â€œHow many numbers will you be on your birthday, Mom?â€ my daughter Lucy recently asked.
â€œ36!â€ I proudly responded.
â€œWow, Mom! Thatâ€™s a lot of numbers!â€
Come on, kid. Perspective is everything. 36 isnâ€™t old â€¦ if youâ€™re a tree!
Well, Iâ€™m not a tree. And even if I was, 36 isnâ€™t old, dang it! I feel younger and healthier today than I did a year ago.Â My friend Kathryn turned 38 a few weeks ago and created a list ofÂ 38 things she wants to do. Taking her lead, here are 36 things on my mind as I celebrate my birthday today.
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1. Start each day with a morning offering. End with a daily examen.
2. Create a prayer corner in my home.
3. At least once a month, meet Jesus for a date in that chapel there. —>
4. Say NO with conviction to things I am not being called to do. Say YES with enthusiasm to things I am.
5. If itâ€™s Godâ€™s will for Joel to become an ordained deacon, it will happen. So chill, girl. Take it one day at a time.
6. Be charitable with my â€œfirst fruits.â€ Give from the top of our budget rather than the bottom.
7. Trust that people have good intentions. If Iâ€™m wrong, freely forgive them.
8. Spend more time with spiritual director.
9. Land that really big interview for the blog. And I mean BIG. I know who I want to ask, I just need to make it happen!
10. Kiss my husband more. And in public!
11. Go on a monthly date with Joel. Hey, moreÂ opportunitiesÂ to get those kisses in! And get this — some friends have graciously offered to watch the kids once a month so we can make these date nights happen!
12. Call my Mom more. And not just when I need something.
13.Teach Jude baby sign language.
14. Embrace Lucyâ€™s personality — the talkative, charming, gregarious, creative, distractable, and flighty social butterfly she is.
15. Be available to my sister to help plan and celebrate her wedding.
16. Be nicer to my dog.
17. Take Lucy to the theater. That’s theÂ theatreÂ not theÂ movie theater.
18. Watch classic movies like A Man for All Seasons, Citizen Kane, Little Women, Itâ€™s a Wonderful Life, and On the Waterfront. (What should I add?).
19. Finish that 1,000+-page novel I started reading in February.
20. Purchase more fine art for our home, from local artists when possible.
21. Play my piano more.
22.Â Build a vegetable garden and grow tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, peppers, and lettuce. And radishes. Oh yes, radishes.
23. Build a compost pile to recycle food scraps and other biodegradable waste.
24. Eat more fish.
25. Bake homemade biscotti. Savor every bite.
26. Run the Des Moines half-marathon in October.
27. Wear dresses and skirts more often. I feel pretty in them. And I am happier when I feel pretty.
28. Make one new good friend.
29. Play card games more with married couple friends.
30. Host more dinner parties. The house will never be big enough, the lighting will never be right, and the dog might bark all party long. So what. Deal with it. Joelâ€™s cooking will make up for it!
31. Hang out at local coffee shops, like that one over there. Â —–>
32. Paint my laundry/mud room blue — like this.
33. Paint my daughterâ€™s fingernails more often. Heck, paint MY fingernails more often.
34. Feed the birds.
35. Go to bed by 10 p.m. and arise by 6 a.m. on most days.
36. Ask for help, with grace, when needed. And donâ€™t wait until the last minute.
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There you have it. Joel says my list is like New Yearâ€™s resolutions on steroids. Maybe so.
Well, what am I waiting for? Letâ€™s get cracking on #36.
Help me, please! Â Give me your best advice for year 36. You can comment by clicking here. I’m looking forward to reading your ideas!Â