Well, another year has come and gone, and what a year it has been. #my26by26 has been one of the coolest, and most stressful, things I have ever done. Back when I was making the list I thought about which ones would be harder to do than others, and which ones I would be able to cross of a little more easily. Some of those predictions were pretty close, others I was WAY off on. Some of the ones that I thought would be easy actually took a lot more effort than I thought they would. I quickly learned which items on the list were really important to me and which ones I didn't care so much about.
I have to admit that when I say I completed them, some might have been adjusted just a little. I figured it was my list, I could fulfill them however I wanted too, right? (That's what I will keep telling myself at least.) I never could have done this without the help of my family and friends. A good 2/3 of this list required help from another person and so many of you helped me make it through. There are so many good memories involved with this list and I can't thank you all enough for being apart of them.
I think the thing that surprised me the most about accomplishing these things is how much I have grown and the changes I see in myself. I learned a lot about Jessica and who she wants to be when she grows up. It's funny how an odd list of goals can shape an entire year of your life. My family can attest to the fact that this past year has completely revolved around this list and making sure I could cross everything off. And I am so glad I did it.
1) Go on a GOOD vacation (in other words- Logan, Tooele, and Fish Lake don't count)
A fantastic trip to San Francisco June/July of 2014 fulfilled this goal. Corrine and I had a grand time exploring the Bay area.
2) Go to the zoo
Jenn and the girls invited me to tag along one day on their trip to Hogle Zoo. What a fun day!
3) Go horseback riding
Ok..so...here's the thing. I didn't actually do this one but IT'S OK because I did the bonus item on my list. (And I still have every intention of doing it this coming summer.)
4) Pay for the car behind me at the drive through
This one was fun. The lady at the drive through window really didn't know how to respond. Makes me wish this kind of thing happened more often.
5) Watch the sun rise and set on the same day
This one was interesting. I did this the same day I hiked Timp. I made Lincoln pause for a few minutes on the hike so I could actually watched the sun come up over the horizon. After getting home that night I drove up to the Provo temple parking lot and watch the sun set behind the western mountains.
6) Go to a NEW MLB park/game
I am so glad I got to finish this one. In fact, the whole reason Corrine and I ended up in San Fran is because they have a MLB team/park. (Just to clarify, I am not a Giants fan, just a fun place to go.) I LOVE AT&T park! Such a unique setting for a baseball park.
7) Have dinner at a "fancy" restaurant
The night I crossed this one off was one of my favorites. I never thought my calling would be the reason I got to fulfill this goal. Such a great night with great people.
8) Pay off my car loan
Yay!! It is such a good feeling to say that I did this!
9) Read the Book of Mormon again
This is another one I am super glad I decided to put on my list. I love this book and it had been a while since I had read it cover to cover. It is such a powerful witness of our Savior Jesus Christ.
10) Sing in a choir
This is one I kind of decided to fudge. I really don't know why I put this on my list in the first place because I really don't like choirs. So, I am counting the violin musical number Katie and I did the Sunday Marcus spoke in church after his mission. Same idea, right?
11) Get my motorcycle license (so I can drive my mom's scooter)
Ok, technically I haven't finished this one. I didn't know that you have to pass the written test before they will even let you schedule a time to do your driving test. And when the DLD is only open 8-5 that makes things difficult for a working stiff. I have read/"studied" the handbook and practiced driving. I absolutely will be doing the rest over spring break when I don't have to take any time off.
12) Hike Timp
This item on the list deserves a big shout-out to Lincoln Hansen. I never would have done this if he hadn't gone with me. This is something that I only plan on doing only one other time in my life (got to hike in from the other trailhead) but after that I don't think I will ever care to go again. Totally worth it at the top but SO FREAKING LONG and SO MANY PEOPLE!!
13) Take a big risk/do something way outside my comfort zone
They day I made this skirt was a very stressful day. I DON'T sew! Not at all. I find it a major accomplishment that I did this mostly by myself and only cried once.
14) Visit all the temples in Utah
This was probably one of my favorites (right up there with the baseball game...) to accomplish. All 14 temples in one year. Some took a lot of creative planning and I had so many people help out and go with me. And most of them have some pretty great stories/memories tied to them.
15) Give a boy my number/tell him I like him
Let's just chalk this one up to experience...
16) Have a water gun fight
This is another I kind of adjusted... but I think a water balloon fight is just as good. Especially considering I ended up wetter than anyone else there.
17) Run a 5k (Let's be honest, this is probably going to be the hardest one. I don't run!! At all.)
Ok, so my foot, shins, and knee decided that running this wasn't really an option. After several pairs of shoes, and many tries, I settled for walking it in under 40 minutes.
18) Go camping
This camping trip is one I am sure my family will remember forever. The moose, the mouse, and the rain!
19) Slow dance in the rain
When I wrote this list, I had some very wishful thinking that along the way there may be a boy to date and help fulfill some of these. Well, unfortunately, that did not happen. FORTUNATELY, I have an awesome friend that stepped in at the last minute and helped me cross this off the list. (Without the rain... I can't do much about the weather.)
20) Take a photo every day (not necessarily of me, but of something legit)
This has been one of those that really changed me and what I am. I know that sounds silly. How can a picture change you? I don't really know. It changed what I see and how I see the things around me. It made me notice things more. I have printed every picture and caption and put them into a book. It is already so fun to go back through and look at everything I have done and everything that has happened in the last year. It tells a story.
21) Get my concealed weapons permit
Again, this is another that I have started but don't actually have the permit yet. I took the class. I have the paper work. I just need to do my fingerprinting and send it in! Yet another to be finished completely over spring break.
22) Hike Deseret Peak
Thanks to Marcus and Katie, I finished this one! It was a such a fun day as siblings to hike it and spend some time together. And this is something I have always wanted to do!
23) Read 10 NEW books
If you know me at all, you can probably guess how much I enjoyed this one. The best part about it is that I read a few books/types of books that I normally don't read!
*The Book Thief
*The Chosen One
*A Single Voice
*Shooting the Moon
*The History of Love
*Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library
*Only the Brave
*Until Proven Guilty
24) Lose 20-25 pounds (this one incorporates the whole eat healthier, exercise more thing)
I am SO close on this one. So close. But, the best part is how much I have come to count on the gym as a stress reliever. This has not been the best school year for me and it has become a great way to work off the stress of work before going home and tackling what needs to be done there.
25) Actually start the teaching blog I have wanted to do for over a year
Yes, I started one. Have you seen anything from it? No, you haven't. After starting it I realized I really didn't want to do it. Maybe it is because I am too lazy to put the effort in. I don't know. So, if you are interested here it is. Don't bother looking at it. There is nothing there. Perhaps one day there will be...
26) Do at least one random act of service each week
This has been another very fulfilling item on the list. I really tried to make each one meaningful and with a purpose. I don't know if it always turned out like that, but I tried. It is funny how when you focus on giving service to others, you notice all the wonderful things people do for you.
Bonus: Get a passport and actually USE it (I originally had this on my list and then thought about the fact that I was actually going to have to pay for all of this myself. Remember, I am a teacher. I'm not exactly making the big bucks. So I am adding it as a bonus. I still really want to do it, but I am not making it "list official.")
I DID IT!!!! Well, I haven't actually used it yet, but I will!! I have the passport. I have the plane tickets. I have a plan. I am going!! (This is why I am not so bummed that I didn't go horseback riding yet. I really didn't think I was going to be able to do this one!!)