31, we’re a few days in and I have to say — you’re lookin’ good.
I have no idea what this year will bring, but I do know that I love making lists. So I came up with 31 things that I would love to make happen this year. Nothing major. Just a random collection of ideas that seem quite perfect for a 31st year of life. So for anyone interested, I thought I’d share them with you today. Feel free to follow along this year on Instagram at @gimmesomeoven, and with the hashtag #gimme31. And hey, if you decide to create a list for your birthday, be sure to let me know too. I love reading other people’s lists!!
Alright 31, let’s do this.
31 Things On My List For Age 31
1. Buy 31 stamps and send 31 cards
…in the actual factual mail. To friends. Just for fun.
2. Learn how to use a hair wand
My hair is the longest it has been in years. As such, I figure it’s high time to try the “beach waves” look (in Kansas, yes). Although, hopefully not like this girl.
3. Decorate my bedroom
Note: not redecorate my bedroom. Just decorate it. Because somehow I still haven’t gotten around to that in the 6 months I’ve lived in my loft.
4. Write and record an original song
I’m a pro at starting songs, not so much at finishing them. So I’m hoping to see at least one through to completion this year.
5. Conquer gluten-free cinnamon rolls
I have a stellar 1-hour cinnamon rolls recipe for regular cinnamon rolls, but I am still tweaking my GF version for my friends who don’t eat zee wheat.
6. Sponsor a child in another country
Years ago, I used to sponsor a child with Food For The Hungry, and then stopped when she graduated and sadly never picked back up. But this year, I would love to make that a part of my giving again. And after doing some research, I’ve decided I would love to partner this time with the organization Unbound. They offer sponsorship for children, youth, and aging adults (which I love), and I really respect the work they are doing in the world. More to come on that.
7. Teach my pup how to “sing”
Or if that’s a massive failure, at least teach him how to shake. This 5-year-“old” dog needs a new trick.
8. Take a nap at least once a week
I am sooooo not a natural napper. If I have extra time in my day, I fill it. But man, on the occasional Sunday when I nod off for an hour after lunch, I feel like a different (and much better) person. So whether it’s a power nap on a Tuesday, or a long nap in the sunshine on a Sunday afternoon, I’d love to try and at least catch a few extra zzzz’s once a week. Preferably with my snoozin’ dog by my side. :)
9. Plan a trip to visit my old host family in Costa Rica
Thanks to Facebook, I still get to stay in touch with the host family I stayed with in high school and college. But it has been far too long since I’ve seen them and the country that captured my heart. Need to brush up my Spanish and remedy that.
10. Perfect a recipe for perfect homemade flour tortillas
Not decent flour tortillas. Perfect flour tortillas. I like them thick, I like them chewy, and I like them a little buttery. I’m hoping this can be accomplished sans shortening/lard.
11. Buy a fiddle leaf fig tree (and hopefully keep it alive)
I have a mega brown thumb and kill every single plant that has ever had the sad fortune of living in my home. BUT. I have fallen in love with fiddle leaf figs and have high hopes that if I resolve to make it my one and only house plant, I might stand a chance at keeping it alive.
12. Read more essays by Marilynne Robinson
Gilead, is my favorite book of all time. But regrettably, I still have never made it all the way through one of Marilynne Robinson’s books of essays. So I’m excited to dive in this year, beginning with When I Was A Child I Read Books.
13. Visit at least 10 new Mexican restaurants in Kansas City
I get in ruts with my favorites, but there are so many Mexi restaurants in town that I still have not tried. Ok, ok, this is basically an excuse just to eat more chips and salsa. ;)
14. Tap into my inner Julie Andrews
…and belt out, “the hillllllls are aliiiiiive”, when crossing The Sound Of Music Tour off my bucket list this summer in Austria. I’m so going to be “that tourist”. ;)
15. Sew a maxi skirt
Little known fact on the blog: I have absurdly long legs. Like, I have to order extra-long jeans from the GAP because I have a 36″ inseam (at only 5’7″ tall!). So maxi skirts? Well, I buy them because I love them, but they’re more “medi”-skirts on me. So this year, I want to pull out my old sewing machine and see if I can actually sew one of my own. It can’t be that hard, right?? (#famouslastwords)
16. Learn to play a new Chopin prelude
I rarely pull out my classical sheet music anymore, but would love to work on a piece by Chopin this year. His preludes are my favorite (and are also plenty challenging), so I think that will be a lovely project.
17. (Finally) watch Sherlock
Yes, I am the last person in the world to watch that show. But Benedict, this is our year.
18. Spend a weekend retreat at a local Benedictine monastery
For years, I have wanted to get in the routine of spending an annual retreat (or even more often) at a beautiful Benedictine monastery outside of Kansas City. I keep waiting for a “free weekend”, but of course those rarely just pop up. So I’m going to set a date on the calendar, hopefully in the summer or fall when I can also enjoy spending some time outdoors on the Kansas plains.
19. Ride a roller coaster
Dude. I realized recently that it has been a decade — a decade — since I’ve been on a roller coaster. Time to finally visit that theme park 10 minutes from my house that promises “worlds of fun”.
20. Learn how to make homemade ginger beer (that’s up to my standards)
I am verrrrry picky about my ginger beer, and only like about 3 brands in the store. But I really want to see if I can develop a homemade recipe that I like. It may take 30 rounds of recipe testing, but if that means I can enjoy it for the next 30 years, then bring on the ginger.
21. Conquer QuickBooks
Ok, this is the only “business-y” one on here. But good grief, I
want need to learn QuickBooks, stat. I feel like getting a good handle on it will be a life-changer.
22. Use a budgeting app for my personal finances
On the financial note, I’d also love to get in the habit of using an app to track my personal expenses in life (outside of Gimme Some). I’ve been good in the past with just keeping a close eye on the bottom line, but would love to be even more intentional about knowing where all of my purchases are happening.
23. Teach myself how to make cold brew coffee
I know drip, I know French press, and I know pour-over. But I’ve never tried cold brewing. Summer seems like a lovely time to learn.
24. Read through the New Testament
I’ve been slacking on reading my bible all that much the past few years. So if nothing else this year, I’d love to spend some solid time in the New Testament, especially with Jesus. I dig Paul. But I really want to just immerse myself in the stories of Jesus again. And again. And again.
25. Buy a hammock for our loft building
I have a few ideas for where we might be able to put one. But I would lovelovelove to have a hammock somewhere outside where my neighbors and I could hang outside and soak up the sunshine.
26. Spend more time with my grandma
I only have one grandparent still with us, and she happens to be a pretty cool one. Would love to be more intentional this year about calling or visiting her in person (she lives 3 hours away), and especially hearing more stories about her life.
27. Watch the Pride and Prejudice BBC miniseries
I’ve watched the Kiera Knightly version 100x (and have mixed feelings about it), but have never watched the 1995 miniseries, which my friends say is a must. No twisting my arm to spend that much time with Colin Firth!
28. Get in the habit of painting my nails at least once a month
I rarely paint my nails, mostly because I’ve always kept them short for piano/guitar and tend to tear them up cooking in the kitchen all day. But, on the rare occasions that I do paint them, I’m amazed at how that tiny touch makes me feel a little more girly and happy. So this year, I want to try and paint my nails at least once a month. They may only last for a day or two, but even still, those one or two days will be a little bit more lovely.
29. Host a clothing exchange
Every now and then, my friends get together and organize a big clothing exchange where we all swap pieces that we no longer wear that often. If you’ve never done it before with your friends, you must. It’s an awesome reason to clean out your closet, and also a great opportunity to find pieces you love from friends you already know and love. (All the better if there’s a story behind that piece.) I’m convinced that my friends and I don’t do this often enough. So this fall, I’d love to host a big exchange going back into cold weather attire.
30. Do something that really scares me
Yes, yes, I know this is the most cliche item on a bucket list. But it’s still a good one, and I’ve lived life long enough to know that this is the one that will make you grow.
31. Write a cookbook
Dum, dum, dum…big one. I’ve had zero desire to write a cookbook since I began blogging, but I recently was bitten by the cookbook bug. So stay tuned…31 may be the year. ;)