Have I been on this earth for three decades? Wow, what a thought.
Here I am about 25 years ago, same love of color, same thrill of living:
The typical birthday post is introspective and thoughtful, but I do enough of that here, so today I’m just going to revisit the life list I first published on my LiveJournal in 2008. It’s a fun thing to look back on — and I’ve got a great reason to revise it now, as you’ll find out tomorrow (yes! big news a-comin’!).
My lifetime 100
- Play piano in a public recital (high school, college).
- Write a paper that’s praiseworthy and prideworthy (undergrad senior thesis).
- Present that paper in a conference (3x!).
- Take modern dance classes (college, grad school).
- Teach people to read (LA Public Library Adult Literacy Program).
- Work for a nonprofit (ditto).
- Take a creative writing class (UCLA, VONA, IWL).
- Go to grad school (UCLA, 2004-07).
- Volunteer (high school, college, grad school). I’d like to do this again sometime.
- Travel alone (summer 2004).
- Take a homeless person out for a meal (did this once in college). Should do this again.
- Eat at Ubuntu in Napa (2008).
- Find a vegetarian/carnivore balance that suits me.
- Move out of LA (2009).
- Do something that seems impossible right now (2009: singing vibrato, topping out at the bouldering gym).
- Learn to sing in a way that pleases me (2009).
- Have a garden, however small (2009-present). Someday I’d like to actually be able to take time with my garden, though!
- Have a website I like.
In progress (limited)
- Work my way through my cookbooks.
- Write a book. Or write and draw one.
- Make creative work my livelihood, or at least be able to call it my profession (part-time is okay).
- Vacation somewhat regularly in a place that feels secluded and unspoiled, like a little hut on an island, or a cabin in the woods in some remote place in Canada.
- Work from home in a beautiful light-filled studio with flowers.
- Learn to do really good portraits, preferably in paints, but in pen and inks if that’s what it takes.
- Make a family tree or in some other way delve deeply into my family history.
- Firm, love, and show off my butt. Not in a vulgar way.
- Make a painting that is really beautiful (to my taste and no one else’s).
- Sell cards that I draw, in however tiny a way. (I’m not sure this is still a goal. Are my Etsy paintings fulfilling this need for me? Maybe.)
- Articulate my ideas on TSVW (this is shorthand for one of my personal insights). (I am kind of doing this already, with a lot of my writing.)
- Own a pair of shoes I really love that I can actually walk in. (I own such shoes! Only… they’re not appropriate for cold weather. I should amend this item to two pairs of shoes…)
- Get good at watercolors. (I cannot believe that only in 2009, this goal seemed so far-off that I had consigned it to the “shelved” section!)
- Do something crazy and lasting on a whim, and never regret it. (Oooh, this might happen. See tomorrow’s post!)
In progress (lifetime)
- Be fit.
- Never stop feeling like I’m making a difference in the world.
- Have a happy marriage.
- Do whatever I can to help my sisters and closest friends realize their full potential.
- Make a habit of visiting friends who live in other places.
- Fear nothing, including (and especially) death.
- Write, write, write, and own it and love it.
- Learn to truly live in the present moment.
- Care not for material things.
- Meet lots of people. Have parties I can invite them to.
- Be outdoors and in nature regularly.
- Have the kind of home my parents have, where people come over all the time, and the house always feels lively and full of laughter.
- Travel somewhat regularly.
- Live someplace where I can go to the farmers’ market (or its equivalent) multiple times a week, so I can eat local, seasonal, super-fresh food almost exclusively. (Our CSA box is doing us well for now.)
- Invest time and work into something, and then be officially celebrated for it (on however small a scale, but not just within the household or something like that). (I think IWL qualifies, but I’m no longer satisfied with this goal as a one-time thing! So I’ve moved it to the lifetime category.)
- Be able to do a yoga handstand without any human help (the wall is okay).
- Be comfortable doing yoga arm balances.
- Develop a meditation practice.
- Get through the must-see movie list Jason made for me when we were neighbors in LA.
- Put my correspondence and event programs into scrapbooks that I then actually look at.
- Get more massages.
- Give more massages.
- Have a house in which the indoor (kitchen) and outdoor dining space are so connected that we think nothing of moving easily between the two for meals.
- Live in a different state.
- Hike/walk a mountain in another country. This is more about the scenery and experience than the mountain or the exercise, so it doesn’t have to be Everest (or even close to it)!
- Find a beach I really love, and go there regularly. This can mean every day, or every few summers. (I have to say, I’m not sure if this is still a goal. Maybe “seashore” or “coastal trail” can substitute for beach.)
- Be able to sew my own clothes (even if I don’t end up doing so).
- Take a sunrise hike… or just go someplace special to watch the sunrise.
- Go to the desert in the early morning with Erik, and take pictures.
- Re-learn to dance, though it doesn’t have to be modern.
- Learn to sing folk songs, chants, and old old songs.
- Write a fan letter to an author.
- Take Mommy to Chez Panisse Café, or equivalent.
- Take Erik to Alinea, or equivalent.
- Learn how to sculpt or make pottery.
- Learn to like swimming.
- Have a dog.
- Raise children. Adopted kids count.
- Be friends with someone who makes movies I like.
- Plant/maintain our own fruit trees, especially lemon and orange.
- Write and illustrate a children’s book, if only for my own kids (or my sisters’).
- Live with Shra and Devin, either in the same (big) house or next door.
- Paint the interior walls of my living space. (This goal has taken on new meaning now that I actually paint. When I first recorded it, I meant house paint, but now… !)
- Keep chickens.
- Bake regularly for my kids and grandkids.
- Visit Greece.
- Visit Japan.
- Travel throughout China. (This is kind of in-progress if you count HK.)
- Visit Prince Edward Island, because I’ve always loved Anne of Green Gables.
- Be friends with someone who owns a bakery, store, café, or restaurant I like, so I can hang out there!
- Really, really splurge on something material but not silly (so: house but not sports car, coat but not strappy shoes).
- If he still wants one by the time I can afford one, buy Daddo a houseboat. When we were kids Shra promised to someday buy him a house, and I promised a houseboat. (I’m now doubting he will want one. But maybe I can find an equivalent gift he’ll like as much.)
- Go on a rollercoaster that scares me but doesn’t terrify me. Splash Mountain will work, but none of those horrible drop-straight-down things. (Not sure whether this is still something I want to do.)
- Be able to identify lots of trees and plants.
- Live in a place that fills me with joy. I mean a geographical place, not the house itself… though that’s great too!
- Have a bathtub big enough for two, preferably next to a window. Temporarily is acceptable.
- Host another party like our wedding shindig, but this time for no “official” reason. (Actually, even though it’s a much smaller event, my 30th party feels similarly momentous. Is that good enough? I’m not sure.)
- Learn more Shanghainese.
- Learn more Cantonese.
- Improve my French.
- Visit Ireland.
- Visit Denmark.
- Invent something, maybe.
- Take a cool train trip with my best friend Jackie on a classic line, like the Orient Express or Trans-Siberian Express.
- Row/paddle a boat across a lake. Even just those little paddleboats at Vasona Lake will do. WITH SUN PROTECTION!!! (I did kayak for a couple of hours around a sheltered area of the Bay Area coast this past summer. That was pretty grand.)
- Do something (on this list perhaps?) I’ve always wanted to do “but it’s just too crazy.” Even the thought of this makes me feel light and liberated. (As early as 2009 I wrote: “I don’t know, there are a whole lot of new and updated things on this list that make me feel light and liberated when I look them over. Maybe my definition of ‘it’s just too crazy’ has changed, so that nothing seems too crazy anymore. That is cool. I like that. I’ll leave this item here for now, though, in case I ever do find something crazy enough that it still makes me reel and go, ‘wow, it’s just too crazy.'” I feel exactly the same way now.)
- RV road trip! And there must be the kind of sandwiches I ate on our family RV road trip when I was four: white bread, Kraft Singles, ham (or veggie ham), mayo, tomato, and iceberg lettuce. Ugh, but yes.
- Visit Antarctica. (Not sure whether I still want to do this.)
I like my list a lot, and in spite of a few exceptions, I still want to do almost everything on it. The funny thing is, though, that the vast majority of these items seemed completely out of reach in 2008, whereas now I skim down the list and think, “Huh, really? Where’s the really crazy stuff?” Which is awesome, amazing, wonderful, because it means I am expanding ever outward in my search of vital adventure.
If, the next time I revisit this list, I find that I can move many of the items to “accomplished,” I’m thinking I might need to start a second list, just so I can continue to have 100 items that I still want to do. Barbara Sher would say this is a very Scanner thing to do, to which I say, woohoo! Bring it!!!
Much love to you all, and thank you so much for helping to bring me to 30 as excited and happy and loved as ever. 🙂 ❤ ❤ ❤ Here’s to joy and continued exploration for us all!
Hey, happy birthday! That’s a really long list you have there! Wish you good luck with crossing all the items off 🙂
Thanks, Sosha! I love your list and your updates to it too. 🙂
What an awesome 30th birthday post. Happy happy birthday Lisa! Can’t wait for tomorrow’s post to find out what crazy thing you’re going to do next! 😀
Here’s to plenty of exciting adventures through the next decade….and beyond!
Thank you much, Munira! 😀
Happy, happy birthday, Lisa! Love your list. Wish I had made one like that when I was in my twenties. Are you really having a 30th birthday shindig? If so, hope it is a blast! Share the fun with us — pictures please….
Oh, yes, and a BIG birthday HUG!!!! Much love…..
Thank you so much, Sherry! 🙂 I’m having a get-together but it’ll be a little more festive than my usual casual potlucks. 🙂 I haven’t taken pictures at my recent parties but I will try to, this time!
Hey hey, happy day to you! Annnd manny moooore!
Love your list. So many things I was saying HELL YEAH to, like graphic novel (but I can’t draw). I might have to make one of my own (45 and still haven’t gotten serious with this living thing, I guess 😉 ). I completely agree– the things we thought would never happen just do, or suddenly become irrelevant. Love that.
Hee, thank you so much, Anna! 😀 I love thinking of you reading the list and giving many a resounding HELL YEAH. 🙂 I bet your list would be fantastic!!
Happy BDAY, Lisa!! This is a rather impressive list; each item well worth the effort. I admire that they are all joyful in purpose, some even in an almost rebellious joie-de-vivre, because-I-can kind of way! Please let me know when you manage that unassisted headstand in yoga. (It’s a personal goal of mine, but you didn’t hear it from me! 🙂 ) Enjoy your special day! Namaste.
Thank you, Empress!! I find my list very joyful too. 🙂 Namaste to you too!
Oh, believe me — if I ever achieve that handstand, you will be hearing it because I will be posting as many pics as I can persuade someone to take. 😉 But since my yoga practice has become more sporadic of late, that goal only gets farther and farther away. ;b
This is a very impressive list, indeed! It made my head spin! I’m so glad you have it. It’s a great way to keep track of all those things that mean so much to you. I wish you all these things and plenty of ink to write down more. 🙂 Happy Birthday, Lisa! I echo Anna’s, “Annnd manny moooore!”
Thank you thank you, Ré!! It makes my head spin sometimes too, but I too am glad I have the list — I think it helps bring some of these things into being, actually, just because I’ve articulated the desires.
Oooh… INK. 😀
Hey Happy Birthday, Lisa. Wow, what lists !! You are living and will live a rich life indeed. Good for you for going for it- full speed ahead. 🙂
Thank you, Alan!! Full speed ahead indeed. 😀
Great job on your Life List accomplishments and good luck on the rest of the list! I love the RV road trip! I have fond memories of that as a kid myself. If your interested, check out my list at http://liferoo.com/profile/Darin_Sanders/. Love seeing other people’s Life Lists.
Thanks for stopping by, Darin! I enjoyed your list too. I highly recommend #41 on driving the CA coast — we did Hwy 1 from LA to Portland, OR a couple of years ago and it was so beautiful and fun. Pics (with links to blog entries) here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/satsumabug/sets/72157606048209885/
[…] you know, I turned 30 two weeks ago. Of course I had to celebrate, but how? At first I hoped for the extravagant: dress […]
[…] of the old posts I came across was this life list I made in 2008 and revised in 2009 and 2011. It was fun to review, because while I’m no longer invested in many of the items on this […]