Updated: Mighty Life List

New & Improved! Now with more stuff on it!

  1. Drive a race car.
  2. Get a pilot’s license.
  3. Live on an island.
  4. Speak French fluently.
  5. And maybe Spanish, too.
  6. Go back to France.
  7. Make wine.
  8. Make homemade cheese(s). (1/30/10: ricotta)
  9. Visit New York. (8/5-8/10: BlogHer ’10)
  10. Take a helicopter tour of interior Maui.
  11. Ice skate.
  12. Replace my cheap wine glasses with fine glassware or crystal.
  13. Break out the china and silver for something mundane, like spaghetti or hamburgers.
  14. Travel to Java to see the volcanos.
  15. Learn to scuba dive.
  16. Write a novel.
  17. Learn to sail.
  18. Visit two dozen islands in the Caribbean. (Key West, Grand Cayman, Cozumel)
  19. Teach my nephews and nieces to drive a stick-shift.
  20. Visit the zoo, a really great zoo like San Diego or Fort Worth, with a child. (San Francisco Zoo w/ niece Dejohna)
  21. Hike into the Costa Rican Monteverde or Santa Elena Cloud Rain Forest.
  22. Take Handsome on a surprise, last-minute, exotic vacation.
  23. Expatriate.
  24. Touch the sandstone walls of Petra.
  25. Skinny-dip in a stranger’s pool while the entire family is out of town.
  26. Own a convertible.
  27. Begin drawing again, including art classes if necessary.
  28. Buy a little black dress.
  29. Celebrate the New Year in Paris, New York, Sydney, Rio de Janiero, London, and Dubai. (Paris 1998/1999 & 1999/2000 — Millennium! Awesome!)
  30. Go back to school to get the degree I never knew I wanted: English Literature.
  31. Find the perfect recipe for wonton soup.
  32. Make homemade marshmallows. (Christmas 2009)
  33. Learn to tango.
  34. Take drum lessons. (4/21/10: first lesson)
  35. Road-trip across the American Southwest. Drive Route 66. See Meteor Crater, the Grand Canyon, Four Corners, etc.
  36. Witness the crab migration on Christmas Island.
  37. Upgrade my kitchen equipment. (2010: salt and pepper grinders, forged steel cutlery, heavy duty skillets, Oster blender, new toaster)
  38. Grow a kitchen garden, with tomatoes, herbs, squash, cucumber, salad greens, etc. (May 2010: planted tomatoes and herbs)
  39. Visit Knighton, Wales, UK.
  40. Learn to roller skate. (5/4/10: first time on skates in over two decades – did not fall!)
  41. And then learn to roller blade.
  42. Take a cemetery tour and a ghost tour in New Orleans.
  43. Spend the night in a haunted antebellum mansion.
  44. Buy coffee and end tables.
  45. Learn to make classic French sauces properly (including but not limited to: bearnaise, hollandaise, mornay, beurre blanc.)
  46. Ride a dozen (or more) roller coasters, each in a different state.
  47. Create and send care packages for no apparent reason.  One a month for a year.
  48. Visit the New Seven Wonders of the World.
  49. See the Aurora Borealis. Take photos.
  50. Complete C25K and begin running on a regular basis, 3-4 times a week.
  51. Try two dozen gins, not including Sapphire, Tanqueray, or Hendrick’s.
  52. Organize the greenhouse to create a private retreat.
  53. Organize my shoes and handbags. Donate or toss any that I haven’t worn or used in more than a year.
  54. Speak at a conference for women bloggers.
  55. Find a favorite honey. (8/18/10: It’s not Pure Honey from CRM Apiaries. 9/8/11: We have a winner! Youngblood’s Natural Honey from Pearsall, TX.)
  56. Read one non-fiction or business book each month for a year.
  57. Spend a month living at the beach, without interrupting work. (12/10-1/11: Lived on North Padre Island for a month.)
  58. Design my home office space, including furniture for both work and comfort, as well as space for my drum kit. (5/11: Moved to a new house. Painted my office, purchased just the right furniture and decorated the space just for me.)
  59. Clean out the closet, donating all clothes that no longer fit, are out of fashion, or are no longer worn. Discard everything that is just plain worn out. Repeat annually or as needed. (During the move, we took several car-loads of clothes to the shelter, and we felt so much lighter for doing it. Will definitely repeat annually.)
  60. Attend Formula 1 when it comes to Austin.
  61. See my favorite band(s) outside the USA. (10/08: Rush in Milan, Italy.)
  62. Replace my point-and-shoot with a good, but not-too-expensive DSLR.
  63. Learn to use it.
  64. Plant a fruit tree and harvest its fruit. Give a bunch away to neighbors.
  65. Make jam. (8/11: Made prickly pear jelly from the cactus pears in my backyard.)
  66. Create a cook book for the Baptist Wine Club. Include no wines over $10.
  67. Self-publish that cook book and give copies to family and friends.
  68. Make more homemade truffles. (Christmas 2009 family favorites: Irish Cream, Amaretto, Kahlua.)
  69. Paint the patio floor. (5/11: The new house has stained concrete on the patio. I think this qualifies as a check-mark.)
  70. Become a better hostess. Including welcome gifts, toiletries kits, signature cocktails, weekend itineraries, menus, etc.
  71. Attend Camp Mighty.
  72. Redecorate the guest bedroom to create a relaxing retreat for our guests.
  73. Go on a silent retreat.
  74. Do a regular wine interview for the BWC.
  75. Learn to arrange flowers like a florist.
  76. Host a retreat.
  77. Compile an album of my doodle art.
  78. Cook a meal from my many cookbooks and food magazines, once a month for a year.
  79. Practice yoga every day for 30 days.
  80. Curate a slideshow for Kirtsy.
  81. Reorganize the pantry.
  82. Go horseback riding. On the beach.
  83. Spend a day at a spa.
  84. Learn to cook lamb.
  85. Create letterpress stationary.
  86. Play in the rain and splash in the puddles.
  87. Make a BWC vintage at Water to Wine, with custom labels. Give away a case as part of a charity fundraiser.
  88. Host a slumber party. Complete with girl movies, guilty snacks, lots of cocktails, and delivery pizza.
  89. Swing. On a swing set. Not the other kind, you dirty bird.
  90. Create a signature cocktail.
  91. Take tap-dance lessons.
  92. Make a lemon cake from scratch. Including the icing.
  93. Make middle-of-the-night pancakes with my husband. Stay up to watch the sun rise.
  94. Help a friend mark an item off their life list.
  95. Buy a set of every-day flatware, enough for 12-16 place settings.
  96. Stay in a thatch roofed hut over a lagoon.
  97. Spend another weekend at the Hilton Los Cabos.
  98. Write a hand written note to someone I love every day for thirty days.
  99. Watch a meteor shower in the desert.
  100. Camp out on the beach with my husband, at least once a year.

A Certain Kind of Eden

It seems like you could, but
you can’t go back and pull
the roots and runners and replant.
It’s all too deep for that.
You’ve overprized intention,
have mistaken any bent you’re given
for control. You thought you chose
the bean and chose the soil.
You even thought you abandoned
one or two gardens. But those things
keep growing where we put them—
if we put them at all.
A certain kind of Eden holds us thrall.
Even the one vine that tendrils out alone
in time turns on its own impulse,
twisting back down its upward course
a strong and then a stronger rope,
the greenest saddest strongest
kind of hope.
-Kay Ryan