Well, never underestimate the value of asking for help. Last week I asked for suggestions to add to my List of 40 New Things to Do to Celebrate Turning 40. I had been collecting ideas for my list, but I needed more. I also wanted creative, easy items to keep from getting bogged down by a list that is supposed to be invigorating.
And I received help, dozens of creative ideas. I’ve had so much fun this week, trying some of the ideas and getting 40 presents from my family, along with a ginormous tin of chocolate from Marnell. I almost forgot that turning 40 is “supposed to be” depressing. On the day of my birthday, Marnell and I ate pupusas, passed out 40 cupcakes (with Anina in tow with frosting all over her hands), went geo-caching (unsuccessfully), and watched the sunset from the top of Elkhart’s tallest building. It was a good day.
I’ve got 40 New Things To Do pretty well defined, but I have a few extra on the list so I can swap out any that I decide against. The list goes from food and recipes to education and books to experiences at home to experiences away from home. I also added several things that I hope to do for most of the next 40 days.
- Black Bean Stacks – DONE! Yum!
- Ukrainian borscht
- Homemade bread with strawberry jam and tomato
- Making specialty bread I got four really good-sounding suggestions and I’m not sure which or if all I will pick: pizza crust, English muffins, Subway bread, barley bread
- Pinky Up tea
- Making cheese – One Hour Cheese book by Claudia Lucero or possibly get my Aunt Virginia to give me a tutorial
- Bread-baking class – DONE!
- Read The Lazy Genius Way by Kendra Adachi
- Read Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
- Read The Physician by Noah Gordon
- Learn common bird calls (Youtube video?)
- Pitch a podcast -DONE!
- Do another episode of my writers podcast to consider restarting
- Study email providers
- Study collaborative software
- Make edible Playdough with Anina- DONE- She is not quite old enough, LOL.
- Order gift wrap on something I ordered for myself- DONE- oh my word, this may have been my favorite yet. It was so fun.
- Ask someone twice my age what life was like when they were 40. DONE, thanks to Marnell’s Mom.
- Make 40 cupcakes to pass out to 40 people. DONE
- Start composting
- Paint a scene on the sidewalk–DONE, similar to the edible Playdough!
- Play Pandemic with Marnell – game ordered
- Sand road-DONE
- Visit the wild horses-DONE
- Visit a new restaurant – Relish Cafe -DONE
- Visit a new shop – Neighbors Mercantile – DONE
- Pray with a stranger in public – DONE (wasn’t really expecting to do this one, but then it just came together!)
- Ride little train at the Train Museum with Anina – DONE
- Geo caching –DONE, although we didn’t succeed yet
- Take a picnic lunch to Krider gardens in Middlebury
- Eat pupusas at the El Salvadoran restaurant in Elkhart –DONE
- Watch the sunset from a different location than you ever have before –DONE from the top of the highest building in Elkhart!
- Visit the zoo or Dutch Creek Animal Farm or both
- Milk a goat (hmmm….not sure that I have the right connections for this)
- Use a non-book library service like renting a park pass
- Leave Anina at the babysitters 24 hours
- Visit cousin Anita – this might be our grand finale!
- Write a 40-word paragraph and edit and revise it for 40 days
- Have a green smoothie (including at least some greens in it) for 40 days
- Intermittent fasting for 40 days
- Add a song to a play list for 40 days
- Read the same Bible passage for 40 days
- Send a thank you note almost every day for 40 days – possibly include public officials and people who impacted me years ago.
- Post on Instagram (if you want to more photos of my progress, you can head over there, but if you also hate social media, I don’t blame you)
I really love this list, a great combination of fun and beneficial. There are some others that I would really like to do in time, or when Anina is older and can appreciate them more. For example:
- Send secret friend cards
- dehydrate foods
- Start or contribute to a Free Little Library
- Wear Mommy and Me outfits
- Many ideas of ways to bless people
- Many exciting activities: spelunking, biking, hot air ballooning, skydiving and kayaking.
- Visit a nursing home (I did make a few phone calls, but didn’t find a place yet
And so many more great ideas from emails, comments, and messages. It was enormously helpful, and I hope the rest of you were inspired too. Thanks so much!
P.S. For your next birthday, definitely order something with gift wrap for your self. That was wild!