I don’t know about you, but I’m not very good at using my free time wisely lately. Small bits of time here and there just don’t work for me when it comes to productivity (I think I may need to read this book everyone seems to be talking about lately to help me with this hang-up!). I like to know I have at least a few uninterrupted hours to work on a project before I can actually convince myself to dive in and get it done! So while some people who participate in the 30 Days of Lists challenges like to wait until each list prompt is shared one day at a time in order to remain surprised, I log in right away and go for the spoilers! Each time I’ve joined this challenge so far, I’ve reviewed the list of prompts right away to give myself plenty of time throughout the month to think of my responses to some of the prompts that might be more challenging for me, and I work on a week or two worth of prompts all at one time to ensure I don’t start to fall behind and give up halfway through the challenge. And while I still share the prompts one day at a time on social media (just because I like spoilers doesn’t mean everyone else wants them!), a blog post every day about this challenge would get a bit overwhelming (for me to write AND for you to read!). So I will be sharing my progress in larger round-ups here! Want to go back to the beginning and see how I prepared for this challenge? I shared my preparations in this post.
Here are days 1-10!
Day 1: Why I make lists
I always have multiple lists going. Grocery lists, to-do lists, wish lists, lists of ideas… I love lists! Lists ABOUT lists? Count me in!
I make lists:
- To help me stay organized
- To check off items to track progress
- To keep track of good ideas
- To document who I am and what I love at this point in my life and preserve it for the future.
Day 2: Resolutions that never stood a chance
Somewhere around my mid-20s I finally learned enough about myself to know that New Year’s resolutions don’t really stand a chance at all when I make a million of them and then give up the second I miss a day with one of them. Still, each year I find myself trying to make a resolution or two that seem reasonable at the time, and I still typically find myself faltering after a few weeks. Last year, I resolved to take one photo every day for the entirety of 2014, and I believe it was the first time in my life I successfully followed a resolution without fail for a full year.
In 2015, the resolutions I made that tanked quickly were:
- Stretching for ten minutes every day (I’m pretty sure I didn’t even do this once!)
- Only going out/ordering in for dinner once a month (though we are trying to get back on board with that one!)
- Drinking 8 glasses of water per day (I’m successfully handling around 2-3 per day which, sadly enough, is still progress!)
- Scheduling or posting 4 tweets per day (Oh twitter, I run so hot and cold with you still…)
Day 3: My jams
I love music, and any time there’s a prompt about favorite songs, musicians, etc., I have a hard time reining in my list to a reasonable length.
Here are a few current and timeless favorites of mine:
Day 4: Favorite online communities I am a part of
As an introvert who hates overstimulating environments with large crowds of people but still wants to actually interact with other humans, online communities are my favorite. In fact, some of my closest in-real-life friends started out as casual online acquaintances back in the days where fan fiction and discussion boards were super popular.
While I no longer write or read fan fiction, and Facebook groups have mostly replaced discussion boards in popularity, I still have a few regular online hang-outs:
- The 30 Days of Lists challenge community, obviously! (There’s still time to sign up! You can catch up on the first few days at your leisure!)
- The Awesome Ladies Project (I was just invited to join the Creative Team, and wow, are my fellow team members ever “awesome”!)
- Habit (a small private group of folks encouraging each other to make progress on new habits)
- The NovelTea Book Club (fellow introvert? Join us this month to read this book about introversion! There are some great conversations happening already!)
- The Pocket Your Year workshop
- Scrapaneers’ Champions learning club
- The One Little Word community
Day 5: Cures for the winter blues
Growing up in Michigan, you would think by now I would have grown accustomed to winter and learned some coping mechanisms. But every year it’s the same. The temperatures drop, the daylight fades earlier and earlier in the day, and I go back to wishing I could just hibernate until spring. Alas, since winter is still a thing here in D.C., and since all of our friends and family still reside in Michigan, I will likely never escape!
A few things that make it more tolerable:
- Warm fuzzy blankets
- Doctor Who slippers
- Hot cocoa with marshmallows
- Beef Stroganoff
- Bubble baths
Day 6: Books I’d like to read for my book club
I mentioned the NovelTea book club above in day 4, and I’d encourage you to check it out and join us in the facebook group if you’re looking for a low-key way to talk about books with others without having to worry about whose turn it is to bring the baked goods! Kristin of My Life as a Teacup is a fantastic host (who sometimes lets other awesome folks like Amy from Lemon & Raspberry take over for a month) and each month’s book is chosen by popular vote from a pre-selected list created by the host. So far, we’ve read everything from young adult fiction like this book to nonfiction, like this month’s current read.
Here are a few books I’ve been meaning to check out that I wouldn’t mind reading along with others in the book club:
Day 7: Inside Jokes
What a tough prompt to complete! While I know with certainty that dozens of inside jokes exist between me and my husband, family, and friends, when it came time to write them down, I either couldn’t think of any, or couldn’t figure out how to put the ones I could remember into words!
While this list will mean pretty much nothing to you unless you’re the one on the other end of the joke, a few that made the list are:
- “You had one job!” with my boss (don’t worry, we jokingly say this about ourselves, not about each other!)
- Randomly saying things in Simlish with Jeff (if you play The Sims, this one might make some sense to you!)
- “Dry teeth” photos with college roomies
- “That was sooo 2 coffees ago” with Ann (although neither of us can remember anymore how this one started!)
- Offering my mom pretzels when she’s had a drink
Day 8: Favorite trends making a comeback
While I’m sure I follow just as many trends as the next person, and don’t claim to be the hipster-type who’s too cool for [insert trend here], I’m not one to consciously seek out the latest trends, and often don’t care for many of them, especially when it comes to fashion and beauty trends. But I can get on board with a few crafty trends!
Some favorites that are making a reappearance:
- Vellum in papercrafting
- Gold instead of silver (but only for some things)
- Polaroid-style photos
Day 9: Advice to my younger self
I tend to think I turned out all right as an adult, but there are still a few pieces of wisdom I’d pass along to my past self if I could.
I’d like to tell my younger self:
- “You’re never going to get taller, so get used to it!”
- “Keep practicing the piano, or you’ll forget everything you learned!”
- “Enjoy your time in choir because someday it will end and you’ll find yourself watching Pitch Perfect and wishing it was a real group!”
Day 10: Favorite hashtags
For many people, hashtags evoke a really passionate response. Some love (and totally overuse!) them, while others despise them and refuse to use any even though they have some great uses! I think I fall somewhere in between. I like to use them for their intended purpose of helping to make searching for topics easier, and occasionally throw one in just to be sarcastic.
A few that I use on a semi-regular basis:
- #HatTricksAtHome (which, now that I think of it, should also have probably been listed on the Inside Jokes prompt!)
- #LGRW (“Let’s Go, Red Wings!”)
I printed out each of the images above in a 3×3″ size and housed them in this style of pocket pages (10 per page plus a couple filler cards/photos) in my 2015 Project Life album between February and March’s pages.
Check out days 11-20 here, days 21-30 here, and see the printed lists inside my Project Life album here!