101 in 1001

Inspired by Mackenzie Horan of Design Darling, I decided to keep my own list of 101 things in 1001 days! She describes it as a happy medium between a bucket list and a to-do list -- and I completely agree! I want to accomplish things, to see and do and experience, and since crossing things off lists makes me happy, I thought this was the perfect way to challenge myself. So here goes -- 101 things to do in the next 1001 days!

START: July 14, 2016
END: April 11, 2019
(7 complete, 5 in progress, 89 to go!)

1. Create a list of 101 things! (7/14/16)

2.Move into a "big girl" apartment

3. Read the whole Bible

4. Get a puppy! (7/23/16)

5. Attend a Pure Barre class

6. Stick to a workout routine for a month

7. Go to church every weekend for a month

8. Run a 5K

9. Apply for grad school

10. Find my "signature" dish

11. Purchase a new lens for my camera

12. Inspire someone to write a 101 in 1001 list of their own

13. Create 3 meaningful paintings that I'm proud of

14. Learn 3 of my grandma's recipes

15. Learn to tie a bowtie

16. Go a month without drinking soda

17. Go to the chiropractor

18. Start my own business

19. Write a letter to myself to open on my 25th birthday

20. Purchase a Kate Spade bag

21. Have professional cap and gown pictures taken

22. Vote in a presidential election (11/8/16)

23. Learn how to change a tire

24. Learn how to fold fitted sheets

25. Go through the old photos and files on my computer

26. Go an entire day without complaining about a single thing

27. Get my hunting license (8/22/16)

28. Get my concealed carry permit

29. Bake really good cupcakes from scratch

30. Unplug for an entire day

31. Begin a retirement savings plan

32. Get up when my alarm goes off everyday for a month

33. Repaint my room at home

34. Make a photo book of all my favorite pictures from college

35. Memorize 50 Bible verses

36. Graduate from college!!!

37. Create an address book (a real one)

FOR FUN (1/22)
38. Read 5 classic books

39. Go on a helicopter ride

40. Start collecting something

41. Go offshore fishing

42. See an NFL game

43. Attend a Braves game

44. See a polo match

45. Learn to shag (well)

46. Finally make my t-shirt quilt

47. Camp on the beach

48. Go to a drive-in theater

49. Go to the Kentucky Derby

50. Go apple picking

51. Go duck hunting

52. Learn how to play chess (11/26/16)

53. Go to 10 concerts (Dierks Bentley 7/22/16, Gwen Stefani 7/24/16, Eric Church 8/20/16, Luke Bryan 9/3/16, Turnpike Troubadors 10/12/16)

54. Go whitewater rafting (again)

55. Get back on a horse

56. Watch the sunrise and sunset in one single day

57. Go to an away NHL game

58. Go to an out-of-state NC State game

59. Go to a music festival

60. Go a month without spending anything other than on necessities (no shopping, fast food, etc.!)

61. Put $10 in savings for each goal completed

62. Have 4 digits in my savings account balance

63. Maintain a $0 balance on my credit card

64. Pay for someone behind me in the drive-through

65. Leave a 100% tip

66. Donate $5 for each uncompleted goal to charity

67. Send flowers to someone unexpectedly

68. Send snail mail to 10 friends

60. Treat my parents to dinner

70. Go to the top of the Wells Fargo or PNC building

71. Try 10 new restaurants in Raleigh (Raleigh Times 8/2/16, Beasley's Chicken + Honey 12/22/16, Poole's Diner ?)

72. Go to the flea market

73. Go to Pik-N-Pig

74. Go to Britt's Donuts (8/7/16)

75. Try 8 different Raleigh bars (Boxcar 9/25/16)

76. New Year's downtown

77. See the 4th of July fireworks downtown

78. Bike all the way down Emerald Isle to Coast Guard Point (and back)

79. See all the NC lighthouses

80. Visit 5 wineries (Biltmore 12/30/16)

81. Hike (some of) the Appalachian trail

82. Photograph the Shackleford ponies

TRAVEL (1/11)
83. Visit 3 new states

84. Travel to a new country

85. Take a girls trip with my mom and sisters (and whichever other ladies in the family want to come!)

86. Take an out-of-state trip with friends

87. Visit Charleston (again), Dallas, Boston, Destin, Nashville, and New Orleans (Charleston 7/29-31/16)

88. Go to the Spy Museum and the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

89. Go on a legitimate road trip

90. Visit Cassie at school

91. Go to Epcot and the Magic Kingdom

92. Make a video of a trip I take (Charleston 7/29-31/16)

93. Go to the top of the Freedom Tower

BLOG (0/7)
94. Buy a .com domain

95. Create a professional collaboration post with a brand

96. Publish 3 recipe posts

97. Blog twice a week for a month

98. Guest post on 2 blogs

99. Redesign the blog

100. Joint a blog group

101. Make a new list!


Why the Right Person at the Wrong Time Doesn't Exist

I spent so much time in the past months after my last "relationship" (if you can even call it that) examining over and over again the circumstances in each of our lives that led to us not working out. Eventually, I came to the conclusion that we would have worked had we met at a different time, had we not both just gotten out of previous relationships, had we not wanted different things, and so on and so forth. Yeah, we had some really great times together. Yeah, I found him at the wrong time. But overall, he was just the wrong person for me. God doesn't make mistakes in his timing. I don't think he brings two people together to tease them, to say "hey, look how perfect y'all would be together if I had just let you meet five months earlier or two years later." He does everything according to his perfect plan.

"There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens." -Eccelsiastes 3:1

Everything that happens to you has a purpose, and now I've finally come to believe that the purpose of whatever he and I had was to show me how I didn't deserve to be treated. I walked away from the whole thing broken, and distraught, and knowing that I had been done wrong and that I deserved better. That didn't make it any easier, but I knew in the depths of my heart that I would find someone who treated me how I deserved to be treated. 

"Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it." -Proverbs 4:23

I came away so brokenhearted because I had failed to guard my heart. I saw the warning signs. I heard him say that he didn't want anything serious. But I played his game. Because I thought I could change him. I thought I could convince him otherwise. I opened my heart to someone who took it for granted, and that is why the right love at the wrong time isn't a thing. Someone who is right for you, someone who adores you and loves you, won't take your heart for granted. They won't take the love you show them and act like they don't care. They will make it work with you. Timing won't matter with the right person. No matter how busy you are with work, how distraught you are over your past relationship, how much you feel like you just don't have your life together, the right person will make it work with you. You will want to make it work and they will, too. 

So don't stay hung up on the wrong boy for so long like I did. Take what you learned and realize that in God's eyes and in God's plan, he simply wasn't right for you. 


Our Lives, Our Fortunes, and Our Sacred Honor

Happy Independence Day! The Fourth is easily my favorite holiday - warm weather, good food, and patriotism... what more could you ask for?!

240 years ago a few brave British people stood up to the bullies from their home country and decided to form a more perfect union. And what an incredible 240 years it has been. Through the ups and the downs, the bumps and bruises, America still survives. She is still that shining city on the hill and so long as we remember the bravery of those people 240 years ago and it continues to shine through in some incredible Americans from every generation, she will continue her greatness forevermore.

Here is a wonderful reading of the Declaration of Independence from the History Channel's documentary, Sons of Liberty.

Go forth, watch a baseball game, love your country, sing the national anthem. 240 has never looked so good, America!