Reviving the Life List

The Life List is something I’ve maintained for the past five years. Referred to as a “bucket list” by most people, this is a list of things I want to do at some point in my life.

I’ve heard the arguments against bucket/life/30 before 30 lists: that you should be living your life instead of checking things off a box. But the way I see it, the life list keeps me on track doing the things I’ve always said, “I want to do that someday.”  So I track it. Not as the sole focus of my life but as something to look forward to when things get dull and tedious. There are so many places that I want to visit and so many things I want to do, it’s impossible to list all of them. So yes, my life list is vague and yes, it could be filled by many different things, but that’s the point. It’s a guideline to living, not a blue print!

My 30 Before 30 List is likely to go unfinished by the time I turn 30 in less than 2 years. But you know what? That’s okay! I’m a different person than when I wrote this list 2+ years ago and doing completely different things. It’s not realistic to find a ballet in the middle of the Ethiopian Highlands or scuba diving in a landlocked country.

Finishing these lists isn’t the focus of where my life is heading, but it’s a good guide and reminder of the adventurous spirit I want to foster in my life.

Another reason I’m bringing this up is because of the post-Peace Corps trip my fiancé and I are planning. While looking at my life list I realized I’d be knocking off quite a few items from the list, so now would be a good time to revive and revise it.

See updates on my Life List page here or click on the link at the top of the page! After today this one will no longer be updated.


  1. Attend high profile sporting events (World Cup match, Grand Slam match,  Stanley Cup finals game, NFL playoff game, Olympic event, college sport playoff finals game)
  2. Run! (5k,10khalf marathon, marathon)
  3. Go aerial (go to space, learn to fly, go skydiving and skydive again in a new country)
  4. Learn water sports (surf, snorkel, scuba dive, sail)
  5. Do winter sports (go dog sledding, learn to ski or snowboard)
  6. Climb a mountain
  7. Swim with sharks and elephants
  8. Jump off a waterfall
  9. Experience zero gravity
  10. Ride in a hot air balloon
  11. Eat a five star restaurant
  12. Meet a US president
  13. Fly First Class on an airline
  14. Ride a camel and elephant
  15. Taste a Scotch older than I am
  16. Go sightseeing on a Vespa/scooter


  1. Visit every country in the world (9/193: Australia, Canada, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, France, Italy, Mexico, Turkey, United States)
  2. Visit all seven continents (North America, South America, Asia, EuropeAfrica, Australia and Antartica)
  3. Visit the 30 “global cities” of the world (New York City, London, Paris, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Singapore, Chicago, Toronto, Seoul, Washington D.C., Beijing, Brussels, Madrid, San Francisco, Sydney, Berlin, Vienna, Moscow, Shanghai, Frankfurt, Bangkok, Amsterdam, Stockholm, Mexico City, Zurich, Dubai, Istanbul, Boston, Rome)
  4. Take an Artic cruise in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres
  5. Take a flight without knowing the destination
  6. Visit a volcano


  1. Visit all fifty US states (33/50: Alabama, Alaska, ArizonaArkansas, CaliforniaColorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, IdahoIllinoisIndianaIowaKansas, KentuckyLouisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, MississippiMissouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New JerseyNew MexicoNew York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, OklahomaOregonPennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, TennesseeTexasUtah, Vermont,VirginiaWashington, West Virginia, WisconsinWyoming)
  2. Visit all thirteen Canadian provinces and territories (4/13: AlbertaBritish ColumbiaManitoba, New Bruinswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Yukon Territory)
  3. Visit the Grand Canyon
  4. Stand on Four Corners
  5. Road trip across the US from one coast to the other
  6. Take the train across Canada
  7. Take an Alaskan cruise
  8. Drive the Alaskan Highway
  9. Visit Easter Island
  10. Attend Burning Man


  1. Go to Oktoberfest in Germany
  2. Drink a beer in a pub in the UK


  1. Ride the TranSiberian railway
  2. Go to Carnivale in Venice
  3. Participate in Holi in India


  1. Go on a safari in Africa
  2. Summit Kiliminjaro


  1. See the Seven Modern Wonders of the World (Great Wall of China, Petra, Christ the Reedemer, Machu Picchu, Chicen Itza, Roman Colesium, Taj Mahal and Great Pyramid at Giza–honorary candidate)
  2. See koala bears in their natural habitat
  3. See polar bears in their natural habitat
  4. Go whale watching
  5. See the Northern Lights
  6. See the Pyramids
  7. See the Mojave Desert airline “graveyard”
  8. See a Galapagos Turtle
  9. See the cherry blossoms in Washington, DC

For Fun

  1. Plant a tree
  2. Bet on a sporting event
  3. Get my fortune told
  4. Wear a sequined dress to a party
  5. Open a champagne bottle with a sword
  6. Hug an inukshuk
  7. Ring a church bell
  8. Christen a boat


  1. Adopt another dog
  2. Own my own home
  3. Design my own clothing
  4. Get a tattoo
  5. Become an ex-pat
  6. Start a family tradition
  7. Don’t purchase new clothes for one year

Personal Development/Projects

  1. Learn a new alphabet
  2. Learn another language fluently
  3. Read a novel in another language
  4. Write a book
  5. Sell a painting
  6. Get an advanced degree
  7. Have a photograph published
  8. Own a digital SLR
  9. Attend Yoga Teacher Training
  10. Learn to do headstand
  11. Brew my own beer
  12. Take a cooking class
  13. Grow a garden
  14. Start a daily meditation practice
  15. Do something every day for 30 days

(updated 4/23/2014)

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