (right on the farm!) and it was incredible. My 30th is this September, I feel like I should make a list like this too peppered with stuff that I wanted to do and accomplished and stuff that I still want to less than 6 months lol

  5. The Chincoteague ponies! We saw them from a distance. Chincoteague was the first ever place I visited on a "road trip." It's only a few hours away from home, but we were 17, so it seemed like a big deal.

    I considered Lasik for a while. It would be awfully convenient and I feel like the cost would totally be offset by not having to buy new glasses and/or contacts, but... I like my glasses. Lol! When I wanted to get it done it was for vanity reasons, and now that I'm an adult with insurance and could get it done I don't want to - for vanity reasons.

  6. I love your list! And I love the list of everything you've already done! How awesome!

  7. Rock on sister! Birthdays are a gift . . . I hope you have a fabulous weekend!

    Love, love, love your list. And I love that you have a list of past accomplishments and that you led with that! I should make one of those just to appreciate all the amazing things I've already accomplished! Fact is, I think your goals are awesome, and I'm going to steal some for my own list. Here's to you accomplishing every one of them!

  8. It's always so interesting to read these lists. Some things I'd never think of, some I've done, some I'll never do. I'm trying to take it one month at a time and evaluate priorities. Like, I could add "remodel a house" to my DONE list, but travel has really taken a backseat because of that. So I've never made a list.
    A connection I made here is that your bday is the Ides of March and I saw the movie Ides of March, in Maine, after eating lobster lol.
    I hope you have a fabulous birthday weekend!

  9. happy early birthday! like you, i'd much rather travel but since i'm not rich (damn the lotto gods), i need to rely on good ol' fashion (cheaper) fun. definitely make it to the Seine -- so beautiful!!!

  10. I had always wished I'd done a "30 before 30" and never did. I think I need to follow you and do "40 before 40"! Happy early Birthday! I hope you have the BEST day...and other than skydiving, I love everything on your list!

  11. Great list!!! I also want to do #1, #17, #26 but most definitely #10....I have to go whale watching some day. I've been obsessed with whales since I was a little girl. Thanks for sharing your list :) It has me thinking of creating a list of my own.

    1. I'd love to read it! I would've emailed you back but your email isn't attached to your account. Let me know if you write a list!

  12. I totally love this post. I totally struggle with getting older but you have the best outlook. I shouldn't because so many people don't get that. Thanks for the reminder. Happy Birthday!! Great list.

  13. I'm going to be stealing a few of these for my 30 before 30 list i've been compiling!! xo, Biana - BlovedBoston

  14. I love to read other people's lists. I'm not much of a list maker or goal setter myself, but I do love to think about what should be on my lists. Perhaps before 40, I'll learn to cook. One can try. If you're ever in need of blog fodder, I would love to read about your experiences with things you've already accomplished - like Lasik (TERRIFIES me but simultaneously sounds like getting a superpower), working on a political campaign (lots of phone calls? doors slammed in your face?), and your thoughts on foie gras.

  15. Happy HAPPY Birthday weekend, my lovely friend!!! This list is fantastic, and I feel like most are attainable. Can I please go to the Mutter with you? It's amazing. In a weird, fucked up twisted way. And I would like to accompany your group on the cheesesteak tour. Let's get to work on this!!!! Love you girl <3

  16. Happy Birthday!

    I think this list has a good mix of things and the travel one's could easily be accomplished in a long weekend trip. I should work on one of these for my 30th.

  17. Happy Almost Birthday! I love your list, I'm confident you'll rock it.

  18. Such a great list! I think you definitely will get something published on Huffington Post. That's really brave to put yourself out there! There's so many things on your list that I would add to mine...learn French, see Mount Rushmore and the Mississippi River and definitely the beignets. You guys are inspiring me to make my own list. Have a wonderful birthday weekend!!

  19. HAPPY ALMOST BIRTHDAY. i always love your lists. conversational french huh? do you know any? Mine would also be travel related if I was rich. you have to have beingets! you can buy the mix from the cafe du monde website- just in case you never make it to new orleans.

  20. This list is great!! I fully support number 1 and 2. and have the best discounts for most shows! Also. Cafe du Monde. Because benegiets. They are AMAZING!

  21. I love this list, especially skydiving! Do it! And Broadway- is another great website/app for discount tickets. I also wish I could do one with just travel goals, but alas, lack of cash money. You've already accomplished so many things, this is a great reminder of where you've been, and where you can go. Happy early birthday!

  22. HAPPY ALMOST BIRTHDAY!! I love this list!!! I would travel the world if I had the money.

  23. Happy Almost Birthday!! Hope you have the BEST weekend! Wonderful list! That is so awesome you saw the sunrise and then set on the west coast :)

  24. HAPPY BIRTHDAY WEEKEND. I love your list. Also, say no more, I will most definitely be having cake in honor of you. You're welcome.

  25. You've got quite a list and I have no doubt you'll be able to accomplish most of them with planning. Though some are spontaneous plans, so I don't know you'll handle that ;).

  26. Happy birthday!!! Our birthdays are just 1 day apart, mines on Monday! Wow you have already done a ton of things that are on my bucket list! I'm not a list maker and I think this is prob why I never get as much accomplished as I'd like. Seeing a play on Broadway - I saw Jersey Boys there and lived it. If you like Frankie Vallis music you'll love it. Granted everyone else in the audience was in their 50s/60s but I didn't care!

  27. So many adventures on your list and many places I've never heard about. Skydiving?! You brave lady!! Not for me...

  28. HAPPY BIRTHDAY (early)! I'll try and find some cake for sure. If you make it as far as Yellowstone for Old Faithful head up to Idaho and I'll take you tubing on the Boise river. It's the best!

  29. Great list... maybe I'll work on my 65 before 65, which should include the purchase of a cane.

  30. Happy early Birthday!!!! I love your list! I am getting a much earlier start on my 40 by 40 list than you haha. I started mine last year and haven't completed all the things I want to do yet. I love that you have conquering your fear of the grill on there. I really need to work on that! I love Niagara Falls! I got to see it when I was 10 but I would love to experience as an adult too! And a cheese steak tour around philly sounds fabulous! Hope you have a great birthday weekend!

  31. I'm going to let you handle that skydiving by yourself, but I'm all about a ton of these items starting with Maine. Count me in!!

  32. I will be waiting for the novella. Let me know.... You have alot of good ideas!

  33. You have crossed a lot of things off that list! Very impressive!

  34. I'm currently in the process of creating my 30 by 30 list! I love reading through other people's lists and seeing all the variations. I grew up right on The Mississippi River and have also been to the headwaters and it's gorgeous!

  35. What a great list! Hope you're having the best birthday weekend! I tried my French press and I think I need more coffee or less water. Tomorrow will be better. Also, my box arrived today! Love it! Thank you SO very much! Cheers to you!

  36. At first I thought this said "BUTTER" museum and I got real excited! hahahaha #innerfatgirl
    I love how you put "real life" things on your list, too! Sometimes they get overlooked when they should be enjoyed the most!

  37. I LOVE your list. I love all lists, but you have some awesome things on yours - including a few that I know will be crossed off this year :) I'm in the final stages of finishing my 30 before 30 and it's been a fun challenge. Best of luck and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!

  38. Happy birthday! I have had skydiving on my list forever, but honestly don't think I can pull it off since I really, really hate heights.

  39. This is a GREAT list. It has everything on it, writing, travel, adventure. I love it and hope you get it all done. Cant wait to read that novel and I do hope you get something published on huffpost!

  40. I have to comment because there's 40 comments right now and it seems to wrong to tarnish that.

    I love the idea to tip the full bill at the restaurant.

    Love #20, there's a lot of them here.

    And adopting a family in need at xmas :) So sweet.

    I hope you had a great weekend! Can't wait to see how it went.

  41. "If I had a fat bank account and unlimited days off, this list would basically be travel-related only." This exactly! Happy belated birthday! I wasn't on here at all this weekend so I'm a little late. That list looks awesome. Let me know when you're working on your French I need to brush the rust off mine!

  42. you've swam with dolphins?! how exciting!! my 30 before 30 has way too much travel stuff on it, i have had to amend it a couple of times because i am not a millionaire with unlimited time off. i am practicing my french right now, but i love how you put it - conversational french. i want to be able to talk while we are there, but i don't need to talk about the political situation, thank you very much lol. i have seen the changing of the guard at the palace - twice! :) happy belated birthday!!

  43. I love this list! If I had unlimited funds & time I would dedicate life to travel as well. The things that you've already accomplished are amazing!

  44. According to IG, you already checked one of these fun! Hope YOU had an amazing birthday weekend, it certainly looked like you did.

    You've never been to a college football game?! AHHHHHH.

  45. Totally stalking you right now because I am turning 36 on Sunday and I want to do a 40 before 40 list - is 4 years too long? I am VERY interested to see how you are doing on this. Birthday countdown is in full swing! Love me some March birthdays :)


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