As part of my “Before 30″ list I have vowed to learn something new every year. And for my 24th year I started rose gardening. This winter I selected 2 roses from David Austin Roses (with the help of Lara) I planted them in huge pots this spring.
They have had a rough first season (between the heat, bugs, a newbie rose gardener, etc), but this morning I woke up to a lovely surprise. My Abraham Darbys are fully open! Last night they looked like your average rose, open and pretty but average. I wondered if I did something wrong. But today they exploded into a cups of fragrant petals.
Knowing we had some violent storms on the way I snipped 2 for our dining room. There are bunch more ready to open and my Wildeve is also looking promising (but smaller).
I’m pretty proud of myself. It’s been very rewarding so far. I’m day dreaming of the day when we have some land and space for a beautiful garden so I can add more to my collection and really let these roses go wild. Next house Lindsey… next house.
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I think it’s time to take a peek at my “Before 30″ list. It’s been awhile and some things can be crossed off and some things need to be modified. Here are some notes on some of the things on my list….
- Own a home: Wahoo! This was a big one we checked off. As you probably know, we purchased our little slice of heaven in February. Now that it’s checked off, I might need to add some renovation goals to my list.
- Plant a garden: This summer we built 2 raised beds, potted a ton of heirloom plants, started our compost bin and learned SO much! Next years garden should be even better. It’s been amazing watching things grow. I’m far from an expert but we’re loving the journey. I’m happy to check this one off this year.
- Go to Europe: I’m debating on amending this one. The opportunity has arose for us to visit Peru in 2013 with some of Jared’s family. It could be the trip of a lifetime. I would of course LOVE to go to Europe and Peru before I’m 30, but that may be unrealistic. We’ll see, I’m going to think about this a little more.
- Go to Niagara Falls: We planned to check this one off this summer and now we’re looking at autumn more likely. We’ll see though. We seem to keep pushing it off.
- Find time to enjoy books again: Still working on it. Who knew this would be so hard when you are working nearly full time? I’m currently working on The Hunger Games (I think it’s technically “young adult” but it’s actually very good). Jared and I picked up a number of books on tape from authors we love to listen to around the house. I’m taking baby steps…
- Have a real career I can see myself sticking with and loving for years. I don’t know if this will ever happen, and I might be OK with that. But that’s a story for another post I think.
So that’s kind of where I stand at the moment. A lot to think about and a lot achieved (only 2 things, but one is a very big thing!). I’d like to check at least one more thing off by the end of the year. Do you have a list? How’s it going?
Photo of Machu Picchu from National Geographic.
Thanks again for the wonderful book recommendations! I am starting my journey to find my love a reading again today, and I chose two books off the list you all helped me make. I am starting with The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet (recommended by Dithie) and once Thanksgiving rolls around I also have Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris (recommended by Dana) out from the library. I think I’ll be in the perfect mood for a holiday book post-Thanksgiving.
I’m really excited about the Pillars of the Earth. I peeked inside and it looks amazing! I’ll be posting reviews along the way. Now to find the time to read it…
First of all, I just want to thank everyone who took the time to recommend books over at my call for help. I have so many amazing recommendations I don’t even know where to start! As I was reading and responding to all the recommendations, I thought this was something other people may be interested in. Now that it’s getting chilly out (it’s snowing as I type this) everyone will be spending more time in and maybe you need a new book for holiday travel.
So I compiled some of the recommendations into a list for you! Links to all of the amazon listings are at the bottom. There is such a wonderful variety, there should be something for everyone.
- I read Magical Thinking by Augusten Burroughs in a DAY because I could not stop reading it. He’s a hilarious writer, and the fact that he tells stories based on his own life makes him so relatable. I own Magical Thinking and also Dry by him and both are great. (From Megan V)
- Definitely Fingersmith by Sarah Waters! So good. I remember reading that book through all hours of the night knowing I should be sleeping but unable to put it down. It is one of my top five books. Also read Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro. The Thirteenth Tale (By Diane Setterfield) is also awesome. I could actually go on forever here so I’ll stop before I bore you to death! lol (From Amy)
- Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card is one of my favorites; it’s science fiction but one of the best science fiction books ever written and it’s not terribly long, either. I also recommend The Art of Racing in the Rain (by Garth Stein), which is told from the perspective of a dog as his life is ending and he’s looking back on his life and his people in it. (From Christian)
- I second Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. I was thinking about it for weeks afterwards. I’m also a huge fan of historical fiction and my favorite book is Little Women (which I see in your picture!). I highly recommend I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith (author of 101 Dalmatians). It has a wonderful female narrator, a beautiful atmosphere to get lost in, and thoughtful period details. A quirky cast of characters, too. It’s an old fashioned book in so many ways but it has a surprisingly modern voice. I really think you’d like it. Huge fan of your blog. Thanks for everything you share! (From Megan)
- Ken Follet’s Pillars of the Earth and World Without End!! Both are super fantastic and I’ve read them one billion times. Well actually just twice. But you should read them. Medieval love and architecture — super super interesting.I also really liked The Tenderness of Wolves (about the Canadian North — kind of a murder mystery but not in genre). I have many recommendations. (From Dithie)
- I second The Help recommendation and also add The People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks and Devil in the White City by Erik Larson if you like nonfiction. (From Kelley)
- With the holidays approaching, I highly recommend you pick up Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris. It’s a collection of holiday related essays of his, and they’re absolutely hysterical. I first heard him read “Six to Eight Black Men” on NPR a few years ago… my husband and I were spending a lazy Sunday morning listening to This American Life, and we were totally cracking up. It’s a story about the myth of Santa Claus… He’s amazing, I highly recommend him. (From Dana)
- I absolutely devoured The Reader by Bernhard Schlink… I started it as a “something to read during lunch break” book and found myself so wrapped up in it, I was even reading it on the bus. This is a big deal, Lindsey – I get pretty sick when I try to read ANYTHING on the bus, even texts on my phone, but I COULD NOT put the book down! (From Dana)
- I also read Beloved by Toni Morrison this year; it was kind of creepy/chilling but just beautifully written. English major though I may have been, this was my first taste of Morrison, and hopefully not my last! (From Dana)
- Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen is one of my all-time favorites. It’s historical fiction (by way of the circus) and throws in amazing animals, a great love story and a mystery for good measure. It’s being made into a movie, but read the book first! (From Lauren)
Links to recommended books:
I’m ready to start chipping away at my before 30 list and I’m going to start with one that SHOULD be easy. Unfortunately I feel like it’s not going to be as easy as it sounds. I’m going to find my love of reading again. It’s not so much that I don’t love reading anymore, I’m sure I still love to read. I just need to make the time to sit down and enjoy a book. I feel like time slips through my fingers and I think the last time I finished a book and had that bittersweet feeling (happy to have a new favorite, but sad that it’s over) was during a summer break in college. I miss getting lost in a book.
It’s time to make this change. I need to make it a priority in my moment’s of free time. I need a new book. Something so good that I won’t be able to put it down. So I turn to you. What have you read that totally sucked you in? I have always loved historic fiction (Sure, some of it’s not great literature or accurate but I love it. Sue me.) but I’m willing to give anything a try. It helps if I can somehow connect to the main character.
Please insert book recommendations here. <3
I’m 23. 7 years away from entering my 30′s. I’m not scared of 30, but it does feel like a milestone age. While I am a grown up, I feel like your twenties are still your time to make mistakes, learn, grow and become your adult self while you are between your post-college years and kids. I want to set myself up for some awesome 30′s, 40′s, 50′s and beyond, developing good habits, experience things that will make me a more worldly person and making sound investments.
I started my list of things to do before I turn 30 a month or so ago and I figure we better start checking them off now since some of them are pretty lofty.
Note: This list is subject to change and develop. I will be adding to it and crossing things off. But the goal is to never take anything off the list and to try to achieve as many of these as I can.
- Find time to enjoy books again. I love reading. But I’m finding as I get older and the responsibilities pile on it has become less of a priority. I miss being able to really sit down and get lost in a book. I would love to get back in the habit of spending free time with my nose in a book.
- Work out regularly. I haven’t had a regular workout schedule since I was running cross-country in high school. Sure, I did the Bridal Bootcamp DVD for a few months before the wedding, but I hardly feel like that counts. I would like to get in the habit of working out regularly. I think part of that will come when I find an activity that I really enjoy. Maybe it’s Yoga or Pilates or running again. I’m not sure, but I need to find it before I turn 30.
- Go on a REAL honeymoon. Right after the wedding Jared wanted to get back to work and frankly we couldn’t afford the kind of honeymoon we really wanted to take. We toyed around with a few ideas just to go somewhere. But ultimately we couldn’t get motivated enough about them to spend the money. We decided to wait until we could afford the trip of our dreams. I have started putting away a chunk of each paycheck to pay for that trip.
Own a home. We’re working on it. Here is hoping I can cross this off the list soon. That’s a big one we can check off. Welcome to 86 Maple.
- Host a holiday. Before I’m 30 and when we own a home of our own I would love to host a Thanksgiving or Christmas. I would love to try to cook a turkey and come up with a beautiful place setting and bring people together in our home. Of course I need to cross owning a home off the list first.
- Come up with a really unique idea. Will clarify in a separate post.
- Have a real career I can see myself sticking with and loving for years. Right now I’m working a part-time job that is OK, but I don’t see becoming a career. By the time we have kids I would love to be settled into a career.
Visit Niagara Falls. Believe it or not, I’ve never seen Niagara Falls. Jared took me an on amazing belated anniversary trip over a long labor day weekend.
- Do something charitable every year. We already do Toys for Tots every holiday, so my goal is just to keep this up.
Have a beautiful (non-wedding) photo taken of Jared and me. I know this may seem silly, but we really don’t have a ton of photos of the two of us outside the wedding. We don’t have a lot opportunity to be photographed at all. Is it narcissistic that I would like some lovely photos of us while we’re young for our children and grandchildren to look at someday? We have a ton of wedding photos, but I would love some non-wedding day photos for our album. We snuck in some photos with my old college roommate Christa Kimble in the summer of 2010. See more here.
- Go to Europe. Perhaps we can combine this with the honeymoon… we’ll see.
Plant a garden. Summer 2011 we checked this one off! And will probably continue to for summers to come. We learned so much about our little garden and hopefully it will get bigger and better every summer.
- Throw myself a birthday party. I might save this one for the last second and throw myself a 30th birthday party. I haven’t really had a birthday party since I was about 9. Why not throw yourself a beautiful party?
- Keep a Diary. This one is in process. On January 29th, 2012 I started a 5 years diary. On January 29th, 2017 I’ll be able to officially cross this one off the list a few months before I turn 30. I think it will be a great way to chronicle the last half of my 20′s.
- Learn something new every year. I love to learn new things. Any I never want to stop. 24 – Rose Gardening
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