Sunday, April 01, 2012

"30 before 30" update

I made a 30 before 30 list in November 2010, and I'm 30 today.  I think I did a fair job of completing my list, and I usually have a fairly good reason why I didn't complete them (although I wish I had been able to).  Here it is:

1. Learn from my mom how to sew quilts.
2. Give $100 to the drum bum.
3. Go to a concert, either Decemberists or Fleet Foxes.
4. Take my first trip to New York City.
5. Get back to my Salzburg weight (about 5-10 more pounds).
6. Do another 5K, but this time run the whole thing.
7. Get a raise.
8. Decorate our living room in fabulous mod pieces a la "Mad Men."
9. Do another painting.
10. Get rid of half-finished craft projects I've totally lost interest in.
11. Eat at every top-five burger restaurant in Chicago onthis list.
12. Buy Rosetta Stone for German and brush up on mein Deutsch.
13. Donate blood.
14. Buy an original piece of artwork.
15. Write letters to my immediate family telling them why I love them.
16. Learn how to pop a champagne cork.
17. Paint at least one room of my new home a fabulous, strong color.
18. Get scuba-certified.
19. Cook a boeuf bourguignon, Julia Child-style.
20. Donate my hair again.
21. Give away at least one bridesmaid dress to The Glass Slipper Project.  (I gave three!)
22. Train for, raise $1,800, and complete the Avon 2-Day Walk (already signed up).
23. Brew my own mead and beer.
24. Buy my first full-size Christmas tree.
25. Watch "Halloween," "Friday the 13th," and "Nightmare on Elm Street" for the first time.
26. Pare my Goodreads "to read" book list down to below 70 (currently at 99).
27. Execute powers of attorney for property and health care.
28. Get my resume website up and running.  (I strengthened my LinkedIn site in lieu of this one.)
29. Get acupuncture.
30. Eat a type of animal I've never had before (ostrich, alligator, etc.).
As for my excuses for the seven I failed to complete:

I didn't complete #2 ($100 to drum bum) because at first, I was leery about giving up that much of my poor-lawyer salary, and then I stopped taking the route that went by his post, and then I forgot about it, and then I had to leave my job entirely and couldn't sacrifice the $100.  I really need to do this one, though.

I actually think I might have made it to #5 (weight loss) when I had to leave my job, because I wasn't eating for weeks and lost about 10 lb.  But things have been going better and I've been able to eat again, so of course I gained it all back.

I wish I had done #6 (run a 5k), and I tried to train for months, but I just really, really hate running.  And I'm also really bad at it.  We were snowed out of a race I had registered for, and then we just didn't sign up for another one. Oh well.

I didn't do #13 (donate blood) because honestly, I'm still too anxious about it.  I feel physically ill when I think about donating blood.  Maybe someday, though.

As for #18 (scuba), we actually are signed up to get scuba certified this summer, but we were just not on top of it last summer.  We have the Groupon and we are all ready to go, so that one will be completed this year.

On #27 (execute POAs), I just decided not to do this one because my health care proxies under Illinois law are already the people I would designate under the powers of attorney, so I figured, why bother?

And the last one, #29 (acupuncture), I realized that you can't just show up to an acupuncture clinic and just ask them to stick you for no reason.  You kind of need to have something wrong with you.  So it's good that I have nothing wrong with me, but hey.  And when I was all stressed out when I left the court, I didn't have health insurance (or money to pay for acupuncture without a paycheck), so that was kind of a catch-22 there.

But I did get all the other ones done, and I can tell you that I had some fun in the doing.  Brewing our own beer has been awesome, and I have eaten the following types of animals for the first time in the last year and a half:
  • Squid
  • Antelope
  • Eel 
  • Quail
  • Skate
  • Oyster
  • Rabbit
Yes, rabbit.  Sigh.  And it was delicious.

And I just painted this (on the left) this weekend to finish #9:

Mine is the pretty tree one, Dave's is the stylized cityscape.

So I have had some fun this year, and now I'm 30.  And I have good news now, because I'm going to be working at Northwestern's Alumni Relations and Development Office.  It's the type of position that is a foot in the door and a great way to move up in the university.  I am so happy that I have tried so hard to get into Northwestern, because now it's really happening and I can't imagine a place I'd rather work.

Last month, as part of my #26 goal, I read "The Last Lecture" by Randy Pausch, the Carnegie Mellon VR professor that gave a really inspiring speech to students and colleagues before he died of pancreatic cancer.  The book was perfect for me to read at this time in my life, and one of the messages that stuck out the most to me was that brick walls are there for a reason:  to keep people out that don't really, really want to do something.  I have felt like higher education was a brick wall, and that I couldn't get in, and this advice really inspired me to keep pushing for what I want rather than taking some crappy law firm job that I'd hate.

Looks like 30 won't be too bad after all.

1 comment:

Jamie V. said...

Giving blood may be easier with a friend along to keep you calm. I totally volunteer, as I've been doing it since college. It's much less of a deal than you probably think. If you wanted, you could just go with me once to watch (and if you decided you could do it, you'd be there already!). So, seriously, let me know.