29 Before 29 – Update

Well, this weekend was my 29th birthday. I don’t feel older but “twenty-nine” definitely stings a little when it coming out as compared to “twenty-eight.” I’m fortunate that my husband is waaaay older than me, so I always feel like the young one. Don’t worry, he makes plenty of jokes about the fact that I will be 30 on my next birthday. I, on the other hand, plan on celebrating my 29th birthday a couple more times, but this was a fantastic first run at it. Breakfast was made for me while I was showered with gifts from my family. The sunny and warm afternoon was spent poolside and after we returned home the boys slept for hours! Our babysitter arrived just as they woke up and we drove north to Frederick to eat at a restaurant that’s been on our bucket list for a long time. Volt lived up to its expectations and we marveled at the quirky food combinations for the rest of the night. Fois gras-filled beet macaron, anyone?

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As some of you may remember, I wrote out a list of sorts to get me to complete certain tasks before I turned 29. Some of these were fun and some were meant to whip my butt into shape and get organized! Some were to focus on my relationship with Shane, my boys and even with myself. Needless to say, the most fun items were knocked off quickly and I was unable to complete some of the more cumbersome tasks. Here’s the results:

1. Take the boys to the National Zoo in DC. Tons of fun and we can’t wait to go back! The biggest hit was the seal tank! Completed on 3/30/13

2. Take the boys swimming. The boys had four swimming classes in March at an indoor pool and absolutely loved it. This was their second winter taking swimming “lessons” and we just loved spending weekend mornings at the pool. Over Memorial Day weekend, our local outdoor pool opened and we’ve already gone swimming three times so far!

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 3. Take better photographs. I’m going to call this one completed. I made an effort to learn how to take (sort-of) artsy pictures using my DSLR camera, but nothing will beat the ease and convenience of my trusty iPhone! I still have plenty to learn and I have zero idea as to how to edit my photos once they’re captured aside from the basic cropping.

4. Make-over the look of the blog. Ugh, I’m still working on this one. I’d like to do most of the work myself so I don’t have to pay anyone, but I would need more than a few minutes here and there to actually sit down and learn how to do it! I’m close though… stay tuned 🙂

5. Run a 10K. Completed on May 27! Probably my biggest accomplishment on the list and I was so excited to be able to check this one off!

6. Re-organize my recipe collection. This was not a total fail, but I didn’t re-organize like I would’ve liked to. I went through about a dozen old copies of Cooking Light magazine and clipped the recipes I wanted to try. This already cleared up a ton of space in my cookbook drawer. I’m hoping to sort the recipes by course and fill a three-ring binder with the recipes behind spill-proof sheet protectors. This might be a good project for when Shane goes on his next trip.

7. Clean our refrigerator. This one was completed on 3/1/13, but guess what?! It probably needs to be done again. I’m so much better at the surface cleaning and would love to pay someone to do the deep cleaning…. a girl can dream right?

8. Sit in a coffee shop and read for one hour. I thought this would be my easiest task but it was actually quite difficult. I sat and tried to read but kept looking at my watch. I felt guilty for having the boys at daycare while I was just sitting around after work. My hour (probably more like 45 minutes) was much less relaxing than I thought it would be! Completed on 3/21/13.

9. Take the stairs up to my office at least once a day. With the exception of one day, I climbed all 5 flights of stairs up to my office at least once per shift. I’m still a little winded when I get to the top but it’s so much faster than the elevator and gets my blood flowing!

10. Sell/Donate/Save massive piles of baby clothes. I took the first step in requesting a bag from ThreadUp, which is essentially an online consignment store. You load all the clothes into a pre-paid bag and ship it back to the company who sorts it and posts it online. You receive a portion of whatever they sell. I just haven’t gotten around to sorting out the ever-growing heap that’s taking over our closet. I’m too sentimental about every item!

11. Decorate the house for Easter/Spring. I’ll call this one completed. I bought a cute Easter themed wreath from World Market and hung up a framed spring-themed print and called it a day. I think purchasing a few things each year will begin to build my seasonal decorations so my house can reflect the different times of the year. I just wasn’t looking to break the bank trying to turn my house into a walking Martha Stewart ad.

12. Mommy & Wyatt day! Completed on 5/3/13, Wyatt and I had an awesome morning at the park and lunch together!

13. Mommy & Caleb day! Technically completed on 5/9/13, but Caleb is due another special day since the Mommy-and-Me event we attended didn’t have much that he was able to do.

14. Beat Shane at a game of tennis. We never found the time to go out and play, but I surely would’ve beaten him too.

15. Movie date with Shane. Didn’t make it to a movie either but we have had at least 3 dinner date nights out (babysitter and all) since I wrote this list so that has to count for something!

16. Try a hot yoga class.  I bought an online deal for 10 Bikram Yoga classes at a studio in Bethesda and I made it to one class and LOVED it! I was so relaxed when it was done and my fears dissipated after realizing that I made it through 90 minutes of yoga at 100 degrees without passing out! Yay! But once I left I realized I totally missed a desperately-needed haircut, I got a parking ticket and then I got flipped off in traffic on the way home. All that Zen-ness and calm feelings were totally gone. Oh well.

17. Family outing for ice cream on a sunny day. Surprisingly, the only time we’ve taken the boys out for ice cream was when we were visiting my family in northern Maine in April. It was an unseasonably warm spring day and I re-created those wonderful memories I have from my childhood… walking down the hill to the Tastee Freez for an ice cream cone. It was just as good as I remember!  Completed 4/15/13

18. Build up to 50 real push-ups. I didn’t realize how hard it was to do numerous consecutive push-ups, but I was able to do 5 sets of 10 push-ups without collapsing, so I’m calling it a partial success.

19. Create a piece of art.  So bummed that I wasn’t able to complete this task. I have a few ideas for the boys’ upcoming birthday and Fathers Day, so I might not be too far away from checking this one off.

20. Take a long bubble bath. This was my first task checked off the list. It was certainly a relaxing 30-minutes and I wish I took the time to take a bubble bath more frequently! Completed 2/18//13.

21. Make-over our entryway.  This is the second best accomplishment on the list. I never fully blogged about it, but after searching lots of online deals I was able to re-model our entry way for about $275.

22. Spend a day volunteering. My biggest disappointment. I just couldn’t find a time that didn’t require a regular commitment and also fit with my schedule. I’m not giving up though and it’s not a total loss since I am now familiar with the great website, Montgomery Serves, where you can search date, time or recipients who will benefit from your service.

23. Finish the book on my Kindle. Pretty pathetic that I haven’t read a book at all in 2013! Well I should re-phrase that… haven’t read any adult books in 2013. We read to the boys every night for 20 minutes without exception so does that count? Ha! Maybe this summer the TV will go off and Shane and I can both hop on the reading train.

24. Pay for someone’s order at the Starbucks/Dunkin’ Donuts drive-thru. I got so much joy from completing this task. I actually went to the grocery store and purchased a $10 gift card to the store itself and handed it to the cashier when I was checking out. I told her to use it for someone who she felt was in need of ten extra dollars. Her reaction was priceless. She was definitely confused at first but took her responsibility very seriously. “I’ll give it to the next person who is unable to pay for all their groceries. It happens a lot.” I left feeling really good about my random act of kindness.

25. Hang updated photos of the boys in our home. Frames purchased and set aside, pictures printed and sitting in an envelope. Only to take the two and combine them and hang them on the freaken wall! It seems our most productive time are when the boys are sleeping and you’d be crazy to think we’re about ready to start banging holes in the wall and risk waking them!

26. Take Caleb & Wyatt to Port Discovery in Baltimore. Completed on 3/2/13. What a fantastic place for the boys to play. We all had a fantastic time!

27. Enjoy a picnic at Wheaton Regional Park.  We had a picnic here with another family and enjoyed a sunny day at the park. We rode on the train, the carousel and explored the tot lot until everyone was tuckered out. Completed 4/27/13.

28. Prepare a fantastic Easter brunch. I love to cook and try new recipes so I pulled out all the stops for this brunch as well as Easter dinner.

29. Take the boys to see the cherry blossoms in DC. Technically we saw the cherry blossoms except we were about 4 days too early so it was underwhelming. The more notable blooms were seen right in our front yard at home so we really lucked out. I don’t feel bad about maybe waiting a few more years to take them back when they’ll be better able to appreciate the monuments and their symbolism.

So how did I do? I completed 19/29 items on my list. Not too bad. I haven’t given up on finishing my list but since my birthday has come and gone, I don’t think the motivation is there anymore. If you’re like me and love making lists, then I highly recommend writing down things you’d like to do in a particular time frame (this summer, by the end of 2013, before your next birthday, etc.).  It feels good to cross things off and you’re never left wondering what to do with your free time! The only question now is whether or not I’ll be making a Summer 2013 bucket list!

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I'm a working mom of three fantastic boys: Caleb, Wyatt and Parker. My husband, Shane, and I live in the Washington DC suburbs where we enjoy playgrounds, pools and never getting to sleep in. This blog is a journal of our day-to-day lives as well as a chronicle of Caleb's progress after a recent spinal surgery to alleviate the effects of his cerebral palsy.

Posted in 29 Before 29
2 comments on “29 Before 29 – Update
  1. Sharon Arnold says:

    You did good seeing you’re a full time mom & work full time..Awesome!!

  2. lillaisa says:

    I love the plan with the hot yoga class, we own a Bikram yoga studio in Sweden, so you are welcome for free if you come for a visit 🙂 i can even take care of the boys while you practice 🙂

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