Monday, March 18, 2013

The Big Things and the Little Things: my Life List

At this point, pretty much everyone knows the concept of a Bucket List. Thanks to Hollywood, maybe most of us have seen a fictionalized account of living the dream of marking every single item off. But I bet very few of us have taken the time to sit, think, and write out the wonderful experiences that would make our time here uniquely our own, individual experience.

My dear friend Sarah (whose blog inspired me to start my own) has an excellent list, and in the Grand Re-Opening of her "Musings of Mother Hood" blog, she's revisited the list that she wrote several years ago. She calls it her "Life List," which I prefer to "Bucket List," so I'm borrowing that moniker, too.

Reading Sarah's list the first time, and again this time, naturally got me thinking: what would be on my list?

I started one several months ago, but I have to admit that thinking of 100, even 50, things that were dramatic enough or inspiring enough or unique enough to include on the list is a daunting task. To the point that when I tried it the first time, I got less than one page of a small spiral notebook into my list, put it down, and didn't return to it. Until today. (Weirdly, I did manage to cross one thing off the list in the lapse between then and now... so it counts. Totally.)

With Sarah's recent post, I'm inspired to start again. Maybe my list won't have 100 things on it - for some reason, 100 feels like the magic number to me - but nobody said I had to write the whole the list right now, and nobody said it couldn't be a running list as I am inspired by the little things that happen, 365 days a year. That's what this blog is all about in the first place, right?

So here goes: the beginnings of the list of all the cool things I want to do while I'm here.

  1. Donate enough money to have my name on something at West Point
  2. Celebrate the 4th of July in Boston
  3. Win 1st place in my age group in a race - DONE!!
  4. Cross something off a friend's life list together
  5. Sing in a symphony chorus
  6. Go to the Olympic Games
  7. Watch Army play in a bowl game in person
  8. Take a train as my primary mode of transportation on a trip or vacation
  9. See my cousin Jay perform live
  10. Become a published author
  11. Visit the American Cemetery in Normandy
  12. Take my kids to the Army/Navy game
  13. Be in Punxsutawney on Groundhog Day
  14. Run a marathon in all 50 states
  15. See Mt. Rushmore
  16. Take a Creative Writing course
  17. Go to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in NYC 
  18. Buy something at the actual brick-and-mortar Akinz, my cousin Suzanne's retail store - DONE!!
  19. Swim around Key West
  20. Watch the Dallas Cowboys play a regular season game in Cowboys Stadium
  21. Spend a whole day riding roller coasters and amusement park rides with my kids - DONE!!
  22. Give a graduation speech
  23. Tour the White House
  24. Complete a full Ironman Triathlon
  25. Hike some of the Appalachian Trail
  26. Grow strawberries in my garden
  27. Learn to surf
  28. Visit Yellowstone National Park
  29. Sew matching outfits for my daughter and her American Girl doll
  30. Qualify for and run the Boston Marathon 
  31. Decorate a fancy cake, like one from a bakery
  32. Cook / bake every single recipe in a cookbook
  33. Own season tickets to something
  34. See the Rose Parade in person
  35. Take a vacation with my sister Susannah, just the two of us
  36. Read a biography of every U.S. President
  37. See Lenny Kravitz in concert
  38. Own a convertible
  39. Take my kids on a Civil War staff ride vacation
  40. Apply to be a contestant on The Amazing Race
  41. See the California Redwoods
  42. Walk underneath / behind a waterfall
  43. Legitimately begin a presentation with the words, "My fellow Americans..."
Do you have a list? Any recommendations for me? Anything you thought for sure you'd see on my list but is conspicuously absent?


  1. Love love love! We MUST make plans to tackle one together!

  2. YESSSSSS!! There are a few I am totally willing to participate in!! #27, #40, & #42 for sure. I could be convinced to do a few others! :-)

  3. Love this! And thanks for including my shop! :) I have a bucket list on my blog (that I never update) too but it's all travel locations. I think I need to edit it to actionable items like you did.

    1. Maybe someday I'll have to edit my list to say "shop at the FLAGSHIP Akinz" if you turn into a retail magnate with stores everywhere! ;)

  4. We're doing #2 this summer!! My brother lives in Boston for his fellowship at Harvard and this is our last opportunity while he's there. It made me happy to see this is far up on your list. ;)

    1. Oh, that sounds wonderful!!! I will look forward to hearing how it is - and now I know who I can ask for tips when we finally get to this one. :)

  5. Let's do the Amazing Race, the appalachian trail & California Redwoods together. :)