Thirty Before 30 . . . and Life List Inspiration

I love lists.  They go along nicely with my love of blank notebooks, they help me get stuff done, they facilitate dreams and plans ever so nicely.

On my 29th birthday, while in the midst of the Les Mis tour, I was feeling adrift.  I had a great job, I was traveling the country with some good friends, but I really missed my life in NYC (and all the people associated with that life).  I needed a way to focus my energy.  I was continually inspired by Maggie Mason of “Mighty Girl” and her Mighty Life List, but I wanted something specific to the time.  So I made a Thirty Before 30 list.

I divided my list into categories:  physical, mental, creative, connection, personal development, and silly, fun stuff.  I also went in with a specific attitude:  I was going to work very hard to finish it, but I wasn’t going to beat myself if I didn’t.  It was about adding beauty to my life, not stress.  And I am proud to say that I finished most of the list and made serious progress on the rest of it–and I continue to work on the “in-progress” stuff (25,000 words in to my novel.  Just, er, 25,000 left.)

Here’s my list, in case it inspires you to create your own!  (It is, after all, #30.)

 Part of the 30 Day Photo Challenge–”Something Pink”

Part of the 30 Day Photo Challenge–”Something Pink”

 International culinary adventures in a tiny hotel kitchen in Ohio

International culinary adventures in a tiny hotel kitchen in Ohio

  1. Train for and run the New York City Half-Marathon.
  2. Hold a plank position for five minutes. Hold a side plank position for 2 minutes.
  3. Pick 10 countries. Pick one “signature recipe” from each. Cook it.
  4. Make homemade ginger beer. Use it to make a gin gin mule.
  5. Reading List: 10 fiction, 10 non-fiction. Write down and preserve favorite quotes.
  6. Write a 50,000 word novel.
  7. Make or purchase extravagant birthday presents for Dad’s 70th and Mom’s 60th.
  8. Fly my brother to NYC for a weekend of brother/sister bonding.
  9. Write Grandma and Grandpa 12 letters
  10. Participate in 3 NYCares Projects— bring a friend to each.
  11. Make a beautifully fitted dress, affix a homemade label inside saying “Made by Casey”. Wear it out for fabulous cocktails.
  12. Finish 5 craft projects. Give all 5 away.
  13. Host one truly fabulous party for my girlfriends.
  14. Go on an “all-day” hike (bring food, take pictures, return at sunset)
  15. Clean out my closet—get rid of anything I don’t absolutely love and anything that I only occasionally wear/feel good in.
  16. Get new headshots. Redesign www.caseyerinclark.com
  17. Write 10 “Thank You Notes” to people who have influenced me.
  18. Invest $500 in the stock market.
  19. Listen to 100 new songs.
  20. Finish a coloring book.
  21. Recreate the “blue sky pictures” art that I fell in love with in Madison, Wisconsin.
  22. Complete the 30 Day Photo Challenge.
  23. Purchase a real painting.
  24. Choose a charity. Raise 1000 dollars for that charity.
  25. Organize the photos on my computer. Create 3 hardcover photo albums of beautiful memories.
  26. Write a song.
  27. Purchase a pair of real rose-gold earrings that go with my wedding ring.
  28. Collect my favorite recipes. Make a book. Give to friends and family.
  29. Buy a truly ridiculous pair of heels for my 30th birthday party.
  30. Document the experience of completing this list. Help someone else create their own Thirty before 30 list.
Casey Clark