twenty five before twenty five.

25 before 25 -01.png We could alternatively title this, "I made Kristen do this exercise so now I have to too" but honestly, "twenty five before twenty-five" is a pretty lengthy title to begin with.

I'm big on resolutions, goal setting, giving things up, engaging in personal experiments, etc. but when I launched into 2017, I didn't think all that much about what I wanted this year to look like, & I definitely stayed away from writing anything concrete down because to me, writing down is committing & making real & I just wanted these thoughts to stay nice in my head, nice in theory, nice for one day.

My other fatal flaw is that I am an incredible at ideation - I am terrible at execution & putting things to action. So bad. I can look at the list of resolutions I made last year & I kept one for sure. (Well, mostly kept it because there was definitely a Saturday in November where my giving up Coca Cola for a year resolution went out the window because I just needed a large, sugary drink to numb the pain that was in my heart & I was okay with it so you should be too.)

I'm also really good at encouraging others to stop talking & start doing... but super terrible at doing that myself. So with Kristen, I'm setting goals slash things slash ideas that I want to accomplish before I turn 25. Which gives me a year and a half (because less than six months just felt a lil too short to accomplish some of these things). Some of these are calendar year goals but maybe will slide into 2018, some of them are ridiculous & require explanation (like Hannah running a 5K), & others I think are smart (like paying off suffocating student debt faster).

So here's my list of 25 things to do before I turn 25 - but also, if you have a list like this, I would love love love to hear it! Please share with me on various social media platforms. Or don't. Go as the spirit moves you.


I. Get some writing published. - This one is actually already in progress (eep!! surprise!!) but I'm procrastinating it by writing this blog post. Old habits die hard, people.

II. Finesse my clumsy design skills. - I work as a graphic designer now? I say that with a question mark because I still am not quite sure how it happened. Regardless, I now have very clumsy design skills, & I'd like to know how to use them better. Slash properly, because I would probably cut down on a lot of figuring out time at work if I could design things properly.

III. Read the Bible in a year (& finish this time!) - I tried this last year & made it to July & then it just fell flat on its face. So I'm trying it again this time on a platform I love & will passionately tell everyone about, ReadScripture! The videos have been so great. And having a reading buddy also helps (shout out to Dave, you are alright).

IV. Take Instagram & Twitter off my phone for a year - I started this on January 5 of 2017! I still can check them on desktop platforms & on my iPad, but it's minimized how much data I use on my phone each month & to be honest, gives me fewer reasons to check my phone (because I run out of apps to refresh) (I'm being real here).

V. Read 1 book a week - this one is actually off to a good start! Kristen & I are also going to stop watching Netflix during weekdays in an effort to read more, so it helps to have a buddy to do this with too.

VI. Send one piece of snail mail a week - I always forget about this goal, so remind me & ask me to send you letters! Thanks. :)

VII. Run a 5K - I hear all of you snorting & giggling in Ontario all the way in Edmonton, you jerks. I've always said I can do anything I set my mind to - I just don't set my mind to very many things. But one of the events I assist with at work is a 5K, where kids train all year to run a 5K & race day is this beautiful celebration of them crushing their goals. So I figured if they can do it, why can't I? (& I have some super beautiful co-workers from work who are training/running the 5K with me - because doing things with people is better!)

VIII. Find a kick butt volunteering position.

IX. Find new music once a month - please, send me your suggestions for this! I want to get intentional about finding new music (Sleeping at Last & The Oh Hellos & the Hamilton soundtrack can only be listened to so many times).

X. Buy local, fair trade, used, & mindfully as much as possible - I am a terrible consumer & this is me, trying not to be terrible!

XI. Give up spending for 6 months. #minimalism - Okay I watched a minimalism documentary in December & now have passionate minimalism beliefs where I think, "Was Jesus the original minimalist?!" & "I should have a capsule wardrobe & live in a tiny home". But also, I am terrible with my money & sometimes buy things to numb feeling through things, so I just want to get clear on money & spending in my life. This will start in March, I decided. It requires more fleshing out before then, as an FYI.

XII. Finish an Edmonton Bucket List - my mom gave me this last summer, & I want to complete it with my friends!

XIII. Cut the crap & tithe - Mainly, I want to get intentional about this, because I'm sick of sitting next to my mom in church & having her say, "This is where I have failed as a parent" every time the offering plate goes by & I don't put anything in.

XIV. Blog more regularly - and not just when I'm mad at my dad wait what?

XV. Camp in the mountains. 

XVI. Do a 100 day art challenge - not sure what this looks like yet, but I don't think it's ever a bad thing to add a lil creativity into your day to day life.

XVII. Take a pottery class. 

XVIII. Travel to another continent.

XIX. Cut the crap about cooking & just do it - I've created a lot of untrue narratives about my abilities in the kitchen. Also, I'm lazy. It's time to cut the crap & just do it, ya know?

XX. Pay off my suffocating student debt faster - I'm making well above the minimum payments on OSAP, but I also have parental debt I'd like to get rid of, so I just want it GONE.

XXI. Drink more water - & it doesn't count if it's saturated with coffee beans, Hannah.

XXII. Buy Blundstones - this really didn't need to be it's own thing, but here it is. Whatever. I'm hoping they last me 5ever.

XXIII. Shut up - & learn to listen just to listen, not to wait for my turn to speak (which, upon reflection, I am very guilty of).

XXIV. Learn spiritual disciplines & practice them. 

XXV. Something new (which I am leaving purposely ambiguous).