My ‘Bucket List’

Posted: June 26, 2010 in The List

Check out the about page to find out more about me and the list, and what makes a Bucket List.  Also, check out my Been There, Done That list of things I’ve happily accomplished so far and thus didn’t go on the list.  🙂  I plan to have 66 things on the list when it’s done.  It’s alphabetical, which doesn’t work when a lot of things start with ‘Go’, but that’s ok.  lol

  1. Adopt an animal or animal habitat though WWF (done this, but want to again), or sponsor an animal in a zoo or local animal rescue shelter
  2. Be an extra in a movie or music video
  3. Backstage at a concert (technically done this, but technically haven’t?)
  4. Buy, and wear a dress or skirt as a regular part of my wardrobe
  5. Camp on the beach/sleep under the stars
  6. Create a time capsule before I’m 30, to be opened when I’m 40
  7. Dance with a stranger overseas
  8. Donate blood again
  9. Drive or ride a train across Canada and the US
  10. Enter a major photography contest
  11. Experience weightlessness and/or go to an indoor skydiving place
  12. Feed a tiger cub
  13. Feel ‘high’, whatever that means
  14. Finish a Final Fantasy game
  15. Fold 1,000 origami cranes
  16. Get a tattoo
  17. Get boudoir photos taken
  18. Get my M license and a scooter
  19. Get something named after me
  20. Go ‘zorbing’ (google it)
  21. Go horseback riding without a ‘guide’ or trainer
  22. Go paragliding
  23. Go sailing
  24. Go scuba diving or snorkeling
  25. Go to and ‘relax’ in a natural hot spring
  26. Go to a Six Flags/Disneyland or Walt Disney World
  27. Go to Vegas
  28. Have a ‘real’ wedding or reception, or renew my vows with my husband
  29. Have a baby
  30. Have a ‘successful’ popular website (more than 500 youtube subscribers, or 5000 visits to a blog)
  31. Have my portrait painted
  32. Hold a snake
  33. Hold myself accountable for my own regrets and stop blaming others for the past
  34. Identify 101 things that make me happy
  35. Learn to dance (take lessons)
  36. Learn to knit, and make a blanket
  37. Lose 50 lbs and keep it off completely until I decide to have children
  38. Move back to Canada for at least a year
  39. Participate in a large food fight
  40. Play paintball
  41. Read 10 ‘classic’ books I haven’t read before
  42. Ride an elephant or camel
  43. Ride in a helicopter
  44. Ride in a hot-air balloon
  45. Save up $200 just in pocket change
  46. See the Grand Canyon, Yosemite National Park (and other ‘wonders’ and attractions that I will add to this sub-list)
  47. Send a letter, postcard or package to my parents every 2 months for at least a year straight.
  48. Send a message in a bottle
  49. Spend a day or week in silence
  50. Spend Canada Day in Ottawa at Parliament Hill
  51. Tell close family about my funeral/burial wishes
  52. Visit at least 5 countries in Europe
  53. Visit Cambodia for a least a month
  54. Visit the graves of my grandparents who’ve passed away
  55. Watch an eclipse/meteor shower again
  56. Write a letter to my future child(ren)
  57. Write and send a real fan letter (snail mail) to a ‘celebrity’ I admire.
  58. Write my will
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Working… In Progress

Posted: September 9, 2010 in The List

I had a look at my bucket list today.  There aren’t many things on there that I feel as though I can accomplish right now.  It’s all things that are ‘to do later’, which I don’t like.  This month I’m participating in a ‘Live A Better Life in 30 Days‘ Challenge.  It’s quite intensive, which is great, but it’s causing a lot of inward reflection, even more so than I already did.  In a positive, forward-moving way though.  Thus, I’ll be reevaluating my Bucket List to ensure it includes things I can achieve, and really want to achieve.

In the mean time, part of this challenge was to create an ‘action plan’ for the month of September, to help us complete some projects we need to work on.  I’ve decided I want to pick 2 items (which turned into 3 items, possibly 4 items) on my bucket list and make them happen this month.  I haven’t chosen ones that are huge, life-changing items, but I will get them done nonetheless.  Here’s what I’ve chosen.

Create a time capsule before I’m 30, to be opened when I’m 40

Well geez, I’m 30 in barely over a month, so I need to get going on this.  I considered making this capsule a geocache, but I don’t really want to have other people tampering with it.  I’ve not decided if this is going to be something I keep around with me for the next 10 years, or bury some place and dig up later (after marking it’s GPS coordinates, of course… I’m not a squirrel!).  I expect a lot of thought, research and writing to go into this.  Oh dear, maybe this is a huge item.

Send a Message In a Bottle

Littering…  I know.  For shame.  But, I think this could be a really interesting thing to do.  Doing it on my 30th birthday, and considering I live in a beach town, it seems a perfect opportunity.  What to say, what to say….. that’s the trick.  Also, to pick the perfect bottle.  hmm…

Write a letter to my future child(ren)

Yes, more writing.  I know that writing things will be ‘easier’ than trying to obtain the big items on the list (easier financially, at least).  Right now I just need some motivation, so I chose items that I know I could complete.  Yes, I’m taking the easy way.  Sort of.  I thought this would be an ‘easy’ task, but, I can’t imagine that envisioning my future children’s lives is ‘easy’.  I don’t know what they’ll be like, how many there will be, where we’ll live, what their names are, what I REALLY want them to know about ‘life’.  No, this one will not be an easy task after all.

BONUS, if I have time: Tell close family of my funeral/burial wishes

Specifically my husband needs to know this.  We talk about it sometimes, but he doesn’t want to consider the idea that I could die before him.  lol  But, you really never know what will happen in life, and despite all this ‘into the future’ planning that I am going to have this month, I also need to plan for no future.  I was recently in a car accident for the first time (and hopefully last, let’s be honest), and while it was relatively minor with some significant  but repairable car damage and no personal injury, it still shakes things up a little.  If that accident had been worse, much worse, I wouldn’t want my husband to have to worry about what I would’ve wanted.  He’ll have enough to worry about.

Well that was certainly ended on a high note…  😐

So there.  Stay tuned for updates on some of these Bucket List tasks.  I can’t believe some progress is going to be made!!!  I’m nervous…  lol

Free Stuff

Posted: August 25, 2010 in 100 Happies

cat not free

I LOVE finding out about ‘Free *** Day’ at such and such place.  I’m not a fiend about it though. You know, the type who searches for and enters every possible contest out there, or goes to every place in town to get free cake on their birthday (though I don’t disagree with that idea).  That said, I WILL go to 7-11 on July 11th for Free Slurpee Day, I thoroughly look forward to Free Comic Book Day every 1st Saturday in May, and I have been known to go to Harvey’s in Canada for Free Hamburger Day.  I’m also a fan of free movies, and am hoping to attend some free movies on the beach, starting tomorrow!

I’ve also been the lucky winner of a few free contests.  Most recently free paragliding lessons (no, really!), which I’m just waiting to get the money to pay for a second lesson so my husband and I can go together.  I also randomly won a free dance lesson several years ago, and have been winners on occasion of free ‘stuff’ draws, but nothing big (no free trip around the world yet… sigh).  I also wrote to the lovely office supply company Sharpie, back when I was in college.  My pencil case went missing (or was stolen?), so I lost all my supplies, and being a poor college student, I couldn’t afford to replace them (as a Theatre Production major, Sharpies were vital to my existence!).  Those wonderful people sent me a free sampler pack of various Sharpies!  I ♥ them!

I can’t get enough free stuff.  If it’s free I want it, regardless of its usefulness.  Free upgrade to anything?  Heck yeah!  Free toothbrush?  Gimme two please!  Free bread sticks with my meal?  New favourite restaurant!  Free mints at the end of the meal?  I’ll take a handful!

People may say nothing comes for free, but I disagree.  Well, except for things like the Special K free Workout DVD, where you have to send in five collected ‘stamps’ from specially marked cereal boxes and mail them in (oh no! cost of stamp!) and they’ll mail you a DVD.  Yes, I did do that.  Why do you ask?  I just happen to really like Special K cereal.  😐

Anyone know of any other great ‘free stuff’ giveaways?  Not SCAMS.  Not things I have to give personal information for.  Just legitimate free stuff.  Not STOLEN stuff, not ‘give away all your secrets and sell your personal information for it’ stuff.  Just things that are meant to be FREE.  It’s out there my friends.  It’s out there…

Getting free stuff makes me happy.  Check out some other things that make me happy!

then there was only one set

The first time I saw the ocean I was 28 years old.  Yikes.  That was just over a year and a 1/2 ago.  Nowadays however, I live about 2-3 miles from it.  Go figure (clearly, I did not grow up around here :P).

Surprisingly, while I thought it was very neat to see and I was quite glad to have that monkey off my back finally, I was underwhelmed.  See, where I am in southern California, is a spot where the coast faces south, rather than west like most of the rest of the Pacific-North American coast line.  There are also several large islands off the coast, which take the brunt of any large waves, and also get in the way of the horizon looking like it goes on and on (well, the oil rigs do that too, but ya can’t win them all).  This also means the waves here, by comparison, are quite minuscule.  Surprisingly, people still surf around here, and just a few miles down the coast is one of the most popular surfing beaches in the state.

Still, I think, in my ignorance, I suspected more like this:

But ended up with this:

Yeah. I jump waves.

Hmm…  I mean, the beaches ARE beautiful and it’s really neat to see the ocean, etc etc.  It’s just different (and COLD!).  I do love seeing the dolphins just hanging out though, and the sea lions and other creatures, and collecting shells, or sea glass and so on.  I hope none of that ever becomes old or common-place.  I think everyone should have an opportunity to see the ocean (AND to see snow!) long before they’re in their late-20’s.  🙂

he jumps waves too

Fold 1,000 Paper Cranes

Posted: August 4, 2010 in The List
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I have been asked why I would take on the project of folding 1,000 origami cranes.  In all honesty, I can’t remember how I originally came across the idea, but I couldn’t resist once I’d read more about it.

According to wikipedia, legend says that anyone who folds 1,000 paper cranes is granted a wish.  Duh!  That’s a good enough reason right there!  😛  Ultimately the most popular idea is that it is a symbol of long life.  It has also become a symbol of peace, thanks to the heartwarming/heartbreaking story of Sadako Sasaki, a little girl who ended up with leukemia from the bomb on Hiroshima.  She attempted to make 1,000 paper cranes before she died.  The stories vary on whether or not she succeeded in time.  Supposedly 1,000 paper cranes are also given to couples at their wedding for prosperity and happiness, or to babies for wishes of long life and good luck, or to people who are ill in hospital.  I also just thought it’d be an interesting little crafty project, and get me doing something other than just sitting at the computer.  Unfortunately, my crafty table is attached to my computer desk, so I’ve ended up doing these mostly while at the computer watching something or other on Netflix.

the first three amigos

On July 22nd, I began this adventure with some origami paper I had on hand, which I’d purchased back in Canada a couple of years ago.  I used my trusty google skillz and found several websites to help me learn how to make paper cranes.  This is a good one, as well as this one, and there are some great origami youtube videos here, for all sorts of projects (though they really need some music playing in the background or something!).  It took me about 4 attempts before I felt like I’d memorized the process.  I also got distracted with figuring out other things like lilies, but that’s another story.  Anyways, now I am quite successful with them, and can make a paper crane like there’s no tomorrow.

Apparently a good way to display them is to string them up in 25 sets of 40 cranes each.  The next question becomes ‘Where the heck are we going to put them?’, and then ‘How do we keep the cats from eating them?’.  I picked up some very cheap beaded necklaces at a local dollar store, and cut them into little sections to put at the end of the strings to dress them up and hold the cranes in place.  For now I am just stringing them up with a thin thread, but think that I should use something a little thicker just in case it breaks (also got the thread at the dollar store, so don’t have much faith in it).  I’ve tacked them up onto the wall to make them out of cat range, and stop them from swaying (and in theory to lessen the weight pulling on the thread).

1 little, 2 little, 80 little paper cranes...

Since taking this picture on Aug 4th, I’ve added yet another string of 40 cranes, which means I am officially over 10% of the way towards my goal.  I’ve also finally convinced my husband that this is not going to be a horrible project that will result in us being buried under a mound of paper birds.  It might actually turn out kinda pretty!

One challenge will be where to get the paper.  I’ve already run out of the paper I had on hand (it was less than 100 sheets, let alone 1000), and purchasing more has proven to be pricier than I’d hoped.  Upon further googling, I discovered that most of these projects seem to be made from TINY paper only 3″ x 3″ in size.  The smallest I have is 4 1/2″.  So I think if I tear some of my paper in half that will help.  Anyways, that’s not that interesting to you, but there you have some of the personal challenges involved with making 1,000 paper cranes.  😛  I might have to end up purchasing a kit specifically for this purpose (I’ve found some on amazon).

I have given myself until either my birthday, of Oct. 20th, or Christmas, to finish this project.  So far so good I think!  🙂  Tacking up each string has been quite satisfying.

Be a Bride

Posted: July 21, 2010 in Been There, Done That
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I’m married; happily, stressfully, and wonderfully.  It’s been exactly 6 months + 1 day, in fact!  lol

I didn’t get to have the wedding I wanted.  Period.  I had to make many, many sacrifices due to circumstances beyond my control, and only our parents could attend.  It bothers me that I missed out on so many great things about weddings, and people will be upset with me for saying I missed out, but I did.  A lot of memories were never had.  I DID have blessings of my parents (who trekked 2500+ miles for us!), a wedding dress, wedding cake, lovely homemade bouquet, beautiful setting, amazing photographer, and a fun bachelorette thrown by some great friends back home.  I sadly did not get to have bridesmaids with me, or the dancing, the fun of creating a party and sharing the joy and love of that day with our extended family and friends… I will always be disappointed about missing out on those things.   However in the end I still ended up with the wonderful husband I would have either way, and for that I am ever grateful.  ♥

photo by jeannetanner.com

Give Blood

Posted: July 7, 2010 in Been There, Done That
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In December of 2008, I did something I never really thought I’d actually do.  Inspired by a friend who had recently been diagnosed with cancer, and at the encouragement of another who’d organized a group donation on his behalf, I made an appointment to donate blood.  I even went by myself and did this somewhat ‘alone’, though I did run into a few people I recognized and was able to chat with them before hand.  It was an interesting experience, to say the least.  You DO get as many cookies and orange juice as you want.  I was able to find out, after years of uncertainty, that my blood type was O+.  I was hoping for something a little less common, but apparently it’s quite a useful blood type, so it can’t be all bad.  Allow me to elaborate on my blood giving experience, to the best of my year and a 1/2 old memory.

After a bit of form filling, testing, waiting, and more waiting, I finally progressed to the next step, which was talking with a Dr. or nurse to answer some personal questions to further determine my eligibility to give blood.  This was somewhat nerve-wracking, in that I was afraid of the ‘wrong’ answer, and it delayed the inevitable, which was the  needle and blood giving itself.  Thankfully I was deemed worthy, and approved to continue on to the other side of the half-wall, which was the waiting room that contained the cookies and juice.  From this room I was able to see the reclining chairs that were set up with a 1/2 dozen or so people on them hooked up to their drainers.  They were short staffed this night, so things were taking longer than usual.  It felt like a hospital type setting, so I should not have been surprised.  Finally, they called me up for my turn.

The girl beside me was also giving blood for the first time.  They ask you if you’re a first timer, so they know what to do for you, and what to watch out for, and what to warn you about.  You also get a sticker and a pin.  How quaint.  Anyways, the aforementioned girl beside me was not reacting well to the needle, and nearly fainted.  They propped her feet up, and gave her a cool damp cloth to rest on her forehead and checked on her frequently.  Thankfully, I found this more amusing than frightening.

As for me things were, I thought, going ok.  I’m not terrified of needles (though I wouldn’t say I LOVE them either) and find it interesting to watch them sometimes.  I remember the nurse tricking me and sticking me with it when I wasn’t expecting it.  She was excited about my visible veins and was apparently too eager since she poked right through one, which is apparently bad.  The blood wasn’t flowing properly and they had to keep checking on me often as well.  You’re supposed to fill up the bag full, or 3 bags full? I feel like a sheep… but I don’t recall that detail.  All I know is that mine was starting to heal or clot or something since she had struck me incorrectly, and the blood stopped flowing after about 2/3 of the way.  OH, I remember now… I think one bag was enough to help 3 people?  I don’t know now.  Either way… I was a bit disappointed and frustrated.  I know that could only help 2 people, not 3.  I remember it taking longer for me because of the stoppage of blood flow.  I also had some weird numbness and a dull pain in my arm happening.  At some point in the whole scenario, I asked the nurse if what was happening was ‘normal’.  On one occasion she replied yes, on the other she replied no.  One of the last things you want to hear is a nurse telling you that what is happening to you is not normal.

If you don’t believe me, I was left with this humongous bruise as proof of the fiasco.  The bruise lasted for quite some time.  That is not normal.

check it, before you stab it

I have considered putting ‘give blood’ back on my bucket list, and right now ‘Donate Blood Again’ IS on the list, but not sure if I’ll keep it there.   I now have a fear of it somewhat, since I don’t feel like this is something I am comfortable with, and had such a bad experience my first time.  I mean really, if something gave you THAT bruise and experience, would you want to do it again?  😐  I’m also not sure when I will be eligible to give blood again since I now live in a different country (depending on the country and your length of stay, it’s a factor on the questionnaire).  I do think that it’s something I should attempt again, to prove to myself that it’s not all THAT bad.  Besides, it’s such a useful and dutiful thing to do, is it not?  I feel like it’s something I proudly attempted, but failed at, even though it wasn’t my fault.  I mean, really… I failed at giving blood?  Is that even possible?  At least I can say I was brave, and I didn’t faint.

click here for the rest of my Been There, Done That list

Yes, I have done this.  Unfortunately, I have no photographic proof, it did not require any particular skill or talent, and my name is not personally in the book.  However, I still took part in an event that was recorded in ‘THE Book’.  Back in the year 2000 (wow, was it really so long??) I went to “The Big Kiss’, which was an orchestrated arrangement of ‘Most People Kissing Simultaneously’.  No, really.  You can find references to it online by clicking here, here and here.   It was the one in Sarnia, Ontario.  From what I recall, I was there with a now-ex-boyfriend.  lol  Too funny.  I believe I have (or ‘had’ at least) a copy of that particular Guinness book as well.

I am happy that I can cross that off a list of ‘to do’s and don’t have to attempt any ridiculous feat in order to get my name in there.

click here for the rest of my Been There, Done That list

Did it.

When I was a kid, maybe 6 or so, I was in the local newspaper for a story featuring a Teddy Bear Picnic at the library.  The original photo has an old friend of mine in it too, but I cropped her out for privacy.  I don’t even remember her name now.  Maybe Jennifer something?   Not sure.  I still have this teddy bear though, and remember it always as ‘hey, isn’t that the bear that was in the newspaper with me?’.  Sure was.  I seem to recall also being in the newspaper as part of the high school volleyball team that won some regional championship, but I could be wrong.

There’s something neat about being in the newspaper.  It’s like you get your 15 minutes of fame, but you really don’t.  No one will remember except you, and your family, who keep the photos around for nearly 25 years to remember it by, or just because your mom thinks you’re cute in the pic.  That’s good enough for front page news for me.

if you go out in the woods today...

click here for the rest of my Been There, Done That list