Wednesday, September 17, 2008

If you don't TRY, you'll never be able to DO

It's not news to those of you who have been reading this blog for a while, but every year on my birthday, I make a goal to try new things that year and set the goal for however many years I am turning. Last year I was 27 so I wanted to try at least 27 new things. I think the older you get, the easier it is to get stuck in your ways and it's important to grow. Now that I'm a mom, this goal is probably more important to me because while raising Creed is my first priority, I think it's important not to lose myself in the meantime and it's easy to do that when I'm focusing on Creed. Some years, it's not so easy to reach my goal, but with so much going on this year, I really could have gone way over 27. Here's what I put on my list:

  1. Flew alone with Creed

  2. Rode a hot air balloon

  3. Met Mo Willems and Jon Sciezska

  4. Went to Pink Moon and Sprinkles cupcake shops

  5. Took Creed to Disneyland

  6. Threw a witches Brew party

  7. Felted old sweaters to make cupcake pincushions

  8. Downloaded songs on Itunes to make Creed’s lullaby CD (yep, I'm lame and that was my first Itunes download)

  9. Got new glasses after over seven years!

  10. Did an author interview on the child lit blog

  11. Needlefelted toadstool pincushions

  12. Sewed a few aprons

  13. Went to Punxsutawney for Groundhog’s Day

  14. Bought a cook book! Everyday foods’ Food Fast

  15. Made a mobile for Creed’s room

  16. Held a Valentine Exchange

  17. Learn to print on Eva’s letterpress

  18. Visited an architectural salvage shop

  19. Ate dinner at Tasi

  20. Put our house up for sale (getting the house ready was so much work)

  21. Sold our first house

  22. Ate at Banana Bean Café and El Aripazo (two restaurants I'd been wanting to try for a while)

  23. Designed posters to be letterpress printed

  24. Took Creed to New York and Coney Island

  25. Walked across the Brooklyn Bridge

  26. Tried Venezuelan food

  27. Moved to Salt Lake City

Now I'm already working on my list of 28 new things for this year starting with going to the Sheepdog Festival and taking a much needed photography class from Candice.

I used to HATE that my birthday usually fell around the first or second day of school. I almost always got school clothes for my birthday while my siblings got them just because school was starting, and I often had no friends to celebrate with because we'd move just in time to start the school year somewhere new. A lot has changed and now I love having a birthday this time of year. This is always about the time when catalogues for community classes arrive and I'm busy thinking about all the cool things I might like to try to learn that year. Columbus had amazing Parks and Rec classes that were really affordable. The Salt Lake Community Learning Centers don't offer many options for kids, but they still have a wide variety of classes for adults. A few options that I think would be fun are basic drawing/composition, breakdancing (ok, I would never have the guts to take a breakdancing class, but I think it's so cool that they offer it), big Band Swing Dancing, Birding 101 (Creed loves birds and I find myself wishing I knew more about them), acrylic painting, yoga, lino and wood-cut printmaking, web design (I've designed a few websites, but I know nothing about programming), and harmonica (which I probably wouldn't take, but aren't you curious about it?).

If you live close to a university, most of them offer life-long learning courses too and they are much lees expensive than a regular college course. You can check out the University of Utah's Lifelong Learning catalogue here. They also offer some courses that are really tempting to me: beginning drawing (I really really want to learn how to draw), introduction to metal work: art jewelry, beyond sushi: Japanese cuisine, designing with fresh flowers, containers for fall gardens, introduction to mime (ok, I'm joking, but I think it's awesome that they offer it), storytelling, ghosthunting 101 (just making sure you're paying attention, again I think it's funny that they offer it and it would be interesting to see what they have to say), sculling, fencing, ice skating for fun and exercise, and full-moon snowshoe hike.

Alas, Larry's schedule is such that it's pretty much impossible for me to take a single one of these classes, but next year his schedule should be much better and I can't wait to see what they offer then because I am absolutely signing myself up!


Kenny, Tara, Ashley said...

Happy Birthday Steph! Looks like you have settled right in to your new life in SLC and have great things going on. My in-laws went to the sheep-dog festival last year, and they loved it. What a fun thing to do. Can't wait to see what you're up to next. Hope you had a great day!

Anna said...

I saw Brooke Beazer do this on her blog around her birthday and thought it was a great idea.

If you don't have time for a full on jewelry class you can take one at a local shop called "The Bead Fairy". I went today and made a necklace, bracelet, and a set of earrings but the woman at the counter did everything (I only strung the beads on). I might go back and take the class, it's one evening for $15 dollars and you get a discount that night on any beads you buy, let me know if you want to tag along.

WendyandGabe said...

That's interesting. I have a Sepetember birthday and make my goals at this time as well. I found that my old January resolutions were too centered on uncreative weight loss plans after a happy season of self indulgence! Fall has always felt like a good time for making goals because I associate with "back to school" beginnings.

Reba said...

I love this idea and have totally copied it. :) Happy birthday a while ago. Want to come to Washington?

Anonymous said...

You're great, and I miss you terribly. Give my love to those two kids of yours. ;)

TX Girl said...

Love your list. Such a great idea.

Before I had kids I took an "adult" classes while I lived in NOLA. I now know work with stained glass. Now with two kids my time is more limited. However, ever fall I look longingly at the catalogs and mentally make a note of the classes I'll take when our schedules are more stable.