40 by 40 – Running Out of Time

This morning, September 7, 2019, at 4:59 a.m. I turned 39 years old. I often don’t think that my age makes me feel much of anything. Most times I still feel very young, and really do wonder when I will feel “grown up” or like an adult. And then I get younger co-workers or talk to teenagers at church and I realize that I am WAY beyond that age I pretend I am in my brain.

Nine years ago I wrote a post called 40 by 40 – a list of 40 things I wanted to accomplish before I turned 40 years old. I figured 10 years is a good amount of time to get a list this size checked off. What better day than today to post an update on how this list is going? I have gone through and updated each item line by line.

What is interesting to me as I type this is that most of these unfinished list items don’t seem very important to me anymore. I’m starting to think that I may come to the end of my life having never seen a large chunk of these crossed off. And you know what? I think I’m okay with that. Because as the years have gone on I have found new goals and learned new things and stretched myself in new ways so much that the Katie from 9 years ago would likely not quite recognize herself in me. And that’s good. I think she would be happy with how we have turned out at this point.


Katie’s 40 by 40
(not in any order)

1. Visit Disney World
2. Go on a culinary tour of Italy
3. Go on a culinary tour of Paris
4. Take a cruise vacation
5. Pay off all my debt – Still working on it. Having kids makes this hard. Having kids with traumatic beginnings in life comes with a lot of bills…
6. Be at a healthy weight – Working on it again…*le sigh*
7. Eat more whole, organic, locally-grown foods
8. Read 12 books per year OR 120 books by the time I’m 40 – I actually read less now than I used to. I blame it on my kids and my iPhone…
9. Be in the habit of working out at least 15 minutes daily
10. Find a hair cut that I loveNot sure if I’ve found a hair cut I love, but I have found a hairstylist I love and that’s almost better. She knows exactly what to do to make me feel pretty! I’m counting this one.
11. Understand baseballIt’s probably as good as it’s going to get. I’m counting it. 
12. Get a great camera and learn how to use it well
13. Learn to play piano
14. Learn to play guitar
15. Learn Spanish
16. Read the bible from start to finish – I’m not sure how much I care about this one anymore. We will see…
17. Improve my complexion
18. Start a great ministry
19. See everyone in my family come to know and love Christ
20. Stop cursing – I’m crossing this one off my list. Not because it has been achieved. But because I quite enjoy the occasional curse word, and I refuse to feel shame about it any longer. Prudishness be damned!
21. Be known for a dish that I make – If I had a dollar for every time I was asked to make my green bean casserole, I’d have like twenty-two dollars…
22. See these artists perform live (again or for the first time): Neil Young, Van Morrison, Emmylou Harris, Metallica, Marc Broussard, (to be continued/added to)
23. Live in New York City – even if for just one year – This one is NOT going to happen. And honestly, now that we have kids, it seems like a nightmare. I’m crossing it off. 
24. Go to Las Vegas with my Grandma Alice at least one more time
25. Learn to bake like my momI think I have a good handle on it now. I don’t love it as much as she does, but I can do it! Crossing it off…
26. Learn to be rebellious like my dad (to a point!) – I’m as rebellious as I’m going to get! 🙂
27. Become a mother (either by birth or adoption or surrogacy) – Never been happier to cross something off a list before in my life…
28. Find a beer that I enjoy drinking – I’m convinced this isn’t going to happen. But you know what? I have found margaritas and whiskey. So I think I’ll be okay…
29. Learn to bake bread – I did bake one loaf of bread a few years ago that was really yummy, and I can pretty much bake banana bread with my eyes closed, but I’m keeping this one on the list…
30. Create things that people love so much, they would pay money for them
31. Decorate my home well – I feel like I will never accomplish this! 
32. Have a great garden
33. Finish at least one more cross-stitch project
34. Catalog family photos with my dad
35. Enjoy one last good conversation with Grandma Jordan. – Sadly this one will never be crossed off. Grandma passed a few months after writing this list, and I didn’t get to see her again before she died. I will always ALWAYS have great guilt over that.
36. Worry lessCrossing this one off thanks to Prozac!
37. Rent a beach house with my family for an awesome vacation
38. See the ruins in Greece – Do I really care about this that much? I don’t think I do…
39. Go on a genealogy tour of Holland, Germany and the British Isles
40. Be on The Price is Right – I miss Bob Barker. Drew Carey is great, and has been a great host, but since Bob is gone my TPIR dreams just feel a little less sparkly. 

There. If I can do those things, I’ll be at perfect peace and happiness, right? 🙂

Ten years is a long time to cross these things off my list. As I look at all of these items, I have to think of some things that will probably happen during the next decade:

  1. Tayla and Damon will graduate high school, and may even marry and/or have kids (Both graduated high school. Tayla graduated college. She’s MARRIED and a TEACHER. And Damon is going to be a daddy in just a few months. HOW ARE THEY ADULTS???)
  2. Kamryn and Clarissa will be in high school: dating, learning to drive, getting grounded and turning into women (Not sure where my math was on this one. They won’t both be in high school next year.)
  3. Harrison will be here, and will be a tall, lanky 10 year old (He’s NINE! And such a great kid. ALSO – we have more nieces and nephews thanks to marriage and birth. Being an auntie is so fantastic!)
  4. Grandma Jordan will probably have passed away – one of the great saints of my life. (She’s 99 now, if she’s alive in 10 years, someone please call Willard Scott!) – She passed on December 23rd, 2010 – just a few months shy of her 100th birthday. I am blessed to have been loved by her.
  5. My parents will continue to age – hopefully well. – These two are the feistiest sixty-somethings I’ve ever known…
  6. My brother may marry a wonderful woman that fits right in to our crazy family – Not married, but he has definitely paired up with an awesome woman who fits right in!
  7. One or more of our pets will probably die. – Since I made this list we have lost three: Lucille, Buster, and Pork Chop. We have Applesauce now, and that’s good for a while. I can’t handle one more thing to keep alive in this family.)
  8. We may move once, twice, 5 times! Who knows? – Twice – We were in Veedersburg when I made the list. We moved to Greenwood in 2012, and have been in Vincennes since 2017.
  9. If I remain in my current job, I will have at least one change in bosses. – Big changes, yes. My job completely got flipped upside down this year!

Some things will continue to be the same though:

  1. Tragedy will continue to strike. – yes
  2. Happiness will continue to prevail. – yes
  3. Matt and I will continue to love each other strongly and deeply. – Oh, yes.
  4. God will continue to be sovereign. – Yes, always.


Cheers to me for turning 39! 


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