I’m not 33 yet, but later on this year I will be. I’ve never been phased by my age. Ask me again if I care when I turn 40.
I was browsing through my old blog recently and found a post that I wrote when I was 27 (which despite not caring about age, seems like a long time ago) about things I’d like to accomplish before turning 30.
Here’s the list, with a follow on what I actually did since then (in six years, rather than three). Spoiler alert: with double the time, I still didn’t make some of this stuff happen.
30 by 30:
1) Eliminate half of my student loan debt. Did not. And it’s actually been three more years since then and I still don’t think I’ve yet paid half. But I’m chipping it away, little by little. As a fresh-faced, new homeowner at age 27, I don’t think I really realized how expensive life was going to be. As my DC friends would say, bills, bills, bills.
2) Go down south for a week. We didn’t, but we had shifted this plan to be a 10th-anniversary celebration, which will take place next year.
3) Volunteer for something that makes a difference. I gave blood once, more than a year ago, and I was happy to be able to do it. It’s on my goal list to start doing so annually at least.
4) Grow my little family. Yep! Not only did this happen before I was 30, but I actually had Isaac when I was still 27.
5) Invest more. We haven’t increased our investments per se, but we now have a comprehensive life insurance plan so I’ll count this one as an accomplished goal. We’ve also invested in our life more by adding a second child into our family and having two vehicles to pay for and maintain. We aren’t frivolous so the majority of our spending is an investment in our family in one way or another.
6) Join a book club. Yes! This happened while I was 27 and we are still going strong! We’re more of a food club with a reading habit, actually. The cast of characters has changed and we now meet every five or six weeks instead of every three weeks, but it’s just as enjoyable.
7) Try a new activity. I barely remember what I’ve done in the past week so I have no idea if I tried a new activity between the ages of 27 and 30.
8) Take a cooking class. Not sure that I did this back then, but thanks to a thoughtful gift from a friend, I’ve had the chance attend three vegan cooking classes recently and plan to do more!
9) Buy a house. Check! We considered moving once or twice since then, but we are firmly planted in our little neighbourhood now. Jacob’s in his second year at the elementary school, which we love, and we’ve met loads of neighbours and school families. Isaac starts school in September, too!
10) Write more. Again, not sure about back then, but this is bubbling back up for me, as exhibited by my most recent influx of posts. I didn’t realize how much I missed putting my thoughts into phrases. It’s cathartic.
11) Learn to use my SLR camera. Yeah, no. Didn’t do this. And I keep thinking I ought to sell that poor, sad dusty camera. The invention and reinvention of iPhones has really made it much too easy to grab great photos without having to lug around a camera bag.
12) Buy adult furniture. Oooo this is a great one! We bought an awesome sectional couch a few years ago that we still love.
13) Read all of my hard-cover classics. Didn’t even read one. And honestly, I have considered selling or donating those too. They just stare at me, taunting me. I’m tired. I like to read easy books. Which is why I’m currently enjoying Talking As Fast As I Can by Lauren Graham.
14) See more of the world.
15) Take a course that will make me better at my job. I could refresh and learn more about Photoshop, or try some new software like InDesign or Illustrator.
16) Take a road trip with girlfriends. We’ve been doing this one annually, trying out new places in Nova Scotia. I throughly look forward to this weekend each year.
17) Make yoga part of my regular routine. My attendance comes and goes, but my desire to do yoga regularly remains the same.
18) Build something. We’re building a deck this spring! Does that count?
19) Donate blood. Yep. See #3.
20) Edit our wedding videos. That never happened either. Probably never will. It’s funny how obsessed you are with your wedding before, during and after it, but then once the rosy haze wears off, it looses its magic. More of my energy goes toward married and family life now. The actual wedding feels like a million years ago.
21) Dye my hair. I did dye my hair fairly regularly over the past six years, but I’ve recently decided to not. My greys are coming in strong and I’m kind of OK with that. I may still reverse this decision, but for now, I’m good.
22) Attend my 10-year high school reunion. This came and went, and I didn’t go. The timing just didn’t work out well. The beauty is that I can see my friends and their lovely lives and gorgeous families on Facebook, which makes me feel like I’m still connected to them.
23) Do a 10k run. I ran the Frost Bite 5 Miler, which is 8K. Close enough, yes?
24) Plant flowers and landscape my yard with success. Agh. I want to be a good gardener, really I do! I’ve given up on the flowers completely. I’m happy with hearty hostas that never fail me and fake flowers in my sole window box. But the veggies. I will make that work! I want to grow my own food, damnit!
25) Dust off my trumpet. This hasn’t happened yet, but will.
26) Try surfing. This is one of those in-my-20s things, I think.
27) Institute an actual moisturizing routine. This took entirely too long, but I have recently accomplished this one, too. I’m now a faithful Clinque user and a card carrying member of the Sephora loyalty club.
28) Sew more. This is an ongoing goal for me. On a recent trip to Cape Breton, I discovered that my sister-in-law’s family is still using a baby quilt I sewed for her oldest, who is now seven. That served as a bit of inspiration for me to get back at it and make more gifts and things for my own family.
29) Get CPR and first aid certification. I didn’t do this yet, but it would be very valuable.
30) Be thankful for my family and friends every day. I am and I try to keep perspective daily. It’s not always easy, but it’s very important to me.