{ Lynn, West Berlin, East Germany, 1982 }
A year ago today, I made a list of stuff that I was going to do during the last year of my twenties. The plan was to spend one month on each of the twelve tasks and to complete the list before, well, today.

A year later, I have to ask myself, "WTF was I thinking?"

Some of these goals required a considerable time investment. Others required a monetary investment that we were just not able to make. If you look at it objectively, I failed, big time.

But, like I said in my guest post at Unscripted Life on Saturday, I didn't fail. I changed this year. I became a better person. I accomplished things that I couldn't have even dreamed of a year ago. This year was awesome.

I lost thirty pounds. I got published. I got a job. I went to Delaware, Vegas, and Hawaii. I ran my first race and finished a Level 5 floor routine. I got shit done.

This doesn't really cover how I did on the tasks themselves. Shall we examine them?

1. Do a Level 5 floor routine. I can't believe that I did this one. I started in adult classes in January (when I realized that I needed to get cracking or it was NOT going to happen), and faithfully went as long as my health and pocketbook held out. Lo and behold, on May 21, I completed the damn Level 5 floor routine. We celebrated with wine in the parking lot afterwards.

2. See 5 new places of national or international historical or commercial significance. I managed to get to one new place, the U.S. Naval Academy. And it's gorgeous. See?

{ Houses across the bay from USNA }
I also went to the 'Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaii this year, but I'm not totally sure if that counts. It's culturally important for sure, and it does have an impact on our nation ... okay, I'm counting it. I made it to two places of national or international significance.

3. Whistle through 2 fingers. I spent a month trying to figure out how to do this, and for the life of me, I could not get my stupid lips to form the right way. So you know what? Screw it. I can yell louder than I can whistle anyway.

4. Get a piece "audition ready" on the oboe. I almost did this. For three weeks, I played three times a week for an hour at a time. But nine hours does not make you audition-ready after not playing regularly since 2000.

5. Play roulette in Vegas. Done, done, and DONE. I put $20 on 29 black ... and promptly lost it. So I went to the blackjack table and quadrupled my remaining $20.

6. Run a 5K. Also done, done, and DONE. I ran a random 5K at the end of March, and came in 179th overall. What's up now?

7. Travel to 5 new states. If only. We went to Delaware in September and made plans to go to Boston in March (with stops in Connecticut and Rhode Island and a possible side trip to New Hampshire). Then a family friend moved his wedding date up and we had to divert our travel funds. It was worth it, though--the wedding was fun, the bride was gorgeous, and the couple is very, very happy. We were glad to do it. (But I still want to go to Boston.)

8. Refinish 2 chairs. I made it about 7/8 of the way through the first chair and called it quits. I'm a little disappointed with this one, because I really did want those chairs. However, we moved shortly after I started this project, and the new chairs didn't really go with our new decor. If only I had made the goal "refinish a piece of furniture." Maybe then I would have tackled the girls' chifferobe.

9. Learn to play the piano. Ha. Ha ha. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Okay, now that that's out of my system, no, I did not learn how to do this. My piano repertoire still consists of "Heart and Soul." Interestingly, I'm okay with this.

10. Take a hot air balloon ride. This is my favorite so far, even though it hasn't happened yet. I started to plan it, and we ran into successive problems of high winds and childcare. Then winter happened, and we couldn't go anyway. This year, during my quest to get published, I pitched an idea to a magazine about hot air ballooning. They want it. So this is on hold until they finish drawing up my contract. But it's happening.

11. Decorate a cake nicely. I did this one! I took a class in July and learned the basics of decorating a cake nicely. Now, I haven't totally proved that I can do it--humidity is a beeyotch, I tell you--but I've gotten much better. And practice makes perfect, yo. (Read about it here.)

12. Be in a play, commercial, or other dramatic production. Sadly, this is one that I actually tried to do and just couldn't make happen. I had grand plans--be an extra in a show filming locally, audition for community theater, take an acting class--but I just couldn't find the time and money to do it. Not with everything else going on this year. So, perhaps later in life, when I can leave the kids alone for a while, or at least trust them with a babysitter for more than just a morning or afternoon.

So that's it. My twenties are over. I'm officially in my 30s. And I'm glad to be here. The only question that remains is what kind of list to make next. Forty Before 40? 101 (Things) in 1001 (Days)? This upcoming year? I don't know yet. But I'm going to take a few days off to think about it (and celebrate!) and be back next week with an answer.

Until then, my friends.

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  1. Um, got a couple of decades on you but I'm not giving up on point #9 yet!Point 10...did it...do it...also fly gliders, great fun. Did you take a photo of the cake? I'd love to see it. All the best for at least 60 more years.

    1. Thanks! I did take a photo of the cake; it's on Instagram/Twitter here: https://twitter.com/lynndaue/status/205433598562680834.

      I've never flown gliders, but I have gone parasailing. Does that count? No? Then I guess it's going on my list. I'm really looking forward to my hot air balloon ride, whenever it should happen. Gotta keep at it ...

  2. I also want to take a cake decorating class...sounds fun! Your whole list sounds great! That's only one of the reasons I have nominated you for The Versatile Blogger Award! Read more about it here: http://www.muddyingthewaters.com.

    Have a great day!

    1. The cake decorating class was awesome--I highly recommend taking one. Most craft stores (Michaels, Joann, AC Moore, etc) have someone that teaches the Wilton Method, and it's worth every penny.

      And thank you for the Versatile Blogger award!


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