Birthdays are funny things, don’t you think? I regularly switch between wanting to celebrate because it’s nice to observe another year on this planet and consider all the happy memories from the previous year, and wanting to hide away because I don’t particularly enjoy being centre of attention and, well, 38 is a pretty big number that fills me with feelings of being old and running out of time. 

Overlooking my home.

You’ll be pleased to know that this year I decided to celebrate. On the day this post goes live I’m enjoying a short break in London to see a play, visit some museums and eat some good food. There was also cake, there has to be cake, accompanied with a cup of tea or two.

I have also decided to mark the occasion by taking part in a bit of a birthday fad. A list writing exercise. A couple of my friends (looking at you Chelsea and Katie) have done this recently, and as a prolific list maker, I couldn’t resist joining in. I have therefore written a list of 38 things I’d like to accomplish between my 38th and my 39th birthday. Some of them are from my existing bucket list, others are new, some will be pretty easy, others might be more difficult because they rely on external circumstance and a decent cash flow.

So here we are, a bit of a muddly list, shared in no particular order… I’ll try and keep you updated throughout the year.

A Birthday To Do List

  1. Get One Hour Outside every day. You know, put my actions where my mouth is.
  2. Walk another National Trail.
  3. Catch up with blogging and then agree to less so I can concentrate on the good stuff and don’t ever feel like I’m “behind”.
  4. Write more postcards. I love receiving them, I should send more to spread the joy.
  5. Spend more time in/on the water. This will most likely take the form of visiting my local pool more regularly, but I’m hoping there will be some salt water in there too.
  6. Finish decorating the house so it is most definitely “ours”. It’s just painting and some soft furnishings, it can’t take that long! I think we’re down to the dining room, study, the bathroom and the bedrooms.
  7. Print out photos of our adventures for the wall as reminders of where we have been and what we’ve seen.
  8. Walk 1,000 miles. I managed it comfortably in 10 months this year, but I’ll stick with the 1,000 target because it’s a nice round number.
  9. Pitch my book idea to some publishers. I’m not saying it’ll get picked up or actually written this year, but I will never know if I don’t get on and pitch it!
  10. Refresh my blog design and layout so it’s a bit more me.
  11. Spend a day at a spa and have a massage.
  12. Read 12 books… (well, listen to). This doesn’t sound like many, but I’ve never been a reader and have only recently got into fiction.
  13. Do the Via Ferrata Xtreme at Honister. Weather stopped play last time, and I promised myself I’d go back and do it properly.
  14. Have another two-day/one-night solo hiking adventure.
  15. Sort out the garden so I have lots of herbs and bee/bug friendly flowers – and then spend time enjoying it.
  16. Feel comfortable in skinny jeans. This means losing a couple of kilos and toning up a bit. Being short in height and always hungry means maintaining a healthy weight is tough!
  17. Spend the night in a really fancy hotel after eating a really fancy meal.
  18. Learn more about the weather by taking an online course and reading up on the topic. One of my schooling regrets is not taking geography, but I was reminded recently that it’s not too late, I can put that right now.
  19. Go on a motorcycle road trip abroad. I’m hoping for Spain and/or Iceland. Everest Base Camp would pretty cool, too, but there is a time and money resource limit.
  20. Visit Budleigh Salterton to check the sea is still there (read my A to Z of Me post).
  21. Secure a regular guest writing gig to help fund my outdoors adventures.
  22. Attempt to break a world record. Any ideas?!
  23. Paint something and hang it up at home. I hardly ever paint anymore. I keep promising myself I should.
  24. Reduce my personal plastic consumption even more.
  25. Climb a mountain.
  26. Spend the night in a campervan.
  27. Ride a rollercoaster. It’s been too long!
  28. Have a ruthless clear out of my shoes. Nothing half-hearted. Really. Hmmmm.
  29. Cut down on processed sugar. I might attempt a month without again. Could I give up sweets and chocolate for Lent?! I’m not sure I could manage that.
  30. Work out what makes me bloat so much and cut it out. I think I already know, but I need to prove it, sort it out, and move on.
  31. Learn to love green/peppermint/fruit tea and drink less black tea. Any recommendations? I’ve tried lots!
  32. Go wild swimming.
  33. Service my mountain bike and get out on some trails.
  34. Donate blood.
  35. Go surfing. As with the rollercoaster, it’s been too long.
  36. Get my skincare routine sorted and rid my face of acne spots once and for all. Okay, so the latter might never happen, but that’s what I’m aiming for.
  37. Spend more time without my phone in my hand.
  38. Use my pre-breakfast time more wisely. I haven’t decided what form that should take yet, but I’m very good at wasting that hour before I need to get ready for work.

Wow 38 things is a lot, isn’t it? I know these aren’t smart goals, more this and less that aren’t very easy to quantify, and a lot of them are just an opportunity to do things I know I enjoy that I haven’t done recently, but that’s not the point here – this is a “for me” list.

If you have any tips or suggestions to help me achieve the above this year, I’m ready to hear them.

I guess I’d better get started…

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