[mighty] life list.
For several years now I have frequented the website of Maggie Mason, creative mind behind Mighty Girl, Mighty Goods, and many, many other mighty things. Around two years ago Maggie began what she dubbed her “Mighty Life List: 100 Things to Do Before I Go,” listing all the things she’d like to accomplish in her life.
For a list-lover like me, this was heaven to read. And hell.
Lists mean possibilities, planning, pursuit; all things I love.
Lists mean failure, frustration, forgetfulness; all things I hate.
Enter stage left: the Mighty Life List.
Maggie (whom I’ve never met, but would love to, so — boom, bonus might life list item!) pushed the list on her readers and friends like a crack dealer. Okay, so that’s not true, but you can read how much she likes to share the transformative things in life to good friends, not caring about (and in fact blatantly encouraging) stealing other’s ideas.
I just love this idea.
Over the years I’ve made hundreds of new year’s resolutions, goal lists and so many to-do lists, semi-crossed off, forgotten and discarded that I could start my own terribly uninteresting edition of Found However, the way the Mighty Life List works, it’s so much better than just filling up a blank page with random things that are immovable, like a Great Wall of Things I Will Eventually Feel Bad About Not Accomplishing Or No Longer Caring About.
It’s about experiences, not tasks to accomplish on this list of how to make yourself better. You’ll be better through the process.
It can be added to.
It can be shared, and in fact seems to grown infinitely more powerful that way. Like a good Facebook with a less moody soundtrack from the movie made of its life.
It inspires action, not in a frenetic American-superlative-bigger-better-best kind of way, but dispersed as it makes sense through the length of a well-lived life.
People, this is a good list.
So, here’s mine [always in progress and in no particular order, of course]:
1. Make my own pasta with an old-school crank-machine.
2. Bake my own bread, systematically and reproducably (i.e. not a one-time event).
3. Dinner at a Grant Achatz restaurant
4. Sew my own skirt/dress from a pattern made from my favorite dress/skirt.
5. Throw 100 parties
6. Get in the habit of grand loving gestures
7. Grow vegetables
8. Cultivate an herb garden [first (failed) attempt: june 2011. ]
9. Send more handwritten letters [began: fall 2011 with my friend Heather in Oregon.]
10. Keep a daily journal for a year [bega
11. Learn how to letterpress
12. Own a dog
13. Take Cello lessons and perform at a recital
Work with my husband in business [began, january 2011: fixer design + in 2012: fixer creative company]
15. Read 500 [more] books: (2011) 1. Jay-Z’s Decoded 2. Jeffery Toobin’s The Nine 3. Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals 4. Emma Donohue’s Room 5. Chris Cleave’s Little Bee 6. Chuck Klosterman’s The Visible Man 7. Chuck Klosterman’s Eating the Dinosaur 8. Simon Garfield’s Just My Type 9. Michael Pollan’s Omnivore’s Dilemma 10. Steve Martin’s An Object of Beauty 11. Laura Hillenbrand’s Unbroken 12. Jim Dwyer + Kevin Flynn’s 102 Minutes 13. Tina Fey’s Bossypants 14. Dave Eggers’ Zeitoun 15. Nicholas Carr’s The Shallows 16. Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs Biography 17. Christopher McDougall’s Born to Run (2012) Jan. 18. Lisa Abend’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice: A Season in the Kitchen of Ferran Adria’s El Bulli 19. Jamie Ford’s Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet 20.
16. Write honest letters to people I admire
17. Tour a beer factory where they have free samples
18. Take a picture each week with one of my eight cameras [rotating usage]
19. Make many lovely things
20. Buying things that are either beautiful or useful; getting rid of those that are not either. (2011) replaced office chairs with eames replicas
21. Document our family trips
22. Celebrate occasions large and small
23. Have a conversation with Maggie Mason
24. Try ethnic food.
25. Tour a chocolate factory that has free samples
26. Pictures with a big bunch of brightly colored helium balloons
27. Go to Greece
28. Cook 1,000 new (tasty) recipes 1. Shrimp Scampi 2. Quinoa & Black Bean Stuffed Peppers 3. Joy of Cooking Blueberry Muffins 4. Martha Stewart’s Pizza Dough 5. Orangette’s Granola 6. Ham & Asparagus Strata for Father’s Day 2011 7. French Toast with Peach Compote for Father’s Day 2011 8. Joy of Cooking Cherry Pie for dinner at my sister’s Summer 2011 9. Mom’s Banana Nut Muffins October 2011 10. Smitten Kitchen’s Dijon Brussels Sprouts Dec. 11 11. Joy Of Cooking Sugar Drop Cookies Dec. 2011 12. Joy of Cooking Gingersnaps Dec. 2011 13.
29. Learn Adobe ID & PS with proficiency
30. Visit a winery
31. Create my own personalized stationery
32. Be a regular volunteer somewhere I love
33. Have an outlandish hair style
34. Send in a PostSecret
35. Attend a PostSecret event
36. Knit a blanket that I would actually have in my house
37. Create my own font
See a roller derby bout [done! 6.18.11]
39. Get on top of my dental health
Attend a Moth event.[done! Chicago, 6/5/2011]
41. Hike Glass Lake + Sky Pond
42. Redesign/build my own website
43. Learn CSS (see # 42)
44. Make 10 things I pin from Pinterest
45. Design my home with intention
46. Run an entire 5K
47. Make an edible bechamel sauce
48. Curate a striking jewelry collection
49. Spend more intentional time with family
now, then. tell me all about yours…