Friday, November 14, 2008

Just Do It!

I am a big believer in experiences. I think our lives are richer, fuller, just plain better, the more experiences we gather. I was asked once what I collected and I said, truthfully, experiences. I do love pretty things, but I far prefer experiences. I would rather make a memory than end up with something else to dust or wash. With the (very large) exception of books, I would always rather spend my money on doing something than on buying something. But, here lately, I've been feeling like all I do is work and parent.

Work and parent. Work and parent, and nothing else but laundry. I love my life, my job, my daughter, but all this working and parenting has left me feeling lopsided. As though I don't have a life of my own. Do you know what I mean?

You can imagine how encouraged I was when I actually got going on the meme below. (found here) Working and parenting, yes. Laundry, yes. Still. I have managed to have more than a few adventures along the way. I kept thinking of stories I wanted to tell you...

... like the time I rode a barge down the Nile. Or the time a camel driver threatened to leave me in the desert. Or about the view from Lady Liberty's hat. Or about how the spray from Niagara Falls coats all the trees in ice and creates a fairy land. Or about the time I heard the stars sing. Or about a magical island where I once lived, full of mountain-side goat trails, child-sized talking poodles, wild blackberries, and diagonal rain. Or about the time I learned to fly...

Oh, the stories.


(done the bolded things)

1. Started my own blog

2. Slept under the stars

3. Played in a band - does high school backyard backup singer count?

4. Visited Hawaii - I was only three, so I'm not counting it.

5. Watched a meteor shower

6. Given more than I can afford to charity - Not often enough, I'm afraid.

7. Been to Disneyland/world - both, actually.

8. Climbed a mountain - Stone Mountain in Georgia. It's little, but I'm counting it.

9. Held a praying mantis - Sloane's Daddy caught an absolutely enormous one for her just a few weeks ago. She named it Amen.

10. Sung a solo

11. Bungee jumped - Nope, but I am one heck of a sky diver.

12. Visited Paris

13. Watched lightening at sea - I used to live on Tecera island in the Azores. So, I've seen lightening at sea, but I was soon snug in my bed listening to the foghorns and dreaming of pirates.

14. Taught myself an art from scratch

15. Adopted a child

16. Had food poisoning

17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty

18. Grown my own vegetables

19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France

20. Slept on an overnight train - No, but I have ridden a train from Port Said to Cairo.

21. Had a pillow fight

22. Hitchhiked - Sort of. I accepted a ride from a stranger because it was pouring rain. My mother almost killed me over it.

23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill - At my school, we call them mental health days.

24. Built a snow fort - It was a lousy fort, but tons of fun.

25. Held a lamb

26. Gone skinny dipping

27. Run a marathon

28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice - Only in my dreams.

29. Seen a total eclipse

30. Watched a sunrise or sunset

31. Hit a home run

32. Been on a cruise

33. Seen Niagara Falls in person

34. Visited the birthplace of my ancestors

35. Seen an Amish community

36. Taught myself a new language

37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied

38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person

39. Gone rock climbing - Funny. My answer is no, but I take my students to the rock gym nearly every school year.

40. Seen Michelangelo’s David

41. Sung karaoke

42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt - Talk about a big disappointment!

43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant

44. Visited Africa - Egypt

45. Walked on a beach by moonlight

46. Been transported in an ambulance

47. Had my portrait painted - No, but I have had it drawn more than once.

48. Gone deep sea fishing

49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person

50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris

51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling - Scuba diving is on my list of things to do by the time I turn 40.

52. Kissed in the rain

53. Played in the mud

54. Gone to a drive-in theater

55. Been in a movie - I have been on the front row of a roller coaster in a Busch Gardens commercial.

56. Visited the Great Wall of China

57. Started a business

58. Taken a martial arts class

59. Visited Russia

60. Served at a soup kitchen

61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies - Number one seller for our troop, right here.

62. Gone whale watching

63. Got flowers for no reason

64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma

65. Gone sky diving

66. Visited a Nazi concentration camp

67. Bounced a check

68. Flown in a helicopter

69. Saved a favorite childhood toy

70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial

71. Eaten Caviar

72. Pieced a quilt

73. Stood in Times Square

74. Toured the Everglades

75. Been fired from a job - I prefer the term "let go."

76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London

77. Broken a bone

78. Been on a speeding motorcycle - Literally speeding, or just going fast?

79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person

80.Published a book

81. Visited the Vatican

82. Bought a brand new car

83. Walked in Jerusalem - only in utero

84. Had my picture in the newspaper

85. Read the entire Bible

86. Visited the White House

87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating

88. Had chickenpox

89. Saved someone’s life

90. Sat on a jury

91. Met someone famous

92. Joined a book club

93. Lost a loved one

94. Had a baby

95. Seen the Alamo in person

96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake

97. Been involved in a law suit

98. Owned a cell phone

99. Been stung by a bee

100. Rode a elephant - Nope, but I have ridden a camel right up to the Giza pyramids.

Which of these have you done? Which one was your favorite experience? To participate, just copy and paste the list into your own blog. Be sure to bold the things you have experienced, and please leave me a comment so I can read your list.

I don't know who took the photo above. I Googled "just do it" and that picture came up about 50 times.


karey m. said...

this was an EXCELLENT little shot of inspiration. it totally got me thinking...thank you for that.

just spent some lovely time scrolling away to my ehart's content {no one's awake yet over here!}...sloane is stunning. she looks like a fairy. and i love your election post. and listening to louis armstrong while devouring all of the above? perfect. good morning...

Jeanne said...

I love this I will put one on my journal.
Thanks for the inspirations

paris parfait said...

So interesting to learn more about your stories. And I think you should tell a few of the ones you've mentioned - fascinating stuff! I notice on your goodreads shelf you're reading Patti Digh's book. Me too. I just never find time to update my goodreads shelf.

Patti said...

Hi! Thanks so much for the comments and especially the kind thoughts about my mom's passing. It's been hard.

Your post is great (and thanks for the link)! You do have lots of stories to tell! I did that post really quick and probably should have taken more time to explain and describe as well. I send these out in e-mails too so maybe I will do it then.

Hope all is going well with your family and school. Have a wonderful weekend!

Christina said...

Mmm.. this is beautiful. First of all, I really know I want to travel with you. ; )

I also want to know what materials you used to teach yourself a foreign language. ; )

This is so inspiring. I have ben going through the work and parenting thing too. It gets so hard. I crave to be me, even wonder where I have gone at times.

You have inspired me, to make sure I find myself, every so often.. : )

susanna said...

Good list here. It's a great exercise to do when one doesn't feel like they have accomplished anything...and yet we all have, haven't we? I think riding a barge down the Nile or a camel into the desert is pretty darn cool, Relyn. :)

Lubna said...

Hello Relyn,
Parenting is the greatest adventure of all. Perhaps you just need some little more "me" time.
Wish you a great weekend. And thanks for leaving those lovely comments on my book-review blog.

Jaime said...

Can you believe I have never owned a cell phone? I think I am the last one on the surface of the earth not to have one...but I am resisting. One day, I know I'm going to have to cave.

You have done so many adventurous things! What an inspiration you are for living a full and creative life.

Isn't kissing in the rain wonderful??


Julia @ Hooked on Houses said...

Great post! I love the idea of collecting experiences and enjoyed reading about some of yours. Thanks! -Julia :-)

Jessica said...

What amazing experiences you have had!

willow said...

Relish the time being a parent. The time whirlwinds by and before you know it they are grown and gone and it leaves you wanting to hit the rewind button.

Beth said...

which bone did you break....I have my nose and my toe to put in that broken bone category....darn it !!

thailandchani said...

Wow.. .what a truly lovely site!

I do like your list. I just might try one myself. :)


Suvarna said...

What a rich and full life you have had already.
Great idea to do this as the day to day can sometimes make us forget. I will definitely post this and tic a box or two.

smith kaich jones said...

What a wonderful list. You have been to Africa, kissed in the rain, slept under the stars. !!!! I just feel good saying those things out loud.

:) Debi

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