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Well here it is. My bucket lists, as they currently appear. These are works in progress and I am always happy to add more to them or take things off. Their separation into chronological categories is based solely on my rough estimates. I want you to know that I love these lists. I know that they will change drastically in the years to come, but for now they are a representation of where I want to spend my time and how I want to live my life. I get so excited just thinking about living out some of these adventures. Because not everything fits nicely into a bucket list, I also have a sort of “To Do” list that I have tagged onto the end.

One Year
Mail out an annual Christmas update letter
Watch all Planet Earth DVDs
Take train from Portland to Seattle
Be a Big Sister
Volunteer for a mental health emergency hotline
Run the Portland Marathon
Join the Station L rowing club
Go wine tasting with mom
Go to Europe with mom
Canoe trip in Canada
Bike across USA
Get TEFL certified
Work for Outward Bound
See an OMSI IMAX movie
See Body Worlds
Climb Mt. Hood
Spend a night at Breitenbush Hot Springs

Two Years
See fall colors on East Coast
Join a community orchestra
Shakespeare play in Ashland
Mountain bike in Bend
Road bike McKenzie Pass near Eugene
Surf in Newport, OR
Rock climb at Smith Rock
Climb Mt. Shasta
Climb Mt. Whitney
Kayak around perimeter of Lake Tahoe
Hike the Tahoe Rim Trail
Online photography course
Do a 5 day solo
Compete in a triathlon
Compete in an adventure race
Pay off all credit cards
Yoga/meditation retreat
Thru-hike the PCT
Learn whitewater kayaking

Five Years
Host a family reunion
Join the Peace Corps
Live in Latin America
Be fluent in Spanish
Get a dog
LASIK surgery
Climb Rainier
Run Lake Tahoe marathon
Sea kayak in Australia

Ten Years
Get my CADC I
Mush sled dogs
Read all of Shakespeare
Take an astronomy class
See Rob Thomas in concert
Climb Denali
Take piano/guitar/violin lessons

Visit all 58 National Parks
See the Great Pyramid of Giza
See Victoria Falls
Hike Macchu Picchu
Thru-hike AT
Thru-hike CDT
Be a foster parent

BA in English
Work as a wilderness therapist
Climb a 14’er
Run the Chicago marathon
Run the Chicago half marathon
Get a Masters in Teaching
Get a teaching credential
Teach high school English
Substitute teach
Sea kayak in Alaska
Get my WFR
Take a NOLS course
Watch all Friends and Lost
Climb Mount St. Helens

To Do
Go through clothes
Organize stationary
Print pics for frames
Complete guide list
Talk to Dr. Knight
Get teaching binders back
Sign up for races

On a side note, I feel as though I can’t include get married and have children on my lists, but they’re there in spirit. Ideally they would be on my “Ten Years List”. All I can do is hope that that is somewhere in my future. On one more side note, I happened to type “Bucket List” into google and of course the first website to come us was actually called I haven’t had a chance to really poke around it much, but from what I saw, it seemed like a pretty great place for us bucket list fiends. Anyway, wanted to pass it along in case someone was looking for more bucket list inspiration.


So little time. It seems like every day I am reminded of one more cool activity or adventure that I want to include in my one short life. The saying “jack of all trades, master of none” applies quite accurately to me, or at least to what I aspire to. I don’t care about being the best in any one thing, which is good since the likelihood of that happening is pretty slim, but I do want to be competent at many different things.

Sometimes I get overwhelmed trying to decide what to focus my time and energy on. One day, for example, I might hear about someone I know who is planning to bike across the country and I’ll feel a mixture of excitement, anticipation, envy, and longing. Sometimes the longing is so strong that I consider dropping everything and joining that person on their adventure! For anywhere from a few hours to a couple days I’ll concentrate on how much I love biking and how I really should do more to further my skills and incorporate more of it into my life. But then something else will come along, like I’ll see an ad for a free rowing clinic being offered in the Willamette, and then my mind will race around ideas of joining a club team and committing to 5:30 am practices so that I can get good at rowing and eventually compete. I have begun to notice that this is not the case for ALL activities and adventures, which is somewhat reassuring. As I get older, I am becoming more aware of the difference between my actual interests, and interests that other people like so I think I might like. For example, I know I don’t like (and don’t want to learn to like) jet skiing, or film making, or painting, or any number of other activities.

I imagine that as the years go by and as I make it into my 30’s I will be able to narrow down my interests even further. I don’t want to spread my time and energy so thin that I don’t get to fully participate in those things I really love to do. So here is a long list of the activities that I do enjoy, appreciate, care about, and want to make sure I fit into my life. I have split this list into sublists for my own organization and clarification. I hope this inspires you to make a list of the activities that you enjoy. Also, obviously this post is dedicated to my activities list, but hopefully future posts will continue to focus in on the activities themselves.

Sea kayaking
*River kayaking
Paddle boarding
Mountain climbing
*Rock climbing
Road biking
Mountain biking
Cross country skiing
Alpine skiing
*Backcountry skiing

*Activities I think I would enjoy, want to learn to enjoy, or still need to learn how to do to enjoy

Today I had the privilege of cheering on hundreds of complete strangers at Mile 24 of the Portland Marathon. It was so much fun! And it completely reignited my love for all things running. Though I only started running after college, and I still only run 10 minute miles, running does show up in multiple places on my various life lists. “Run a marathon” is on my “Completed Bucket List” (I ran the Chicago Marathon in 2008), “Sign up for races” appears on my “Continuous To Do” list, “Exercise” is on my “Daily” list (and running is usually how I accomplish this), and “Running” is also on my “Activities I enjoy on foot” list. Also, “Portland Marathon”, “Lake Tahoe Marathon”, “Run an adventure race”, and “Compete in a triathlon” ALL show up on my “Bucket List”. Phew…clearly I hope to do some more running in my future.

This morning I was reminded of just how powerful the “Runner’s High” can be. As I got out of my car and walked up to the curb where hundreds of dedicated runners were finishing their last leg of the race, my eyes filled with tears and I became overwhelmed with emotion. I could feel the energy in the air…their high was rubbing off on me! I was immediately transported to my own racing experiences, complete with hope, pride, excitement, envy, fear, and pure joy. I watched as people pushed their bodies, minds, and spirits to their very edge, and celebrated along with them as they discovered that they were indeed so much stronger than they knew. The tears came and went, usually brought on by a t-shirt indicating who the race was meant to honor or the simple love demonstrated through one runner slowing their pace for another. I made eye contact with hundreds of people and watched wide-eyed as my smile literally infected one exhausted runner after another. I was yelling, “Great job!,” “You’re almost there!,” and “Keep it up!,” but I know that what they heard was “You are able!,” “You are strong!,” and “Pain is only temporary!” Some life lessons are only truly understood when we are pushed beyond our self-imposed limits. Most people call all these emotions the “Runner’s High”, but those of us who run know it is so much more.

The fact is that running is one way that I live deliberately. It is something I want to do more of. Not only does it keep me healthy and strong, but it surrounds me with like-minded people and it brings peace to my soul. So with that in mind, I have done a little research. Today at the marathon I met a fellow cheerleader who mentioned that she was participating in “Foot Traffic University.” Then minutes later I was talking to a man whose daughter had just finished the marathon a whole hour faster than her first attempt last year, and he was giving all the credit to a running club she had joined. This got me thinking about group runs. I’ve always run solo, but what better way to make new friends and stay motivated then to run with a group! So here is a list of what I found in Portland. I’m sure I’m missing some great clubs and groups, but this is a good start.

Portland Running Company – Free group runs Sat-Wed

Foot traffic – Free group runs Mon-Thurs

Foot traffic University

Red lizard running club – Free group runs Mon-Thurs

ORRC – Free Tuesday night workout

NoPo Run Club – Free Thursday night group run

Team Athena – Must join for Tuesday night workouts

I look forward to checking some of these out this week, and I’ll let you know how it goes! Now I just have to hope I stay injury-free!



About Me

- 26 years old
- Pacific Northwest
- Educator, adventurer, friend

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