Friday, November 15, 2013

36 Things

I'm old...and getting older.

Well, okay, we all are.

Halloween starts the busy season for us Shipleys as the fun holiday leads to more holidays and then the fast paced flow of birthdays.

I wasn't really thinking about my birthday so soon, but I kind of incorporated it in my thoughts around this song.

I firmly know life is precious and what we do in this life matters.  Each year as I grow older, I grow more wise (I like to think) and find myself fine tuning the ways I view the world and what it is I am supposed to do with the life I was given.

I pray for guidance, but the Lord knows guiding me isn't easy. I am sure He feels that way about all of us humans, but when you get a woman who digs in her heels (well tennis shoes) and refuses to step out of her comfort zone (known to the rest of you as her front door), and then cries about how much time has gone by and little she has to show for it...well, you have to want to smack your head on something--hard.

Have you heard this song?

If you are feeling old, and like you have not used your years to the best of God's ability, it will suck the air right out of your lungs.  You will feel a panic, but don't worry, after the 2nd or 3rd time you replay it, you will feel lifted up and the urge to use the time God has give you more wisely.

With that being said, I have pondered over and prayed over the following list.  I don't want to (figuratively) blow out the candles and feel that same since of regret I have felt for more than a decade about what I am doing with my life.

Don't misunderstand me. I LOVE being a stay at home mom, and a devoted wife to my husband. I don't want that to change and I won't.  I want to change how I use the time I am at home and with the kids and with my husband.  I don't want to waste it. I have savored many moments with my family, but lost so many, many more to the couch or the TV, or shyness or laziness or depressed moods. And, then another year is gone, and I mourn it for the next 2 months.

Now, I know that with God all things are possible, but lets not even consider that I--the daughter of one of the most stubborn men on the planet-- can change over-night.  But, just maybe I can turn 36 without regret that so much time was wasted.

 Many most of these things are going to seem so silly to you, but they are things that for me are hard and I want to accomplish or overcome. I know that they will make me feel more alive than I do today, and that is the point. I want to live life fully and purposely in a way that I can.  I can't live a life like an extrovert or a celebrity or a world-traveler, or even a working mom.  But, I can find ways breathe more life in to my protected tucked away existence where I spend more time caught up in negative emotions running circles in my head than I do fulfilling God's purpose for me.

So what can you do?  Besides turning the laughter down to about 5 when you read my list--you can encourage me and pray for me and my journey to 36--otherwise known as the second-half of my life.  (Face it people, with all the things in this world trying to kill us, living to 70 would be a HUGE blessing!)

36 Things to Do Before I Turn 36

***In no particular order***

1. Count all the people who tell me they love me...and say it back.

2. Let some one take my picture--Maybe a posed picture. Something nice, and on purpose.And post/print it.

3. Read 3 books ---sounds sad, but for a lady who never gets time/makes time to read--that's a pretty big challenge

4. Volunteer for something at church--yup, three years in the pews, and I have done nothing beyond the 11:00 service. I am too shy to even go to Wednesday night dinners and even Sunday potlucks!

5. Finish a project from the "half-done" pile in my closet

6.Watch 3 classic movies I have never seen --TCM should make this easier for me, and luckily there is a long list of the top movies ever made, most of which I have never seen.

7. Tell 5 people how much they mean to me--I forget to do that far too often.

8. Make a new friend--Sounds easy, but not for a shy hermit person like me

9. Suck it up and get the wisdom teeth pulled

10. Execute awesome Christmas card idea, & send out Christmas cards BEFORE Christmas--my track-record isn't good.

11. Visit a new church for one Sunday--just to visit. I am happy with my church home, and I should probably actually join it. Maybe that will make next year's list.

12. See a living Nativity this Christmas

13.Order something different off the menu at a restaurant --you are starting to laugh at me aren't you? Hey, well all got "issues." Some of us more than others.

14. Go a whole day without ipad, phone or computer--that sounds so sad!  And, I will answer a phone call, I don't want to scare people or not be there when the school calls.  I guess a better way to phrase it is no internet, email or games.

15. Watch a whole football game with my husband and TRY to understand, not walk away, or find the ipad.

16. Accept an invitation from someone and actually go--I am the queen of finding ways to back out of social things.

17. 5 Random Acts Of Kindness with the kids helping

18. Get all the way dressed up--reason or no reason, maybe make a person snap my picture. Do nails, hair, make-up nice dress and no flats.

19. Make and give something to someone's son & to someone's daughter--remembering my children and those ages and how blessed I am to have the talent I do, and the time and resources I have.

20. Hug my best friend

21. Submit something--a picture, a blog post, story to a contest or paper or bigger blog

22. Find something on my Pinterest page already pinned and DO IT

23. Find and prepare a new recipe

24. Do something I would ordinarily be scared to do--not like haunted house "scared", but ridiculously socially awkward lady "scared"

25. Read an entire book of the Bible--perhaps Ruth

26. Do a "group" thing --without kids or a husband to hide behind.

27. Forgive a person that really hurt me--I have done a GREAT deal of that over the years, but I am often surprised when something like that pops up and I realize I have not let it go. PS: I have no one in mind as I type this.

28. Go to a class at the gym--nope, never had the nerve to go to one alone. Only did yoga with Gracie

29. Try 2 new foods

30. Lose 1 pound--it is not about the pounds, it is about starting somewhere and trying to try again

31. Finish the kids baby books

32. Run outside--I don't know how long or how far, but I have never done it, and I have never wanted to try.

33.Take a class--pottery, cake decorating, sewing, knitting, something!

34.Read 100 books to one or both of my kids

35. Listen to Jill--I will do my absolute best to try and carry out a piece of advice she has for me.  She always keeps me grounded, and Lord knows I need more of that in my life/

36. Scrapbook this 36 step journey and repeat every birthday (with added numbers obviously)


Jill said...

such a lovely, well thought out, super.... I mean SUPER post!!
I am amazed and inspired by your goals!
Please keep us posted!!

Grace said...

I love this post and have SO many things to say about it....

#3 according to my count, you only have 1 more to go.
#8 pick me pick me!!
#9 you've made it this long, do you really have to? I can't talk, I've never had wisdom teeth so I just got lucky.
#10 I still need to look for a costume for you.
#11 my church counts, right?
#15 you've missed some pretty good ones this season that would have kept you interested (VT vs Miami and Auburn vs Georgia, etc.)
#23 White Chicken Chili
#26 Spirited Art

I think you've got this!! I think you should blog each thing too!

Good luck, have fun, and happy birthday!

Grandma said...

Wonderful goals. I know you can do anything you set your mind to do! OK, I did have to laugh at # 13. This one may be the hardest for you. ;) I am so glad you have wonderful friends to help you along your journey.You can do it! I love you!!!!