365 in 365- Kinda, Sorta, Let Me Explain

il_570xN.483656551_25qxAlmost exactly a year ago, I had decided to embark in an ambitious endeavor of completing 365 things 365 days. At the time, it was a creative way for me to continue to try new things while regaining a new life balance, something that was lacking in 2014. The original list was full of mini road trips, photography projects, wish list items and many, many, many random to-dos

Forgive me if this sounds cliche, but there is no other phrase that can describe why all of the items on the list did not get completed. The unexpected happened in my life early in the year, placing me on a winding path for the rest of the year. Instead of focusing on this list that was sure to bring me enlightenment, circumstances caused me to rise to the occasion at work, where I had barely been for four months. An unintended Master’s class was upon me, expanding my industry knowledge and skills sets in a baptism by fire way. Somehow I blinked, and 2015 is in the final stages. In total, 95 items have been completed on the original 365 list. Yet there is no doubt that over the past year, the amount of new experiences, purchases, projects and skills developed total that target number of 365.

doallthethingsWhile all of the items are not included on here, each one has impacted who I am. From discovering my uncanny ability to multitask high priority tasks, to exploring my strengths as a professional, the direction of my future is clearer now than I had anticipated it would be this time last year. In respects to my writing, in 2015 I have had 33 essays published including 20 syndicated pieces and 13 original. My mind is still reeling about that reality. The gratitude I have in my heart for the opportunity to share my stories to help others feel less alone cannot even begin to be explained. Personally, the items that were completed (both planned and spontaneous) served as additional crumbs of insight leading me the path of learning more about myself. Self acceptance and inner peace is still a daily struggle, but maintaining an undistorted viewpoint has become more manageable.

To check out my favorite moments of 2015, including a photo gallery, click here!

To check out a photo gallery of my favorite photographs that I’ve snapped in 2015, click here! 

To check out all of the 33 articles I’ve had published in 2015, click here! 

Below are the list of the 90 items checked off the list, as well as a few of the additions:

  1. IMG_5083Make that vision board I’ve been saying I would make for the past year
  2. Buy a sketchbook
  3. Finger paint
  4. Meet with a financial advisor (you can read about it here)
  5. Pay off my credit cards (one of them!)
  6. Contribute to my retirement fund (bi-weekly 401k set up)
  7. Get an IUD (you can read all about it here)11836816_10155836743385063_7381234250717098400_n
  8. Start writing essays for my way in the future book (way harder than anticipated)
  9. Be published/featured in new publications
  10. Enter a writing contest
  11. Submit an essay to Thought Catalog (technically they syndicated two of my articles- which you can read here! 
  12. Write a list of 25 lessons I’ve learned in 25 years (you can read it here)
  13. Write a letter to a friend I have lost touched with (Written but not sent, yet….)
  14. Sip on a glass of scotch
  15. Pop a bottle of champaign
  16. 11624_10155089108500063_5829636590520800064_nHave dessert for breakfast
  17. Have breakfast for dinner
  18. Eat something I can’t pronounce
  19. Try a new vegetable (rutabaga) 
  20. Go to a piano bar
  21. Eat at Han Dynasty
  22. Eat at the Pop Shop
  23. Get ice cream from an ice cream truck
  24. Eat at a really fancy restaurant (Parc and Fo Go De Cho)
  25. Go to the gym in the morning before work for an entire week 
  26. Take a walk in the rain
  27. Screen Shot 2015-07-14 at 7.56.38 PMWake up and watch the sunrise
  28. Watch a sunset
  29. Make a snow angel
  30. Dig my feet into the sand
  31. Lay outside and stare at the stars  
  32. Dance in the rain
  33. Look up at a really tall tree
  34. Skip stones
  35. Life Interrupted-Bethany DahlstromWish on a star
  36. Lay on the grass and watch the clouds
  37. Throw a penny in a wishing well
  38. Yell really loud and listen to my echo
  39. Run through a field of really pretty flowers   
  40. Go an entire day without speaking
  41. Spend an entire weekend reading at least two-three books
  42. Stay at a hotel/motel by myself (The best way to save your sanity when life is overwhelming)
  43. Attempt to mediate (Still is a bust)
  44. Go to Hershey Park (Brought along a friend’s family and created my own rented-family vacation)

    Renting a mini-van and a family for the day to go to Hershey Park
    Renting a mini-van and a family for the day to go to Hershey Park
  45. Walk through Valley Forge 
  46. Spin in a chair with wheels until I get dizzy
  47. Hang upside down
  48. Play Jenga
  49. Ride another upside roller coaster (at Hershey Park)
  50. Ride a wooden roller coaster (at Hershey Park)
  51. Attend mass at St. Peter and Paul’s Basilica
  52. Visit the Constitution Center  
  53. Visit Franklin Square
  54. Go to the Philadelphia Museum of Art
  55. Polar Bear Plunge (you can read about it here)
  56. Take a painting lesson- not one that involves alcohol (you can read about it here)
  57. Feed ducksScreen Shot 2015-07-14 at 7.56.29 PM
  58. Do a homemade hair treatment (you can read about it here)
  59. Do a homemade face treatment (you can read about it here)
  60. Make my own body scrub
  61. Successfully use a hair sock bun (although it only lasted several minutes)
  62. Take an epsom salt bath (a new favorite relaxation device)
  63. Try Reki (you can read about it here)
  64. Experience a new spa treatment
  65. Try Halotherapy 
  66. Try reflexology (you can read about it here)
  67. Make that vision board I’ve been saying I would make for the past year (it totally worked!)
  68. Spend a whole day not using my laptop (not by choice, but because the Apple Store had it)
  69. Clean out my closet and drawers
  70. Buy a nice poster for my room (Breakfast at Tiffany’s Kissing in the Rain scene- thrift store steal of $10)
  71. Guess Who caught the Garter
    Guess Who caught the Garter

    Be a bridesmaid in a wedding (my girl is now a Mrs. as of October 2015)

  72. Tell someone exactly what I need when asked, as many times as possible
  73. Forgive someone that has hurt me
  74. Pay for someone’s coffee behind me anonymously (in honor of Weston’s 9th birthday)
  75. Donate blood (attempted to but apparently my veins were too small)
  76. Listen to an elderly person’s life story (this is a privilege that I get to experience quite often at work)
  77. Buy a flask AND FILL IT UP (technically I won a flask at an ugly sweater party)
  78. Buy a silk robe (another thrift store steal- Victoria Secret’s brand for $5)
  79. Buy a star in honor of someone (in honor of my buddy Weston, which you can read about here)
  80. Buy a really high quality dress (Jessica Simpson brand for a cocktail gala)
  81. My first pinterest creation- fruit gobbler
    My first pinterest creation- fruit gobbler

    Buy a bold shade of lipstick 

  82. Buy an overpriced hair accessory 
  83. Watch a Ted Talk
  84. Go to the Crayola Factory (you can read about it here)
  85. Take Taylor to New York (you can read about it here)
  86. Take a photo every single day for 365 days (the app Project 365 was great for this
  87. Enter a photo contest
  88. Learn how to use external flash on my DSLR (still a work in progress but I’ve shot several times using it)
  89. Get professional head shots taken (twice!)  
  90. Learned that the Philadelphia Parking Authority will tow your car for outstanding parking tickets
  91. Put air in my own car tires
  92. Rented a car for the first time
  93. Papal Cat
    Papal Cat

    Made a fruit turkey inspired by Pinterest

  94. Took off from work for 13 days straight for Christmas vacation
  95. Organized a food drive for Philabundance
  96. Stepped in to continue marketing endeavors of an organization after my boss unexpectedly left- 5 months after I was hired
  97. Had several articles syndicated by multiple publications
  98. Watched Christmas Vacation for the first time
  99. Published several articles on Your Tango for the first time
  100. Published articles on Elite Daily for the first time
  101. Published an article on Muppet Mindset for the first time
  102. Had an article syndicated on Yahoo Parenting
  103. Had an two articles syndicated on Thought Catalog
  104. Had an article syndicated on Everyday Feminism887395_10156128581555063_1481667906586922207_o
  105. Had an article syndicated on Psych Central
  106. Successfully pitched and had media coverage for the 1st Annual Feed the Fire Event (you can read about it here)
  107. Won an ugly sweater contest
  108. Tried a pie milkshake from Magpies
  109. Went to a male stripper review for a bachelorette party
  110. Dressed the cat up like the Pope during the Philadelphia Papal Visit- had it showcased on television and online
  111. That time i came into work and 50 pumpkins were shoved in my office
    That time i came into work and 50 pumpkins were shoved in my office

    Tweeted the Borgota because of poor customer service during a bachelorette party weekend- received free cover to nightclub

  112. Interviewed to be on Worst Cook in America
  113. Landed my highest paying freelance job, starting in 2016
  114. Wrote and produced my first ever Annual Report for a non-profit
  115. Purchased a multi directional antenna
  116. Shot my first boudoir photo shoot
  117. Having Annie the Cat featured on several social media outlets, including Meow Mix (you can read about it here)
  118. Took my niece on her first train ride
  119. Took my niece to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular for the first time (you can read about it here)
  120. Went to the Philadelphia Christmas Village for the first time
  121. Went to the Philadelphia Comcast Center light show for the first time
  122. 1800469_10154976737770063_6335199367780726773_nCaught the bouquet of flowers at a wedding
  123. Had a gentleman put a garter up my leg at a wedding reception
  124. Schooled that gentleman by being forced to put the garter up his leg- with my teeth
  125. Had my first chest x-ray
  126. Befriended a person who let me document her incredible health journey  
  127. Produced a short video for a non-profit gala (you can read about it here)
  128. 12027495_10155988911735063_6935925355265988426_nHelped put on a 100-person gala
  129. Had 48 pumpkins delivered to my not-so-big office for a pumpkin decorating contest I coordinated at work
  130. Spent more time writing in notebooks using pens
  131. Read at a friend’s wedding for the first time
  132. Attended two rehearsal dinners for the first time
  133. Stopped a woman from attempting to steal my iPhone
  134. Bought high-thread count sheets
  135. Bought a duvet cover
  136. Went to Dorney Park
  137. Attempted to make baked brie
  138. Started seeing a massage therapist on a regular basis
  139. Learned the importance of using Microsoft Excel

    A bridesmaid virgin no more
    A bridesmaid virgin no more
  140. Had to manage the paper promotional items of an organization- and came to realize digital is more my thing
  141. Watched a family reunite with the hospital staff that they considered family for several years
  142. Had my photo taken with Santa at the Macy’s in New York’s Herald square
  143. Launched my first organizational blog, Next Chapter for Penn Rehab (you can read about it here)



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