## Thursday, June 30, 2011

### #12 Is In the Beginning Stages

12. Take an actual vacation.

The word "vacation" means something different to everyone.  To some, it's camping yourself out on a beach with a Tervis full of water and a good book with your toes in the sand.  For others, it's traveling to crazy parts of the world.  Dictionary.com (totally worthy of being quoted) defines it as "a period of suspension of work, study, or other activity, usually used for rest, recreation, or travel."

If you've ever met me, you'd know that I have no actual idea what a vacation is because I never take them.  I'm too cheap and always have too many things going on to fit them in.  It never fails--people at work as me if I have any big vacation plans for the summer.  My typical response: "Don't really have anything planned.  I'll probably do a couple of long weekend trips at some point."  Do I ever take said long weekend trips?  Not quite.

Next year will be different though.  Not only will I make the promise to take a few long weekend trips next summer, I've partially booked one.  And if you've met me, you know that's big.

It's no secret: I'm a Jazzercise junkie.  Started taking class about two and a half years ago.  Last year around this time decided to move from student to instructor, and have been leading classes since October.  And\it is most certainly one of the most random and fantastic things that I've ever done.  This girl who hates having any sort of attention on herself stands on a stage four times a week with a Brittany Spears mic on, jumping around saying every cheesy thing possible to motivate her students to push themselves harder in their workout.  And I absolutely look forward to it.

It would make sense that I do some sort of mini-vacation with Jazzercise in mind.    So, when I found out that Jazzercise was hosting a live routine taping at the end of next June in Orlando, I bought my ticket.
Judi Sheppard Missett--I'll see you in 365 days.

## Tuesday, June 21, 2011

### And So It Begins...

Today a friend described me as a work horse.  I have never been the kind of person who could just sit and do nothing.  I always feel the need to do something.  Even when taking the evening to relax and watch TV, chances are at the same time I'm doing some sort of craft or working on some sort of project.  I have always felt that time spent just sitting is time wasted.

Here's the rub: I am the person who cannot handle sitting still, yet there are so many things that I want to do and never have.  I have big dreams of what I'd like to do, and still I do absolutely nothing to try and make these dreams a reality.  I've had enough of just sitting by and waiting for things to happen.

I was inspired by a couple of friends to take the leap and do this.  So I've compiled a list of 30 things that I want to do by the time I turn 30.  Some are very simple.  Some are more complex.  I don't think that 30 is the end of the world by any means, but I think it's an attainable time frame to finish all of these things that I want to do.

Why do I want to do this?   I will never be happy with my state in life.  I will never be happy to wake up, and do the exact same thing over and over (even though I love a routine more than just about anyone).  I will never be happy not growing.  And I will never be happy staying stagnant, not challenging myself to grow.  I know that I will grow through this.

So, take a look at the things I will be challenging myself to do in the next 2 years.

1. Buy a pair of heels and actually wear them.
I have always loved the look of heels...on other people.  The thought of actually putting them on my own feet, however, terrifies me.
2. Learn something new.
I love to learn how to do things.  I just don't take the time to actually do it.  Not anymore!
3. Lose 10 pounds.
No, this isn't one of those "I'm so fat" goals to make me feel better about myself.  As a fitness instructor, however, I would like to look as fit as I feel.
4. Learn a new craft.
If you've ever met me, you know that I love crafts.  Any craft.  I am always looking for a new project to tackle.  I look at blogs, stroll through little shops trying to figure out how I can make the things that I'm seeing on my own.  But rarely do I actually try them out.
5. Prepare an actual meal for my friends. (Recipe required)
I am not a chef.  For this single lady, cooking does not happen often.  By the time that I've grocery shopped, done the prep work, cooked the meal, and plated it, I am so tired of looking at it that I don't want to eat it.  I love cooking for others though and would love to branch out further than tacos and brownies from a box.
6. Sew something from a pattern.
Sewing is in my blood.  My mom is a sewer.  My grandma was a sewer.  I received my first sewing machine for Christmas in the fifth grade.  But despite all of the sewing I have done in my life, I've never made something from a pattern.  In fact, the thought of it terrifies me.
7. Read a classic novel cover to cover.
I love to read.  But because my schedule is often crazy, whenever I sit down to read, I inevitably start to fall asleep no matter how interesting the reading material is.  I love classic things, and the thought of reading a classic novel makes my heart happy.
8. Do something crazy.
I live life on the safe side.  I'm not a rebel.  I'm not adventurous.  I don't take risks.  But everyone should do something crazy in their life, right?
9. Attempt to eat seafood.
I always think that seafood looks delicious.  And then the smell hits me and I almost can't handle it.  And then there's the taste.  But it can't all be bad, right?
10. Take a picture of myself I don't hate.
I would much rather be behind the camera than in front of it.  I can't think of the last time that I saw a picture of myself that I actually liked.  But, in this project of self discovery, I hope to discover that I can actually take a good picture.
11. Treat myself to an outfit that is not on sale just for fun.
I am cheap.  My father taught me well (even though he still thinks that I own way too many pairs of shoes, even if I only paid $5 for all of them). I will wait for a shirt to go on sale before I'm willing to pay for it. But everyone deserves to treat themselves to something nice every once in a blue moon. 12. Take an actual vacation. Remember that time I said I was cheap? This applies to entertainment as well. But I think taking time away from life is important. I'm just too cheap to pay for it. 13. Do something huge for someone else. I love people. And I love to help people. But I don't think that I've ever done anything for another person that could be described as huge. I have been so blessed, and I want to bless someone else in a really big way. 14. Teach someone something. Remember that time I said I loved people? Well I really do. And I love to learn new things. I would love to help someone else discover something that they really love. 15. Paint a picture. I find painting fascinating. The way the colors and materials come together to make something so beautiful amazes me. But painting definitely takes skill. It's not like when you were five and your mom thought any finger paint that you smeared on a piece of paper was worthy of being displayed on the fridge. 16. Confess a secret. I have lots of secrets. And I think that is okay. But there is something about opening up to people and being honest with them about something that you've held inside that is freeing. 17. Take a day off to do absolutely nothing. It's no secret that I don't take time off from work often. I have never seen the point of taking a day off for no reason. Unless I have a doctor's appointment, trip, or actual reason to take off, I don't do it. And, like I've said, I'm terrible at doing nothing. This one is a double hit. 18. Pay off an extra$1,000 on both my car and student loans.
My debt is reasonable, but debt is debt.  And challenging myself to pay off that debt even faster frees me from the burden that comes along with it.
19. Post a picture of a new craft on my blog each month.
I love to do crafts.  But I don't always take the time out to do them.  By committing myself to having to have a craft "show and tell" once a month, it'll force me to take time out to do something I love.
20. Beat my Jazzercise evaluation from last evaluation.
Sound like a silly goal to you?  Maybe.  But for me, I am a lifelong learner.  And unless I set constant goals for myself, I'll never keep growing.
21. Get a massage.
I love massages.  But I'm too cheap to pay for them.  Taking an hour to pamper myself is totally needed.
22. Complete a Beth Moore Bible study.
I currently have six half completed Beth Moore Bible study books in my apartment.  Six.  Each of these studies was started with gusto.  I made time for it, I put my heart into it.  And then somewhere in the middle, I quit making them a priority.  And then I feel bad opening the book back up to finish it later.  But I love these studies.  And I want to finish one.
23. Move.
I'll be honest.  This one wasn't my idea.  And this would be the hardest one on the list for me.  But my friends tell me that change is good (I'm not sure I believe them).  And the thought of packing up all of my things terrifies me.  But I'm willing to consider it.
24. Reconnect with an old friend.
The joy and struggle of Facebook for me is finding people that I haven't kept in contact with from my past.  But usually, it's a friend request, a little catching up on what's been going on in their lives (usually just by checking out pictures and information) and that's where it stops.  I'd like to take this one step further.
25. Plan a camping trip.
I love to camp.  My family used to go on camping trips when we were younger and I adored it.  We started off as tent campers and moved to a pop-up trailer, but there's just something about setting up a tent outdoors and enjoying the creation God has given us.  And I want to share that with people I love.
26. For one week, don't eat out for a single meal.
When you're single and you live by yourself, it just doesn't feel worth it to cook most of the time.  But cooking is better for me and it's better for my bank account.  And its a good way to challenge myself.
27. Read at least one Bible verse a day.
This shouldn't be something that I have to put on a "Things I Want to Do Before I'm 30 List."  This should be something that I'm doing anyway.  But I'm not.  So putting it out there is a way to hold myself accountable.
28. Plan a totally solo weekend getaway.
Sometimes you just need to get away from everything--work, commitments, people and life in general.  Taking time away for yourself gives you a chance to really look at yourself and evaluate.  And that is important.
29. Watch all of the Star Wars movies in order.
My older brother grew up with Star Wars.  He loves the movies.  My younger brother is a huge nerd and loves the movies.  I think that watching these movies is one of those things every American should do.  And I am an American, right?
30. Plan an Aunt Beth Day with Norah and Brighton.
Norah and Brighton are two of my favorite people on this earth.  Because I live 90 miles from them, spending a whole day focused on those two is tricky.  But it would bring me more joy than I can even imagine.