36 for 37

In 96 days, I am turning 37, which is such an uneventful, non-milestone age to turn that I had to double check myself twice before I started writing this to make sure I wasn’t already 37.

The only thing noteworthy about being 37 is that it is the last year when I can describe myself as being in my “mid 30s” versus my “late 30s”. It is a little thing, but I’ll take it. I’m actually looking forward to my 37th year being fairly uneventful, minus (hopefully) finishing graduate school. I don’t want any major life changes in the cornerstone areas of my life: no new babies, no new job, no new house, no new husband.

But a birthday is a birthday and I do like to have a reason to look forward to things (I enjoy anticipation and planning) so I’ve decided to give myself a list of 36 things to check off before my birthday:

1. Improve our family’s net worth by $3700. This should be totally doable thanks to an extra check I’m expecting to arrive soon but making some mortgage payments.

2. Read three books and seven magazines.

3. Do 37 minutes of yard clean up (blargh. I have the opposite of a green thumb but I can at least pull some weeds).

4. Swim 37 miles

5. Ride 370 miles on my bike

6. Walk/run 370 miles

7. Send three friends actual paper letters

8. Have 37 days without Diet Coke, my second biggest vice.

9. Add 37 rough draft pages to my dissertation

10. Blog 37 times (this totally counts as #1. Progress!)

11. Write 37 pages of fiction (on the story that I can’t shake)

12. In bed before 11:37 every night between now and my birthday. I tend to stay up too late for no real good reason. More sleep is always a good idea.

13. Take the kids swimming at least 3 times.

14. Play tennis with Miles at least 3 times.

15. Eat breakfast at home 37. I have a bad skipping breakfast habit.

16. Bring lunch to work 37 times. I also have a bad buying lunch habit.

17. Purge 37 pieces of clothing from my overstuffed closet/drawers. I’m not willing to commit to a capsule wardrobe yet but I have clothes ranging in sizes from 14-24 and have some things that I am sure I haven’t worn in at least a year.

18. Purge 3 pairs of shoes. This one will be harder than the clothing thing, I predict.

19. Go to the gym 37 times. We get a discount if we go 12 times in a month and I’ve never made it. C’mon self.

20. Try 7 new dinner recipes. I’ve been in a bit of a cooking rut and I’d like to find a few new staple recipes.

21. Have 3 dates with Mr. Monkey. Even if they are just quick ones, I need to see more of his face without kids in between us.

22. Take 3 days off of work to work on the dissertation.

23. Submit at least 3 columns for my new gig at Inside Higher Ed.com

24. Spend 37 hours relaxing in my new hammock. Damn I love my hammock.

25. Make $37 on eBay or through my neighborhood garage sale site by selling stuff we don’t need/use. Use $37 to start savings accounts for the kids.

26. Make a “summer fun” to-do list to better explore our new city.

27. Take Miles to a professional ballgame.

28. Plan one-on-one time with Ev for at least 3 times.

29. Coordinate a gift exchange with some of my neighborhood friends.

30. Go hiking

31. Help Miles learn to ride without training wheels

32. Learn to sew a simple dress for Evelyn.

33. Get over my fear of plaster walls and get three pictures hung in the house.

34. Sign up for a triathlon

35. Complete the Point to LaPointe race.

36. Dye my hair a different color, just to see.

Tick tock….

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