The Life List (in progress)
Thank you for all the positive feedback on my series and your excitement for it to continue on a smaller scale! I think it will fit in nicely with the posting I usually do around here. I’m also happy so many of us seem to be in the same place right now, which, depending on the day you ask me, can seem like the edge of a tall precipice. Simple, intentional living and thoughtful spending? Piece of cake! I’m currently drafting blueprints for a yurt in New Mexico. I’ll show it to you as soon as I finish my lunch; that McDonald’s happy meal won’t stay hot forever.
I decided to organize my new focus with a list. I know, another one. It’s true, I’m a list person, but not because I’m scheduled and organized. The opposite, actually. Without a list, without structure, without deadlines or goals, I flounder. I’m like a BeyBlade skittering across a hardwood floor, allowing tongues and grooves steer me into the unknown. Lists are my Bey stadiums, four walls that provide enough structure for me to 1…2…3…let it rip!
(I often wonder how my life would be different if I had daughters.)
Knowing this about myself, I should already have a list of 100 bucket items typed up and ready for the satisfying strikes of a fine point Sharpie marker. I don’t. It took registering for Camp Mighty for me to consider analyzing my wants so closely and even now, a week before I’m scheduled to leave, I’m still without a completed list.
I’m nervous about meeting new people, and whether they will like me. I’m nervous about spending several nights away from home, away from the moments of solitude I need to refresh and recharge. I’m nervous about what to wear.
But most of all, today I’m nervous about finishing this list. I know I’m missing something. Technically, I’m missing 30 somethings. I know I want more than 1-70, but numbers 71-100 elude me.
Here is my list so far. I’m open to suggestions and trolling the Oprah website for inspiration.
- Visit all 58 U.S. National Parks: Acadia, American Samoa, Arches, Badlands, Big Bend, Biscayne, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Carlsbad Caverns, Channel Islands, Congaree, Crater Lake, Cuyahoga Valley, Death Valley, Denali, Dry Tortugas, Everglades, Gates of the Arctic, Glacier, Glacier Bay, Grand Canyon, Grand Teton, Great Basin, Great Sand Dunes, Great Smoky Mountains, Guadalupe Mountains, Haleakala, Hawaii Volcanoes, Hot Springs, Isle Royale, Joshua Tree, Katmai, Kenai Fjords, Kings Canyon, Kobuk Valley, Lake Clark, Lassen Volcanic, Mammoth Cave, Mesa Verde, Mount Rainier, North Cascades, Olympic, Petrified Forest, Redwood, Rocky Mountain, Saguaro, Sequoia, Shenandoah, Theodore Roosevelt, Virgin Islands, Voyageurs, Wind Cave, Wrangell Saint Elias, Yellowstone, Yosemite, and Zion. (Inspired by Leslie.)
- Go camping and “rough it.”
- Vacation on a house boat on Lake Powell.
- Visit all 50 states.
- Vacation in an R.V.
- Tour the Smithsonian.
- Visit the World Trade Center Memorial and Museum.
- Visit Iguazu Falls. (I did this with my family as a child.)
- Celebrate Mikey’s 8th grade graduation.
- Celebrate Nicholas’s 8th grade graduation.
- Celebrate Mikey’s high school graduation.
- Celebrate Nicholas’s high school graduation.
- Celebrate Mikey’s college graduation.
- Celebrate Nicholas’s college graduation. (The preceding six items inspired by Laura Mayes.)
- Make more than enough money to put my husband through school or allow him a career change.
- Live in Argentina for one year.
- Establish a “set in stone” family night.
- Establish a “set in stone” date night.
- Introduce my grandmother to my husband and our sons.
- Visit Argentina.
- Visit Anne Frank Museum. (I did this as a child. Unforgettable.)
- Read Chronicles of Narnia with the boys.
- Read the Harry Potter series with the boys.
- Have nothing in my home that is not useful or that I do not believe to be beautiful.
- Create Essential Papers File. (Inspired by 52 Bites.)
- Fold a fitted sheet Gap perfect without a Youtube tutorial.
- Grow vegetables from seed.
- Plant and harvest backyard vegetable garden.
- Eat a salad made from garden vegetables.
- Have a paperless kitchen. (Inspired by 52 Bites.)
- Have a go-to pie crust recipe.
- Can something.
- Make yogurt.
- Have a go-to recipe for empanadas from scratch that won’t make me want to poke my eyes out.
- Sew a quilt or bedspread for Mikey and Nicholas.
- Have a go-to bread recipe.
- Create a compost system…pile…whatever they are called.
- Make “I must be in Mexico” refried pinto beans from scratch.
- Read the Bible cover to cover.
- Attend mass at Saint Peter’s Basilica.
- Tour the Holy See.
- Visit all four Papal Basilicas: Saint Peter’s Basilica, Saint John Lateran, Saint Paul Outside the Walls, Saint Mary Major.
- See the Pope.
- Shake hands with the Pope.
- Read Catechism of the Catholic Church.
- Pray the rosary for everyday 30 days.
- Sleep 8 hours every night for at least 30 days.
- Become a person who exercises regularly.
- Compete in a tennis tournament.
- Eat completely unprocessed for 30 days.
- Abstain from sugar and flour for 365 days straight.
- Run a 5k.
- Pay off all debt: credit card, student loan #1, student loan #2, mortgage, line of credit.
- Speak Spanish fluently once again.
- Write and publish a book.
- Write monthly or weekly column for a magazine or newspaper.
- Have a signature scent.
- Have a perfume named after me.
- Read the Western Canon. (Any suggestion on which source to follow?)
- Use my camera’s manual setting. Correctly.
- Read a book series in a genre I normally avoid. (e.g., The Hobbit and the complete Lord of the Rings or A Game of Thrones.)
- Read my Unread Library.
- Build family tree at least three generations up.
UPDATE: Would you look at that? I finished my list! You can check out the Official Life List here.