30 Goals Before 30 Years Old

I recently read a post about a woman who recently turned 30 years old and was very enthusiastic about the new decade in her life. She wrote a post about 40 things she wanted to accomplish in 10 years before her 40th birthday.

Since we have moved, I have been wanting to try new things and discover more about myself and this has been a bit overwhelming. So when I saw her list I was pretty excited myself! I have 6 more years until I am 30 and figured that setting some goals could help me to be on track for this new stage of life and self-discovery. Putting things into writing helps keep me accountable and on track for goals, so here we are.

Here are my 30 before 30.

30 Before 30

  1. Go snorkeling.
  2. Visit Hawaii.
  3. Learn to surf.
  4. Make the perfect vegan mac & cheese.
  5. Go to Alaska.
  6. Go snowshoeing.
  7. Buy hiking boots.
  8. Find an organization and become a regular volunteer.
  9. Hike the Wonderland Trail in Mt. Rainier National Park.
  10. See a West Coast sunset.
  11. Host a cute, classy, Galentine’s brunch.
  12. Roast a whole turkey on Thanksgiving.
  13. Visit Thailand.
  14.  Go to Canlis in Seattle. (Fine dining)
  15. Get a tattoo from Tenderfoot Studio in Portland.
  16. Buy a house.
  17.  Find time to regularly have “creative time” for painting and writing. (once a week or every two weeks)
  18. Sell one painting.
  19. Go to PAX in cosplay.
  20. Find a job I enjoy.
  21. Renew my passport
  22. Go on a cruise.
  23. Go to Europe.
  24. Retake couples pictures.
  25. Dye my hair ombre/baylage.
  26. Hike up a mountain.
  27. Visit Portland.
  28. Write a creative short-story.
  29. Host a Friends-giving.
  30. Start composting regularly.

I may not blog about every single thing, but I will try to break down the goals by time. I have 3 more months in this year (2017) and there are some things I know I can finish by New Years.

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2017 Goals

  • See a West Coast sunset (#10)
  • Hike up a mountain (#26)
  • Make perfect vegan mac & cheese (#4)
  • Visit Portland (#27)

 

What do you think? Do you have goals for this decade? What about this year?

Much love. Much grace.

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To the Girl Who Feels Empty

I have been an empty person in the past.

I know that I can be an optimistic person, full of love and joy and seeking friendship… but it isn’t always like that. There have been times when life was hard. So hard. There were days that turned to weeks that turned to months that at one point even turned into a couple years where I felt numb to the core. Not because I desired to be that way, but because… well, I don’t really know why. I just know that at times there is such deep darkness that it feels impossible to imagine the light, let alone see it.

I keep journals, I always have. My journals are raw and embarrassing, and I don’t really like to share them with anyone.

So it’s hard for me to share this.

Sometimes sharing our past pains can help others, and even ourselves.

“I feel numb.

I can’t feel happiness or even sadness.

There’s nothing there. Not a care about anything. I’m just numb and empty.

I want help, but I don’t at the same time. I have gotten used to the loneliness that it somehow feels more like a friend than friends do.

Searching for things to fill the empty space in my chest… in my life. It’s just such a deep emptiness… can he fill it? Can this job? Can anything?

Praying to the empty sky for the numbness to ease into feeling, but to no avail.

Will I forever be empty and numb?”

Those words, those heartbreaking and somewhat tragic words are my own. At a time in my life when I was feeling so dark and alone, and I couldn’t seem to grasp onto anything. All the things I had or wanted were slipping by. For a while I tried to catch them all, but then I became used to the weird numbness that I felt.

I am sharing this with you today to let you know that I am a believer in Christ and I have suffered with emptiness. I have struggled with things you can’t imagine. Darkness and sadness and panic and fear and anger and so many things.

Life is not easy, and if anyone tells you that, they are lying.

But.

There is hope.

Even in the dark times when I couldn’t imagine love or light or even an emotion… There was hope for me. Even if I couldn’t feel that hope it was so there. I clung hard to that tiny, barely a sliver of hope. I clung so hard just waiting to make it to the end of the emptiness. Praying and waiting and hoping and clinging with every part of my being.

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Eventually the feeling did come back. Such a force of emotion I had not felt in so long washed over me and I felt compassion and love and joy and sadness. It took a couple of years, but it came.

And there it was.

The light. The hope shining brighter than ever. The grace and mercy I had longed for was there as it always had been in Jesus Christ.

We don’t always feel His love, but it is there in a major way.

It is there for you too. You who struggle with depression or whatever your darkness is now. That tiny speck of light that you try to see and cling to is there. Even if you don’t see it yet.

Life may get worse before it gets better, but there are bright days ahead; even if it doesn’t feel like there will be. I know this for a fact.

Much love. Much grace.

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The Year of 24

I had so many goals for when I turned 23 last year.

It is a tradition for me to make fun little goals for myself each year on my birthday to try new things or do more of what I enjoy. This year, I accomplished some but not all my goals could be scratched off the list.

This year I want to set different types of goals.

I want to set more meaningful goals.

I am continually growing in my goal setting because not only would I like to actually accomplish goals, but I also want these goals to bring me closer to a larger goal. Whether the goal is to be healthier, gain traction in my career, or find a way for my dreams to take shape, all of these larger goals need smaller more reachable goals. So this year I am setting realistic “themed” goals for myself.

Professional

  • Become more creative in my teaching.
  • Be more knowledgable in my content area.

Personal

  • Let go of anger.
  • Try not to expect perfection.
  • Be the hands and feet of Christ.

Physical

  • Take my vitamins when I need to (like an ADULT)
  • Drink more water (like an ADULT)

 

I am excited for what this year will bring for me and for my family. We have some exciting adventures ahead and I can’t wait to see how they all turn out!

Bring it on 24!

Much love. Much grace.

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New Year, New Goals

Happy New Year, everyone!

I hope your holidays were full of fun, love, and peace these past couple of months. I have been quite busy myself with work and the holidays, but it is nice to take a moment just to sit and think.

Like many other people, the year of 2016 has been a pretty crazy one for me. I had a stressful time with school, I struggled with food, and I was overcoming some insecurities. To top it off, this year was pretty crazy with the national election and not really knowing how to process many of the things done and said by people close to me.

However, there have been many good things that have happened this year. I graduated college with my Bachelor’s of Science, Mr. Yell and I have started new camping adventures and rescued a cat, and I started a new job which I love. Personally, I have overcome many fears and issues that developed in my heart and mind, and overcoming those alone are enough for me to celebrate this year.

With all that being said, I have been trying to think of a new “Word of the Year” for 2017. If you have been following me for a little while, you know that last year my word was “Kind”. I wanted desperately to work on being kind to myself and to others. I believe that over the course of the year I was stretched in this area in many ways and that having the simple mantra of “kindness” helped me to remember my goal for the year.

This year there are so many things I want to accomplish. I want to love more, learn valuable skills at my job, be warm and encouraging, and I want to be content with life. After thinking about the things I hope to accomplish in 2017, the word “Peace” has been laid on my heart.

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I need to find peace in the busy moments.

I need to seek peace in times of anger or sadness.

I need to have peace with what I am doing and how I am able to do it at a point in time.

Peace is what I need to seek.

After about a week of praying and thinking, I am learning that this type of peace comes from wisdom. A righteous, pure, wisdom is what brings true peace.

James 3:13-18

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth.15 Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.

17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving,considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.

I hope you will join me this year as I yearn to remember peace in my life and peace in my relationships with others. I hope that I can live by the wisdom the Lord gives. I pray that the simple word of “peace” will bring to mind what wisdom looks like for this upcoming year.

Bring it on 2017, I am ready for ya.

Much love. Much grace.

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Married Christmas

I am loving this Christmas season! I mean I do every year, so that isn’t much of a surprise. I just really love the holidays. I love the decorations, the food, and all the joy. Around Thanksgiving and Christmas, I feel like the joy is just contagious and people can’t help but to feel a bit of happiness.

This Christmas marks Mr. Yell and I’s second holiday season as a family and it has already been such fun! Yes; the holidays are always stressful trying to figure out whose house to go to and what times we need to see everyone; but this year has still been wonderful. This year we decided to dive into the Christmas spirit by making some new Yell family traditions. Making these traditions has been one of my favorite parts of being a “newlywed”. By making these fun little things to do each year, we feel like we are becoming more like our own little family and it literally makes me giggle with excitement!

It’s been an interesting process trying to find things we want to carry over from our own families into our new one. My family has several traditions that I have enjoyed putting into Mr. Yell and mine’s holidays; and Zach has some new ones he has invented for us to do.

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Decorating for Christmas

Mr. Yell and I started decorating the Saturday right after Thanksgiving. We put up Christmas lights, decorated our (live!) Christmas tree, and decorated the kitchen with cute little towels and other little Christmas things. It has been such fun getting to decorate together in our new home and it looks so cozy now! We even managed to get Mru, our cat, a little stocking for Christmas this year. Too cute, right? 😉

12 Dates of Christmas

This year we each created 6 different dates and put them into envelopes. Each day that we open an envelope, we get a surprise date that is Christmas themed. It has been such fun so far! Some of our dates have included: driving to see Christmas lights, getting hot chocolate from Starbucks, and …

Christmas Party

For the past couple of years Mr. Yell and I have hosted a small Christmas party in our home. It is a fun time of sharing Christmas cheer and just spending time with friends before the holidays. It also helps me get some good practice on making Christmas goodies and deserts!

I hope this Christmas season fills you with warmth and love and joy.

Much love. Much grace.

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