50 Activities for 50 Years…

I’ve thought about this a lot. I don’t really want one big thing (like a party). Instead of a birthday I’m going to have a birthyear! And I’m going to do 50 things that will make me happy, starting on my 49th Birthday, and going straight through until my 50th. It’s not a bucket list (I already have that in my “Dream Book” scrapbook), but it is things that I know will bring me joy, will help me be healthier, and will be reminders to live life fully. This is my way to celebrate this wonderful birthday, for which I am grateful, for longer than one day.


Get a tattoo for my 49th birthday…

Make a graffiti style logo of my initials (or of James’??)

Make 3 different self-portraits in the style of 3 different artists

Paint a mural on a wall

Make a quilt with Anna

Complete my animals coloring book

Finish “Wreck This Journal”

Be the subject of a photo-shoot


Complete “Couch to 5k” program…OR trot/walk a half marathon


Go horseback riding

Start hiking on the Continental Divide Trail

Literary:  Einstein said: Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death. I’m with him on that – the day I stop wanting to learn will be the day I give up on life.

Release a book “to the wild”

Read Beowulf

Make a list of 50 personal favorite books

Memorize 3 poems this year (including Paul Revere’s Ride by Longfellow, which I half-memorized in elementary school)


Learn to play 2 worship songs by ear on piano

Fall in love with a new band

Watch both The Bucket List and Julie & Julia

Watch Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything

We picked  ”Eat, Pray, Love” from the book by Elizabeth Gilbert “Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything” since it seemed to fit into the project50 vibe. …  The cinematography was truly beautiful, as was Julia Roberts as Liz. In Italy she embraced the pleasure of food and to godersi la vita (enjoy life)  In India she learned how to find that place of stillness within that grounds us all through life’s turbulent times, the place that we in the West so often find difficult to access. And in Bali she found purpose, and, ultimately, allowed herself to love again. A couple of hours in a darkened auditorium with this film is time well spent – it will leave you with food for thought but, most importantly, a nice warm feeling in your heart — review by Jo Blackwell on her Project 50 Blog

Other things:

Learn to milk a goat effectively

Attend a Dog Agility training session and/or competition (with son Jakob?)

Campout under the stars with Jakob and Anna

Get a massage

Pick our own fruit (with Jakob and Anna)

End of the 50th Year Activities:

Make a Paper Quilt (with squares from friends)

Let’s make a paper quilt, you and I. Get a 4×6-inch index card, or cut a piece of card stock paper that size, and make a wee piece of art on it for me. Whatever you’d like. Play! Perhaps in response to 37days or Life is a Verb, a message to me or to the universe, whatever makes you happy. A collage, a painting, a puzzle, fabric, a poem, a photograph, anything! Sign the back (with your mailing address, if you would). I will piece them together into a magical paper quilt and be very very happy. I will sit and look at it for the next 50 years. Idea from Patti Digh — 37 days blog

Starting April 8, 2012 walk one mile per day, each dedicated to one special person or couple in my life.

I’d run the 50 laps and dedicate each one to a special person or couple in my life.  So, I started making a list.  It didn’t take me long to hit 50.  Then, I had another idea.  I would write each one of these people and let them know what they had meant to me.  I would send them a letter and then I would dedicate a lap to each person. … As I was into this process, I soon saw how important this was for me.  Each letter brought back memories and I tried to share them with the person I was writing to.  My mother, father and brother are dead, but still a part of my life so I wrote them too.  I mailed all the letters 2 days before my birthday so that the special people in my life could feel they were sharing in my experience.

But the process of going over my life in a way that gave me insight as to who was important and why, really gave me a chance to see how many people I had to thank.                                                    Idea from Danny – Fulltime RV’ers

Join the Red Hat Society on 50th Birthday J

Trip to London (including Royal Ascot??)


Write a blog post each week, summarizing how I’m doing on my plans…

AND… summarize my week in 7 words

Walk a minimum of one mile per week.

Do one aerobic exercise session each week (Zumba?)

Write down one positive thing about myself each week—something I like about myself, something I am good at, something I have done well.

SAVE $25 each week toward trip to London (by cutting costs wherever possible)

Try one thing new each week.

Do a new thing a day for 50 days. It might just be … reading a new magazine, going to a new theatre, walking along a road you’ve never walked along, talking to a person you’ve never spoken to, buying a different colour of clothing, donating to a different charity, signing up for voluntary work, painting a picture, going to Yoga, writing to the newspaper, planting a new flower, watching a different television programme, listening to new music, going to a different Church, getting up at a different time of day, sleeping with the bed in a different position, changing bedrooms, trying a new herbal tea, digging up your lawn, having sex in a different position, taking up knitting, taking tennis lessons, saying “”no’ to something you are asked to do which you usually say “”yes”” to, giving up chocolate, giving away a piece of furniture, having a new haircut, going to a new sport, holding your toothbrush in a different hand, …

Compliment one person each week (including passing on a compliment about an employee to store manager)

Each week leave an inspirational note for someone to find. Leave the note: in a book, on a mirror at a hotel or in a bathroom, on a bench at a playground, in a museum, etc.


(See Page for more descriptions of these 12 things)


1000 Paper Cranes

Daily Photo Assignments

Preparations to celebrate husband’s 50th birthday

Collect a poem for each day

Write letters for 50 people to dedicate 1 mile walk

Participate in #Reverb10 on-line

Scrapbook about ME

Daily Art Journal Entry

Watch the Sunset Every Evening

Last 2 months open for ideas that come up


5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Project50
    Jun 10, 2011 @ 14:48:01

    My goodness, Jill, this is a comprehensive list! Be careful you don’t pressurise yourself – all I promised to do was post every day and I nearly expired after the first six months. So do add “relax and let go” to that list!

    I just wanted to pop on over and say good luck with your “Year of Jubilee”. MIne is almost at an end, and I have to say that writing project50 has been a joy. It has acted as a catalyst for me, allowing me to connect with so many people and helping me to grow in confidence.

    I only wish that I could help you with your wish to be the subject of a photo shoot, but I don’t think I will be “crossing the pond” this year. Who knows? Maybe one day…

    Much love, Jo x


  2. Karry Fischer
    Sep 21, 2011 @ 07:44:02

    What an inspiration. My 49th birthday is coming up and now I have something to look forward to.
    Thank you. Karry


  3. Vera Hassell
    Apr 14, 2012 @ 06:01:20

    Wow, after reading all that I need to go take a nap. 🙂 Really Jill, what a wonderful goal you have set for yourself. Blessings as you travel down the road to 50.


  4. Trackback: Progress Report… « Journey2Wonder

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