Today's my birthday. And not just any ol' bday, it's a game changer milestone. I'm 30. Leading up to today, I've gotten a lot "oh honey please" or "just wait until you're _______." But it's not that I feel "old" and it's not about the slow introduction of crow's feet (though I swear I saw some new ones just last night) it's that 30 is downright scary.
People in their 20's are the perfect combination of youth and access. In your 20's, you're of legal age for all the (legal) vices and hell, you can even rent a car. But when it comes down to it, people still give you a pass for inexperience, ignorance, playfulness, inappropriateness, and even poor fashion choices. Twenty-somethings are children dressed in adult clothing and it's a widely accepted growing pain of the decade when you're still "figuring it out." Then enter 30.
From career to domestic life, finances, long term goals... you should probably have that together. Twenties are for figuring out who you are and where you fit, thirties are for, well, fitting and doing. That's the scary part--fitting where I've nestled myself personally and professionally.
I read somewhere that studies show we (meaning we humans) have a persistent optimism on the subject of our lives. We routinely think our lives in the future will be better than they are, even when history has predicted otherwise. I am toooootally guilty of this bizarre human behavior. Which brings me to.... drum roll... THE LIST. That 30 before 30 thing that I (*ahem* regrettably) created last year. Well, it's only fair to see how I stacked up... Spoiler alert: I didn't reupholster my chair ;)
1. Take a floral design class. While I didn't take a floral design class, I actually did a lot of arranging over the past year. I've added to my mental library of flowers and created some pretty special pieces in the last 12 months.
2. Plant, maintain and eat from my own garden. I'm not the best gardener and while I've gotten into it more, I'd just rather plant flowers and enjoy their beauty if there's a chance they won't live longer than a couple weeks. When my gardening improves, I'll get to tomatoes.
3. Run a 12k. On "3" let's all burst into laughter. Ready? 1, 2, 3...
4. Go to Europe with Daniel. This didn't happen...yet. But listen here 29 year old me, you were/are building a business which takes time, money, and a huge amount of energy. Unfortunately, galavanting around Europe depletes the same resources. Tentative plans in motion for 2016.
5. Open an IRA. Yay adulthood! Completed.
6. Contribute regularly to said IRA. If I could just delete that "regularly," I'd have another satisfied task under my belt.
7. Attend a wedding/event industry convention. Done and done! Thanks to Angel Swanson and her Love and Splendor Workshop. I wouldn't call it a "convention," (it was better and more personal) but the core of this goal was continuing education and that was certainly satisfied.
8. Start something really big. This was in reference to a dream I've had for several years of turning my grandparents' beautiful home and land into a wedding venue. While this didn't happen (or hasn't yet...?) I'm not disappointed because I really gave it everything I had. I was creative, smart, and professional in my attempts. Sometimes, it's just about letting it go. I haven't entirely given up, but have peacefully tabled this for now.
9. Buy a house. We're just not there yet. And you know what "expectations of a 30 year old?" I'm ok with it and you should be too.
10. Create new branding for Vanessa Noel Events. Wooohoooo! Done and done and don't you think Rebecca did the most gorgeous job with that floral logo??
11. Make really awesome homemade ice cream that isn't vanilla or chocolate. I'd like to request an extension! Give me until August and I promise I'll complete, eat, and report.
12. Clean out my storage unit. Ooooooh ya. It wasn't pretty, but I did it. Now... how to organize and store every. single. item. from our wedding...
13. Learn not to pout so much when something upsets me. Funny you should bring this up, former me. I've recently talked about and put into practice "speaking my truth." For me, the pouting when I didn't get what I wanted or when I was disappointed really comes from self-imposed martyrdom or from having unrealistic expectations that people would read my mind and know that what I'm really needing or wanting is not what I've expressed. Stupid. I know. I've been working on this and thus, curbed my pouting. If I know something will upset me, I don't just let it happen. I'm learning to speak my truth and be honest about my feelings and intentions.
14. Become a decent tennis player. I'd like to make an exchange--returning the tennis and taking a racquetball instead! My dad and I used to play racquetball every Sunday when I was in high school. When I left for college, that routine stopped, but we're back and it's awesome. It's the best combination of exercise and father daughter time... though I know he uses topics like The Bachelor to try to take my breaks between play. I'm on to you.
15. Visit my grandma once a week. And just like that I have tears in my eyes. While I'm going to forgive myself for not checking off all of these goals because sometimes "life gets in the way," this is a perfect counter to that argument. Don't let life get in the way because sometimes, there isn't much life left. My sweet sweet grandma went to be with Jesus in September. No, I didn't visit her weekly before that, but I did spend really good time with her in her last days and for that, I am eternally grateful. As a tribute to her, my mom and I created a sprawling casket spray, and set up displays of my grandmother's beautiful art at her service. We cried a lot together, but had a really great time. There was a lot of that painful happiness; so much smiling through tears and relishing in the precious family I'm blessed with.
16. Buy and learn to use Photoshop. Maybe eventually, but for now, I'd rather keep that $$$ in my pocket and just use good ol' powerpoint... oh ya, you'd be impressed.
7. Reupholster my lovable, but haggard office chair. Planning to do this in April with some old fabric that belonged to my grandmother!
18. Decorate a fancy, homemade fondant cake. I'm thinking that might be part of my weekend plan
9. Go paddle boarding. Another exchange. Keep the paddle boarding; I'll take kayaking in Kailua instead
20. Get back into "those" jeans. Pffffffffffff
21. Go on a hot air balloon ride. I mean... I honestly thought I'd do all of this in ONE YEAR??
22. Go on a vacation with my mom. My poor mom. She's my wedding slave. Seriously. She assists me on weddings and works so damn hard for me. Unfortunately, that means that the majority of the time we're going somewhere together, it's for a wedding--working! But, the good news is that we always have a fabulous time. <3
23. Play in a softball game worthy of a Band of Horses music video. You have to have a large group of friends who are all free on the same night... again, last year me, this is unrealistic.
24. Become a yogi again. Not happy with myself for not achieving this one, but as my previous yoga instructors would say, "you must forgive yourself for infractions and mistakes if you want to achieve a better version of you."
25. Book and complete 15 weddings between now and then. Pretty proud of this one. 2014 was a year of fantastic growth and 2015 is shaping up to be the kind of busy that makes the inside of my brain look like something out of Willy Wonka. Thank you for all the support!
26. Have great "about me/headshots" taken. Emily and I have been talking about this and it's on the to-do list! I've been putting it off... see #20...
27. Have personalized stationary and write sweet notes with it. Not yet, but I have been sending more little notes.
28. Sing more karaoke. In Hawaii as a matter of fact...
29. Develop more industry contacts. There have been quite a few events throughout the year that have helped with this, and our Indigo House Launch Party was one. I'm so grateful for the network of wonderful colleagues I have and love adding to it by meeting new people. The wedding industry really does have the coolest people.
30. Go camping with Daniel. This is a definite plan in 2015!
So I didn't check everything off the list... not even close. But I did add to my list of wedding blog features, become a party of a studio of talented women, watch my best friend graduate from nursing school, go on a mini vacay with my handsome husband, get my hands dirty with calligraphy ink, fabric dye, and spray paint, book some "game changer" weddings, have my first multi-cultural wedding, go on an impromptu girls trip in the desert, have some great morning coffee chats with Uncle Jimmy, celebrate my own wedding featured on Style Me Pretty, watch one of my best friends walk down the aisle, squeal with excitement when 2 more dear friends got engaged, and spend great quality time with my nieces.
Looking back at this list, I definitely feel a little bummed, but mostly because I'm competitive and I want to complete what I said I would. But plans change. Priorities change. My focus is on living intentionally and mindfully; not checking things off a list that I once thought were important. I still want to do all the items above, but my true goal is to not allow day to day tasks to become so overwhelming that they cloud my priorities. There's a zombie-like way we move through our days when life becomes overwhelming or too "task-mastery." Mindfulness is what I want to achieve. I want to be mindful of the way my actions effect others, of how my decisions impact my goals, and how the sound and feeling of my own breathe entering and exiting my lungs can be enough for a mini-vacation.
I'm off to have a wonderful day with some truly special people. Thanks for reading my rant xoxo