23 Things To Do Before 24

Last year was my first time creating a list of things I wanted to accomplish over a year of my life. I feel extremely lucky to be able to hit ‘reset’ all at once – a birthday and a new year all within a few days. As I went back over last year’s list for this post, I had to laugh; By all means, I am a failure. However, as I went back over all of myself that changed and the circumstances that changed around me this year, I couldn’t have asked for a better year over all. Out of my list of 22 things, I managed to complete 5 of them. I started a new job, working 12-14 hour days 4 days a week. Sometimes pulling 16-18 hour days with other commitments. 21556124_10210805686279155_2080865210_o I also cut a few commitments out this year in order to prioritize myself and the people I love. As of the beginning of January, I will have gone through a life coaching program. Through it, I have discovered my core values and am currently putting the finishing touches on my purpose statement. 21557264_10210804719814994_202162302_o I also made it back to Uganda and became a full-fledged advocate for my favorite organization, Sole Hope. 

Thanks to Amy Cates for this photo.!


I consistently made my way to the gym twice a week (upping it this year, yay!) and have made huge strides towards being the strongest I can be (physically and mentally). 26132734_10211560658552990_173039354_o.jpg I also became an aunt to Lachlan, who is the sweetest human on the planet. 26179763_10211560654432887_1022355830_o26134049_10211560654032877_2128321121_o26179320_10211560657712969_2025556033_o AND I found out that I will be an aunt once again, which is incredibly exciting.

All in all, 22 wasn’t a horrible year. I laughed a lot, I cried a lot (mostly because 14 hour work days take some time to get used to and are absolutely exhausting), and learned a lot.

Here are the 5 things I DID accomplish before we get into what I’m looking forward to for 23:

1. This year, I did, in fact, read 12 books, including, but not limited to:

The Sacred Enneagram by Christopher L. Heuertz

A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L’Engle

The Divine Dance by Richard Rohr with Mike Morrell

Absolutely on Music by Haruki Murakami

The Blue Castle by L. M. Montgomery

When Helping Hurts by Steve Corbett

Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

Spark Joy by Marie Kondo

Self to Lose, Self to Find by Marilyn Vancil

The Poetry of Lucy Maud Montgomery

Wonder by R. J. Palacio


2. I also took myself out 4 times over the course of the year on ‘self-dates’. It wasn’t spread out amongst quarters as planned, but it still happened.

The first of which was in January, when I went to see La La Land for the second time in theatres.
The second, The Piano Guys in February.
The third, to see Loving Vincent at the Naro Theatre.
The fourth will be this Friday, to get my tattoo.

3. While I did not see a third Vermeer, I have plans to in mid-January, so it almost counts, right?

4. Accurately track expenses – I definitely got a hold on that this year and look forward to continue the path I’m on this next year, as you’ll see reflected in a few of my goals.

5. See more sunrises than not
Boy, did this one come to bite me in the butt. I started a new job in June of this year which requires me to be up at about 3:45 every Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. I wanted to wake up right as the sun was beginning to rise, not three hours prior to the event!


And now for what you actually came here for – this year’s list of things to do before I turn 24!


  1. Create something once a week. Creating is no longer an option.
  2. Save another $5,000 minimum. One day you’ll be glad you did.
  3. Pay off the car. No debt, no ‘one day’s’. FREEDOM.
  4. Establish a healthy bedtime routine. Less scrolling, more reading and reflecting.
  5. Do some form of yoga once a week. Your body loves it, your mind loves it, so do it.
  6. Travel somewhere new. Now, I’m going to D.C. and Uganda this year, but I’m planning for Asheville and maybe a solo day trip here and there!
  7. Dive a little deeper into the Enneagram. So. Many. Resources.
  8. Find a happy balance between mind, soul, and body. It’s been a big year of growth for me in this area, and I want to continue purposely in engaging this.
  9. Set a 200 pound deadlift PR. I hit 150 this year with a trap bar. I hit 119 this week with the olympic bar with 6 reps with eccentric holds… I’m going for 200.
  10. Benchpress over 60lbs. I’ve been stuck between 50 and 55 for sooooo long. I want to see 75 happen this year.
  11. Go on a self-date once a month. A little less extravagant than last year, but more often. They were some of my favorite moments from this past year.
  12. Read another 12 books, minimum. I’m taking suggestions!
  13. See 6 new films (New to me, at least). This is difficult with my schedule, but that means intentionally sitting down once every two months to watch a new film. Hopefully ones that are of some artistic value – I’m taking suggestions for this as well!
  14. Create a toxin-free skincare routine and stick with it. I work with flowers, which means I see a lot of dirt every day. While I don’t often wear makeup, I think it’s probably time to start taking skincare seriously. Favorite toxin-free products or oils???
  15. Attend a pro-football match. It doesn’t have to be Arsenal, but there are games as close as D.C. and I want to go!
  16. Complete The Artist’s Way. I’ve only been looking into it for forever now.
  17. Go nearly 100% dairy free. Fewer cheat days in the future – your body will thank you.
  18. Keep one morning a week alarm free. I live by my alarm, I need to keep one day as a possibility to not die by it.
  19. Keep the first hour of each morning phone free. No social media, just silence.
  20. Publish a book of poetry. AGGGHHHHH
  21. Buy all physical gifts through local/small businesses, but give experiences when possible.
  22. Be more vigilant about my vitamin D, fish oils, and multivitamins. No more brain fog, and way less anxiety, please!
  23. Detox social media – create a space where ideas, creativity, and community fill, not anger, harshness, or hatred. No matter what side of what argument you’re on or how much I love you – if you’re an angry person, goodbye.


Here’s to 23!



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