Friday, September 13, 2013

This List Should be Shrinking not Growing, Right?

I’ve been pitching for a bunch of different writing gigs lately and this morning THE ideal job posting came across the wires – a travel blog writer. For money. Holy crap! I don’t really have experience writing articles so much but I’m an expert reviewer. Not to mention an expert traveler by car as couples.

So that’s what I based my pitch on. Along with some creative and flowery adjectives describing my own backyard. Hey, travel starts in your own neighborhood right? Especially when you’re an “expat” like me – a Townie in a new land.

But anyway, while I was going back through my blog posts to see what articles I could share as samples of my style, I came across a post from April 16, 2011 titled Something to Do Before I Die. I re-read it and had to laugh. My bucket list that I wrote back then included a bunch of good stuff but the list itself has definitely grown since I wrote that post. But a few things got knocked off and they sure were fun!

Let’s break it down and see where I’m at as of September 2013…

The Bucket List – as originally published on 4/16/2011

• Be on the New York Times best sellers list, “The” list not one of those offshoots

Um, not quite there just yet. Don’t know how soon this one might get crossed off but I’ll keep giving that old college try!

• Travel to Spain, specifically Barcelona

We have some friends with a condo in Rocky Point, Mexico. Their place is right on the beach and only about a 3 or so hour drive from Phoenix. And they go almost every weekend in the summer and keep inviting us to go with them. Why am I telling you this on a point related to Spain? Well, we haven’t even gotten our passports updated to go 3 hours away by car with friends. So looks like Spain is on the back burner for a while, huh?

• Travel back to Amsterdam (with Matt this time)

See above…

• Travel back to Ireland


• Travel to Hawaii

We actually have the opportunity to stay with my sister’s BFF and her husband who just recently moved to one of the Hawaiian islands to live permanently. No passport required? Free place to stay? Challenge accepted!

• Travel to Portugal

You know the answer by now.

• Live and make a living in San Diego

Not yet but this is definitely on both mine and Matt’s radar right now. We got home from our anniversary trip and actually seriously started talking about how we could make it happen to get a condo out there that we rent out until we’re ready to “retire” (I use quotes because I’ll be writing until my fingers fall off, the retiring part can be left to Matt).

• See the Red Sox play the Yankees at Fenway in a game 4 for the sweep and kick their sorry asses right back to the Bronx where they belong (if this season is any indication I’ve got a couple years before this occurs)

As predicted, not so much the past couple seasons. Although this one is looking pretty promising. But I can 100% guarantee I wouldn’t be able to catch the game even if it happened as I laid out here. Too much other travel this fall for weddings. We won’t be able to get back to Boston until next summer unfortunately.

• Settle for seeing the Sox beat the Yanks in any regular season game at Fenway

And because we can’t get back east until 2014 I’d settle for seeing it happen on TV.

• Sit beside my Aunt at the finals when the Bruins win the Cup for the first time in 38+ years (yes, I mean this year damn it!)

I did not get to sit next to Sue when they won the Cup but…

• Settle for seeing them win the cup at all (either in the stands or on my sofa next to my Aunt) and getting to go to the parade

GOAL ACHIEVED!!! (Pun intended). That was THE BEST WAY EVER to wrap up our Boston lives before moving to Arizona! The parade was insanely cool and something I’ll remember the rest of my life. And I’m so glad I got to share that day with Sue, Matt and my Uncle!

• Becoming a millionaire, not through inheritance or anything like that, my own blood, sweat & tears

Still working on this one…

• Graduate college

No longer caring to work on this one…

• Be in a big budget movie (I’ll even take a small part like “Friend’s neighbor” or something but it has to be a speaking role [one line will do] and I must be credited

Not yet but I’ll keep it in the back of my mind. I am so not attractive on camera and I really dislike my recorded voice, but maybe with the right lighting and direction, plus the fact I wouldn’t have to be the “star” would help me be better at those parts?

• Make my living as a published author (book tours, readings/signings, etc included)

I think I should’ve said published Writer, not Author, because that’s more in line with my real life goals. And I’m actually making major headway toward that now doing freelance and publishing books. I love my job!

• Get to see all 50 states & spend time in each of them seeing sights (20 down -- MA, NH, VT, ME, CT, RI, NY, NJ, PA, OH, MD, DE, NC, FL, TX, AZ, CA, DC, LA, GA -- of course the only time I really spent in Delaware was at rest stops but what else is there to see, really? I imagine we’ll knock at least 7 more off the list just driving out to our new home and probably another 5 within the first year we live out there. That only leaves 18 more!)

OK, I’m up to: MA, NH, VT, ME, CT, RI, NY, NJ, PA, OH, MD, DE, NC, SC, VA, FL, TX, AZ, CA, DC, LA, GA, TN, MS, OK, AR, NM
That’s 26 states and one Capital. Only 14 to go, mostly stuff in the middle and northwest.

• Drive a race car around a track at over 125 mph

Not yet!

• Go white water rafting again

Done it once so it isn’t as crucial I get back, just something I’d love to do with Matt.

• Get Matt to Disney World

This will happen for our 15 year anniversary. I’m making the declaration now.

Stuff that should’ve been included (some of which is already crossed off)

Catch a Green Bay Packers game at Lambeau
Get to a game at every NHL arena (2 down, only 28 to go!)
Become a season ticket holder of a professional US sport – Coyotes here we come!
Be in the studio audience at the Maury show when the DNA test results are revealed.
Meet Jason Mraz (preferably not as a fan-girl but maybe at a party or something)
Renovate a home (not in the ghetto) that we intend to live in – Currently in process!
Get a byline in a major market publication (I’ll take magazine or newspaper and online is ok)
Publish something that goes viral
Chase a tornado
Own a second home used only for vacations or rental income
Make enough as a Writer that Matt can quit working Corporate (if he wants to)
Learn to surf (even though I’m terrified of sharks I still can’t shake this one)
Get to Australia & New Zealand

I’m sure there’s more but I just can’t think of them off the top right now. Maybe I’ll have a lot to cross off and more to add in another 2-1/2 years. Until then, it looks like the top item on the list should be ‘Update passport’ huh?

What are your top 3 bucket list items?

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Content Marketing Strategist and Blogger for hire, Jenn has over 12 years of freelancing experience. Read her blog


Launna said...

Right now my top three bucket items are as follows:

Go to Alberta in April, see the Rockies, Banff...all those amazing picturesque places out there (Definitely going and staying with my David)

Go to Portugal, need a passport but I really want to go there..

Visit Italy... another one I need the passport for..


Chris said...

Wow... that's quite a list! maybe you should pare it down just a *little* (esp. since a good chunk of those require a passport!) But I bet you could accomplish at least half of those - especially if the B's and Sawx help you out.

My top three would be: publish a novel - traditional format, with an actual publisher. (e-books are nice but it has to be on a store shelf for me to feel like I can cross this one off)

travel to Europe - especially Rome, London, Berlin, and Stockholm. (I count these as one b/c i doubt I'm making four separate trips to anywhere)

learn to skate - on ice or rollerblades. I want to play hockey before my back and legs fail me. And with the minuscule amount of exercise i get, that window could be closing quick!

Good luck with your list, and Go Sox! 3 titles in 10 years -- let's get it!

p.s. I hate the sound of my (recorded) voice, too. Like, if someone is watching a video that I know i'm in, I'll leave the room. My mom bought me a tape recorder to help w/ my writing and I told her that I will not use it (but she left it with me anyway)

Rosebud Collection said...

So happy to hear from you..I haven't been visiting much..but you are always in my thoughts..
Good to have a list like this..and fun to scratch things off as you succeed in accomplishing each one.
Glad you like AZ..I know this, the weather has to be a heck of a lot nicer than here in Maine..I had the heat on twice last week to take the chill out..Woe is me!
Take care my dear friend..wishing you the best and sending you much love..

Almost Precious said...

Long list with some wonderful goals or places to see. Yep, looks like passports are in order for the very near future.

My goal would be to somehow, someway, sell off most of my jewelry inventory and pare my supplies down. Then work on my true lifetime dream, one I've held on to for over 50 years now . . . but like the wish one makes when blowing out their birthday candles, I can't tell anyone or my dream may not come true. :)

Almost Precious said...

I just typed out a comment and then Google Blogger "ATE" it. Made me sign in and then dumped me back to an empty comment box. Bleah !!!

You've an impressive "bucket list" and an exciting one. Sounds like you need to go fetch some passports pronto. :)

Suldog said...

OK, I'll give you my three, but first a bit of advice about one of yours. Use what you have, rather than pine about it. If you look weird on camera and have a weird voice (which I doubt - most folks think they look worse than they do and most folks think they sound worse than they do) then market yourself for a weird face/weird voice part. If your voice is truly weird (distinctive) that's just as good as having flowing melifluous tones.

OK, my three:

1 - Become emperor of the known universe.

2 - Discover more universes to become emperor of.

3 - Don't burn the steak for dinner tonight.

I'm hoping to cross off one of them soon, and then I'll cook the steak.