I’ve been making a list like this every year since 2009, when I made my first list with my best friend before we started our senior year of high school. We had so many dreams for that year (kissing a lot of boys, getting drunk for the first time, eating a whole gallon of ice cream in one sitting…), because basically it was our last year to live and be young and our lives were totally ending. ”This year, we have to…” became a mantra so often that summer, that the week before school started we felt so anxious we actually sat down to make lists.
The first 101 Things To Do was born.
Since then, I’ve been creating a list in December of each year…think of it as a mega-New Year’s Resolution. Some years I have finished the whole list…some years I have only done 20-30 things.
I love making these lists because somewhere around 40-60 things in, I start to have to really push myself. What do I really want to do with my life? What things haven’t I thought about in awhile? What’s important to me?
I’ve been doing a pretty good job of keeping up with my list so far this year (minus sending Valentine’s to everyone…#sorrynotsorry), but I really want to stay on it. There are some pretty ambitious things on my list, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve found that the more ambitious my list is, and the more I actually do, the more aligned I am to really accomplishing the things I want to.
So, without further adieu…101 Things I am probably/definitely going to do this year (I’ve italicized some things I’ve already done so you can see that I’m not a total slacker):
101 Things to Do in 2014
2. Create/build/decorate patio.
3. Have a patio dinner party.
4. Write 10 letters.
5. Travel out of the country.
6. Visit a state you’ve never been to.
7. Publish writing in 3 places.
8. Submit work to 3 major contests.
Two down (Grassroots Women Project and Great Lakes Commonwealth of Letters Poetry Contest), one to go!
9. Attend a writing workshop or event.
10. Go to a poetry reading.
11. Forgive yourself.
12. Buy a yoga mat.
13. Go to yoga classes.
14. Send Valentines to everyone you love.
15. Plant vegetables or herbs on patio – contact Well House about urban gardening classes.
16. Volunteer often for causes you support.
Every Tuesday this year (besides one snow day) I’ve tutored Yariksa at the Creative Youth Center. Her seriousness and maturity about life always shock and humble me. She is so grateful for her education.
17. Complete task list for home improvements.
18. Jump off a boat or dock.
19. Be a better listener.
20. Be a kind and thoughtful friend.
21. Spend a whole day in silence.
22. Spend a whole week without social media.
23. Read at least 10 books this year. Be an active library patron.
1. Don’t Worry It Gets Worse by Alida Nugent (1/2014)
2. Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker (1/2014)
3. Blood and Beauty: The Borgias by Sarah Dunant (1/2014)
24. Be more fluent in Spanish.
25. Buy some original art and hang it.
26. Go hiking.
27. Take a real road trip.
28. Build your personal library.
29. Go camping.
30. Hang up a world map and mark where you’ve been.
31. Watch a sunrise.
32. Watch a sunset.
33. Go to the dentist.
34. Get your first mammogram.
35. Get your yearly physical.
36. Go to the eye doctor.
37. Spend a weekend with Giselle.
38. Go dancing.
39. Make an effort to see Katy, Cassie, and Tara once a month.
Jan. – Saw Katy and Cassie for New Years.
Feb. – Saw Tara and Cassie for birthday brunch at Rockwell’s on 2/2.
40. Spend an entire day on the beach.
42. Do something kind for all of your house neighbors.
44. See a movie or go to a restaurant alone.
45. Get a professional massage.
46. Bring baked goods to work.
47. Knit a scarf and give it to someone.
48. Get a bikini wax.
49. Bake a loaf of bread.
50. Go wine tasting.
51. Leave a 100% tip for a server.
I did this on 2/1 at The Winchester. I took my mom there for lunch as part of my birthday weekend and our server was so nice. They didn’t have any good tea (because it’s a bar) and she brought me some that she had brought from home. My mom and I split a burger, so our bill was on $15ish, and I thought “NOW IS THE TIME!” It felt nice to surprise someone who really deserved it.
52. Visit a temple or church and pray.
53. Go to a concert.
54. Let something go that hurts you.
55. Drop everything and help a friend.
56. Have wild sex.
57. Hold hands with someone.
58. Eat a food you’ve never tried before.
59. Give an unexpected gift.
60. Print, frame, and display pictures.
61. Contact paper/re-vamp fridge. Or petition landlord for new one.
62. Work hard. Stay humble.
63. Sit by a bonfire.
65. Get a pedicure.
66. Vacuum your car and clean inside windows.
67. Take your mom to dinner and a movie.
68. Go canoeing or kayaking.
69. Get wet in a waterfall.
70. Take Giselle to Frederick Meijer Gardens.
71. Make a bookshelf bed.
72. Clean your make up brushes.
73. Have beautifully organized closets.
74. Try to read every day for 30 minutes.
75. Schedule lunch/dinner/shopping dates with friends.
I had lunch with my friend Ashly at Marie Catrib’s on 1/7/14. I had the Vermaire. SO GOOD. And a piece of the best carrot cake afterward. Seriously, best ever. And the pickles…Ashly and I talked about cheating and relationships and why being 20 is so goddamn hard.
76. Buy cute, warm, winter pajamas.
77. Bring someone coffee or tea just because.
78. Meet with Brent, Pamela, and Miriam.
79. Go on vacation.
80. Eat at Bartertown Diner, Marie Catrib’s, Terra GR, or another “farm-to-table” restaurant. (See #75 for details on Marie Catrib’s. But seriously…best pickles and carrot cake ever made by man/woman._
81. Learn a new skill.
82. Be okay with being alone and lonely.
83. Play the harmonica.
84. Visit with your brother.
85. Buy personal calling cards.
86. Go horseback riding.
87. End the year with at least $500 in your savings account.
88. Bake someone a birthday cake.
89. Get Mugs’ teeth cleaned.
90. Have a picnic at Reeds’ Lake.
91. Put together a writing portfolio.
92. Visit Uncle Terry and go out for dinner.
93. Go to the Grand Rapids Art Museum.
94. Go to the Grand Rapids Public Museum.
95. Take a kid to the Grand Rapids’ Children’s Museum.
96. Buy something from a locally owned book store.
97. See a play, opera, or other theatrical production.
98. Listen to live music.
99. Up-keep This Little Space blog for a year.
100. Have a support group of solid friends and family.
101. Complete this list.
Do you have a bucket list? Share the top three things you want to do in 2014 in the comments below. :)