28 Things to Do This Year Check-In

Tuesday was my half-birthday. I’m halfway to 29…and that feels really weird. It kinda feels like that scene from Newlyweds when Jessica Simpson says, “I’m 23, that’s almost 25, which is almost mid-twenties.” I’m almost 30. Whoa.

On my birthday, I wrote 28 things I wanted to do during my 28th year. And since it’s my half-birthday, I thought it would be fun to check in with how I’m doing with my goals for the year. Plus, it will be really good to see where I need to focus the next 6 months!


  1. Keep learning German. Doing fairly well with this one. I still have my lessons twice a week and do my homework, but I can definitely pick up the pace.
  2. Travel. I can say that we have doing a great deal of traveling. Since my birthday we have been to Venice, London, France, Munich and Switzerland! And we have plans to go to Amsterdam, Dublin and Vienna before my birthday. I should have made this number one.
  3. Blog. Well, you’re reading this, so I think I’m doing okay here.
  4. Spend time outside. I’m surprised by how much time I’ve been spending outside during the cold weather. I hope it continues.
  5. Explore German bier gardens. We went to the original Haufbrauhaus in Munich, so yup!
  6. Run another half marathon. Um, failure. Maybe on my birthday.
  7. Finally write my darn book. Definitely another goal for the next six months. I haven’t spent much time (read any) time writing my book, so I think I know what I’ll be doing for the next few months. Thank goodness winter is dark and I want to be on the couch.
  8. Play a lot of tennis. Decent amount of tennis has been played, but once spring hits, I hope to get back into it.
  9. Read Anne Frank’s Diary. Reading it now!!
  10.  Make a recipe from Julia Child. Oooh, this sounds like the perfect thing to do over the holidays.
  11. Take an online writing course. Something else to do during the cold winter months.
  12. Decide if I want to go get my MBA. Still not sure, but I’m leaning towards no.
  13. Watch TV less. Failure.
  14. Learn to edit photos. Yes! I bought Adobe Elements, the poor man’s version of Photoshop, and have been edited a bunch of pictures lately. It’s exciting that something can be checked off the list!
  15. Finally organize all of the paper sitting around. Some days are better than others.
  16. Get Google Analytics certified. I honestly forgot about this one. It’s still a good thing that I should do.
  17. Try my hand at having a green thumb. Probably a bad idea to put on the list during winter, so maybe spring.
  18. Purge my closet. Slowly but surely. I’ve gotten rid of some pants, shoes and coats. Hooray.
  19. Put myself out there. I am happy to say that we have found a nice group of friends recently. It’s certainly bonding to have people going through the same thing you are to talk to. I hope to have more things like Friendsgiving with them!
  20. More date nights. With all the visitors we’ve been having, it’s been hard to have time to ourselves. I’m excited to incorporate more date nights into our routine.
  21. Take a really nice picture of Copley. Check. See above
  22. Make a 2016 “yearbook.” Still to do.
  23. Learn to make tiramisu. Check. See the recipe I used here.
  24. Go to a concert. We are going to a Dave Matthews concert in Vienna in April. No, it’s not my first choice, but it counts.
  25. Take a class at the gym. Check. I’ve taken several Bodypump classes at the gym and like it, I wish it wasn’t on Wednesday nights, though.
  26. Wine tasting. Our trip to Switzerland included a wine tasting, but I would like to go to a vineyard. There’s still time!
  27. Do some future planning. All.Day.
  28. And last but not least, just have fun! I can honestly say that I have been having the most fun ever. I am loving life and anticipate loving it even more in the next months. The best is yet to come.

What do you want to accomplish in the next six months?

November Goals

In lieu of the craziness that is happening in America right now, I thought I’d focus on something positive today: goals. Monthly goals are always fun to write and help me focus. Even if I don’t accomplish everything, I still want to continue to move forward.

My October goals were ambitious, especially since we had a lot of traveling on our to-do list.

Read Two Books. Nope, not even close. I didn’t finish one book. I’m embarrassed.

Work Out 5 – 6 Days a Week. Sorta. I will say that I have been very good about my workouts lately. I have been doing a lot of intervals and a lot of weights, mostly high intensity interval training. I don’t think I technically worked out 5 days a week every week, but I did many times. Win!

Purge my Closet. Check. I finally donated a lot of items that were in my closet. A lot of things were just too big or something that I didn’t even like. I would put on a sweater and look at myself in the mirror a few hours lately and just think, “Why do I own this? This is so ugly and unflattering.” Into the pile it went. The best news is now I can go shopping.

Try at least 1 New Recipe. Win. I made a healthier version of chicken fried rice and it is so good!

And now, onto goals for November!

goals november

Write 35,000 words for my book. I’ve wanted to write a book for as long as I can remember. I (clearly) love to write and I feel like I have a story to tell. I’ve started writing it several times but haven’t gotten very far. This month is the month to get a chunk done.

Decorate for the holidays. Admittedly, I’ve already started doing this. With no Thanksgiving, I feel like there’s nothing holding me back. The Christmas markets are amazing here, so I feel like some new decor is in my future.

Try a new restaurant. We love going out to eat and have found some really great restaurants in our area. But now that we’ve found some great ones, we keep going back. It’s not a bad thing, but I want to branch out and try something new this month.

Get to 30 burpees in one sitting. I love/hate burpess. They are intense, but effective. They get your heart rate up and are super toning. I want to do 30 in a row, no breaks.

What are your November goals? 

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June Goals Update

Wow, it’s already the end of July. I can’t even believe it. July has gone way too quickly and it’s gotten away from me.

I’m a very goal-oriented person and in June I wrote all my goals for the month. And now that over a month has passed, I thought I’d share how how I did.

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Read More – a big fat failure

I have a new book to read, Girls, and I am really enjoying it. The kicker is that I haven’t take the time to sit down and read. I didn’t make it a priority to read before going to bed for most of the month. But, we are going on vacation soon and I know I’ll do a lot of reading on the plane. I hope to continue to make reading a goal and to keep making it part of my routine.

Write More – success! 

I am happy to report that I wrote quite a bit in June. I’ve fallen a little behind, but I am happy with where I am and with the progress I have made. It really is therapeutic for me to write and I’m only getting more and more comfortable with it…in my humble opinion.

Understand Our Cash Flow – fail. 

I’m just going to add this to the list to keep trying to understand. When we went to Maine, we spent like we were on vacation…and we were. It’s hard to get a true understanding of your spending when you go on vacation. We’ve only had “real” expenses for about 3 months, so it was probably a little aggressive for me to have this as a goal. But, it is still a goal of mine to understand and be better about our money. Everyone’s situation is different and I want to make sure our situation is the best it can be.

Start Tennis Lessons – a huge success!! 

I’ve written about my love of my tennis lessons already and I am so proud of myself for finally doing this. I am loving my weekly lessons and then when Vinn and I play together on the weekends. I’m no Serena, but I am absolutely better and really happy with my progress.

Plan Our Next Vacation – check, check, check…sorta.

We actually have quite a few vacations on our agenda. Technically, we planned this in July, but I’m still happy that it’s done. We have some great adventures on the horizon.

All in all, June was a great month and July has been even better. I don’t have true goals for July, especially since it’s almost over, but I am content with how I’m moving forward and continuing to grow as a person.

Do you set monthly goals? 

28 Things To Do This Year

Happy Monday! Today is my 28th birthday. Wow, that year went fast. So much has changed in the past year: moved to another continent, quit my job, and visited a bunch of new places certainly top the list. Below is one of my favorite pictures from our Salzburg trip.


For my birthday, I thought I’d share 28 things I want to do in this next year of life. The closer I get to 30, the more I want to check off my bucket list, especially now that we live so close to a lot of the places where I want to visit. Here’s to making 28 the best year yet.

  1. Keep learning German. I want to make more of an effort to learn German this year. I have been decent at studying German once a day, but I  could definitely step it up a notch. We are living here, so I should speak the language.
  2. Travel. This is a huge one and could probably take up half of the things I want to do this year. Here’s my bucket list.
  3. Blog. I love writing every day for this blog as a way to share my thoughts, feelings, travels and random musings. I want to take this year to learn more about the behind the scenes of blogging and maybe doing a redesign or something.
  4. Spend time outside. I’m currently writing this on our balcony with the sun shining and listening to country music and Copley laying next to me. I love summer and the sunshine and want to be outside as much as possible.
  5. Explore German bier gardens. Because when in Rome, right?
  6. Run another half marathon. I love having a fitness goal. And it’d be really fun to run a half marathon in Europe. I should probably start training now!
  7. Finally write my darn book. I’ve been wanting to write a book pretty much since I was in high school. Now’s probably the time to start doing that.
  8. Play a lot of tennis. I’ve written about my want to learn tennis already, but it definitely deserves it’s spot on the list because it’s a large goal/priority for me.
  9. Read Anne Frank’s Diary. I have attempted to read this book since I was in middle school, I think. I always stop reading at the same part. Maybe this year can finally be the year I read the whole thing, especially if we do make it to Amsterdam this winter.
  10.  Make a recipe from Julia Child. I consider myself a decent cook, but I’m certainly not a trained chef. I would really like to step up my cooking skills. I find myself making a rotation or variation of the same kind of food. I think something from this website, like the roast chicken.
  11. Take an online writing course. Writing is certainly leaving it’s mark on this list. As I mentioned, I have a lot of ideas for a book but I’m not sure how to go about the writing process. I know there are online writing courses and I’d love to take one this year.
  12. Decide if I want to go get my MBA. No explanation. I just need to decide.
  13. Watch TV less. Yes, that’s right. I want to watch less tv. There are definitely more productive uses of my time. I can’t give up tv, especially the Housewives, but it’s probably good for my overall well being to cut back.
  14. Learn to edit photos. I really don’t know how to edit anything except grammar and I’d really like to be able to. I used Photoshop during a class in college and I just could not figure it out. I could envision what I wanted the end product to look like, I just couldn’t get it there. It will also help elevate the blog’s photos. Maybe I’ll take a class on Skillshare.
  15. Finally organize all of the paper sitting around. Yes, boring, but necessary. We just have piles of paperwork next to the desk and it needs to be organized. Like finally put into a labeled file and in the filing cabinet. It’s just annoying to do and I keep putting it off. If I write it, I’ll do it!
  16. Get Google Analytics certified. Another thing that’s been on my to-do list for far too long. I started taking the online classes in my last job and just couldn’t finish. It will be great for my resume and help with the blog.
  17. Try my hand at having a green thumb. I can barely keep our basil plant alive, but I would love to get more plants for our balcony to add some life to the space and hopefully some more privacy.
  18. Purge my closet. I did a lot of purging before our move, but I definitely have things in my closet that are way too old…like a shirt from high school (!) and I don’t need anymore. It’ll make more space for new things. Win/win.
  19. Put myself out there. Specifically to make new friends. Being in a new place is hard and not having any friends is hard.
  20. More date nights. Vinn and I love our date nights and make them a priority. We love going out to dinner the most, I think. This year, I want to go on more date nights (because there are never enough) and doing some new things together around our new area.
  21. Take a really nice picture of Copley. I have SO MANY pictures of Copley. It is borderline ridiculous. But, I don’t have a really nice, semi-professional picture of her. I’d love to take one with my nice camera
  22. Make a 2016 “yearbook.” I had this idea to make a book every year with all the photos from that year. I made a book of our honeymoon and my last family trip to Europe and I love looking at all the pictures at once. I think this will be a fun tradition to start. Maybe I’ll even go back to 2013 – 2015 so we have one since we’ve been married. That’s pretty ambitious.
  23. Learn to make tiramisu. I love tiramisu. Actually love is probably an understatement. Obsessed is probably the word. I’d love to learn to make it at home and make it my go-to homemade dessert.
  24. Go to a concert. Small, but true. Vinn and I love live music, but I haven’t been to a concert since the life-changing Sir Paul McCartney.
  25. Take a class at the gym. Similar to putting myself out there, but this is something I want to do.
  26. Wine tasting. I love, love, love wine. Just like with travel, I’d love to go to as many wine tastings as possible in the next year. Yes, please!
  27. Do some future planning. In the next year, we’ll need to really start thinking about our transition back to the US. Wow. We need to figure out where we want to live, if we’ll buy a house, how to save even more for a house, when to have kids. Man, I guess there are a lot of changes coming my way!
  28. And last but not least, just have fun! The last five months have been a roller coaster of emotions. And the biggest lesson is to have fun in any and all situations. To find the humor in even the trickiest circumstances and that life is too short, it’s time to live it!

I think 28 is going to a great year!

*Check out the 27 things you don’t know about me from last year.

June Goals

How is it June? We’re halfway through 2016. Time is just passing way too quickly. Isn’t that what everyone says as they get older? Well, I’m officially in the group that says life goes in a minute.

I’m a goal oriented person by nature and want to start putting monthly goals together so that I can accomplish things I’ve always wanted to do so I can continue to grow and learn. I shared some goals before, but this time, I’m breaking them down into months to make them more manageable.

June is the perfect month to start because this is my birthday month. I’m turning another year older…28…a year closer to 30 and closer to really needing to make sure my shit is together. So, here we go, June Goals 2016! And what says goals like a cute picture of Copley laying in her puppy bed.


Read More

I’ve been doing well with this so far in 2016, and I want to continue. I want to read 3 books this month. I’m currently reading Shonda Rhimes book, Year of Yes, and it is really interesting. I’m thinking of reading The Nest afterwards and after that I’m not sure.

Write More

Writing is therapeutic for me. Hello, that’s why I started a blog. I’ve had ideas floating around for some books for quite some time, so this month I’m going to tackle some chapters. I’m contemplating taking an online creative writing class, too. I need to research that more.

Understand Our Cash Flow

We’ve been spending a lot of money recently on larger ticket items, like our couch, outdoor furniture and a nice dress for an upcoming wedding. I am not the most financially savvy person and even less so now that I’m married to a finance major. I want to have an understand of how much and when I’m spending money. It’s just smart. #adulting

Start Tennis Lessons 

I took tennis lessons one summer when I was probably 10 or 11. I didn’t love it. I loved playing softball and volleyball and being part of a team. I really enjoy watching tennis and Vinn is an amazing tennis player. We’ve “played” together a few times and I get frustrated because I don’t have great form and we can’t really volley back and forth.  I have enough hand/eye coordination to get the ball over the net, but I don’t have control over where it goes. I now really want to learn how to officially play tennis! I want to get good enough so Vinn and I can really play against each other and one day be on a doubles team. Pipe dreams!

Plan Our Next Vacation

Enough said.

I can just feel that June is going to be a great month! What are your goals this month?