Goals Good Life

30 Before 30 List: Things to Do in the Last Year of My Twenties!

June 30, 2012

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I’m turning 30 soon — well technically I have to turn 29 first, which gives me about 13 months to do a 30 Before 30 list. As mentioned, I decided to take a break from the 101 things in 1,001 days list this year. My bff started a 30 before 30 list, so like a good clone I’m copying her! Turning 30 is just part of the adventure of life. But it does seems like such a big milestone. Like I should have my life more “figured out”. Whatever that even means!

When I started writing down ideas for my 30 Before 30, that made me realize that I have already done a ton of exciting things. Like travel solo, quit my job to travel around the world, go skydiving, take control of my finances etc. So with this list, it’s part aspirational, part achievable, but mostly to have fun and see if I make things more of a priority, kind of like how things went on my Life List.

Let the listomania begin…

What is a 30 Before Thirty?

A 30 Before 30 List is a list of things to do before 30 [years old]. The number is just a fun way to match your years… so 30 things to do before you turn thirty. The idea is that 30 always seems like this “big” life change age! A new decade and age range bracket. Goodbye to your 20s! So making this list is kind of a way to think about some big things and fun things that you would like to accomplish while you’re still in your 20s! Kind of a bucket list or checklist for the year(s) leading up to 30. Here’s my list…

My 30 Before 30 List:

1. Buy a house

This was on my list before I bought a house, lol. Buying a house seems like such a grown-up thing to do. I didn’t think I would be buying a house so soon after my return to real post-travel life. But the auction came up, there was a homebuyer credit going, and no one bid up my offer! So now it’s mine.

CompletedI bought a condo at an auction

2. Visit Iceland

After traveling around the world, I of course, still have a ton of places on my proverbial list. Iceland is one of them. I ended up finding cheap tickets to Reykjavik for $438, that sealed the deal. Traveling to Iceland in November is no joke, only six hours of daylight. I am looking forward to going again in summer.

Completed10 Things I Love about Iceland

Iceland in November

#3. Run a half marathon

I started training for a marathon in 2007 and then injured myself from ramping up too quickly from zero to 100 miles in two months. They most I ran/walked was 13.5 miles but I don’t consider that a half marathon. I would like to do a real half marathon and train for it properly.

Not Completed – but I did the SeaWheeze Half Marathon at 32!

#4. Take a cooking class

This seems like such a thing to do in your thirties instead of twenties. Haha! I have been wanting to take a cooking class at Sur La Table here in Portland. I walk by their cooking room window all the time, and it seems like a fun date night or girls outing. And so much cheaper than deciding that you suddenly want to go to cooking school on a whim. Just me?

Completed – I took a Provencal Sunday Supper cooking class and then a year later a mastering macarons cooking class!

making macarons cooking class

#5. Create a home office space for working from home

Moving into my new place, also coincided with my job switching to working remotely. It’s definitely been an adjustment. Since I live in a studio, I want to create a space that both functional and fun.

CompletedCarve out a stellar mini home office

#6. Try a health fad – eat raw for one week or do a cleanse

This one is a little funny. I don’t usually try too many diet type things. I’m more of an eat healthy, eat real food, and be active. But I thought it would be fun to try the “raw food” diet or do a cleanse. (hi mom, I know you’re going to leave me an inspirational comment!) –

Not Completed – I did get a juicer and start juicing some though.

#7. Start strength training

Don’t we all love the idea of strength training more than actually doing it? I always say I would like to start lifting, instead of just my cardio-focused fitness.

Not Completed

#8. Learn to ride a road bike with cycling shoes

(Without falling over!) I have been thinking about getting a new bike, like a road bike or a touring bike. I use cycling shoes in spin class. I’d like to add the two together and try clip-in shoes on a bike.

Not Completed – I bought a city bike instead

#9. Go to one new restaurant, coffee shop, or bar per week

This one will be pretty easy, because I love trying new places here in Portland. One per week is 52 total new places for my 29th year.

Completed1 new restaurant (or coffee shop) per week


#10. Do yoga everyday for a month

I’ve done some yoga challenges before, but I’d like to try to do it every day for a month, or at least 6 days a week for a month (to have a rest day).

CompletedDo yoga everyday for a month

#11. Learn a hard yoga pose

I first thought about learning the Tittibhasana (Firefly) and then switched to Pincha Mayurasana – Forearm stand pose. I hijacked this one off my bff’s list. Ha!

Not Completed

#12. Get a new iPhone

Yes, I was one of those people without a glorious iPhone for the longest time ever. Don’t worry, I got it for myself as a birthday present.

CompletedGet a new iPhone

#13. Go backpacking

I want to go actual backpacking (as-in: carrying a backpack into the forest, not schlepping around the globe). I’ve been kayak camping, tent camping, and car camping my whole life, but still not backpacking!

Not Completed

#14. Take a silver jewelry making class

Crafter-alert! I’ve been wanting to take a jewelry making class and see what it’s like to create a necklace or ring or something. But without all the work of researching and getting tools and supplies. This sounds like a fun class to do with a friend.

Not Completed

#15. Road trip Hwy 101 from Oregon to California

I have always wanted to take a roadtrip south on Hwy 101 from the top of Oregon to California – starting in Astoria. And I would like to stay in that lighthouse hostel near San Francisco!

Not Completed

#16. Try a new workout class that isn’t my style

I usually take the same kind of workout classes – spin, kickboxing, yoga. I would like to try a new class that isn’t ‘my style’: belly dancing or zumba or something cringe-worthy like that


#17. Ask 12 people their favorite book and read it

I love the idea of reading books that people you know and love have a strong connection to. We’ll see how hard this one is to complete. 12 would be one book a month.

Half Completed – I asked 12 people, but I didn’t read all their books, lol

#18. Try kiteboarding or SUP

I want to try stand up paddleboarding or kiteboarding. I feel like these would both be really fun adventures, although kiteboarding seems like it would take a bit more time and learning curve.

CompletedI went SUP-ing in Maui

#19. Volunteer again

I used to spend more time volunteering, and then with job searching and then working it was fallen off my radar. I’d like to remedy that.

Not Completed

#20. Get some transportation – a car, scooter or new bike

After returning from my RTW trip, I haven’t rebought a car. I take public transit (bus and streetcar), car share, walk, and ride my old clunky bike. I would like to get an upgrade in this department.

CompletedI got a new bike – an orange mixte city bike!

#21. Visit a spa for a whole day

Well this one is not really my jam. I don’t know what I would do at a spa for a whole day, or how I would pay for it. But I like the idea of it. Or doing a DIY yoga/spa vacay with my bff.

Not Completed – But last year we did a massage and Edgefield soaking pool day

#22. Eat [hyper] local for one week

You would think this one would be super easy in Portland. I need to define what hyper local means to me though. I love eating in season, especially during summer in the Pacific Northwest.

Not Completed

#23. Cook a 5-course meal & have a dinner party

I love to cook, but I usually do one item meals, or a main dish and a side. Occasionally, I will also make a dessert. So I’m more of a 3 course meal cook. I love the idea of trying to cook a 5 course meal and having a dinner party. But this could be an either / or.

Half Completed – No 5 course meal, yes to a dinner party

#24. Buy matching lingerie

Doesn’t it just seem like a grown-up thing to do? To clean up your underwear drawer, and have matching bra and underwear. Hey sophisticated lady who is almost 30.


#25. Start a grown-up alcohol collection

I have been wanting to research and create a liquor collection or bar cart area or something. And learn more about different cocktails. So I should also declare a signature drink!

CompletedStart a grown-up liquor collection

alcohol collection drinks to stock in home bar

#26. Buy a little black dress LBD

Now this one is totally something doable and that I should have in the last year of my twenties. Right? Buy a little black dress! Note: not navy, grey, or a sundress… this one is going to be a challenge for me.


#27. Visit all the breweries in Portland

The hard part about living in a city with a lot of breweries is that more are constantly opening. You can have a list that you’re working on and so close to finishing and then a new one opens. Ha! So I would like to finish my list of visiting all the breweries in Portland.

80% Completed – 6 left on my Portland breweries list!

#28. Ask a guy out

I seriously have never done this. What is my deal! So I have started online dating off and on again. And it should be a lot easier to ask someone out online right?


#29. Visit a new National Park

No, not a new one, but a new to me US National Park. I haven’t been to a ton of the national parks. I would like to see more of my own country.

CompletedVisited San Juan Islands National Historical Park

#30. Go on a group bike ride

Pedalpalooza is every year here in Portland in June. I would like to make a point to trying one of the rides this year.

Completed – technically just after my birthday

And there you have it! Have you thought about making a time-constrained bucket list?

Turning 30!

Update: I have entered a new decade of life!

Turning 30

After turning 30 in June, I had completed about 50.5% of the items on my list. A few favorites include: visiting Iceland, buying my first house, trying standup paddleboarding, biking the San Juan Islands, buying a mixte bike, doing yoga for a month, and going to 200ish new restaurants. It’s been super fun to look back at all the stuff I did manage to accomplish over the last year. On to the next list! 40 Before 40, anyone?

sign photo by 96dpi

  • Steve
    May 28, 2010 at 2:38 am

    great list like the visit iceland part! BEST country in the world !!

  • Ana
    May 14, 2010 at 6:24 am

    great list like the visit iceland part !
    BEST country in the world !!

  • CëRïSë
    May 13, 2010 at 11:59 am

    Great list! I had to google Tittibhasana, though, and that was kind of terrifying.

  • Andrea
    May 13, 2010 at 7:41 am

    I may have to steal this idea from you (both)! 30 is so daunting, I’d rather go out knowing I’ve accomplished something in my twenties :)

    Also, awesome FOTC reference.

    Good luck!