“In the autumn of your years don't make it so that what you look back on is regret. Live your life now so that whatever you do gives some sunshine before you head into the winter of your life.” ~Stephen Richards
Another month down....which means that I'm a quarter of the way through with this project (and a quarter of a year closer to 30!) I thought that I was pretty darn productive this month and I'm excited to share these things with y'all! If you're new to the blog, you can see my complete 30 by 30 list here!
#1: Cook 10 new recipes. (7/10 completed).
This month I knocked out three new recipes. You read before about two of them...Baked Potato Soup and Protein Packed Banana Nut Bread. But that's not all, folks!
I also made a Cabbage Roll Soup that was seriously amazing and packed full of veggies. Here's the recipe. I left out the onion and added some cauliflower. You could really put in any additional veggies that you wanted to. It was perfect for a cold day!
#4: Check 5 items off my bucket list. (1/5 completed).
Don't you love me cross referencing other lists? Monica from Friends would be proud.
What was the bucket list checkmark I got this month? Well I submitted a couple of articles to a magazine. ND Friend got me a subscription to Seeing the Everyday, which is the most adorable magazine ever. They invite contributions from readers, so I ended up sending a couple of my prior blogs. So far I've not heard anything back, and they probably have far better options, but I submitted those babies and got my checkmark.
On a sidenote, ND Friend's sister, Super Mom, has been doing an Everyday inspired project with her boys every week and it's seriously the cutest thing you've ever seen. Check it out on her blog here.
#5: Get a draft of Uncle Black Belt's book put together. (.25 completed)
This is really more of just a progress report to let you know that Uncle Black Belt and I (along with a few other family members who have kindly agreed to supply info) are working away. What exactly is this book, you ask? Well, it's basically Uncle Black Belt's memoir from his year spent as an army officer in Vietnam. It's gleamed from his journals, letters that he wrote home to his family, and memories of him and his sisters. And, well because I think you guys will enjoy this and we could use a little encouragement, here are a couple of snippets from the book.
I'm not too sure why we hunt to kill other human beings...
I still can’t get used to the idea of killing people, but it’s you or them, and this is one boy who’s gonna make it home.
Send some snapshots of yall and some koolaid. This water tastes worse than buffalo pee.
I’ve never really thought or done much praying, but when the first bullet went over my head, I started.
I'm sending you this letter at school because I'm not sure mom should see it.
Out of eleven of us, eight were wounded and three died. The last I remembered was my radio operator James STOKLEY helping put me on the medivac to the field hospital.
Okay....who wants to pre-order? Pretty heavy stuff, right?
I don't know how this thing can't be a best seller. Uncle Black Belt sent me this message last week, which made all of this worth it, even if this book never sells a single copy: "Tiffany, I want to thank you for taking on the task of writing this book. The memories that have come back to me about the good times have done more to help me than all the crazy Doctors at the VA."
Turns out that this little goal had a much larger purpose than I thought.
In January, I actually read three books, which you heard all about in this prior blog. Usually it's a struggle for me to get through two, but the fact that I could not put The Fault In Our Stars and spent like 4 hours one afternoon just reading helped to speed things along.
#8: Send my friends little gifts once a month. (3/12 completed).
For January's gift project, I decided to try my hand at making some hand stamped candles that I'd seen on Pinterest and some other blogs. Summary: Cute, but not really worth the effort (unless you have a really good stamp collection and a lot of time).
So I just bought white (coconut scented) candles from Target, some cute stamps and ink from Hob Lob, some tissue paper, and some wax paper. You just stamp your design onto the tissue paper and set that on the candle. Then you put wax paper over it (wax side down...that matters I found out!) and hold a hairdryer over it for maybe a minute. The wax paper melts to the candle and your design sticks. Pretty simple!
I decided to make two candles and to turn this into a little themed gift box.
The first candle said, "All you really need is a friend with chocolate" so that gift box turned into a chocolate fest and got sent to ND Friend.
The second one said, "Life is about using all the crayons in the box." I wanted to send this to Teacher Friend (thought it was appropriate for a teacher) and decided to include a coloring book and crayons for her sweet little girl in the gift box.
Pretty simple, inexpensive project and I think the girls enjoyed their gifts!
#9: Eat in 10 new restaurants. (3/10 completed)
Well this month a little trip to College Station got me two new restaurants to check off the list. Holy moly....both of these were amazing. The first was Veritas, which is a little wine bistro. I had a steak, mashed potatoes and squash and it was to.die.for. Seriously, so good. The next day I had lunch at Cafe Eccell and was just as impressed. I had a bowl of corn chowder which was seriously SO good and a chopped salad that was even better. It was like they put all good things in life in that salad and served it up on a plate. If you're in College Station, I'd highly recommend trying both of these places!
#15: Go to church every day for a week. (Completed.)
I was really excited to check this item off the list, and I figured that there was no better way to start the year off than by going to church every day for a week. And so I started on December 31 and went to church every day. 7 days, 5 churches. And I loved it. As much as I'm not a morning person, I think my favorite might have been 6:30 am mass in a cold, quiet, dark church. It was just so beautiful and peaceful and the perfect start to my morning. I would highly recommend this for anyone to try, I just can't tell you how much I enjoyed this experience, and even since then I've been going to church at least one "regular day" a week in addition to Sunday.
#29: Bring home a bouquet of flowers once a month. (3/12 completed).