August 13, 2008

101 Things in 1001 Days

So, I saw this page, 101 Things in 1001 Days, and I was intrigued enough to start one of my own. We all have items on our "to do" list, but do we ever really get to them? I know I don't!

In order to actually make myself think about what I want to do -- and without a scary end date of 30 days or something like that -- I decided to start a list of my own.

The Mission:
Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria:
Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on my part).

Why 1001 Days?
Many people have created lists in the past - frequently simple goals such as New Year's resolutions. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organizing and timing some tasks such as overseas trips or outdoor activities.

Some common goal setting tips:
1. Be decisive. Know exactly what you want, why you want it, and how you plan to achieve it.

2. Stay Focused. Any goal requires sustained focus from beginning to end. Constantly evaluate your progress.

3. Welcome Failure. Frequently, very little is learned from a venture that did not experience failure in some form. Failure presents the opportunity to learn and makes the success more worthy.

4. Write down your goals. It clarifies your thinking and reinforces your commitment.

5. Keep your goals in sight. Review them frequently, and ensure that they are always at the forefront of your thinking.

And here's my list. I'll keep you all updated.

Bold - Completed tasks!

Start Date: Thursday, August 14 2008
End Date: Thursday, May 12 2011

1. Sign up for guitar lessons and actually attend at least 5 (5/5) <-- Complete! However, I'm still enjoying the lessons and still learning, so I'm still going. :)
2. Have 5 more articles published in a newspaper or magazine (0/5)
3. Completely finish potty-training LD
4. Play hooky with my hubby
5. Have a date night out with Scott once every other month if not more
6. Go to Niagara Falls with Scott and LD
7. Go to Newfoundland with Scott and LD
8. Take LD to StoryLand
9. Get away for a weekend with Scott
10. Have a getaway weekend with my college chicas
11. Replace our front door and casing/frame
12. Take LD to a Red Sox game
13. Take LD on a swan boat ride in Boston
14. Work out 4 times a week each week
15. Paint the porch
16. Paint (and/or replace) the window ledges
17. Paint the kitchen entryway mini-porch
18. Go on Scott's parents' boat every summer (1/3)
19. Take LD to the Ben & Jerry's museum/store
20. Go to a movie with LD and stay through the whole thing
21. Organize our photos into actual albums
22. Take LD to Roger Williams Park/Zoo
23. Write at least two opening chapters of my novel (0/2)
24. Write summary of plot for novel
25. Submit summary and two chapters to literary agents
26. Continue to go to the Festival of Trees each year (0/3)
27. Clean out the guest room upstairs
28. Have a girls' night out dinner/event with my buds at least once every other month, if not more
29. Attend 15-year college reunion
30. Bake holiday cookies with LD from scratch (0/3)
31. Host or attend a toy party with friends
32. Host or attend a make your own purse party with friends
33. Finally use that crock pot I bought
34. Drink Vernor's ginger ale again
35. Find and re-taste Bottle Caps candy <-- Thanks to Sassy for that gift. :)
36. Have professional family picture taken of me, Scott and LD
37. Have professional family picture taken of me, Scott, LD and my side of the family
38. Have professional family picture taken of me, Scott, LD and Scott's side of the family
39. Take a cooking class
40. Have a spa day
41. Throw baby shower for my sister -- and see if there's any way she'll be surprised
42. Have neighbors over for dinner
43. Get a professional pedicure
44. Use gc Scott gave me for manicure
45. Get another massage
46. Host a party with friends and/or family
47. Host game night
48. Reconnect with at least three old friends (1/3) <-- Reconnected with an old work friend that I hadn't talked to since my AWL days.
49. Finally donate those clothes in bags in the back of my car to Goodwill
50. Explore if going back to school is a good idea for my career
51. Host a play date for LD and his friends
52. Stop putting off that dentist appointment and actually go
53. Purchase and use re-usable grocery bags
54. Update my blog at least once a week
55. Start contributing to my savings account again
56. Up the part I'm contributing to my 401K
57. Take a kick-boxing class
58. Finish reading the Twilight series (4/4)
59. Take my vitamins (6/1001)
60. Have Blake the dog professionally groomed and trimmed up
61. Get Blake's lyme disease checked every year (1/4)
62. Take LD on a whale watch
63. Take LD on a boat cruise
64. Take LD mini-golfing
65. Attend another book reading at my alma mater
66. Help LD see that getting his hair cut isn't a torture
67. Attend a book signing of an author I like
68. Go to the movies at least once every other month
69. Start and finish reading Ender's Game
70. Pick up the graphic novel version of Ender's Game when it comes out October of 2008
71. Watch Terms of Endearment
72. Stock up on many, many tissues before watching Terms of Endearment
73. Stop buying books completely and strictly use the library
74. Map out a solid plan for visiting Ireland one day
75. Map out a plan for taking LD to Disneyland (if that's the one in Florida)
76. Watch Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, which I own, but have never even opened
77. Take a voice-over class -- signed up for one in Oct of 08 on 8/25/08
78. Buy curtains for bedroom that are all the same
79. Re-paint the guest room
80. Re-do kitchen floor
81. Bake a cake from scratch
82. Take a wine tasting class -- This was actually fulfilled by the wine tasting party below, thanks to the lovely Sassy and her wine tasting party kit.
83. Throw a wine tasting party <-- had one 9/19/08 and it rocked. :)
84. Clean/organize the upstairs closet
85. Clean/organize the upstairs armoire
86. Clean/organize Scott's closet
87. Have that gigantic tree in the backyard removed before it falls on a neighbor's house
88. Fully rake the leaves from the backyard each year (0/3)
89. Replace the Brita faucet in the kitchen
90. Plant annuals/perennials each year (1/4)
91. Either fix the swing set in our back yard or remove it
92. Get Scott's car horn fixed
93. Welcome new neighbors when our next door neighbor's house is purchased
94. If they have kids, bring LD so he can meet them
95. Go through books and sell/get rid of ones I'm just keeping around for no reason
96. Start using video camera to record birthday parties/holidays, etc.
97. Take a cake decorating class
98. Spend a vacation without checking work e-mail once
99. Buy a laptop (which yes, I know that could contradict the above item)
100. Take LD to Mystic Aquarium when it's not 99 degrees outside
101. Get swimming lessons for LD

August 4, 2008

Pizza boy

Last night, LD ("Little Dude" for those new to the blog) and I made home-made pizza. Well, it was out of a Chef Boyardee box, but I still considered it home-made. LOL

LD is quite the little chef. He read the ingredients, helped me measure everything out and then had a blast mixing the dough together and then spreading on the sauce and the cheese. While we were making the pizza, I told him that this is like what his Uncle Kevin did to make pizzas (Kevin worked out in CA for a few months as a pizza maker, and became quite the pro -- I'm pretty sure he didn't use a Chef Boyardee mix though ;) ). LD thought about that for a minute and said, "I didn't know this is how he made pizzas." Apparently, LD has a new respect for Uncle Kev.

We made two pizzas -- both cheese -- on two cookie sheets. And, yes, I used to sell Pampered Chef and have pizza stones galore, but still used a cookie sheet. It's easier. LOL I'm glad we made two because one of them became completely scorched on the top, despite rotating the sheets from the top to bottom racks. Ah, well -- it worked out okay because we had more than enough pizza with the one pizza and that one rocked.

July 30, 2008

No dining in the sky for me

I have a fear of heights. A pretty bad one, in fact, to the point that sometimes if I'm walking up a set of open stairs (meaning you can see between the slats), I feel nauseated. Scott and I once stopped by this bookstore while we were in Stowe, VT and it was so cute. I went to investigate the upstairs and noticed that it was (a) an open spiral staircase and (b) the upstairs itself looked like it wasn't supported by too much. I somehow got up there but didn't stay upstairs too long at all.

So, with that in mind, the thought of this just makes me want to throw up. The concept is called "Dinner in the Sky" and basically 22 people are strapped into leather seats secured to a table and then hoisted 12 stories up by a crane to enjoy their meal 180 feet in the air.

I found out about this through an article that was in the Boston Herald today. The people in the pictures look quite happy and like they don't have a care in the world. Clearly none of them have a strong fear of heights, or else they're somehow glossing over the person who's green and whimpering silently (or not so silently) in their chair with their feet dangling into space.

I'm sure if you don't have a fear of heights (and have $30K to throw around -- the starting group price), this would be all sorts of interesting. For me, I'll remain firmly on the ground.

July 27, 2008

Dusting this off...

Since I'm going to be blogging at work, I think it's time to dust off this old blog that's been inactive since 2006. Plus, this gives me a place to jot down my thoughts and it was pretty interesting to read my posts from 2005 and 2006. LOL

No need at all to re-hash the past 2 years since my last blog post. Let's just go forward.

This weekend, we went down to the Cape to Scott's parents' house and went out on their boat. LD ("Little Dude" for those who are new to the blog) had such a good time. He thought it was hilarious when the speed boat revved up and we hit choppy waves. Luckily, I had a blast as well -- which is pretty huge, since I've known Scott for 13 years and have only been out on the boat twice in that time frame -- last year and this year. I had a bout with motion sickness while on a whale watch during college, so I've always thought that being on their boat would make me sick and just wouldn't go each time. Wimpy wimpy wimpy.

But, last year, LD really wanted to go out on the boat with his cousins and I didn't want to stay behind while he was out on the water. So, I went... and I had a blast. Insert the image of me kicking myself all over creation here for wasting years when I could have been enjoying the boat.

<-- This isn't Scott's parents' boat, but it says "Great Scott" on it, so of course I had to grab a picture while we were out on the boat yesterday.

This year, Scott's parents bought a smaller boat (rising costs of gas and all that), but it was just as fun as last year. We were out on the water for close to three hours and just had such a good time. LD even said he wants a boat of his own. Sure, I'll get right on that. ;) I asked him if he wanted a baby brother or sister (adding a disclaimer -- no baby brother or sister in the near or not so near future! A baby cousin is fine for now.) or a boat. He thought about it for a moment and said "a boat"! Hah