The List 2016 Summary - The "Hits" and the "Almosts"

I meant to tie up the loose ends of my 2016 List in early January, but that didn't happen. So, he we are, and it's halfway through muther-effin April , and it's finally happening. I'm cutting myself some slack here, because my version of 2017 started off on some shaky, depressed and wary ground...and then I sold some consulting projects, and THEN I started an intensive yoga teacher training program, and got my butt all busy and running in a million directions, ok? So, things are starting to settle down again, but I'm still working to find my footing with this whole write regularly game.

Even though we're now in "Q2" of 2017, I don't want the chance to reflect on the 2016 List to slip away, especially because one of the things I enjoy about The List is the new experiences and moments of fun that it brings, and I get a lot of personal satisfaction going back and re-reading and reflecting upon my adventures, especially when the going gets rough.

I'm pleased to share that I completed 9 items from the 2016 list. Yes, it's 4 short of my goal to check off 13 items -- but frankly I think a few of my 9 should count for double duty. I mean, B & I bought a house! A HOUSE! That's a pretty major item to tackle! Also, I came really close on 5 items from my list. OK fine, so maybe saying that I came close to checking off "pet a penguin" from my list is a bit more than a stretch, but since my opinion is the one that counts here, I'm going to go with it.  So, there you have it. Once I include the 5 "almosts", then I'm actually AHEAD of the game, at 14!

Here's a quick recap of "The Hits"  

12. Visit a winery I've never been to before - This one was fun! I checked this item off x2 with a gorgeous, picturesque boutique winery in NoCal, and a quaint little gem in SW Michigan. I love me some crushed, fermented grapes!
14. Go to a candlelit Yoga class - A serene and peaceful practice, though admittedly my timing was a bit off with this item. Heading to a candlelit class in the peak of summer and late sunsets made the candles themselves a bit moot. I think I'll have to give this one another go-round.  On a different note, the write-up for this item, is one of the most read entries on my blog!
20. Write a Goodreads book review - I've somewhat gotten over my "write fright", which is a made up phrase akin to stage fright, but it's for publishing writing. Yes, it's kind of funny and weird that I experience "write fright" given I write a blog, but there you have it.  I guess I worry that if anyone reads my analyses, they may think I'm shallow and 'not smart.' But, I've now reviewed 6 books, and it turns out I'm not concerned with what other people think. Victory, yo!
43. Plant an herb garden - Dream big, yeah? Well, B & I bought a house, and then I planted some herbs in the backyard. Simple pleasures!
45. Find a family ancestral relationship to someone famous, living or dead - This is worthy of its own entry, but I never got around to writing it up. Here's the gist: I went to visit my family in my hometown of Kzoo, MI last Oct. While I was there, my dad took my sister and I to the Gilmore Car Museum, which houses a small exhibit dedicated to my great, great uncle, JB Rhodes. Considered, the "patent King" of Kalamazoo, he invented and patented numerous gadgets, from Razor blades to fishing lures, to car parts. One of his inventions, a device for railroad cars, was instrumental in building the Panama Canal. WAAAY ahead of his time, Rhodes even invented a navigation device for cars, back in the 1920s.  Here's a picture collage of me at the Gilmore Car Museum, including a few shots of the JB Rhodes exhibit.

 At the Gilmore Car Museum in Kalamazoo, MI.

At the Gilmore Car Museum in Kalamazoo, MI.

56. Run around all 3 lakes in the chain at once (Harriett, Calhoun, Isles) - I'd been meaning to do this for years, and one beautiful, breezy fall day, I finally did it - all ~10 miles. 
76. Become a homeowner - This one should count for extra bonus points! And since I make the rules, I'm going to go ahead and reward myself accordingly.
102. Work the polls at the presidential election - This was a big one too, and one of the coolest things I did last year. It deserves more of a write-up than I'm going to give it now. I am so proud to have served my city and country as an Election Judge, helping people to vote. The polling place where I was stationed ended up being the 2nd busiest precinct (out of 132 in MPLS) for same day registration and voter turnout. I firmly believe in the right to vote - and that we should make voting EASIER and not HARDER for all US citizens of legal voting age.
103. Make spaghetti squash - Spaghetti squash is delicious. And it turns out, involves using a big fucking knife to prepare it, and is kind of terrifying to make. They should call it "Machete squash" amiright?!? Ahem. Seriously though, I had to look up a Spaghetti Squash YouTube video to figure out how to cut open my spaghetti squash. The woman in the video calls her knife, "the bad boy."  Yikes!  The entire time I was hacksawing my Machete Squash, I was worried I was going to lose a finger. 

And here are the "Almosts" 

4. Take a Spanish class. - OK, so I didn't take an actual Spanish "class." But, I did download the DuoLingo App, and had a 50-day practice streak going for a while, so that kind of counts for something, no? I've fallen off the wagon and need to get back on board if I'm ever going to learn.
8. Run a 5k in under a half hour. - I came close to this one, but didn't quite hit the mark. When my sister came to visit last April, we signed up for the Goldy's Run 5K.  I finished with a time of 31:43 (10:13 min/mile). I've still got a lot of time to shave off (34 seconds/mile, to be exact). However, I've come a long way already. and I finished in the top 3rd overall (for women in my age division) and top half overall.
23. Relive B and my first date in Chicago. -  Our first date, back on January 5 (or 6), 2007 involved dinner at Kinzie Chop House followed by drinks at a piano bar. This summer, we took a weekend jaunt to the city, and enjoyed dinner at the chop house. How has it been 10 years already?! A
63. Pet a Penguin. - Yeah yeah,  I already confessed that came nowhere CLOSE to petting a penguin. BUT, I did visit the new Penguin exhibit at the Detroit Zoo with my husband and in-laws, and it was all kinds of fun and adorbs!  Here is a photo of my new penguin friends.

 Visiting the Polk Penguin Conservation Center at the Detroit Zoo

Visiting the Polk Penguin Conservation Center at the Detroit Zoo

80. Buy coffee for a stranger. I didn't buy coffee for a stranger, but when I was flying to SFO for my best gf's bachelorette party, I managed to score a free smoothie, and happily gifted it to a stranger in line...who happily accepted!

Whew!  So, that's 2016! Now, onto the 2017 List adventures. I'm already well on my way with some big ones for 2017, so I'd better get to writing. Weeee!