Wednesday, February 25, 2015

He says...She says

He says: "Let's go"
She says: "Not yet"

He says: "Of course"
She says: "Maybe"

He says: "No doubt"
She says: "I don't know"

He says: "I'm in"
She says: "I'm not convinced"

He says: "Give it a try"
She says: "Another time?"

He says: "Why not?"
She says: "Better not"

He says: "One day"
She says: "Someday"

He says: "It's beautiful"
She says: "I can't see it"

He says: "I mean it"
She says: "Prove it"

Friday, February 20, 2015

Reverse 4s Hatzik Volleyball Tournament

Oh my goodness! I can't believe I forgot to actually publish this post! It's from almost a month ago! Woopsies! I am just going to go ahead and blame it on the last four weeks of house hunting stress! -please forgive me!

On January 31, 2015 the hubby and I played in a R4s Volleyball Tournament at Hatzik Secondary School out in Mission. The majority of the other teams/players that were there were very similar to the crew that we usually play against in our Wednesday night R4s League so it was a super fun, good energy day! It's always fun playing against teams/players you've played against before, because there always seems to be these continuously developing rivalries in and amongst the groups.

Overall our team did pretty decent. We had a few bumpy games and also some epic ones. But, at the end of the day, we managed to pull out a 1st place win in the "B" pool! This was the first time the four of us had a played in a tournament together (two couples playing together is potential for a dangerous outcome, especially if you haven't travelled those waters before, heh), but after a few shaky starts getting to know each others play styles, we ended up having a total blast, and like I say, we even pulled out a strong finish for a win!

(From left to right: Lucas, Natasha, Me, Mark, and Lorraine (tournament host))
Those blue shirts were our lovely prize for our 1st place win!


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

We found a place!

With 14 days to spare we finally secured a new rental suite to move into!

On Saturday I was able to breathe a sigh of relief after signing a year lease for a 2 bedroom, ground level suite along the South Surrey/White Rock border. The landlords are an absolutely delightful couple, who even after only a couple encounters I admire already!

Now that I know we have a good space to move into I can't wait to get started on getting the new place all set up and organized! I'm thinking I'm going to try a do a few posts on here for my new set up/decorating process, but I'll see how I feel after the actual moving process. Of course, I'm not looking forward to the packing part, or the physical moving part, but I am super excited to get everything placed in the new home. Deciding where to put which shelf, and which direction to angle the couch, and which cupboard should hold the plates vs. the glasses, etc. I find all very soothing. I hope to be able to share the experience with you guys here.

Pros about the new place:
It's ground-level which means lots of sunlight compared to most basement suites. It has two bedrooms, insuite laundry, a gas stove and fireplace, a dishwasher, a back door entrance which walks out right to the backyard. We have yard access and parking for both our vehicles, plus Mark's motorcycle. It's in an area we love, it's directly across the street from a large park and a pathway that heads directly to the beach. The dogpark is only a 3km walk away and the landlords are an absolute delight and are more than happy to accommodate the pets we have (two cats and a young dog). 

Cons about the new place:
There definitely are not too many, but there are a couple of items that we will just have to look past. It's definitely a bit of an older home, so curb appeal is not great (but who cares, we live on the inside, not the outside! heh) and currently the back yard is not fenced (should be complete my summer time), and the front driveway and entrance are facing a relatively busy street. Also, the landlords have a two and a half year old son so upstairs noise will take some getting used to. The place is also all hard floors (no carpet what so ever), so I'm either going to have to invest in some long term slippers, or spend a few bucks on some nice area rugs.

All in all, even considering all the stress I went through over the last couple of weeks, Mark and I are thrilled to get to move into somewhere new. 

(The first bit of packing)

Wish us luck with the rest of the move!

P.s. I'd love any moving tips if you have any you want to share!

Yours Truly by Annabel Pitcher

Here is book #3 completed in 2015! So as per my growing routine, here is my summary, review and favourite quotable moments:

Set in England, this novel is about Alice (aka Zoe) a high school student, confessing the events leading up to the death of her "boyfriend" by writing subsequent letters to Mr. Stuart Harris, a death row inmate. The novel includes topics of love, fear, betrayal, controversy, and guilt. Throughout the novel Alice struggles choosing between two love interests, between a future in law vs. writing children's books, and dealing with the constant fear of her parents getting divorced based on the continuous arguing and resentment that goes on in their household.

Overall I really liked the idea of this book. I liked that the story progressed through this unconventional relationship between Zoe and Mr. Harris. It created a relatively unique dynamic to follow along with. As for the ending, I don't want to spoil anything in case you plan on reading this, but I didn't care for it in that, I didn't like that Zoe was left with this undeserved title of girlfriend because it felt very forced. Maybe that was the exact intention of the author but to me it felt a little too contrived. Overall, I thought the writing was well done, and it was an easy read. I would recommend this novel for anyone struggling with any sort of guilt, family pressure or strain, or moral dilemma. I think the writing is best suited to high school readers.

Quotable moments:
"The problem Mr. Harris is this is real life, not fiction, so I wanted to reflect how it actually happened. In real life, things don't build up nicely to a climax. In actual fact, moments occur out of the blue and there's no warning,..." pg. 68
"...and that was the only evidence in the whole world that something inside me felt broken." pg. 74

"'A new season of Top Gear starts tonight,'" pg. 86

"It wasn't just dancing. It was living. Really living, like imagine the width of a moment rather than the length, and two people determined to fill every last millimetre of it." pg. 91

"I like winter and I like the dark and I like cats and I like the rain and I like walking up mountains and sitting at the top in the fog. That's all I need to know about my life right now. It's pretty simple. And I can experience it all for free." pg. 111

"'You're just a girl I keep bumping into. Someone I barely know.'" pg. 159

"My hands slammed against the cold glass door, and I left it spinning as I darted across the foyer and out into the rain --- proper English rain, falling in lines, not dots, splattering my skin and soaking my hair and drenching my clothes." pg. 204

"'Your voice changes when you smile.'" pg. 219

"His eyes said You're beautiful and I felt it, too,..." pg. 222

"'So long,' I agreed, because a life without him would be." pg. 255

"Humans. We're all the same. There's no escaping it. Doesn't matter if you're a bald English guy burping the alphabet or a woman killing chickens in the middle of the Andes. Doesn't matter what language you speak or what clothes you wear. Some things don't change. Families. Friends. Lovers. They're the same in every city in every country in every continent of the world." pg. 259

Hope you enjoy!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Sweetheart (=Liebster) award!

First off I would like to start this post by saying thank you to the wonderful Miriam for nominating me for the Sweetheart (=Liebster) award! She nominated me for this lovely award for my birthday, which also happens to fall in the same week as Valentine's day. I could not have asked for a better lovely little gesture at this time of year! 

First off, here are the rules, which I have not quite followed, but oh well, just have fun with it!

1. Thank the person who nominated you
2. Answer the questions yourself
3. Nominate 5-11 bloggers (I definitely don't have that many connections yet so I only did two...heh)
4. Create 11 questions for your nominees (or go ahead and keep passing along the same ones, just like I did :) )
5. Notify your nominees

Here are the 11 questions that she presented to me, along with my answers:

1. What is the most embarrassing this that has ever happened to you?
This one is a toughy! To be honest, I absolutely hate getting embarrassed and for a lot of years I was so careful to avoid it at all costs, but lets be honest, no matter how careful we are, things are still going to happen, and well there was no fun in avoiding situations just because something bad might happen. I think I will go with this one though:
When I was in high school, probably grade 10ish, one of my sisters had a bunch of her friends over (some of which were also my co-workers). We were all outside in the yard enjoying the sunshine, and decided to start passing the volleyball around. Of course, everyone having a non-chalant attitude, just casually passed the ball around, but me being competitive, and a perfectionist, I was using my proper volleyball passing technique. Well, if any girl has every tried playing volleyball in a pair of fitted jeans, they have probably experienced this as well. Sure enough I squatted down to make my bump, and without a doubt, my pants ripped straight up the crotch all the way to the back. Of course, everyone heard the pants tearing, but I tried to hide my beat red face and quickly started back pedalling my way into the house. I was mortified. All my sisters older friends, and co-workers saw my bare bare bottom (if only I had been wearing full underwear instead of a thong at the time). 

2. Do you have any experiences that were utterly life-changing? What happened?
When I was only about 10 years old, my 14 year old sister at the time, went into cardiac arrest on boxing day. She was sitting at the computer and just collapsed, falling limp out of her chair. I wasn't in the room at the time, but I heard the thump and went running upstairs to see my sister on the floor, unconscious, and my dad on the phone with 911 in a panic. 
At the time I think I was too young to really comprehend what was actually happening, and thankfully my sister pulled through and made a full recovery, but, the whole experience from the moment I run up those stairs, to waiting at my aunts house to hear any news, to visiting my sister in the ICU, to visiting her after her surgery, and then welcoming her home when she finally came back, I think it would have been impossible for that to have not changed me. 

3. What did you study/major in when you were in school?
Immediately after high school I upgraded Biology 12, Math 12, and Physics 12 courses at Langley Education Centre.
I then went to Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Surrey where I got my Certificate in Legal Administrative Studies and worked as a Legal Administrative Assistant at a small law firm in Langley for approximately three years. 
Finally, I went to BCIT in Burnaby for two years where I got my Diploma in Medical Radiography, and now I have been working in the hospitals for approximately a year and a half as an x-ray tech.  
(My stack of BCIT text books)

4. What did you want to be when you grew up? Are you doing it right now?
To be honest, I don't think I ever really had a focused goal or dream job as a kid. Sure I probably spewed off the typical doctor or scientist answer as most kids do, but those were just answers to questions I didn't really understand at the time. As I got older and older, I still never really pictured myself in any sort of dream job, but now that I am old enough to really understand my passions, I definitely want to end up being in charge of some sort of volleyball facility or program, including coaching/training of some sort. 

5. What is one bit of advice that you would give your younger self if you could go back in time?
It's okay to feel what you are feeling, no matter what those feelings are. Don't let anyone make you doubt yourself just because you have different thoughts or feelings than them in any given situation or scenario. 

6. Tea or coffee? Why?
Mostly coffee. I work a night job so on work days I always have my coffee around 11:30pm at night (it helps keep me awake/alert for my shift). On days off, if it's the weekend I also tend to stick with coffee as well if I'm going to be running around doing some errands (I need that extra boost of energy). That being said, if I'm just having a lazy day cozied on the couch, reading a book, or watching a movie by the fire, then I like the comfort of a nice hot, hot cup of tea in my hands. 

(Tim Horton's french vanilla is my absolute favorite!)
7. If you could change your first name to anything you wanted, what would it be?
I've always liked those kind of gender neutral unique names, but nothing with funky spelling. I grew up with a tough last name, and it definitely gets tiresome having to spell and pronounce it constantly for people. 

8. Have you ever spent a few days binge-reading a blog? Whose was it? Why?
You betcha! Farmgirlmiriam was the first blog I ever really learned about. Sure I'd seen lots of blogs on the internet just from pinterest links and what not, but Miriam's was the first one that I actually took the time to really appreciate. She showed me it one day while we were at work together, and that afternoon I went home, and read back post after post as far as my eyes would let me!

9. Who is your biggest role model? Why?
Definitely, my husband, Mark. His attitude and just the way he lives life is what I find so inspiring. He takes things seriously when absolutely needed, but otherwise, he just has this light breezy air about him. He takes things as they come, doesn't sweat the small stuff, and just has this energetic passion for living a full life!
(My wonderful husband)
10. If you could spend a day with anyone from Friends, who would it be and why?
Gunther. I bet he knows more about each and every one of those characters than anyone else!

11. What is the very first thing you do every morning?
Usually moan and groan in agony knowing that I have definitely not gotten enough sleep. Then, I usually grab the pup and force some snuggles out of him, and then if it's the weekend, I definitely give the hubby a big fat kiss on the cheek (no one likes morning breath!). After a few big stretches generally I get up and either jump straight into the shower or throw on my sweats and head out to walk the dog around the neighbourhood. 

Thank you so much for the great questions Miriam! I am going to go ahead and pass these right along to the following bloggers who I have the pleasure of knowing in real life as well and are absolutely deserving of a sweetheart award:
Nicole & Rachel.

Thanks again so much Miriam for the nomination! 

Hope you all enjoyed!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Happy 26th birthday to me!

Only a short post today...

Happy 26th birthday to me! 

Last night we went out to celebrate with some friends by having a breakfast dinner at IHOP, and then came back to our place and just lounged around for a few hours. Nothing to wild, but just a nice evening with good quality company. 

Here is my outfit from the night:

(Outfit for my 26th bday breakfast dinner at IHOP)
And since today is my actual birthday I decided to post a morning photo of myself with the couple of gifts I was lucky enough to receive! I got a scale from my hubby (yes I have been wanting one for forever!), a lovely bottle of red wine from Lucas and Tasha (typically I'm not a wino, but apparently this one is lovely so I'm excited to give it a try), and I got a French version of the first Harry Potter book from Jessamine (I can't wait to start improving my french skills)!

(Birthday morning showing off my lovely presents)
We spent the afternoon today at the dog park with one of my best girlfriends Sarah, and her new puppy Cooper, and then tonight the hubby and I will be heading to my parents for a family birthday dinner. My mom is making me crepes (can you tell I have a thing for breakfast food?). 

(Captain and Cooper hanging out at the Aldergrove dog park)

Anyway, that is all for today!

Take care

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Strike back!

So you may recall my Belly Bulge  post from a few months ago where I was highly traumatized by the changes in my body shape do to my lack of physical activity. Well shortly after that I got my butt back in gear and was going to the gym pretty regularly. However, as usual, I quickly slipped back into my old habits of bumming around. I'd been blaming my new position at work (being on nights I constantly feel tired) but really, it was no excuse. 

Well I'm proud to announce that my motivation struck back! I've started jogging while I'm at the dog park with the pup and I also found three different "workout challenges" that I'm following. The workouts themselves aren't anything too extreme, but with the combination of the three of them I have a pretty well rounded workout. Another huge benefit/motivator for me is that even doing all three workouts combined, it only takes me about 30 minutes to complete them all (45mins if I'm moving really slowly), so it's a workout that I don't really have to "plan" to do, I can just squeeze it in right before jumping in the shower. 

Also, not to toot my own horn, "toot" "toot" but, I've even started to improve my eating habits. Now, don't get me wrong, it's not like I'm eating 100% healthy, but I am eating much more controlled portions. I've stopped just sitting down and eating an entire bag of chips (I still do it with popcorn, woops!), or an entire bar of chocolate in one brief sitting. Being on nights I thought it was going to make it a whole lot worse, but I think it has actually helped. I am eating at more predictable/scheduled times, instead of just out of boredom. 

I just finished week two of trying out these workouts so I thought I would post a progress it goes (please don't judge):

(Two weeks after starting my combo workouts - p.s. don't mind the outfit, I was still in my pjs!)
That is all for today!

Friday, February 6, 2015

Volleyball Terminology: Campfire!

Who would have thought there could be camp fires in volleyball. Picture this, everyone sitting around a camp fire, not in motion, just people, side by side, mesmerized by the flames. 
(From left to right: Nicole, Matt, Mark, James & Sarah)
Well, in volleyball a camp fire is referenced when the ball is put in the air (either by the opposing team or sometimes your own team) and then either one of the following two events occurs: 

1) Both players think each other is going to play the ball, so neither player goes for it and the ball lands right in between them;

2) Both players think it's their ball to get, and call for it, but then upon hearing the other player call for it, no one goes for it and again, the ball lands right in between both players, and they are left just staring at each other.

Most often camp fires in volleyball happen only between two people, but sometimes it can happen between more. Three or even four players might call for the ball, but then everyone backs off thinking one of the other players will get it. It's a very frustrating aspect of the game, but it definitely reinforces how important good communication is throughout the entire game.

Let me know if you have any questions!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

30 Before 30!

My 26th birthday is coming up in less than a week. Around this time of year I find I tend to get lost in a lot of self reflection. 

Having this blog has also made me evaluate the life I am leading. Am I the person I always thought I would be? Have I done all the things I thought I would have done by now? With a quarter century of my life already over, I've decided to create a 30 before 30 list to help me make sure I'm following through with living a life filled with more than just work and bills. It was hard to narrow my list down to only 30 items because I have a lot of ongoing, long term goals, but here is what I finally came up with:

1. Buy a house
This is something that I thought I would have already done by now, but with the market being the way it is and the fact that that I still have tons of school debt, this was a goal that got pushed further and further down the road. Well, now that debt is almost paid off, I'm confident that within the next four years we will be able to purchase something we love!

2. Take a big trip
I'm thinking something tropical, maybe Mediterranean, perhaps a cruise, or an all inclusive resort. Anything really more than a week and I will probably count it. Mark and I have done a lot of little road trip-esque adventures together, but aside from one trip to Hawaii in 2010, I think it's about time we indulge in something a little more elaborate. 

3. Get out of debt (excluding mortgage)
I am proud to say that between my student loans and our line of credit, we are down to $15,059.39 in debt. Now that I am done school for a bit, and we are both working pretty much full time, and don't have "knock on wood" any major expenses coming our way, I'm confident that we should for sure have a clean slate by the end of this year!

4. Obtain a permanent position at work
Unfortunately this is something that I don't have a ton of control over since most of it comes down to availability of positions at work and seniority. But, considering most techs in my field get a temporary position around the first year mark, and then a permanent position around the second year mark, hopefully a full time position should be coming my way late this year, or early next year. 

5. Maintain 135lb weight
I told Mark I want a scale this year for my birthday, how lame, I know! But body image is something that I've kind of struggled with over the last couple years. During my couple years at school with all the late nights and major stress I definitely didn't eat well so I managed to gain a good 10-15lbs. I eventually got myself back down to the 140lbs range, but I still feel like my body shape and size fluctuates way to easily. One day I'll put on my tightest pair of jeans and they fit like a glove, but a week later I'll put on my baggiest pair, and they will literally feel like they're suctioned to me. So, over the next four years, I am very determined to maintain 135lbs. If I can get lower, great, but I want to keep the goal relatively realistic but still push myself to work hard!

6. Learn photography & get paid to do it
Photography is something I have always enjoyed, but honestly I never really thought much further of it. Recently I've been more and more intrigued by the possibilities photography has to offer, so over the next four years I want to buy a good quality camera, learn some basic and more enhanced skills, and eventually get a paid gig. 

7. Coach volleyball
Since I was 11 years old volleyball has always been a huge part of my life. For a couple years when I was younger I did some coaching and I've always missed what it brought to my life. Recently, I got offered a coaching opportunity through someone from Mark's men's volleyball league. Unfortunately, I have not actually been able to start coaching yet (it's been a crazy few weeks with work and trying to move, etc.), but I'm confident that within the next four years, I will have some sort of steady coaching gig (even if it's just being a a fill-in or helper coach, if that's all that time will allow).

8. Improve my education
I'm leaving this one kind of wide open. I'm not exactly sure which direction I want to take this yet, but, whether it's taking a photography class, a language class, an x-ray course, a writing class, or a technology class, I just want to make sure that I don't stop improving my knowledge. I need to keep my brain working hard. 

9. Take a road trip with no planning
Being an obsessive control freak I think this one is going to be pretty tough to accomplish, but I'm hoping within the next four years that I will eventually be able to let my spontaneous side, even if only briefly, take over! I'm leaving this one kind of open as well, because it can be a trip as small as something like Whistler, or Harrison, but I am putting a minimum 2 day restriction (i.e. minimum a weekend) on it. 

10. Finish that book I'm always meaning to finish but never do
"The Four Agreements" by Miguel Riaz is a book that I got as a Christmas present in 2013. Even though my mom insisted that we (me and all my sisters) read it, for no reason in particular I just put it on my shelf and never really took another look at it. It's now over a year later and I've read tons of other books instead. Every time I get a new book, I look at "The Four Agreeements" sitting on my shelf, consider picking it up, but then just grab the new book and read it instead. So within the next four years, I am determined to finally finish this one! 

11. Do yoga
Everyone else I know that does yoga seems to love it, so I am determined to, at the very least, give it a try. Last year I did attend one class at a nearby rec centre but, it was a stretching version and my opinion of it wasn't the best. Since then I've had tons of people give me a bit more education on the different types of yoga there are and which would be better suited to me and the type of workout I am looking for so I'm using this 30 before 30 list to make sure I get myself back out there. 

12. Do more running events (including a 10km event)
I've run a handful of 5km, 7km, and even 8km events in my lifetime, and every time I complete one I am reminded how much I truly enjoy it. So, I really want to focus on throwing myself into more events and even challenge myself with a 10km run as well. I'm thinking maybe I'll try things like the Vancouver Sun Run, the Underwear Affair, the Dirty Dash (again), the Spartan Run, Concrete Heroes, Color me Rad, and really anything and everything else I can find.  

13. Try 30 Pinterest projects
Whether it's a craft, a new recipe, a home improvement project, an organizational task, or any other of the billions of things you can find on Pinterest, I am determined to try 30 projects. Oh, and don't worry, whether they are successful or not, I plan on documenting them on here. 

14. Read 30 books
I think this one is pretty self explanatory. Bottom line: I want to read more! I love relaxing on the couch, in the bath, at the beach, or in a park, and getting lost in a good book. 

15. Get a couples massage
I've never had a massage in my life, and to be honest, it's probably because I just can't seem to justify paying for something like this. But, apparently, according to pretty much everyone else I know, I am totally missing out, and it's something that I just have to experience. 

16. Get a manicure/pedicure
I had a manicure when I was about 12 (a girls trip with my sisters to San Francisco to visit my Auntie Elda), and I had another manicure the week before my wedding day. Now, similar to a massage, getting these things done, I just can't seem to justify paying for (also, party because I've always had short nails that I pick at, or that have been ruined from sports, etc.) so, hopefully within these next four years, whether it's for a birthday, Valentine's day, an anniversary, or Christmas, someone will buy me a gift card for a couple's massage, or a mani/pedi and then I'll get to see what all the hype is about!

17. Read my Sarah Dessen novels in French
In grade 6 I went into French immersion and continued with it all throughout high school. Unfortunately, since I graduated (2007), I've hardly even used more then a few random phrases or words here and there. For anyone who knows anything about learning a second language, obviously, the more you use it, the better and more fluent you become. If you stop using it, you start losing it pretty quickly.  I'm hoping by getting a French copy of my Sarah Dessen books I'll be able to develop my French skills again, and if I find I'm really struggling, well, I've got the English copy that I can compare with to steer me in the right direction.  

18. Complete 20 different hikes
Similar to my running goal, hikes are something that whenever I complete, I always wonder to myself why I don't do them more often. Nothing beats venturing through a new trail, breathing in the fresh outdoor air, and taking in some new breathtaking scenery. 

19. Play volleyball at Huntington Beach, California
I think this one is kind of a given since I pretty much eat, sleep and breathe volleyball. Even though we don't live that far away up the west coast, I still have yet to play at one of the most well known volleyball beaches in the world, so there was no way I was not going to put this on my 30 before 30 list.   

20. Get my motorcycle licence
Ever since Mark got his motorcycle licence I've been telling myself that I will be getting mine shortly. However, every spring/summer seems to come and go, and by the end of the year I find myself still without a full licence. One year I did get the "L" version, but then I never took the next step (the "skills test"), so eventually the "L" expired. I really want for one day Mark and I to be able to go out on nice cruises together, or maybe even take a road trip on the bikes, so I better get practising. 

21. See Eminem in concert
Not that this conversation comes up very often any more in my life, but any time anyone asks me what type of music I like, my answer is pretty much always the same: "I can pretty much enjoy listening to anything, except maybe elevator music. If I hear lyrics that I like, I'll like a song. If I hear a beat I like, I'll like a song." Usually then they follow up with: "Well, who have you seen in concert?" My answer: "No one...well, that's not true, I saw Velvet Revolver when I was in high school, but only because the guy I was interested in at the time took me. The scene wasn't really for me." Then they almost always follow up with: "Okay, well who would you want to see?" My answer every time: "EMINEM! No body is comparable!" Enough said. 

22. Decide what I'm going to do with my old wedding dress, and do it
If you haven't read any of my previous posts you may not know that I got married in November, outdoors, in a torrential downpour of rain. Even though we each had our own umbrellas to help keep us dry, my big poofy dress (not what I expected to purchase), ended up getting soaked, and I even had twigs caught in the train of my dress dragging around behind me. It's been over a year and I still haven't gotten the dress dry cleaned, it's just bagged up in the back of my closet, honestly probably growing mould or something off the bottom. Soon enough I'll have to come up with something to do with it. 

23. Do a photoshoot
Since Mark and I had a pretty short engagement, we never did a couples engagement photo shoot and since I don't plan on having kids, I'll probably never have a maternity or new born photo shoot. Aside from doing maybe a Christmas card, I'm not sure we'll ever take the time to do a couples photo shoot. And, as far as doing an individual photo shoot, I just don't see the use in spending the money to have some pictures of myself taken. I did at one point consider, for mine and Mark's first anniversary, making Mark a boudoir photo album, but I totally chickened out. And, I've also thought about doing a couples boudoir photo shoot (Mark and I love silhouette, black and white sensual art), but again, I'm totally chicken. So, in the next four years I've got to grow some balls and finally do some sort of shoot. 

24. Build/complete a wardrobe that is functional, versatile, and that I actually want to wear
Fashion has never been my strong suit, but over the years I've slowly started to develop some sort of style that works for me. However, the more I check out other peoples blogs (yes I'm talking to you Miriam), and pinterest pins, I've realized that I'm still lacking in what my closet holds. There are still a lot of essential (and non-essential) pieces that I need to acquire in order to have a proper wardrobe that I can be proud of. 

25. Do a headstand
My hope is that after I try yoga (and fall madly in love with it like everyone tells me I will), and get my workout routine on a tight schedule (so that I can maintain that 135lbs), I will become strong enough and fit enough to put myself into a head stand, in a manner as close to effortlessly as possible. 

26. Visit a Hot Spring in B.C.
I'm pretty sure as a kid I probably went to Harrison Hot Springs (it's only about 100km away from where I grew up), but I don't recall any of the memories. Mark went as an adult a few years before I met him, and raved about how beautiful it is, so naturally I became jealous and wanted to see for myself. I will be more than satisfied if it ends up being Harrison that I go to, but honestly, there are a ton of Hot Springs in B.C. and I will be more than happy to have the experience at any of them. 

27. Find a haircut that I love and can maintain
I've had all sorts of hair cuts at all different times of my life. I've had hair down to my bum, a mushroom cut, a pixie cut, a regular bob, the angled bob, a layered cut, a v cut, no bangs, side swept bangs, I've pretty much tried it all at some point. My goal is to finally find something that is functional and attractive for this stage in my life, that I can maintain and that I truly enjoy having. 

28. Learn how to play chess and actually remember all the rules
Mark has taught me how to play chess previously, but every time we actually try to have a match, I have to get Mark to remind me for every move which pieces can do what. Needless to say, I want to get comfortable enough with the game that I can actually take Mark on. I don't expect to beat him (he always wins strategy games), but I, at the very least, want to give him a run for his money. 

29. Skimboard on my own skimboard
Mark was the one that introduced me to skimboarding, and since that very first day that I tried it I have been wanting my own board (Mark has his own, and that's what he taught me on). Even though every summer when we go out on the beach for the first time, it always takes me a good 20 minutes before I'm willing to jump on the board while it skimming through the water, I really really really want to own my own board and get much more comfortable skimming through the water. 

30. Make my Nona's signature Chocolate Roll
My Nona's (my mom's mom) chocolate roll is probably one of my all time favorite desserts. It's basically a long layer of chocolate cake that gets laid out flat, then coated with whipped cream, and then rolled up into a log and put in the freezer to chill. When you eat it you cut the log into slices and it's basically the most delicious swirl of chocolate and chilled whipped cream. Sounds pretty simple, but I'm sure it's going to take me more than a few tries to really get it just right. 

(The hubby being super supportive since he's already hit that 30 yr old mark!)
I know some of these probably seem a little amateur and pretty easy to accomplish, while others seem pretty expensive and challenging, but to be honest, I just needed a list with some variety, some things to push me out of my comfort zone, but also with some things that are easier to succeed with so that I don't loose motivation. 

Anyway, wish me luck! I've got four years to get through this! What's on your 30 before 30 list? Did you accomplish everything you thought you would?