Do you PIN?

I have a new love in my life, and it’s name is PINTEREST.

Have you heard of Pinterest yet?  It’s a lot of fun!  It’s been a really neat way to organize all those snippets of things I see online into categories.  The idea is that each user gets to create “boards” that they can pin items to.  I have a board for food and recipes.  I have one for collecting things I would love to put in my bedroom.  I have a board where I can collect craft ideas, and I have a board where I can post photography stuff.

As if that weren’t cool enough, there’s also a social aspect to Pinterest that is really fun.  You can follow other people and see what they pin.  You can “Repin” things you find onto your boards.  You can ask for feedback on things you have pinned, and you can comment on pins your friends have posted.  I have discovered some really cool stuff since being a part of Pinterest!

Below is a screenshot of my Pinterest page:

I am a total Pinterest fan!  If you’d like to give Pinterest a whirl, let give me your e-mail address and I’ll send you an invite.  Right now you must have an invite to sign up!  You can leave your e-mail address in a comment below, or you can shoot me an e-mail directly at mrs.swish (at) gmail (dot) com.

>Reflecting on my first 30 years…

>When I wake up in the morning I will be 30. It’s not old by any stretch of the imagination, but it does seem so much more mature than 29. My grandmother will tell you that life begins at 50, so perhaps I’m still just starting out. I think that’s what perplexes me about this new age. 30 means I am an adult – a grown up. I am responsible for myself and my actions. I have a job. I have a home to care for. I have pets that depend on me. I have bills. Car payments. Insurance. Financial planning. It’s all very adult-y. Yet to so many 30 is very young. In many ways I am still starting out.

In my previous post I listed 40 things I want to accomplish by the time I’m 40. I can’t help but feel some disappointment at the things I haven’t seen and done by now. It occurred to me this evening that perhaps I need to shift my perspective, and think about the things I have done up to this point. So, here you go…my 30 in 30:

I have:

  1. Married my best friend
  2. Had two jobs that I have loved
  3. Learned about food and cooking
  4. Visited the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
  5. Visited the Baseball Hall of Fame
  6. Learned to enjoy baseball…really!
  7. Moisturized every day
  8. Vacationed in New Orleans twice, and fell in love with the city on accident
  9. Discovered Ikea
  10. Dug my feet in the sand on the Gulf of Mexico
  11. Painted my nails about 300 different colors
  12. Driven to Gatlinburg 4 times to support our neice and nephew
  13. Met new neices and a nephew (Kamryn, Clarissa and Harrison) and have fallen in love with them on purpose
  14. Witnessed a birth live
  15. Acquired three pets that I adore (most of the time)
  16. Lived in 7 homes in 6 different cities
  17. Learned how to cross-stitch
  18. Owned 7 vehicles
  19. Learned to scrapbook and make cards
  20. Bought my own furniture (sounds silly, but buying our own brand new furniture was a real experience!)
  21. Made life-long friends
  22. Tended old friendships from far away – hopefully successfully
  23. Learned that my sister is my best friend
  24. Realized that my brother is one of my favorite people to talk to (it took moving out of my parents’ house to discover both of these things!)
  25. Made some of my mother’s best dishes (Swiss Steak, Kale and Sausage, Pineapple Upside-Down Cake, Beef Stroganoff)
  26. Learned to appreciate family history like my dad does
  27. Received some beloved recipes from my great Grandma, and successfully made her Cherry Delight with my little sister (one of my favorite memories)
  28. Grown closer to my Grandma Alice, and learned to love sitting and talking with her.
  29. Trusted that God’s plan was perfect
  30. Witnessed first-hand that God’s peace is there to comfort you right when you need it

Thank you Lord for a great 30 years. I have definitely experienced some trouble – some innocently, and some by my own doing – but I have yet to doubt that you are King of my heart and my life. However many years you see fit to give me, I will continue to love you for who you are, and thank you for the people you have let me share my life with.

>40 by 40

>My 30th birthday is just over one week from right now. I haven’t feared this milestone until just recently. I mean, 30 isn’t THAT old. When I’m honest with myself, it’s really not the number that affects me. Instead, it’s the things I thought I would have accomplished by the time I reached this point that cause me to pause with mild disappointment.

I know that life is a continuous string of days and events, but for some reason this impending birthday seems to be a do-over point. Much like New Year’s Day to the 10th degree. I can reset my clocks, wipe the slate clean, start my life anew. This is silly because of course I can do these things at any point. It just seems like now is the perfect time to do it. Maybe my poor health lately makes me feel like age is more than just a number. Maybe it’s wisdom settling into my bones a bit more now that I’m (almost) not a witless 20-something. Maybe it’s regret I feel over some things left undone in my 20’s. In any case, I felt strongly to come up with a list of 40 things I want to have accomplished/seen/done by the time I’m 40. It occurs to me now that I left off a lot of altruistic items like, “see doctors cure cancer” or “world peace finally attained.” I guess I assume everyone wants those things. These things are just for me. I must note that I fully retain the right to change this list on a whim any time I please.

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
6. Be at a healthy weight
7. Eat more whole, organic, locally-grown foods
8. Read 12 books per year OR 120 books by the time I’m 40
9. Be in the habit of working out at least 15 minutes daily
10. Find a hair cut that I love
11. Understand baseball
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
17. Improve my complexion
18. Start a great ministry
19. See everyone in my family come to know and love Christ
20. Stop cursing
21. Be known for a dish that I make
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
24. Go to Las Vegas with my Grandma Alice at least one more time
25. Learn to bake like my mom
26. Learn to be rebellious like my dad (to a point!)
27. Become a mother (either by birth or adoption or surrogacy)
28. Find a beer that I enjoy drinking
29. Learn to bake bread
30. Create things that people love so much, they would pay money for them
31. Decorate my home well
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.
36. Worry less
37. Rent a beach house with my family for an awesome vacation
38. See the ruins in Greece
39. Go on a genealogy tour of Holland, Germany and the British Isles
40. Be on The Price is Right

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
  2. Kamryn and Clarissa will be in high school: dating, learning to drive, getting grounded and turning into women
  3. Harrison will be here, and will be a tall, lanky 10 year old
  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!)
  5. My parents will continue to age – hopefully well.
  6. My brother may marry a wonderful woman that fits right in to our crazy family
  7. One or more of our pets will probably die.
  8. We may move once, twice, 5 times! Who knows?
  9. If I remain in my current job, I will have at least one change in bosses.

Some things will continue to be the same though:

  1. Tragedy will continue to strike.
  2. Happiness will continue to prevail.
  3. Matt and I will continue to love each other strongly and deeply.
  4. God will continue to be sovereign.

Life is an exciting journey, and after the craziness I’ve been through lately, I just have to say that I’m so glad to still be traveling this road.