- Posted by Alaia Williams
- On January 26, 2014
- 30 before 30 list
Ah, the good ol’ 30 before 30 list. I’d like to start off by saying this isn’t a particularly deep list and there’s no tragedy or inspirational story behind why I’m doing this. Sometimes you just want to do something because you can. And 30 before 30 sounds fun, doesn’t it? In 2011, after a life change, I just decided to do all the fun things I wanted to do. I ended up going to 10 concerts in eight months, went on my first camping trip and a bunch of other stuff I don’t remember anymore.
In 2012, I decided to do one new thing each week. I think I was successful, but got tired of tracking after four months. In 2013, I wanted to be location independent. That didn’t happen, but I DID travel more in 2013 than all the other years of my life combined! And so, this is my 2014 thing. It’s a combination of fun things I want to do and things like I feel like I should have or know by September. In no special order, my 30 before 30 list:
1. Fly over a large body of water
I hate flying. Flying over a large body of water means I’m probably going somewhere far away. That means a long time on a plane next to someone who could be sick or strange. It also means I’d have to go to the bathroom on the plane. That’s just a no-no. But I can’t stick to the US, Canada and the various islands near Florida. There’s a whole big world out there!
2. Climb a tree
I’ve never climbed a tree.
3. Learn to ride a bike
My mom bought me a bike when I was 7. But she never had one as a kid. She got me one with training wheels (smart), but I just couldn’t get my mojo up to ride the thing. Then I outgrew it and we donated it. I rode on the back of a tandem bike once when I was about 21 or 22. That’s the extent of my bike riding.
4. Go on one date each month
I’m still working on January. This could be tough.
5. Run…jog…walk in in a half marathon
I thought about putting a 10K on the list, but I’ve done one of those. Time to level up. I’ve jogged in a 10k and walked 19 miles across Los Angeles (twice) yet the idea of doing a half marathon scares me.
6. Get back in shape
No particular weight goal, I just know I’m out of shape and I just have this feeling that it gets harder when you’re older. So, I’d better fall in line now.
7. Start a garden of things I can eat
I like gardens. I’m not sure I’d remember to water flowers every day. It’s like taking vitamins. I think I’d be more motivated if I was growing food. I have minor experience in this. In high school, I used to grow peppers in pots – and then throw them away because I didn’t eat peppers (now I do). My mom and I also took a horticulture class together and every student got a plot of land. We combined and grew lots of lettuce, carrots and broccoli. I want to grow some food on my own turf
I used to be so good at this. I volunteered for campaigns, for kids, for causes. But I just don’t do it anymore. Sad face. So, I will find something I want to give my time to and make it part of my life again.
9. Take a dance class
I took ballet when I was four, but let’s not count that. When Groupon and Living Social came on the scene, bought a bunch of dance things and then never went to them. Sigh. So yes, I’d like to squeeze in a tango or something before my birthday.
10. Detox my life
It’s been a while since I did a clutter purge, a people purge and so on. I meant to do it when I moved in August, but I allowed some life changes and unexpected visitors to distract me. Five months later, I feel suffocated. Time to toss some stuff out!
11. Read 30 books
I used to read a heck of a lot more than I do now. As a child, my mother had to limit how many books I could buy each month from Troll and Scholastic. But books were $1.25 then – if there was something I *really* wanted, I’d skip a lunch and buy it. Lunch used to cost $1.25 too. Man! Back in school, we also used to have this program where you got a sticker for every book you read and then you could trade the stickers in for pizza at Pizza Hut. I don’t even know why I’m alive right now. Library book sales excite me. The introduction of the Kindle meant I could purchase books faster than anything else – even music! But recently something shifted. I’ve traded reading for naps and I’d like to find a better balance. I already own the 30 books I want to read, so now is the time to make it happen. That puts me at about a book a week at this point.
12. Write and self-publish an eBook
I have the ideas and depending on which book, I actually have all the content. But I have a mental block around packaging it and putting it out to the world. What’s up with that? This would be non-fiction of course. My creative story and poetry skills seemed to have abandoned me after high school.
13. Attend new kinds of cultural performances
I think my mom took me to the ballet as a kid…or some ballet dancers came to my school. But that doesn’t count! I WILL be seeing a ballet at the Music Center this week and I have two tickets to another performance in April.
14. Make my apartment feel like home
My apartment is sort of an unfinished construction zone at the moment. I’m already bad at settling down (I have never completely unpacked in any place I’ve lived as an adult), so that doesn’t help. This ties in with the detoxing. Once I purge a bit, I’ll feel more motivated to get the place finished and more home-like
15. Become a DIY junkie
Back in my pepper growing days, I used to paint the pots I grew the peppers in. I liked hanging out at Michael’s. I don’t do a whole lot of creative “stuff” anymore, so I think that as I work on my apartment, I’m going to go the DIY route as much as I can stand. I’ll start with the projects I’ve been collecting on Pinterest (of course). It’s good to multitask during Law and Order: Special Victims Unit marathons.
16. Roast a chicken
Roast chicken is so tasty. Problem is, I’m not a fan of touching raw dead animals and are there going to be some random parts up in there that I don’t want to see? I don’t even know! I just feel like this is something I should know how to do. God knows I will NEVER make a whole turkey. But I only eat chicken breasts, so basically I will need to have a dinner party to celebrate having successfully made a roast chicken.
17. Commit to an exercise plan
Definition of commit: once I figure out what I’m going to do, I do it consistently three times per week for at least three months. I certainly have the time, so that’s not an excuse. But I really am wondering what I’d be interested in enough to commit to doing more than once a week and what’s practical for my location. I certainly won’t be running around my current neighborhood, for example.
18. Crochet a scarf
I taught myself to crochet once, but I never completed a project. I’d really like to make myself a scarf and I liked concentrating on something. That was about six years ago, so I’ll be starting from scratch. In two years, you’ll see me on Project Runway (wait, is that show still on?)
19. Own a toolkit
I don’t own any tools. At all. This is a problem.
20. Take a wine class
I only like one kind of wine. If I’m going to drink wine, I think I should expand my palate. But even more than that, I think that wine is pretty interesting. Like, when you tell me that it has notes of apricot, why the heck does it taste like dirt? I need answers to these questions.
21. See a Broadway show
I like movie musicals. I like plays. I think mixing the two would be a delight.
22. Flesh out my family tree
I start this a while back and then stopped because I didn’t want to pay for ancestry.com (didn’t rank too high on budget priorities), but I’d like to dig back beyond my paternal grandparents and maternal great grandparents. Maybe that would make me more interested in my history. I’m currently more interested in my future.
23. Take a sabbatical
I need a break. I’ve needed one of a while. I think a brief sabbatical would be just the ticket. This may coincide with the big 3-0.
24. Do a 30 day challenge
I’ve done the No Complaint challenge. Actually, I did that one successfully. I’ve failed at the dress challenge and the workout challenge. I thought about going completely dairy free, but that just sounds like torture. I thought about going vegetarian for 30 days, but in thinking ahead to where I’m traveling year, I don’t want to quit at the first sign of seeing something amazing on the menu. So, I am open to suggestions.
25. Visit Catalina Island
I’ve lived in L.A. my entire life and never been here. An island! So close! A friend suggested this one and I thought it deserved a place on this list.
26. Visit Wine Country
Every time I’ve attempted to head up Napa way, something has happened. That just makes me more determined to get there.
27. Walk across the Golden Gate Bridge
I love San Francisco. I don’t even think I’ve driven across the bridge. I just think that as a lifelong Californian, like Catalina Island, it is one of those things to do. Why not do it this year? Thanks to the friend who suggested it.
28. Make an entire meal – from amuse bouche to dessert
I have my signature dishes, but I don’t experiment much. I think it would be fun to make an entire multi-course meal. I’m also not much of a baker. I kind of hate eggs, so I never have them handy. I do make a killer banana bread though. And short ribs. Um, so the meal might include those two things.
29. Brunch at 30 places I’ve never been to before.
I love brunch. And then Thrillist came out with this list and now I feel like this entire post should have just been places I want to eat.
30. This one is private