100 Things, 2017: March Update

19/100 – Thing 21 – laugh genuinely and hysterically, 3/7/17
Charlotte was being so funny, I could not stop laughing. Of course now I can’t remember what exactly it was about but at the time I did think, “ooh! I can cross this off my list!”

20/100 – Thing 79 – read the Lauren Oliver Delirium trilogy, finished 3/10/17
I believe I started in January, and finished March 10. I actually read all 5 accompanying short stories that Oliver wrote as well. I enjoyed these books, but not as much as the Matched trilogy by Ally Condie. I was satisfied with the way the series ended, even though a lot of people don’t like how it’s left open in many ways. I think there’s enough conclusion there.

21/100 – Thing 87 – bake apple pie with Charlotte, 3/14/17
We baked an apple pie for Pi Day!

22/100 – Thing 32 – celebrate Pink and Black Day, 3/25/17
This is a holiday I created in college. It’s really easy to celebrate, you just have to wear pink and black. Silver has been an unofficial color of the day as well right from the start. I don’t usually remember Pink and Black Day until after it’s past, so I am proud of myself for remembering this year. I even made chocolate chop brownies to help celebrate!

23/100 – Thing 68 – create art with Charlotte, 3/26/17
We finger painted together. I made a butterfly, which she painted over a little. We also learned about making secondary colors by mixing primary colors together.

24/100 – Thing 10 – watch “Sheryl Sandberg: Why we have too few women leaders”, 3/27/17
I watched this video on the train in the morning. It was interesting because of course I want there to be more women leaders in the world, in business and in society, but I don’t want to be one of them. So maybe I’m exactly who she’s talking about, women who don’t have aspirations to be tops in the field. But regardless of what I want for myself, I want to teach my daughter that she can aim for the highest position in whatever she chooses to do with her life. So I’ll probably rewatch this one.

Other Things I’ve started: Writing a blog post every month (Thing 97). Do Morning Pages for 60 straight days (Thing 14) – I started March 7, so if I do sixty straight days then my last day will be May 5. I have a couple days where I started but didn’t finish, but I’m counting it as long as I didn’t completely skip the day, regardless of if it was written in the morning or later in the day. Read Jane Eyre (Thing 77) – I started listening to the free librivox recording read by Elizabeth Klett. Take Charlotte to a Renegades game (Thing 50) – I bought us tickets to the Princess Party game.

Things Done Each Month:
January – 8
February – 10
March – 6

If you click on the progress bar in the right side of the page, you can see the complete updated list, even before my monthly update posts at the end of the month.

100 Things, 2017: February Update

9/100 – Thing 44 – have a Girls’ Day with Z and Charlotte, 1/30/17
Yes, I did this in January but it didn’t make it into my update post. And yes, Mark came with us, but that’s okay. I decided it still counts because it’s my list and I make the rules. Z has family tickets to the Norwalk Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk, CT. We saw seals, and jellyfish, and frogs, and sharks, and lots fish and other sea creatures. We had a lot of fun. We had lunch there and went to the shop where I got Charlotte a shirt that says “I’m really a mermaid” and me a shirt that says “Mermaid at” and then a seashell in the shape of a heart. Charlotte got a seal and I got a sea otter — we saw sea otters! So cute! It was such a great day, and we all had lots of fun.

10/100 – Thing 6 – watch “Richard St. John – Success is a continuous journey”, 1/31/17
To be honest I know I watched this in January but I didn’t write down when it was, so I am just putting it here. I found this interesting and accurate. People work really hard, but if they stop working when they achieve success, they will stop being so successful. So it’s critical that to remain successful, you have to keep doing all the things you did to get there. Which makes sense, but also makes sense that people tend to forget that.

11/100 – Thing 90 – wish on a star, 2/1/17
I’m not sure when this was either, but I was holding Charlotte and walking to the apartment from the car, and we saw a bright star. I told her that we can make wishes on stars, and hope that our wishes come true. I said, “like if you want a cookie when you get inside, you can say, ‘I wish I had a cookie.’ And then maybe your wish will come true.” She was smiling and saying yes she wanted a cookie, but didn’t want to actually say the wish. But when we got inside, I gave her one anyway. And I did make my own wish, but I am not sharing my wish either.

12/100 – Thing 37 – take a solo train ride that is NOT for my work commute, 2/4/17
I am considering this done. I took my usual train home from work on Saturday February 4, but then continued past my stop to go to my parents’ house. Technically it was still my work commute, but I decided it counts since I went to a further stop and was on the train much longer. I read a lot of the 2017 Newbery winner (see below).

13/100 – Thing 17 – read the 2017 Newbery award winner, 2/6/17
I started this book in January after the awards were announced and finished on February 6. I am so happy the Newbery committee chose to honor _The_Girl_Who_Drank_The_Moon_ by Kelly Barnhill. I can hardly contain my love for it. Here’s the review I posted on Amazon and Goodreads:
Unforgettable. Magical. Several different perspectives in the story that cleverly dovetail into perfection by the end of the book. I was utterly entranced and could not put this book down. This book won the very well-deserved Newbery Award this year, and I am glad it did because it put the book on my radar. I would love to see this as a movie, and I’m not surprised that movie rights have been optioned already.

14/100 – Thing 19 – do a jigsaw puzzle, 2/12/17
Charlotte and I did a few different easy jigsaw puzzles together. I still want to do some bigger ones this year that she is too little to help with, but I can still check this one off the list.

15/100 – Thing 86 – bake cookies, 2/12/17
For some reason they didn’t turn out right, exactly, so I call them “cakies” when they taste more like cake. Too much flour? Not the right amount of salt or baking powder? But whatever, Charlotte helped and we made the Tollhouse Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe. I will definitely make more cookies this year.

16/100 – Thing 41 – go on a date with Mark for Valentine’s Day; hire a baby-sitter, 2/17/17
We didn’t “hire” a baby-sitter, but we did have Mark’s mom baby-sit so we could go out to dinner at a nice restaurant. We haven’t been able to go out much, and in September we decided to aim for one child-less date every month, and that lasted… two months. Haha. So we need to keep trying, and by making a reservation a couple weeks before, we had this to look forward to. Then we got sick, so we had to postpone it a few days but still went in the same week as Valentine’s Day so it counts. ❤

17/100 – Thing 46 – go on the swings with Charlotte, 2/25/17
It was actually pretty nice weather, and we did go on the swings. She only stayed about two minutes before she wanted to get out, but that’s okay. There will be other swings this year.

18/100 – Thing 92 – toss a coin into a fountain and make a wish, 2/27/17
Mark and I took Charlotte to a mall and there was a fountain. We didn’t have coins, but Mark saw two quarters on the floor not far away so he picked them up so Charlotte and I could make wishes. She didn’t want to tell me her wish, lol.


Other Things I’ve started: Writing a blog post every month (Thing 97) – if I can keep up with this monthly round-up of my progress toward achieving everything on my list, that will accomplish this by the end of the year. I did finish this post in March and backdate it to February, but most was written in February. Read the Lauren Oliver Delirium trilogy (Thing 79) – I started Delirium in January and finished reading in February, and then read Pandemonium and started Requiem. Since there are three books for this Thing, I wanted to get it done early in the year. After I finish this trilogy I will read the Eve Marie Mont Unbound trilogy (Thing 78), and then the rest of the books on my list are all stand-alone books. And I guess you could say I’ve started “end year with no credit card debt” (Thing 11) because I’m reading Get Rich, Lucky Bitch and I’m working on getting on top of my finances.

Things Done Each Month:
January – 8
February – 10

100 Things, 2017: January Update

One of my 100 Things to Do in 2017 is to write a blog post every month, and last year I wrote two updates on how I’m doing but didn’t continue. So my intention for this year is to post on the last day of each month to say what I did from my list, and any notes I want to add about it. To do all 100 this year, I need to average 8.3 Things each month.


1/100 – Thing 1 – watch “Hans Rosling – The magic washing machine”, 1/1/17
I watched this before going to bed after watching the ball drop at midnight, because I thought if I could start off the year with one thing crossed off already in the first hour of the year, that might give me some good karma to get a lot more things done this year than in 2016. So I’m glad I got this video over with first, so there’s a lot less build up about its potential for greatness than there could have been. This video was kind of funny, but not enlightening. Just kind of meh.

2/100 – Thing 2 – watch “Elizabeth Gilbert – Your elusive creative genius”, 1/5/17
This is a video I’ve watched before and will definitely watch again and again. It gives a hint of what was to come when she later wrote Big Magic, which I read last year and absolutely loved (and will probably read again and again too). Basically, Liz advises going back to the ancient Greeks, where people said “you have a genius” and not “you are a genius” – then if you’re creatively blocked, you don’t have to get depressed and think that you suck, you can just blame your muse for not showing up to work.

3/100 – Thing 3 – watch “Amanda Palmer – The art of asking”, 1/5/17
I love Amanda’s delivery – she tells us a little about her experience as a performer, and we get to see some of that in the way she speaks. This was a great little video that advocates crowd-funding by likening it to a street performer putting out a hat or guitar case. You’re not “making” someone pay you, you’re asking them. And when they do, you both feel it’s a positive exchange of energy. And it’s not just about money – Amanda has asked for things or services and people have offered them to her. For people who have trouble asking for or receiving money or help in their lives, it’s a must-watch.

4/100 – Thing 4 – watch “Diana Nyad – Never, ever give up”, 1/7/17
What an inspiring story! I had never heard of Diana, so I looked her up online and actually watched the video showing her finishing her historic swim before I watched her TED video. Wow. I am not a strong swimmer, and I don’t like swimming, so to me the idea of swimming for over 50 hours, a distance of over 100 miles, is utterly unfathomable. The fact that she tried and failed a few times, and then kept going for it and finally achieved her goal? Incredible. You really can do almost anything you set your mind to, if you are determined and persistent.

5/100 – Thing 35 – bake a cake from scratch, 1/7/17
6/100 – Thing 45 – try a new recipe, 1/7/17
Mark was watching a few episodes of Two Broke Girls, which put me in the mood to bake. I was going to make a cake but decided to make cupcakes instead. It still counts as baking a cake from scratch as far as I’m concerned. I don’t know if I had ever tried the Devil’s Food Cake recipe in my Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book (my favorite cookbook) before, but the cream cheese frosting recipe I found on the Internet was new to me. I put lemon extract in the frosting instead of vanilla, so that was a fun twist. I brought some of the cupcakes to work with me after a few days so I wouldn’t eat them all myself, because Mark’s not big on chocolate. Oh, and Charlotte helped because she loves to help with cooking and baking (and anything else you’re doing).

7/100 – Thing 5 – watch “Brené Brown – The power of vulnerability”, 1/8/17
I’m finding it hard to write a response to this one. I listened to it almost two weeks ago (as I sit here on January 21, starting my blog post that won’t be published for another week and a half), and I just read a transcript of it, and it’s just not hitting me. Maybe because I already know that vulnerability does not equal weakness? She says feeling vulnerable and feeling shame are related, and I can’t help but remember how my least favorite question a person can ask is, “What’s the most” (or most recent) “embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you?” Because I can never come up with an answer. Life is what it is. So… I don’t know. This is another video that I just didn’t get anything out of it, and that’s okay.

8/100 – Thing 28 – do a Tarot/Oracle card reading for someone other than myself, 1/13/17
I had my new cards with me, the I Am Power Deck from Love, Light and Legacy, at work with me. I am absolutely in love with this deck. Each card has an “I am ____” phrase on it, which can be used in meditation or as a mantra or as a journaling prompt… They are very open to interpretation which is so lovely. Before I left work for the day, I pulled a card for each of the three college students that were working that day. I also brought the cards to a meeting on January 17 where I knew I would see a certain friend of mine, and I pulled a card for her as well.
[Interesting side note – my 8th Thing of 2016 was also done on January 13.]


In addition to doing the above I’ve also started reading Delirium by Lauren Oliver, the first book in the trilogy (which is Thing 79). I had Mark call and make a reservation for us to go to dinner for Valentine’s Day on the Sunday before (Thing 41). And I got a white scarf with pink and black hearts on it that I can wear for Valentine’s Day at work, but I can also wear on Pink and Black Day (Thing 32), a holiday I created when I was in college that falls on March 25.

100 Things To Do in 2017

I did 58 Things on my list of 100 Things To Do in 2016, which is much better than I did in 2012. Now that I have my 2017 Create Your Shining Year Workbook it’s time to make a new list for next year. I thought my 2016 was a lot better than the 2012 list, but I learned through this year that there is still work to be done in order to create a more perfect union list. This time, while many goals were more concrete than before, there were some that were still too lofty – and others that were too impossible.

This year, I started with the videos on Leonie Dawson’s list of 10 TED spiritual talks that will change your life. Then I used my 2016 list – I removed some things I have done (or no longer want to do), and left some I want to do again. Then I added a bunch of fun new things to fill up the list. As always, I will come back to update this post throughout the year, and I’ll be updating the progress bar on the right side of my site. And now without further ado, here is my list of 100 Things To Do in 2017.

  1. watch “Hans Rosling – The magic washing machine”
  2. watch “Elizabeth Gilbert – Your elusive creative genius”
  3. watch “Amanda Palmer – The art of asking”
  4. watch “Diana Nyad – Never, ever give up”
  5. watch “Brené Brown – The power of vulnerability”
  6. watch “Richard St. John – Success is a continuous journey”
  7. watch “J.K. Rowling Speaks at Harvard Commencement”
  8. watch “Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford Commencement Address”
  9. watch “Conan O’Brien’s 2011 Dartmouth College Commencement Address”
  10. watch “Sheryl Sandberg: Why we have too few women leaders”
  11. end year with no credit card debt
  12. buy a car
  13. win NaNoWriMo
  14. do Morning Pages for 60 straight days
  15. get a manicure
  16. get a pedicure
  17. read the 2017 Newbery award winner
  18. do the Goddess Haven ecourse
  19. do a jigsaw puzzle
  20. plant a seed
  21. laugh genuinely and hysterically
  22. write a poem
  23. take a bubble bath
  24. do 20 minutes of silent meditation
  25. do a faerie painting similar to my mermaid
  26. attend a flea market
  27. throw a dinner party
  28. do a Tarot/Oracle card reading for someone other than myself
  29. take a photowalk
  30. get a Bedazzler and use it
  31. get a massage
  32. celebrate Pink and Black Day
  33. go on a walk with Mark
  34. don’t wait until Halloween to figure out a rockin’ costume
  35. bake a cake from scratch
  36. teach Charlotte how to sing and sign a song
  37. take a solo train ride that is NOT for my work commute
  38. take Charlotte to a beach
  39. see a play
  40. make s’mores over a campfire
  41. go on a date with Mark for Valentine’s Day; hire a baby-sitter
  42. get cupcakes from Flour and Sun Bakery for my birthday
  43. throw Charlotte a 3rd birthday party
  44. have a Girls’ Day with Z and Charlotte
  45. try a new recipe
  46. go on the swings with Charlotte
  47. visit Canada
  48. spend an afternoon in AC Moore and don’t spend any money
  49. take Charlotte to her first Mets game
  50. take Charlotte to a Renegades game
  51. watch a movie in the theater
  52. ride a roller coaster or ferris wheel
  53. go swimming with Charlotte
  54. take Charlotte to the Bronx Zoo
  55. get my typewriter fixed
  56. go to a museum
  57. take Charlotte outside in the grass on a sunny day for some grounding
  58. get reiki
  59. get a Tarot reading for my birthday
  60. get Charlotte ice cream from an ice cream truck
  61. make my own soap
  62. take Charlotte on a picnic at Bowdoin Park
  63. take Charlotte to Boscobel to see the gardens
  64. go see the ocean
  65. take Charlotte to the Dutchess County Balloon Festival (July-ish)
  66. go to the Mid-Hudson Valley Gem & Mineral Show (September-ish)
  67. get a sewing machine and make something with it
  68. create art with Charlotte
  69. read Essentialism by Greg McKeown
  70. read Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh
  71. reread Girl Seeks Bliss by Nicole Beland
  72. read Everyday Zen by Charlotte J. Beck
  73. read Goddesses in Everywoman by Jean Shinoda Bolen
  74. read The Dance of the Dissident Daughter by Sue Monk Kidd
  75. read The Way of the Happy Woman by Sara Avant Stover
  76. read The Book of SHE by Sara Avant Stover
  77. read Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
  78. read the Eve Marie Mont Unbound trilogy (A Breath of Eyre, A Touch of Scarlet, and A Phantom Enchantment)
  79. read the Lauren Oliver Delirium trilogy (Delirium, Pandemonium, Requiem)
  80. spend a day at a spa
  81. do a random act of kindness
  82. order room service
  83. go ice skating OR roller skating
  84. get a hair cut
  85. go to a comedy show
  86. bake cookies
  87. bake apple pie with Charlotte
  88. shoot a bow and arrow
  89. go on a hayride
  90. wish on a star
  91. climb a rock wall
  92. toss a coin into a fountain and make a wish
  93. go to the chiropractor
  94. dress up fancy to go somewhere not fancy
  95. donate blood
  96. send a care package
  97. write at least one blog post every month (Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec)
  98. take a CPR and/or First Aid class
  99. go bowling
  100. buy something for a total stranger off their wishlist/registry

*Items crossed out have been completed. Items italicized have been missed (if dated) or given up on.

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100 Things update 3

If you haven’t seen it, check out my list of 100 Things to Do in 2016. Previously posted: updates 1 and 2. It’s been a while since I’ve done some of these Things, so I will do my best with these notes. In the future I should just start a draft and comment as I go.

14/100 – Thing 10 – Read an autobiography not written for children, completed 2/4/16
I read Sounds Like Me: My Life (So Far) In Music by Sara Bareilles. I think I got this via NetGalley within a month or two before it was officially released, but hadn’t read it yet. I really like Sara’s music, and I enjoyed her autobiography immensely. The chapters are titled with songs that she wrote and/or released at the time the events in the chapter took place, so I made a playlist with those songs and listened to each before reading the chapter. It’s a great playlist itself, with some of her hit songs but also quite a few that were new to me. Highly recommended.

15/100 – Thing 42 – Create my own ice cream flavor, 2/7/16
I started with frozen raspberries and additions include chocolate syrup and white chocolate chips and crushed candy cane. I only had milk so the consistency was terrible, but the taste was pretty good. Next time I want to try using heavy cream and see if it ends up more like ice cream.

16/100 – Thing 69 – Try a new recipe, 2/16/16
I made a delicious Irish Chocolate Mint Dessert, which is almost identical to my mom’s famous Fudge Mint Petit Fours that she makes around the holidays but with mint extract and green food color instead of creme de menthe. The recipe is from a mail-order subscription I used to have called Easy to Bake, Easy to Make. YUMMY! It’s a chocolate cake-y layer, then a layers of what is essentially a green minty buttercream, and then a layer of chocolate chips melted with butter that hardens.


17/100 – Thing 18 – Laugh until it hurts, 2/20/16
Okay, so it didn’t hurt, but I did cry from laughing so hard so I am counting it done. This video is absolutely hilarious:

18/100 – Thing 47 – Try to write a song, 2/24/16
Okay, so this was actually not as hard as I anticipated because (1) I decided to go with a REALLY short song instead of a full-length one, and (2) I found two websites that made it really easy! I created the music on Hookpad. I couldn’t export or download anything, so then I found another site,, where I could copy everything to, and then download my song as sheet music and as an mp3. The lyrics are: “Writing a song is hard. / I don’t know why… / I have written a song!” I wasn’t thinking of not posting it, but what the heck, I’m sharing everything else here. Here’s my “masterpiece” — don’t judge me. It’s pretty terrible.

Things I am working on:

  • Thing 4 – read Women Who Run With The Wolves – don’t take notes (I actually stumbled across a book club online started by a friend of mine, and when I found it they were going to be starting the next day. kismet!)
  • Thing 7 – do morning pages for 30 straight days (I have done 20 days in a row as of today, woo hoo!)
  • Thing 23 – learn how to make Mom’s candy cane cookies (I got the recipe from her, but I haven’t made them yet)
  • Thing 43 – celebrate Pink and Black Day (It’s March 25, and this is a holiday I created in college. Official colors are pink and black with silver as an honorary color. Really easy to celebrate: wear pink and black. And maybe silver. I’m working on it because it’s March now, so I need to figure out what I’m going to wear to celebrate the holiday.)
  • Thing 100 – create and abandon one piece of art every month (I have done this for January and February!)