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101 Things: It Begins (Again)

15 January 2012

A few years ago, I stumbled across a “101 things in 1001 days” meme and decided I’d do it.  I started my list, did some of the things on it, and then life got busy.  And I stopped.  Recently a couple of my co-workers picked up on this through a more formalized website, the Day Zero Project.  I’m not really interested in participating at that website, because it’s just one more place to check in and interface and I don’t want to add it to my daily life.  But I do want to start blogging again.  So I’m going to put my 101 Things back onto my blog, with modifications and updates, and go from there.

Here’s how it will work:

  • I’ll build my list and post it here. It will be a work in progress for a while, I suppose.  If you have suggestions, do make them in the comments.  And I reserve the right to edit the list if circumstances demand a change or two.
  • Activities in progress are in italics.  Activities completed are struck through. When it’s a recurring activity, I’ll keep a countdown and will add what I’ve done in a bullet list below.
  • When I write about a particular activity, I’ll link to it on the list.
  • Each month, I’ll repost the list with updates.
  • Finish by Sunday, October 12, 2014. Hope you have fun following my (mis)adventures!

Without further ado, here goes!

The List

1. Monthly culture–visit a site, go to a concert, see an exhibit, go on an art walk, etc. (0/33)

2. Road trip up the west coast at least along Big Sur, maybe further.

3. Travel to a foreign country.  Preferably one I haven’t visited before, but since time and means are limited I won’t be too choosy.

4. Plant an herb garden in my kitchen or on my balcony; use the herbs I grow in my cooking.

5. Write a children’s book.  Just because I think it would be interesting to try.

6. Keep up with regular blogging.  By regular, I mean at least weekly posts and preferably more often.

7. Read a book and write up an old-school book report once a month. (0/33)

8. Learn how to play chess; re-learn backgammon and checkers.

9. Go stargazing.  Maybe during the Perseids, since it’s the meteor shower I remember from backpacking trips with my Dad.

10. Visit Saguaro National Park when it’s in bloom.  I’ve wanted to see the saguaros in bloom since I first encountered them a few years ago. (see #s 19, 26, 31, 38, 50, 59, 65)

11. Spend an afternoon people watching.

12. Fill in a cinematic gap once a month.  Heaven knows I have enough of them that I could probably watch a classic film I’ve somehow missed weekly and still not be caught up by the end of 1001 days. (0/33)

  • Gap 1: Close Encounters of the Third Kind (at Paul’s suggestion)

13. Make it a tradition to give service  on Thanksgiving Day. (0/2)

14. Read the Constitution.  Complete with all amendments.  I’ve read parts of it but am ashamed to admit that I don’t think I’ve ever read it all the way through.

15. Donate blood.  As a consequence, learn my blood type (seems an important thing to know).

16. Go Christmas caroling.  I always want to do this at the holidays and it seems I never do.

17. Extend a micro-loan through Kiva or a similar organization; make it an ongoing loan that goes out again once I’ve been repaid.

  • Loan 1: to Chang in Cambodia, where she farms rice and potatoes; to rent additional farmland with the goal of eventually buying more plots

18. Take a roadtrip without a destination.  Just get on the road and drive until I see something that makes me want to stop.

19. Visit Arches National Park.  Part of my larger national parks list (see #s 10, 26, 31, 38, 50, 59, 65)

20. Learn to swim.  I sorta know how in that I can keep myself from drowning and can play in a pool.  But I don’t know well enough to swim for exercise and I’d like to be able to.

21. Join a gym.  Use that membership regularly.

22. See the Northern Ligths.  Not sure where, exactly, but I’ve been wanting to see the aurora borealis for a very long time.

23. Learn to knit.  I can already crochet.  And technically I’ve already taught myself the very most basics of knitting.  But I need to really learn.  I’ll probably take advantage of Blazing Needles classes to do this.

24. Experience a sensory deprivation pool/chamber.

25. Send a secret to post secret.  Not sure what this is going to be, because I feel like my life is mostly pretty boring and doesn’t have that many secrets in it.  I’ll be thinking about it.

26. Visit Yellowstone.  If possible, stay at the Old Faithful Inn. (see #s 10, 19, 31, 38, 50, 59, 65)

27. Write a letter to myself to read at the end of this project.  Cheesy? Yes.  But I still had fun reading the one I wrote as a 15-year-old to myself at 25, so I figure I’ll enjoy writing to my future self again.

28. Kiss Paul in the rain.

29. Watch sunrise and sunset on the same day, maybe on one of my visits to a national park.  Maybe just here at home.

30. Go snowshoeing or cross-country skiing.  I’m not much for downhill skiing, but think I’d enjoy one of these.

31. Visit Zion National Park.  For more than a quick afternoon stop on a roadtrip. (see #s 10, 19, 26, 38, 50, 59, 65)

32. Get a tattoo.  Okay, in all honesty I’m probably far too wussy to do this.  The thought of getting a tattoo fills me with dread of pain.  But I sorta want to do it anyway.  I may do henna instead.  Or maybe I’ll do a piercing. I guess we’ll see what happens with this one.

33. Try a new food (or a food I’ve been saying I don’t like) once a month. (0/33)

34. Start practicing random acts of kindness consciously.  I think I’m a pretty kind person, but it can’t hurt to be more thoughtful about this.

35. Buy an original piece of artwork or a limited edition print.

36. Get a piggy bank.  Use it to save spending money for an upcoming vacation.

37. Pay off my credit card.

38. Visit the Grand Canyon.  Maybe even a hike to and camping at Havasupai Falls. (see #s 10, 19, 26, 31, 50, 59, 65)

39. Make homemade applesauce.  Yum.

40. Watch a TED video or listen to an an iTunes U lecture once a month. In other words, learn something new. (0/33)

41. Start saving for retirement.  Because it’s a smart, grown-up thing to do.

42. Get into the habit of using a calendar/planner and to-do lists to plan and organize my days.

43. Give at least some hand-made gifts for Christmas (realistically I don’t have time to make all the gifts I give, but I can make some).

44. Learn to identify 5 new constellations.

45. Start making iTunes play lists again.  Occasionally burn one and give it to a friend.

46. Learn how to cook dishes from my favorite cuisines: Indian, Thai, and Mexican. (0/3)

47. Make homemade jam.  Probably either strawberry or raspberry freezer jam. (Really I should make this an annual occurrence. Homemade jam is so yummy.)

48. Make an alphabet book for my new niece/nephew (#25!).

49. Stay up all night to watch the sunrise.

50. Visit Canyonlands National Park. (see #s 10, 19, 26, 31, 38, 59, 65)

51. Add a Le Creuset French oven to my stock of culinary tools.

52. Go on a girls trip with my mama and my sisters.  Should be rather nutty if all seven of us go!

53. Go to a concert at least once a quarter, some classical, some not. (0/8)

54. Make Julia Child’s beef bourguignon.

55. Attend a live taping of The Daily Show.  Or The Colbert Report.  This is maybe a bit unlikely since I live in the west, but I do get to New York state at least once a year, so maybe I can make it happen.

56. Visit another Frank Lloyd Wright house.  Most likely Hollyhock House, since it’s in L.A. very near my friends’ home.

57. Explore a city that’s completely new to me.  For pleasure, so business trips don’t count.

58. Make it a habit to start my day with a decent breakfast.

59. Visit Capitol Reef National Park. I plan to be getting stamps on my National Parks Passport as I visit all these national parks (thanks, Randi!). (see #s 10, 19, 26, 31, 38, 50, 65)

60. Explore a Salt Lake cemetery.  Not sure which one, but I’ve always enjoyed a ramble through a cemetery and there are a few beautiful ones here.

61. See a Cirque du Soleil show, probably in Vegas.  I’ve been wanting to see one of these shows for years and never have.  Sometime when I’m en route to California, I’ll stop to take one in.  And I could combine it with #11, since Vegas is a great place for people watching.

62. Write a six-word memoir.  Do it again.  And maybe again.

63. Visit the This Is the Place Heritage Park.  A little like Salt Lake’s version of Williamsburg.

64. Go to the Utah Museum of Fine Arts.  It’s a small museum and the collection looks a little underwhelming, but I want to support what local art scene there is.

65. Visit Bryce Canyon National Park.  Utah has a wealth of national parks; I want to take them all in. (see #s 10, 19, 26, 31, 38, 50, 59)

66. Go bird watching.  Preferably at the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge.

67. Make a habit of reading poetry, both old favorites and new finds.

68. See the wildflowers in bloom.  Spring, summer, and fall. (0/3)

69. Learn the names of my neighborhood trees.  And remember them.

70. Get all dressed up and go out on the town.  I don’t do it often, but I have a good time when I do.  Paul, I’m hereby putting you on notice for this one.

71. Go see films that are part of the Sundance Film Festival.  Probably just whatever ends up easy to get into.

72. Make it a habit to cook healthy, balanced meals for dinner at least five nights a week (except when I’m on the road; then I’ll buy healthy, balanced meals).

73. Once a month make a big batch of something I can stock my freezer with.  Makes healthy mid-week meals easier. (0/33)

74. Celebrate my 39th birthday in style.  I’ll celebrate 37 and 38, too, but I think a big, fun send-off to my 30s is in order.

75. Get my appropriate Utah ID and register to vote.  I should have done this by now, but have been dragging my feet.  Time to embrace my status as a Utahn, even if I’ll always identify as Californian first.

76. Walks in gardens at least once a month. This shouldn’t be hard, since Paul and I walk through Temple Square on a weekly basis, but I’d like to add Red Butte and Gilgal and others to our regular list. (0/33)

77. Read Sense & Sensibility.  It’s the only Austen novel I haven’t read and I really should.

78. Attend a Christmas Eve midnight service.  Not sure which denomination, but I’ve been wanting to do this for a long time and this year I missed out cause I got sick.

79. Celebrate Ephiphany.  I’m not sure how it’s traditionally celebrated, but I think this is a sadly overlooked holiday.

80. Go backpacking again.  It’s been far too many years.  I have all the gear I need and easy access to amazingly beautiful mountains.  This coming summer will find me out hiking and sleeping under the stars.

81. Build a fire and roast marshmallows so I can make s’mores.  Because I haven’t had one in forever and that’s just too long.

82. Spend a winter weekend at a cabin in the mountains.  Play outside and then come in to warm up by a fire.  Consume far too much hot chocolate, lounge in bed until far too late in the morning, read a good book or watch a good movie.

83. Volunteer with Habitat for Humanity.

84. Hang a wind chime on my balcony.  I do love the sound of a wind chime just outside my window.

85. Get a massage.  I’ve only ever had one and it was lovely.  I think I deserve another.

86. Create a monthly budget and stick to it. (0/33)

87. Write a piece of flash fiction.

88. Travel by train.  I love traveling this way and it’s been a while since I’ve done so.

89. Dine by candlelight.  I’ve done this once or twice and it’s fun.

90. Watch a movie at a drive-in.  Haven’t done this since I was a little kid and there just happens to be a drive-in theater in SLC.

91. Five museums in five cities–go to five different museums in five different cities.  This would be a nice way to liven up some of my business travel, too.

92. Give flowers to someone.  I love getting flowers.  And I’ve sent them for certain kinds of occasions.  But I want to give some to someone just cause.

93. Build something with legos.  Preferably the old school basics, rather than a kit.

94. Explore street art on a monthly basis.  There are a couple places in the city where people paint pretty regularly; it’ll be fun to track the changes. (0/33)

95. Write a “This I Believe” essay and submit it to the website.

96. Memorize one poem a month.  It’s kind of old school, but I like the idea of memorizing poetry.  When I did it before, it was a good way to be thinking regularly about a particular poem and how it works. (0/33)

97. Learn how to crochet Amigurumi animals.

98. Go white-water rafting.  Something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.

99. Take pictures in a photobooth.

100. Make a new list of 101 things for the next 1001 days.

101. Donate $5 for each goal I don’t complete.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. 16 January 2012 10:31 pm

    If you haven’t already explored Portland, come here! And depending on what time of year you come, you could a) celebrate Epiphany (we have a benefit dinner party every year), b) make jam (I pick berries and make low-sugar freezer jam almost every summer; Fourth of July is good for this), c) make applesauce (we have a Winesap apple tree, and the apples are ready to pick in mid-October), or d) go Christmas caroling (I’m already planning my party for this year, with cookies and cocoa).

    Also, the Le Creuset pots are very nice, but I opted for an on-sale Martha Stewart cast iron dutch oven from Macy’s in a lovely robin’s-egg blue. :)

  2. 16 January 2012 11:29 pm

    You tempt me, janeannechovy. I have been to Portland already, but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t make it one of my 5-cities-5-museums stops. Is there a good museum for me to visit there?

    I’ll keep you posted if it looks like I might be heading to the great Northwest. I love it up there and it’s been a while since I’ve been.

  3. 17 January 2012 4:55 pm

    I’ve actually never visited Portland’s art museum, so I don’t know if it would be worth the while. But if you come in the summer, we can schlep out to the Maryhill Museum in the Gorge: It’s a fantastically gorgeous drive along the Columbia River (the Gorge is a National Scenic Area), you can hike around waterfalls on the way, PLUS there’s a replica of Stonehenge!! What could be more awesome?

  4. Randi permalink
    12 February 2012 11:58 am

    I love it, Parkin! I can’t wait for the recaps! xoxo

  5. amelia permalink*
    12 February 2012 8:04 pm

    First recap coming up next weekend. :)

  6. 19 February 2012 12:12 am

    Looks like a great list!

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